It's no surprise that Tyler Nauman has a passion for coaching.
"My dad [Mike Nauman] was my elementary coach," said Nauman, who was recently named Belle Vernon Area High School's new head wrestling coach. "He was also my high school coach. So coaching is in the family."
Nauman, a 2007 graduate of Middletown High School near Harrisburg, was a four-time PIAA place-winner.
"I've always wanted to coach," Nauman said. "I helped my dad coach at junior high tournaments when I was in high school."
Nauman accepted a scholarship to the University of Pittsburgh after graduating from Middletown. He redshirted as a freshman, then became a fixture in the Panthers lineup and qualified for the NCAA Division I tournament four consecutive years. He placed fifth in the country twice and finished his collegiate career in 2012 with 140 wins and 39 pins, which ranks third in Pitt history in both categories.
"Tyler is the first Pitt wrestler to win four [Eastern Wrestling League] titles," said retired Pitt coach Rande Stottlemyer, who recruited Nauman. "He also went unbeaten against EWL opponents during that stretch. That's pretty impressive."
Stottlemyer is not surprised to see that Nauman has moved into the coaching profession.
"Tyler's dad is a good coach, so it doesn't surprise me that he's following in dad's footsteps," Stottlemyer said. "I could see his passion for coaching when he worked at our summer camps."
But Stottlemyer also has some good advice for his former pupil.
"Coaching at the high school level is more than just X's and O's. He has to draw a line and stay on it. He has to remember that college coaching is a lot different than high school."
Nauman officially began his coaching career during the 2012-13 season.
"I was the second assistant at Drexel University [in Philadelphia]," said Nauman, who graduated from Pitt with a communications degree. "I also began my master's degree in sports management."
After spending a year in Philadelphia, Nauman and his wife moved back to Pittsburgh.
"My wife, Bethany, is from Baldwin and she wanted to come back to the Pittsburgh area," Nauman said.
Nauman and his wife moved to Baldwin and he began searching for a coaching position. He applied for two openings.
"Pitt had an opening for a second assistant after coach Stottlemyer's retirement," Nauman said. "I applied but they gave the job to [former Pitt teammate] Matt Wilps."
Nauman also applied at Belle Vernon and was hired to replace Jack Jolley, who retired after the school board decided to open his position.
"I found out about the Belle Vernon opening by reading a Facebook post by P.J. Tasser, who wrestled with me at Pitt. P.J. is a Belle Vernon graduate. After talking with P.J., I decided that Belle Vernon would be a great place for me to begin my high school coaching career."
Nauman also wants to complete his master's degree.
"I'm looking into transferring to California University [of Pennsylvania]," Nauman said.
Nauman takes over a squad that posted a 16-4 record last season under Jolley.
"I haven't met with the kids yet, but I am familiar with two of the returning starters," said Nauman, referring to Austin Bell and Brendan Hasson. "I'm very excited to get things started."
Bell earned All-America status at the USA Wrestling Cadet National Freestyle Tournament, which took place last month in Fargo, N.D.
He placed sixth at 160 pounds.