top of page


NCAA Division 1


Head Coach- Irvin T. Hess

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — Irvin T. Hess of Williamsburg, Va., died Sunday, June 7, 2009.

He was born in Lewistown, Pa., where both his mother, Jesse, and his father, Stuart predeceased him by the time he was 11. He then moved to the Milton Hershey School in Hershey, Pa., where he completed his schooling and then joined the Army Air Force. He graduated from Slippery Rock University and spent the next 13 years teaching physical education and science and coaching football and wrestling in Pennsylvania high schools.

He completed his work for a master of science in physical education, where he also coached the University of Massachusetts's wrestling team. Then he was recruited by the University of New Hampshire to build a wrestling program. During his tenure at New Hampshire, he coached several different sports and served as an assistant to the athletic director.

He was employed as the director of athletics at Kutztown University for 13 years. During this time Kutztown acquired a new field house, enlarged their football stadium, and built new baseball and softball fields. The athletic program moved from Division III to Division II. He served a term as president of the Pennsylvania Athletic Conference and was a member of the infractions committee of the Eastern College Athletic Conference.

Irv had a keen sense of humor. He enjoyed being with family and friends, playing golf and cards, and creating watercolor paintings.



NCAA Division 1


Head Coach- James H. Urquhart

DURHAM, NH - James H. Urquhart of RI, passed away after suffering a heart attack Jan. 14, 1998.


A two-time Yankee Conference and New England wrestling champion, received Rhode Island's LeBoeuf Award as the top senior male athlete and the physical education department's Outstanding Athletic Achievement award. He qualified for the final Olympic Trials in 1976. A two-time junior college All-America, he was a member of the State University of New York at Farmingdale squad that won the 1972 national championship. He won the New England AAU and MIT invitational wrestling titles three times. He was assistant wrestling coach at URI and at Brown and head coach at New Hampshire from 1979-91.  In 1980, he was named New England Coach of the Year. He also coached lacrosse at URI and UNH and was an associate athletic director at New Hampshire. Jim Urquhart, who coached the New Hampshire men's lacrosse team for 17 years and the wrestling team for 11 seasons before taking the position of Associate Athletic Director of Event Management in 1997

For decades, the team ranked among the powerhouses of wrestling in New England. In the final 11 seasons under coach Jim Urquhart, the Wildcats boasted over 100 wins, 18 New England champions and 20 wrestlers in the NCAA Division I championships. His teams had a record of 60-20 in its last five seasons.





In 1991, university president Dale Nitzschke approved the $309,000 budget cut on athletics, leaving UNH with 23 Division I sports, 12 for men and 11 for women with football in Division I-AA. Nitschke also looked into the creation of a Division I-AAA football conference that would do away with scholarships in the sport. Putting an end to wrestling as a varsity sport and effectively removing UNH from the collective mind of the wrestling world. 


1990-91 had been the last year for varsity wrestling at UNH. It had was one of the most successful years in team history with a 14-5 record, tying the team record for most wins in a season. The team had also finished 2nd in the New Englands.

Senior Jim Marcotte, 167 lbs, finished the season with a record of 25-1-2, his only loss coming in the first round of the nationals. The Wildcats were looking forward to the 1991-92 campaign with plenty of talented returners.

UNH wrestling was resurrected as a club sport in 1999 and joined the National Collegiate Wrestling Association (NCWA), the governing body for college wrestling clubs.

uri urquhart.png
David Butler.jpg



NCWA Northeast Conference  


Head Coach- David Butler 

Dr. David Butler was the Vice President of Human Resources at the University of New Hampshire . David was the fourth UNH wrestling coach in the programs history ,but the first coach to coach in the NCWA (National Collegiate Wrestling Association).

As a top prep wrestler, 4th Degree Judo Black Belt, and former National Judo Champion, Dr. Butler brought a love of competition, grappling, and athletic excellence, to the new club program, as well as a passion for developing collegiate  athletes. Butler served as the  Head Coach for 4 years, during which time UNH Wildcat wrestling attracted local  talent to the program and consistently placed in the top 5 national collegiate programs within the National Collegiate Wrestling Association. Many of Butler’s former Wildcat wrestlers are now successful high school and collegiate wrestling coaches.  Dr. Butler is currently an Elite  Peak Performance Consultant/Coach, working with elite athletes and military special forces operators. He continues to be a strong and avid supporter of  the Wildcat Wrestling Program.

The Butlers



NCWA Northeast Conference 


Head Coach- Brian Aparo 

Coach Brian Aparo coached UNH Wrestling for 3 seasons. During his 3 year run the wildcats won the Northeast Conference Regional title all three years and produced 4 All Americans (Tod Thone in 2004, Zach Thone and Jon Gaffney in 2005, and Brian Bumpus and Jon Gaffney in 2006. 

Prior to coaching at UNH coach Aparo spent 2 years at St Thomas Aquinas HS where he produced the schools first state champion and 5 state place finishers.


As a wrestler Coach Aparo was a 2 year starter and letterwinner for the University of Michigan. In High School Coach Aparo finished 3rd in the country in 1994 and was 2x All State in New York State. 


NCWA Northeast Conference 
2018- 2023
Head Coach- Tod Thone

Tod  Thone represents as the 6th Head Coach in the University of New Hampshire's Wrestling history. Thone also serves as the Founder/ President for the UNH Wrestling Alumni Association (UNHWAA), preserving the strong heritage and history of UNH Wrestling Team. 

In his coaching years at UNH, Thone had a 4th Place Team finish at the Northeast Conference Championships in 2022, helping guide 2 NEC Champions / 1 x Outstanding Wrestler Award (4 finalists total with 8 NCWA National qualifiers). Thone has also helped assistant coach 2x NEC Champions back in 2012, in which became 2 NCWA National All Americans. In 2023, Thone also coached its first NCWA National Female Champion / 2023 Northeast Conference Female Champion.

Tod Thone drives the emphasis of student leadership and development. Student Leaders are responsible for the overall administration of the club. This philosophy provides a unique opportunity for students to develop on and off the mat with leadership abilities. This will assist members well beyond their years at the University of New Hampshire.


Thone came to UNH after filling the following Head Coaching positions at Spaulding High School, NH  (3 years) / Kingwood High School, NH (2 years)/ Rochester Middle School (5 years) and forming a pee wee wrestling program called ‘’The New Hampshire Thundercat's’’.


During his tenure he was able to produce a New England Place winner / many NE qualifiers. A NH State Champion and multiple NH Place winners. Thone also coached as an assistant coach at UNH back in 2011-2012 helping send nine wrestlers to the NCWA National Championships leaving with one All-American.


Thone as a competitor wrestled for the UNH Wildcats from 2003-2006 compiling a 100+ wins career. He was a NCWA All- American placing 5th in the country in 2004. Thone was also a 4x NCWA Northeast Conference Place winner, and part of the 3x NCWA Northeast Conference Team Championships in UNH history. Thone was also a 2x NCWA Academic All- American and  named team captain in his four year duration on the team. Thone came from Spaulding High School, NH where he Wrestled under coach/father Joel Thone. Thone was a New England Championship Qualifier , 4x NH State Place winner, 100+ career winner, 2002 NH State Wrestling Sportsmanship Award Winner and 4x Team Captain for the Red Raiders.


Tod Thone holds two degree’s from the University of New Hampshire with a Sport Studies Degree in Recreation Management (2006) and Policy and a Restuarant Management Degree in Food Service Education(2004).


Outside the sport of wrestling Thone currently works as a Manufacturing Supervisor for Lonza Biologics Pharmaceuticals. Producing pharmaceutical drugs from Advil to cures to cancers Thone takes great pride in his work being able to save lives and make a difference. Tod & Meghan Thone are the proud parents of four boys, Gabriel , Noah, Caleb , and Aidan.

bottom of page