Wheeler’s Brickley succeeds Day at Lassiter wrestling's reins
by Carlton D. White
cwhite@mdjonline.com
June 10, 2013 12:23 AM | 2155 views | 4 4 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
In four seasons at Wheeler, Matt Brickley, center, often saw the success Lassiter’s wrestling program achieved under longtime coach Steve Day. After Day’s recent retirement, the Trojans needed a new leader and found one in Brickley, who made the short move from one part of east Cobb to the other.
<BR>Staff file photo
In four seasons at Wheeler, Matt Brickley, center, often saw the success Lassiter’s wrestling program achieved under longtime coach Steve Day. After Day’s recent retirement, the Trojans needed a new leader and found one in Brickley, who made the short move from one part of east Cobb to the other.
Staff file photo
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Lassiter recently hired Matt Brickley as its new wrestling coach.

Brickley, who spent the past four seasons as Wheeler’s coach, replaces Steve Day, who retired after the 2012-13 season, following a career at Lassiter that spanned more than 30 years.

Brickley officially took over the position May 25.

“I want to compete for region titles and have my guys earn state championships and become state-placers,” Brickley said of what some of his goals are for his new team. “I want to build the program up as much as I possibly can. Ultimately, I want us to win the team state championships, and I think all of that is attainable in the near future.”

Before his arrival at Wheeler, Brickley spent eight seasons as a coach and teacher at Central Gwinnett High School. He moved to Georgia in 2001 after receiving his bachelor’s degree in education from Youngstown State University in Ohio.

An Ohio native and graduate of Ursuline High School, where he wrestled and was a member of the track and field team, Brickley was an assistant wrestling coach at Canfield High School as he pursued his degree at Youngstown State.

Brickley elected to apply for the Lassiter job because of his knowledge of the school and the community. He and his wife, Kelly, also wanted their two sons, 6-year-old Carter and 4-year-old Jackson, to be involved with what the community has to offer.

“I knew it was a great school to be at,” Brickley said. “I have two small boys, and our family was looking for a place where they can go to school and wrestle. We wanted to be in an area that was close-knit and that they have an opportunity to really be involved.”

Brickley and Day got to know each other as opposing coaches in Region 5AAAAAA and officers with the Cobb County Wrestling Association. Brickley spoke with Day about the Lassiter program and was eager to have the opportunity take over as the Trojans’ new mentor.

“Steve’s a good friend,” Brickley said. “I know the type of program he ran, so I know I’ll be stepping into a good situation. I want to continue what he started. He and I share similar styles, so it should be a smooth transition.”

Brickley, who was offered the Lassiter position a few days before he accepted it, was very excited to receive the news.

“I got an email from (Lassiter principal) Dr. (Chris) Richie that I was hired and took some time to fill out the paperwork and was officially brought on board later that week,” Brickley said.

“I had an open session with the (wrestlers) and their parents to tell them a little bit about me and what I wanted to accomplish with the program. Then, about three days later, I had a four-day camp with the guys. It was a little awkward on the first day as we got to know each other, but we got in a lot of good practices, and things have been going well.”

When the school year begins in August, and wrestling season follows a few months later, Brickley is expecting to continue the long tradition of success Lassiter had under Day.

“I’ll be involved with the junior program and the high school program,” he said, “and I expect us to do well right from the start.”
Comments
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Moving on up
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June 11, 2013
WOW! Now Teacher/Coaches are leaving Wheeler to go to Lassiter!
Article correction
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June 10, 2013
Your article implies that Mr Brickley was the head coach for four years at Wheeler. It was only two.
Mr. White
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June 11, 2013
I asked Brickley how long had he been the head coach at Wheeler and he said four years.
Mat Man
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June 10, 2013
We are excited to have Matt at the helm of Lassiter Wrestling. He brings renewed energy to the program that the boys will benefit from in short order. We are looking forward to a great season.
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