Co-founder and NCAA Division I Champion, Max Askren, head’s AWA North Shore, the most recent addition the the AWA program. Born in Cedar Rapids, IA, and raised in Hartland, WI, Max has been wrestling since the age of five (three if you count hanging around and causing people headaches while watching Ben!).
With a combined total of over 20+ years of competing, coaching, and experimenting with styles, Max’s knowledge and creativity on the mat is second to none.
Although widely recruited, Askren was set on the University of Missouri where he was sure he would improve daily drilling with his brother, Ben Askren, once again. Max red-shirted his first year, and after, immediately became a four-year starter at 197lbs (’06-’08) and 184lbs (’09), and finished with an overall record of 104-16 (.867), the 2nd highest winning percentage in Missouri’s history. In 2006, Askren owned the best Missouri freshman record in over 10 years, and went on to become a two-time Big 12 Champion in both his freshman and sophomore season, making him only the fourth person in program history to ever win the conference title more than once. After, he went on to become a three-time NCAA All-American and a Division I NCAA Champion in his senior season. This made him and Ben only the 10th set of brothers in history to both win Division I NCAA titles.
However, Max’s excellence wasn’t limited to the mat. Askren was also a 4-year Academic All-American as an Interdisciplinary Studies major. Focusing on linguistics, Max’s fluency in Japanese, French, and Russian, as well as his sporadic Spanish and impeccable English, has allowed the AWA to expand beyond the domestic realm, advancing the Askren approach to wrestling globally. Additionally, his ability to communicate on an international level has introduced him to an infinite number of styles and approaches, allowing for the expansion and development of his own understanding of wrestling tactics, proving useful in the development of “total wrestling”: one of the basics the AWA style is based upon.
Simultaneously with college, Max joined his brother, Ben, in the development of several summer camps, including the “Funky Fresh Scrambling” camp. Traveling each summer, Max introduced “total wrestling” and experimentation to everyday wrestling, creating an immediate following and interest in his unique tactics. In fact, so much interest was generated over the 4 summers in college that it lead to the development of the AWA with Max taking the lead.
His 20+ years of “total wrestling” combined with his 6+ years of coaching experience proves to be a hot commodity.
- 3x AA, only the 2nd tiger in program history to win 3 or more AA’s
- Finished with a career record of 104-16 (.867), the 2nd highest winning percentage in school history
- Seven career wins by tech. Fall and tied for 6th most in Missouri history
- 21 career major decisions which is 6th most in Missouri history
- Became the 18th member of Missouri’s 100-win club, picking up the 100th career win decision at the 2010 Big 12 Championships
- 4x NWCA Academic AA 1st team and 4x Academic All-Big 12 1st team from 2007-2010
- 2010 NCAA National Champion (184lbs), beating Boise State’s Kirk Smith by a 10-3 decision to become Missouri’s 4th National champ
- 2010 Winter Chick-Fil-A Community of Champions honoree for excellence in academics, community service, and leadership/sportsmanship
- 2009 AA at 197lbs after finishing 5th at 197lbs at NCAA’s
- Finished 3rd at 2009 Big 12 Championships
- 2008 AA after finishing 7th at 197lbs at NCAA’s
- Big 12 wrestler of the week for Jan. 14, 2008
- 2008 Big 12 Champion, becoming only the 4th wrestler in program history to earn 2 conference titles
- 2007 Big 12 Champion