Assistant College Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year

The Assistant College Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year Award is given to an outstanding Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist® (CSCS) who has demonstrated dedication to improving athletic performance at the college level.

Congratulations to our 2023 winner!

Gary Calcagno, MA, CSCS, RSCC*E

Calcagno is an Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach at Oklahoma State University where he has been for the past 22 years. Calcagno assists Rob Glass, Assistant Athletic Director for Strength and Conditioning with football and Calcagno is responsible for the strength and conditioning of the Cowboy wrestling program. Since taking over the strength program for Coach John W. Smith, head wrestling coach at OSU since 1992, the Cowboy wrestling team has won four NCAA team National Championships, two NCAA Runner-up finishes, 24 NCAA individual National Championships, 17 Big 12 team Conference Championships, 94 Big 12 individual Conference Championships, three NWCA National Duals Championships, two Dan Hodge Trophy winners, eight Big 12 Conference Outstanding Wrestler Awards, two Big 12 Conference Wrestler of the Year Awards, one NWCA National Duals Outstanding Wrestler Award, one Wade Schalles Award winner and has had 105 All-American selections. In addition, three freestyle wrestling team members for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, two freestyle wrestling team members for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, and one freestyle wrestling team member for the 2012 Olympic Games in London were former Oklahoma State wrestlers. Out of those Olympic wrestlers trained by Calcagno, Jamill Kelly won silver in 2004 and Coleman Scott won bronze in 2012. Most recently at the 2021 Senior World Championships, freestyle wrestling member Daton Fix won the silver medal. In 2008, Calcagno was awarded the Bob Dellinger Distinguished Service Award from Oklahoma State Cowboy Wrestling.

Download the Press Release

Award Eligibility

Current NSCA Member
NSCA Membership - Minimum 2 years*
NSCA CSCS Certification
Current Assistant College Strength and Conditioning Coach with at least 2 yr experience (beyond the internship / graduate assistant level)
Not a previous recipient

*Consecutive membership is counted back from the date the award is to be conferred.

Additional requirements listed in the General Awards Criteria, include but not limited to, the nominee must be nominated by a member in good standing and nominees will be sent a criteria sheet to fill out that must be returned with a cover letter and CV/resume before the required deadline. 

Past Award Recipients Include:

2022 - Ryan Metzger, MS, CSCS, RSCC  
2021 - Andrew Stocks, MS, CSCS, RSCC  
2019 - Ashley Jackson, MS, CSCS, RSCC, University of Michigan Boyd, Jackson, Triplett 
2017 - Domenic Reno, CSCS, RSCC*D, Western Kentucky University  Caulfield, Boyd, Reno, Haff
2016 - Matt Shaw, MEd, CSCS, RSCC, University of Denver  Haff, Shaw, Epley, Caulfield
2015 - Bo Sandoval, MS, CSCS, USAW-2, RSCC, University of Michigan  
2014 - Caitlin Quinn, CSCS, RSCC, Florida State University  
2013 - Antony McClure, CSCS,*D, RSCC*D, New Mexico University  
2012 - Jason E. Spray, CSCS Middle Tennessee State University  

How is the recipient selected?

1. The NSCA will market and solicit nominees from NSCA membership.
2. Additional award nominees may be recommended by the NSCA Coaching Program Manager based on recommendations by SPD, SIG, and other NSCA Volunteer Program Leaders.
3. Nominees must meet the General Award Criteria requirements.
4. Nominees must meet the Eligibility Requirements stated in the Criteria Sheet of the award to be considered.
5. The nominee shall provide the completed criteria sheet, cover letter, resume or CV, and supporting documentation of involvement, activities and awards to the NSCA National Headquarters by the requested deadline.

Selection Process:

1. The process for selection shall be as follows:
    a. Nominations must be received before the established deadline.
    b. NSCA Headquarters will verify eligibility requirements and overall points for nominees have been met.
    c. Qualified nominees will be notified.
        i. If there are no qualifying nominees, the award will not be given.
    d. Top three nominees based on points for each award will be sent to the Coaching (RSCC) Task Force.
    e. The Coaching (RSCC) Task Force will vote for the winner.

2. The Coaching (RSCC) Task Force:
    a. The Task Force will be volunteers selected yearly by the Coaching Program Manager.
    b. It will be apparent that the Task Force is impartial to the nominees.
    c. The Task Force will be comprised of >50% non-coaching award recipients and <50% past coaching award recipients.
    d. For the HS Coach of the Year Award voting, members of the HS SIG Executive Council will be included in the Task Force.
    e. The Coaching Program Manager will certify that the policies and procedures for the nomination and awarding process were followed as outlined herein.
    f. The Coaching Program Manager will submit the winners’ names to the Awards and Honors Committee Chair for review and approval.

3. The Awards and Honors Committee Chair will
    a. Notify the Board of Directors of the recipient.

4. The NSCA Headquarters will:
    a. Notify the recipients of the award.
    b. Send regret notifications.
    c. Create a Press Release and online announcement of the winners.
    d. Will verify attendance at the Coaches Conference Opening Ceremony or the National Conference Awards Banquet.

#NSCAStrong #NSCAStrong

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