Jackson comes to Eden Prairie with an amazing coaching record. His Apple Valley teams captured two mythical national titles finishing with #1 rankings in the USA in 2010 and 2011, along with numerous highly nationally ranked teams. His Valley teams also captured 14 state team titles with an overall record of 618-27-3 for a win percentage of 95.4% during Coach Jackson's coaching reign. Jackson was named "National Wrestling Coach of the Year" by the National Wrestling Coaches Association, National High School Coaches Association and Wrestling USA Magazine for his efforts. He coached 60 individual state champions and 132 individual state place winners in his 17 years as head coach for the Eagles.
Coach Jackson says, "With full support from my daughter (Taylor) and her Mother (June) we have decided coaching again would be a positive move in my life. At the State Tournament this year Taylor was cheering for her three favorite Apple Valley wrestlers (Maolu, Brock and Seth). At one point she turned to me and said, "Dad, you should go back into coaching." Taylor knew that working with kids and wrestling has always been my life's passion. Coach Davis has given me an opportunity of a lifetime, and the Eden Prairie school administration seem to be extremely supportive. They, along with teachers, coaches from other sports and supportive parents are a must in building a program. I look forward to working with the kids, Coach Davis, and his staff. It's time to go to work!"
Jackson joins former rival coach Scot Davis who coached previously at Owatonna for 25 years, among other schools (36 years as a head HS Coach). Owatonna won state titles in 1998 and 2005, and Davis also captured "National Coach of the Year" honors from the National High School Coaches Association and Wrestling USA Magazine. He was USA Dream Team Coach in 2009. Ten of his teams were nationally ranked. He is the "Winningest Coach in Amateur Wrestling History" with a 1015-171-4 career high school coaching record. Davis took over as head coach at Eden Prairie this past season (2013-2014). The Eagles captured their first outright Lake Conference title in the program's history and were one victory shy of the program's wins record with 19 dual meet victories.
Coach Scot Davis says, "even though Jim and I have competed at a very tense and high level with opposing teams we have always maintained great respect for one another. When the opportunity presented itself to add Jim's dynamic personality and coaching expertise to our Eden Prairie Wrestling program it was a "no brainer" to do so. Our wrestling program at Eden Prairie will be greatly enhanced with Jim on our staff. It's already been fun to converse and talk about ideas and strategy with such a highly successful and experienced coach as Jim. I really look forward to working with him! He will bring exceptional personal skills and organization to our program which will enhance our opportunities to get more student-athletes to come out for wrestling. It will be much more fun coaching with Jim than competing against him, that's for sure!"
Eden Prairie High School has a student body of some 3,000 students, grades 9-12. They are a high profile school having won multiple state team titles in numerous sports. One of the few sports that hasn't won a team title is wrestling. I think people will now take notice as two of Minnesota's most highly recognized wrestling coaches team up together to build the Eden Prairie High School (MN) wrestling program. Davis and Jackson have an incredible combined career high school coaching record of 1633-198-7 for a win percentage of 89%.