Done Deal: Cael Sanderson Leaving ISU for Penn State



By Aaron Hepker

AMES - Iowa State Athletic Director Jamie Pollard has confirmed that Cael Sanderson is leaving the ISU wrestling program. Cael has accepted and will be named the head coach at Penn State University to replace the recently resigned Troy Sunderland.

The Center Daily Times, which covers Penn State, had reported in its Friday edition that Sanderson was at Penn State interviewing for job.

Rumors and Internet comments had been flying about the situation since Thursday.

Sunderland resigned this month after 11 years as head coach. Penn State spokesman Pat Donghia said Thursday the university had no comment on the search process.

Sanderson, an Iowa State alumnus, recently completed his third season coaching the Cyclones. Iowa State finished third behind Iowa and Ohio State during last month’s NCAA Championships. The Cyclones also won the Big 12 Tournament title and finished 15-3 in dual meets.

Sanderson went 159-0 during his college career at Iowa State. He captured his fourth NCAA title in 2002 and claimed a gold medal two years later at the Athens Olympics. Sanderson replaced Bobby Douglas as the Cylcones’ head coach in 2006.

Sanderson has deep ties to Iowa State. His older brother, Cody, is the school’s associate head coach, while his younger brother, Cyler, wrestles for the Cyclones.

Sanderson received a base salary of $132,500 during the 2008 fiscal year, according to Iowa public records.

Sanderson, 29, is one of multiple high-profile coaches who have been in contact with Penn State. According to multiple sources, the search committee has interviewed more than a half-dozen coaches.

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