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Porter to lead Parkview wrestling

Josh Porter

Josh Porter

Josh Porter is well aware of the rich tradition of the Parkview wrestling program.

The former Harrison assistant coach can easily recite the names of many of the legends that have donned the orange singlet.

Porter plans to return the Panthers to prominence after he was announced as the program's head coach on Monday.

"What attracted me was the past tradition of state champions and state championships teams and the opportunity to return it to the state champion level," Porter said.

Porter takes over for Chris Hardin, who resigned after two seasons. Parkview is the third team hire a new head coach this year. Steve Fairchild takes over the Duluth program and Dennis Stromie is the new coach at Wesleyan.

Parkview was one the state's dominant program in the 1990s and 2000s under the guidance of Stromie and Tom Beuglas. The duo routinely produced state champions and won the Class AAAAA traditional and dual state championships in 2004 and 2006.

However, the last three years the Panthers have struggled to crack the top 10 at the state meet and haven't had a state champion since 2008.

"I'm really excited about the opportunity and challenge," Porter said. "We'll eventually be back to winning state championships."

Porter is a 1998 Milton grad where he was a three-time state qualifier. He was a member of Team Georgia, which was coached by Mike and Josh Stephen, who are now coaching at Grayson and Collins Hill, respectively.

"He's a young guy and real big with Team USA," Parkview athletic director Mark Whitley said.

"He was excited about the program and taking it to where it's been in 2006. We've won county and region, we just haven't done as well at the state level."

Porter wrestled for two years at The Citadel where he earned a varsity letter. After college he pursued a rugby career in New Zealand and Colorado before becoming a full-time wrestling coach.

Porter spent two years as the youth coach at Chattahoochee, two years at Kennessaw Mountain as an assistant and last year at Harrison. He's also been an assistant coach for Team Georgia the last four years.

"I'm well aware of the Parkview tradition," Porter said. "I remember when I was in high school, that Parkview singlet struck fear in people. That's where I want to get back to."