John O'Donnell
Team: Yale

      *JOHN O’DONNELL began coaching the Yale freshmen wrestlers in 1929, assisted by brother, Eddie, who’d eventually earn renown as head of Eli physical therapy for over a quarter century. John became head coach in 1945, serving 18 seasons in that role. He coached Andy Fitch to an NCAA title in 1959, whose only two EIWA losses in ’58 and ’59 were to Cornell 2-time NCAA champ, Dave Auble. Andy reached the ’59 league final by upsetting Pitt’s defending national champ, Paul Powell. Fitch dropped to 115 and joined Auble atop the NCAA victory stand, as Yale’s sole national champ until 1975. Fitch and Auble made the 1964 Olympic team.

      O’Donnell also coached 1951 NCAA runner-up, George Graveson, an EIWA champion and runner-up. The 1950 EIWA 4th-place team led by Graveson and coached by O’Donnell would remain the highest school finish through the eventual demise of the sport after the 1991 season.