Contributors Hall of Fame: Jon Habben

Hall of Fame – 1990

Habben along with “Hall” member Norm Manstedt laid the foundation for the NSWCA Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1982 by suggesting a way to recognize Nebraska’s wrestling greats. Graduating from Eagle Grove, Iowa High School and coming to Osceola in 1973 he is beginning his 18th year as wrestling coach. Serving as high school principal Jon still finds time for his first love—wrestling. His teams have collected nine conference team trophies, two district trophies, and 34 tournament team trophies. His wrestlers have qualified for state 70 times and won 20 state medals while compiling a record of 95-56-2 in dual meets.

He attended Iowa Central Community College, Wayne State, and recevied his M.A./Specialist Degree from Kearney State in 1986. Seeing a need to honor wrestlers for their academic abilities as well as their athletic abilities, Jon devised the criteria and set forth the idea for the Academic All-State Wrestling Teams selected the last three years. This has resulted in the spin-off of all-state teams selection by the Lincoln Journal. He has also served on various committees of the NCA and NSWCA where he is a charter member. His philosophy embodies the idea that every kid who shows and interest in wrestling by coming out should be “coached”, not just those that have talent and will become stars in their own right. He is a team leader off the mat as well as evidenced by his involvement with the alcohol/drug program in the community and school, receiving a Cooper Foundation for Excellence in Teaching award in 1984, D.A.R. State History Teacher of the Year Award in 1986, Franklin Select Circle Coaching Award-Gold; and his biggest thrill, selection into the NSWCA Hall of Fame.

Back to Top