Orosco’s offseason spent making imprint on grapplers
KANELAND—With his hiring in late-May, new Kaneland Knights wrestling coach Joe Orosco could be spotted last week in the Wisconsin Dells area.
It was anything but a breezy four days.
Orosco helmed the Knights through the Malacek Team Wrestling Camp—through clinics and duals—and feels good in the offseason before the 2014-15 campaign.
“There isn’t going to be a big learning curve,” Orosco said. “It’s just about getting to know the kids, and I’ve seen and worked with 10 or 12 of these kids already through various levels and clubs.”
With the Monty Jahns era coming to an end after seven seasons, the good news is Orosco, an Aurora police officer, doesn’t have to deal with a complete reteaching of what it means to have success on the mat. The last two seasons have seen an uptick in dual and conference success and a steady stream of qualifiers for the Champaign mats. Orosco, a former East Aurora mat warrior, is taking the summer to build a steady foundation.
“It’s a lot easier to go at it with this group,” Orosco said. “It’s less about teaching the sport than it is building up the basics.”
Orosco has worked as an assistant with Martinez Fox Valley Elite Wrestling Club, Knights Wrestling Club and East Aurora wrestling, as well as being head coach for Waldo Middle School in Aurora.
The Knights coach got acclimated pretty quickly in the Badger state setting.
“My voice is hoarse from yelling so much on the sidelines. You’re working a lot, especially with your kids in there,” Orosco said.
Orosco has four months until the ramp-up to the season starts in earnest, but his experience and his learning process stand to serve him admirably.
“Steve Kenyon of East Aurora and Joe Martinez of the Martinez Wrestling Club are who I looked up to the most,” Orosco said. “They really helped me in a lot of ways.”