Class of 2002
St. Charles | Naperville (Neuqua Valley)
Mick Ruettiger began wrestling his senior year at Providence Catholic High School in New Lenox in 1973. He was a Private School League Conference Champion and had a 19-3-1 record his first year. Mick went on to Joliet Junior College and wrestled for one season, earning NJCAA Academic All-American honors. He attended Eastern Illinois University and was a member of the Panther’s 1978 NCAA Division II 3rd place team.
While at EIU, Mick served as the sports editor of the Eastern News Daily Newspaper: He earned his education degree in 1979 and worked as a graduate assistant wrestling coach. After a stint as an assistant at Mt. St. Joseph Prep School in Baltimore while working in private business, Mick returned to Illinois as the head wrestling coach at Plano High School in 1981. After one year at Plano, he moved to St. Charles as the head coach for the Saints from 1982 to 1997. While at St. Charles, the Saints won two Upstate Eight Conference Championships, two I.H.S.A. Regional titles, one sectional crown, and in 1997 his dual team place third in the I.H.S.A. Dual Team State Tournament. At the state tournaments, his teams have placed third two years and finished first, using unofficial individual scoring.
In 1997, Mick assumed the position of head wrestling coach at the newly formed Neaqua Valley High School. Beginning with a freshman-sophomore schedule, the Wildcats compiled a 17-3 record. During four years in existence, Mick has led Neaqua Valley to a 54-31-1 dual meet record, two conference runners-up, one regional title, two regional second place finishes, and dual team sectional second place.
Mick’s career coaching record for 20 years as a head coach is 241-156-3. He has coached two conference titles, three regional championships, one sectional championship, and a third place finish in the dual meet state tournament. He has had fifty state qualifiers, twenty-five state place winners, and two state champions.