NORMAN — New University of Oklahoma head wrestling coach Roger Kish announced the additions of Cam Sykora and Austin Marsden to his coaching staff ahead of the 2023-24 season.
Sykora and Marsden both join Kish in Norman after coaching on his staff at North Dakota State University.
Sykora (pronounced sy-KORR-uh) spent the last two seasons as a volunteer assistant on Kish’s Bison staff. The Wheaton, Minn., product worked across multiple weight classes on the NDSU staff, helping develop NCAA All-Americans, Michael Caliendo and Jared Franek. In addition to the two All-Americans, Sykora assisted in the success of seven other NCAA qualifiers over two seasons. The Bison amassed a 21-7 record with Sykora on the bench and secured the most points at a national championship in program history in 2023. As a student-athlete, he won the 2020 Big 12 championship at 133 pounds, becoming NDSU’s first Big 12 champion. As a result, he was tabbed as the No. 11 seed at the 2020 NCAA Championships, the best of his four career qualifications. A second-team All-America honor from the National Wrestling Coaches Association capped off his dominant senior season.
“I’m ecstatic to bring coach Sykora to Norman as one of my assistant coaches,” Kish said. “He has a proven track record of winning at the highest level and developing wrestlers to compete on the national stage. I know that he will be instrumental in the development of the guys in that wrestling room as we look to build a program that competes for championships.”
Marsden also comes to Norman by way of Fargo after spending four seasons under Kish’s helm. A two-time heavyweight All-American at Oklahoma State, Marsden was vital in developing Bison heavyweight wrestlers, guiding Brandon Metz to three NCAA Championships qualifications. With Marsden coaching him, Metz earned three placing finishes at the Big 12 Championship. He also coached 197-pounder Owen Pentz, a three-time national qualifier for the Bison. Pentz scored one of the biggest upsets in recent NCAA Championships history when he pinned No. 2 Evan Schultz of Nebraska in the opening round of the 2021 championship.
“Coach Marsden and I have worked together the last several years, and I’m excited about our continued future,” Kish added. “His dedication to our student-athletes is unmatched. He has a unique ability to cultivate relationships, build trust and drive positive team culture.”
Kish was named Oklahoma’s 15th head coach on May 2. Over the last four seasons as the Bison head coach, Kish coached 21 wrestlers to NCAA qualification: six in 2023, five in 2022, four in 2021 and six in 2020 (before the event was canceled due to COVID-19). Those wrestlers earned nine All-America honors, and NDSU finished 24th at the 2023 NCAA Championships after scoring a Division I program-record 25.5 points at the event.