HOF Wrestler/Coach Jim Glasser Remembered
McCallie/UTC Wrestler … Lovett School Coach Died March 8
Many friends, teammates, coaching colleagues and more finally received the news earlier this week that hall of fame wrestler and coach Jim Glasser had passed away at age 68 after a long struggle with several illnesses.
His vast array of wins, trophies and hall of fame plaques make for a sterling resume, but his friendships and the lives he touched far out way all the cheers and honors bestowed upon him over the years.
McCallie classmate Bill Shults wrote, ”All too rarely there are just plain old good people in this world----Jim Glasser was of that rare breed----He has had my highest accolade for years—‘a good guy’”.
McCallie wrestling teammate and two-time Mid-South champ Garnet Chapin wrote, “One of the great ones...a great dad, a great coach and a great friend ... He will be sorely missed.”
A versatile athlete at an early age with exceptional balance, quickness and speed, his childhood friends knew he was something special on and off the athletic fields.
“ What a great person Jim Glasser was in so many ways, on and off the field of play. Jim was my friend from first grade on, and will be missed by everyone he touched. Rest In Peace my friend,” McCallie classmate Jack Goodlett.
From the Gray-Y leagues and Missionary Ridge School to McCallie, Oklahoma State and UTC, the guy with the big smile and even larger heart for others excelled in most every sport he touched whether it was the football, wrestling, baseball, handball and more.
Beyond what he did as an athlete, he had a strong influence in the coaching world
Fellow UTC hall of famer and four-time Southern Conference champ and Hixson HS state champ Pat Murphy wrote, “He was fantastic and in the offseason ran one of best open rooms around. He was instrumental in introducing freestyle and Greco to this area. I think he even did more for Lovett. He is a legend there. He will be missed.”
Baylor School state champ Doug Dyer wrote “Jim was great guy … coached me in lower school at Baylor as well as years of freestyle wrestling in the summer. Lost track of him once he went to Lovett. Then one day he shows up at the mats at Baylor about 15 years ago.
I was working out with their heavyweight and he walks over and says: “Dyer this is where I left you 30 years ago”
He laid down a great foundation for guys like (Pat) Murphy and myself “
Glasser Wrestling Career
3-2-1 … At UTC he won three SEIWA titles, while at McCallie he claimed two national prep championships and a Mid-South title.
His most meaningful win might have come four days after his 18th birthday (born on Valentine’s Day 1949) as a McCallie senior in Feb. 1967 as he moved up two weight classes from his normal 155 to win the Mid-South at 183 pounds and secured the team title for the Blue Tornado.
Two weeks later he won his second national prep crown in overtime at 155 pounds.
In 1966, his first national prep title secured the team trophy for Milton Hersey Academy and following Glasser’s win against a Baylor foe in the finals, members of the M-H team carried Glasser around the Lehigh Univ. gym on their shoulders and gave him a gift – what else – a box of hersey chocolate bars!
Coaching Career at Lovett School in Atlanta
The Glasser numbers are impressive. Actually, staggering.
751-48-2 (93.99%) … dual meet coaching record (retiring in 2011)
93.99% … highest dual meet win percentage in high school wrestling in the nation (at the time of his retirement)
11 State traditional championships
2 State Duals championships
56 Individual State Champions
2 All-Americans; Andrew Aiken (’93) and Daniel Domanico (’09)
16 Undefeated Seasons, including 8 in a row; 1977-85 (91 straight wins)
Fittingly, in his last two times sitting mat side at the Georgia state traditional tournament in February 2011, Glasser had wrestlers walk off the mat as state champs – Patrick Emerson at 189 and Hunter Rich at 285.
“Jim is an iconic figure and has meant so much to Lovett,” said The Lovett School athletics director Steve Franks in 2011. “His impact on our school over the years is so visible as he has impacted thousands of lives.”
A versatile coach, Glasser also led Lovett to state titles in boys’ tennis and girls’ track.
A hall of famer – UTC, Greater Chattanooga and Georgia Chapter National Wrestling HOF – on and off the mat he will be missed.
“Jim was the ideal wrestler to coach,” said former McCallie School, UTC and Baylor School coach Jim Morgan. “He was very athletic, easy to coach and was a leader in everything he did. Simply, he was one of the best.”
Details for a memorial service have yet to be announced by his family.