Jim Boyd started his wrestling career in 7th grade. He wrestled at Cedar Falls High School in Cedar Falls,
IA. His coach was National Wrestling Hall of Famer and three-time NCAA Champion Keith Young. Jim’s record was 20-7-1. Jim qualified two times for the USA National Freestyle Tournament.
After high school, Jim attended Morningside College where he lettered 2 years. After knee surgery Jim transferred to the University of Northern Iowa. Having the injury bug Jim continued his wrestling career by coaching at the local Junior High School.
Jim received his B.A. in Education from the University of Northern Iowa and started his coaching career at Clear Creek of Tiffin, Iowa, At Clear Creek Jim took a team with little success and in two years he had a complete line-up, placing 3rd in the conference with one state place winner. With state-wide budget cuts Jim’s teaching position was eliminated. Jim received a Graduate Assistantship at UNI where he would earn his M.A. in School Administration.
Following his graduate work, Jim took a teaching job at Riverdale High School in Port Byron, IL. Jim was the Head Varsity Wrestling coach. The previous coach was IWCOA Hall of Famer, Jerry Lancaster. Jim coached the Rams for eleven years and had a dual meet record of 141-72, winning many tournaments during that time. In addition, 5 conference titles, 5 IHSA Regional titles, qualifying 3 teams for the IHSA Dual Team Tournaments with two of those teams placing 3rd. In 1993, Riverdale Rams were honored as the IWCOA Class A State Champions. This award was based on the number of team points scored at the individual state tournament. Jim had 16 IHSA state qualifiers and an additional 16 IHSA state place winners, including 3 State Champions. Three-time champion Tyler Hurry has been inducted into the IWCOA Hall of Fame. Another State Champion, Joel Stockwell is currently the Head Wrestling Coach at Rock Island High School. All of this was accomplished with the assistance of Riverdale’s current Head Wresting Coach Myron Keppy. The Riverdale Wrestling Tournament which Jim started in 1985 is now called the Jim Boyd Riverdale Wrestling Invitational.
Jim became a Principal at Riverdale High School from 1994-2012. Jim served as a member of the IHSA Wrestling Advisory Committee, IHSA Legislative Commission from 2000-2004 and the IHSA Board of Directors from 2004-2012 and was the Vice President of the IHSA Board of Directors from 2010-2012. Jim was inducted into the Riverdale Hall of Fame in 2009. Jim retired in 2012.
Jim married his college sweetheart, Robin. They live in Port Byron and have two children. Son Jake and his wife Carissa, have three children: one girl and twin boys. Jake is the Assistant Wrestling Coach at Rock Island High School where he also teaches. Daughter Jena and her husband, Eric have one girl and are expecting their second child in May. Jena is a Senior Actuarial Analyst for Country Financial in Bloomington, IL.