Interview with former Wisconsin Badger Head Coach Duane Kleven
Wisconsin Wrestling Network: Throwback Thursday’s
Duane Kleven came to Wisconsin in 1970 after coaching 5 years at Racine High School (winning 2 State Team titles) and one year of coaching at UW Oshkosh. During his 12 year run as Wisconsin’s Head Coach, the Badgers earned 25 All-American honors (22 in a 6 year span) with 9 individual National Championship titles. In the previous 60 years of the programs existence the Badger had never won an individual National Title and had earned a total of 15 All-American honors. In 1977 the Badger Wrestling Team became the first Team from any University to beat Oklahoma and Oklahoma State at their home gyms on the same weekend.
In addition to coaching wrestling, Kleven had also coached football and baseball. While at UW-Oshkosh he had a wrestling recruiting budget of $25. When he would bring in a recruit that also played football he could use the Football recruiting budget, which was $75!
Kleven has also served our country in the Military for 31 years retiring at the rank of Colonel. He was stationed in Korea and after his deployment continued in the Reserves for 29 years. Duane retired from the University of Wisconsin Athletic Department with “Emeritus Status” in 2003 and since then has worked part time for the National W Club in fund raising and event management. His favorite hobbies are golf, ballroom dancing and pickleball.
The following video interview covers several areas of Coach Kleven’s career. We touch on his High School Military and College Coaching stints, along with why he stepped out of coaching and went into administration in the UW Athletic Department.
Originally posted at Wisconsin Wrestling Network