Matt Dunn is the new wrestling coach at Elkin High School.
“He’s just a passionate and great teacher of wrestling,” outgoing wrestling coach Perry Lloyd said. “He impressed me the first time I saw him working with children.
“I don’t know if I’ve seen anybody more knowledgeable - especially at his age. He’s just a great coach. I feel fortunate my son will be coached by him.”
Dunn said he came to Elkin “because of the youth program. The people around the program. Perry Lloyd, Dale Bartley, Josh Price, Cory Combs, and Dr. John Orta have created and worked tirelessly to foster a youth program which could likely set the stage for a very successful future at Elkin.
“They work so hard to ensure that these kids are granted every opportunity possible.”
While Dunn is an accomplished wrestler and is building a strong coaching résumé, he prefers to deflect any attention from himself and would rather give the credit to those who have built the Elkin program.
Dunn has a storied career as a North Carolina high school state champion wrestler in the late 90s and in 2000, before moving on to the University of North Carolina-Greensboro where he was an NCAA Academic All-American and medaled at many important wrestling events.
Dunn’s experience includes training alongside individuals competing in a international competitions and seeking Olympic bids.
His coaching experience includes four years as an assistant under Maurice Atwood at Parkland High School. The team won four consecutive state titles. Dunn describes Atwood as “extremely influential in my life and coaching career.”
Atwood won eight consecutive state titles at Parkland before commiting to West Forsyth High School in May.
Dunn has also coached at University of North Carolina-Pembroke and Belmont Abbey College.
He has also worked as a clinician with Ken Chertow’s Gold Medal Olympic Training camp for the past 13 years. Dunn said the experience with Chertow has allowed him “to work side by side with the living legends in wrestling.
“Spending an entire summer with Olympians never gets old, there level of commitment and intensity is contagious as well as inspiring.”
Chertow said he has known Dunn since he was a teenager. “I’ve been working with him since his freshman year in college,” Chertow said. “He picked up wrestling quick.”
Chertow, like Lloyd, was also complimentary of the way Dunn works with children.
“He’s got a great blend,” Chertow said. “He knows how to be serious. He’s very focused.
“But he also has a sense of humor.”
Jim Fuller may be reached at 336-258-4052 or Twitter @elkinareasports.