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 Coaching Staff

Cody Caldwell | Assistant Coach

Cody Caldwell began his duties as an assistant wrestling coach at South Dakota State in September 2017 and continues in that role under first-year head coach Damion Hahn during the 2018-19 campaign.

During his first season with the Jackrabbits, a program-best seven wrestlers qualified for the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships. Three SDSU wrestlers -- Seth Gross (133), Luke Zilverberg (157) and David Kocer (174) -- earned All-America honors, with Gross winning an individual national title.

Also during the 2017-18 season, the Jackrabbits posted a 14-2 dual record, including an 8-0 mark against Big 12 Conference opponents. SDSU finished third at the Big 12 Wrestling Championship with Gross and Nate Rotert (197) winning individual titles.

A member of a wrestling-rich family, Caldwell spent the 2016-17 season as a graduate assistant coach at Grand View University in Des Moines, Iowa, which won its sixth consecutive NAIA national title. He helped mentor 12 All-Americans, including five individual national champions as the Vikings set a team scoring record.

In addition, Caldwell served as a coach for the Viking Wrestling Club, which trained junior and senior wrestlers for high-level competitions, including the U.S. Open, World Team Trials and the Dave Schultz Memorial International.

As a collegiate wrestler, Caldwell was a four-year starter and team captain at the University of Northern Iowa. The Waverly, Iowa, native qualified for the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in 2014 at 174 pounds.

Cam Simaz | Assistant Coach

Cam Simaz joined the Jackrabbit wrestling staff as an assistant coach in May 2018.

"I am thrilled to have Cam Simaz join the Jackrabbit wrestling coaching staff," said South Dakota State head coach Damion Hahn in announcing the hire. "I had the pleasure of coaching Cam during his successful collegiate career at Cornell and am keenly aware of his work ethic and leadership abilities. He possesses the qualities that fit the vision of the program and I know he will make an immediate impact."

Simaz (pronounced CY-mazz) most recently served as director of the West Point Wrestling Club Regional Training Center and associate head coach of the United States Military Academy Preparatory School wrestling team. His USMAPS team completed an undefeated dual season during the 2017-18 campaign and won three open tournament titles. Three of his wrestlers went on to earn All-America honors at the National Collegiate Open.

Prior to his position at West Point, Simaz coached for two years with the Wildcat Wrestling Club in Evanston, Illinois, while also pursuing a business career in Chicago. He also gained coaching experience with the Finger Lakes Wrestling Club in Ithaca, New York, by serving as a regional training center coach.

As a collegiate wrestler, Simaz earned All-America honors four times at Cornell, including winning a national title at 197 pounds as a senior in 2012 after runner-up finishes the previous two seasons. With Simaz in the lineup, the Big Red finished in the top five at the NCAA Championships all four seasons.

A native of Allegan, Michigan, Simaz earned first-team all-Ivy League honors four times, won four Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association individual titles and was a three-time all-academic selection. He was inducted into the EIWA Hall of Fame earlier this year and also is a member of the Michigan Wrestling Hall of Fame.

Chris Dardanes | Volunteer Assistant Coach

Chris Dardanes (pronounced dar-DANES) joined the South Dakota State University coaching staff as a volunteer assistant in July 2018.

"I am thrilled to add Chris to our staff," Jackrabbit head coach Damion Hahn said. "I am confident he will have an immediate impact on our program and will add tremendous value in recruiting and working with our light- and middle-weight student-athletes.."

A Chicago native, Dardanes earned All-America honors three times while wrestling collegiately at the University of Minnesota from 2012-15. He placed fourth at 133 pounds in both 2012 and 2015, while earning a sixth-place finish in 2013. Dardanes finished his collegiate career with 101 victories.

For the two years prior to coming to SDSU, Dardanes and his twin brother, Nick, were members of the Hawkeye Wrestling Club.

Nate Rotert | Recruiting Coordinator

Former South Dakota State University standout Nate Rotert continues his long association with the Jackrabbit wrestling team by joining the staff as recruiting coordinator for the 2018-19 season.

"Nate has been an integral part to the success of our program and exudes all that is SDSU," head coach Damion Hahn said.. "He will help with our recruiting efforts immensely, and I am proud to bring him aboard."

A Spearfish native, Rotert was a four-time NCAA qualifier at 197 pounds while wrestling at SDSU from 2015-18, helping spark the Jackrabbits into a nationally ranked program. He compiled a 99-37 career record, including a 50-14 mark in duals. Rotert won a Big 12 Conference individual title en route to a 28-5 mark his senior season.