The 1997-98 season marks the eighth year of Cowboy Wrestling under head coach Steven Suder, an era of consistently competitive and winning teams.
In the nine years under Suder, Wyoming wrestling has become one of the premier programs in the Western Athletic Conference and is one of the most promissing in the country.
Suder has coached twenty WAC champions, four All-Americans and seven Academic All-Americans. In 1990, he placed third in the balloting for NCAA Rookie Coach of the Year. He has led the Pokes to two WAC titles and has been named WAC Coach of the Year three times. Over the last five seasons, the Cowboys have been ranked among the top eleven and finished last year 10th in academic standing.
"Each year comes with its own unique challenges and sources of excitement," said Suder. "Working with first class student-athletes and people is rewarding. This program has taken huge strides both academically and competitively and yet that was all yesterday. Now our goals for the future are even higher."
During his collegiate years at Wyoming, Suder won two Cowboy Open titles and he won the prestigious Las Vegas Invitational once. As a senior, Suder earned All-America honors by placing eighth at 150-pounds in 1979, becoming only the tenth Cowboy to do so.
The Littleton, Colorado native brought a wealth of coaching experience to Wyoming after being hired in 1989. Suder served as the head coach for Athletes in Action from 1985 to 1988 and also served as the associate athletic director for the organization in 1988 and 1989.
"My tenure with Athletes in Action and those international experiences greatly influenced my coaching style and philosophy," Suder said. "It shaped how I interact with people, how I run practices, the way we prepare to compete and my perspective on athletics."
Suder has also coached U.S. international teams from 1983 to 1987 which took him to tournaments in South America, Latin America and Europe.
In 1995, he was selected to coach the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) team in Italy which placed second. The team was comprised of 1995 NCAA All-Americans. Suder also went on a similiar trip in 1996 to Germany.
"It was obviously flattering to have been asked to coach those teams," said Suder. "On a trip like this, you don't have a great deal of input into the athletes training, wrestling or their lives. Prior to the trips the coaching that went on was more in the way of strategical value, and trying to get them ready."
Steven and Deanna Suder have three children, Beau (12), Heidi Joy (10) and Cody (8).