Daniel Robertson was a dedicated assistant coach, and he loved every minute of it.
After taking a new position at Rocky Mountain High School as a science teacher following four years as the head wrestling coach at Lovell High School and two years as head coach in Files, Idaho, he enjoyed his position as the assistant middle school coach under Tim Jones for two years.
But after longtime head high school coach Josh Collins stepped down following the 2016-17 season, the school turned to Robertson and he accepted the head coaching position.
“I love sports and I love teaching technique,” Robertson said. “I love game planning and workout planning. But I’m not a paperwork junkie. It’s kind of sad to leave the land of no managerial chores.”
Robertson certainly brings experience to the Rocky Mountain program, with six years of experience as a head coach and three years as an assistant. He will quickly put his stamp on the Rocky Mountain program.
“I’ll bring a different type of training and less traditional practice schedule and training regimen,” he said. “I believe in very little aerobic work but tons of anaerobic work – lifting and carrying and short bursts of intense exercise – using my science background.
“I like a cold wrestling room. Cold gives calories someplace to go. A hot wrestling room doesn’t work. It just makes you dehydrated, which is false weight loss.”
As for the wrestling itself, Robertson believes in an aggressive style.
“I’m pretty aggressive,” he said. “I try to bring wrestling back to its roots as a martial art. I like to purvey the idea that this is hand-to-hand competition. It’s not gentle.
“I hate stalling. If my kids do it, it’s never going to be with my blessing.”
Robertson is the sole coach of the Grizzlies right now. Former assistant Stacey Hiser has left the program, leaving Robertson alone “in the room,” for now. Once the middle season is over, Tim Jones will help, Robertson said.
“Tim will work in the room, and I need his expertise,” he said. “I’ve always built my programs with assistants who are incredibly knowledgeable. This is the first time I’ve had to go it alone.”
Robertson is currently working with five wrestlers including junior Nathan Hatch, who placed second at the state wrestling tournament at 170 pounds last season. Also out are seniors Malachi Cook of Burlington and Wyatt Horrocks, junior Travis Lytle and freshman Tonka Lytle.
By David Peck