Andy Hamilton - Iowa City Press-Citizen
Danny Song wasn't certain what he was getting into three years ago when his search for a place to continue his wrestling career led him from New York to Iowa.
He had just finished his senior season at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy where he became a Division III All-American under coach Tim Alger, a former Hawkeye.
A phone call from Alger to Iowa coach Tom Brands helped get Song's foot in the door of the Dan Gable Wrestling Complex in 2006. Ultimately, it helped Brands find the newest member of his coaching staff.
Brands said Monday that Song will be the strength and conditioning coach for the Hawkeyes. The 25-year-old replaces Jared Frayer, who left Iowa after one season for an assistant position at Wisconsin.
"I consider myself a product of this program, "Song said. "I feel like the philosophy, the lifestyle, the culture, it's what I was looking for, even not knowing it. But getting out here and getting a feel for it, it's exactly where I want to be."
Song trained in Iowa City for two seasons before spending last year as an assistant coach at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, N.J. He returned to Iowa in the spring to continue his freestyle training.
"We were looking for a guy who loves the Hawkeyes, and he does, "Brands said. "He's young, but he has a passion for wrestling and with the help we have, he adds to a good staff. ... The attractive thing for him to come back is the training aspect. He's in an environment where he's still able to train and compete."
But Song said his first priority will be helping the Hawkeyes in their pursuit of a third straight NCAA title.
"A lot of times you get guys who are competing and the focus is shifted between being there for the team and then being for yourself and getting yourself ready for competition, "Song said. "From what I've seen and what I've learned so far, I think I can bring a complete, 100-percent dedication to the program and to the position. In my head, this isn't a position that's going to supplement my training, which it might. It might do that, but my priority lies with getting these guys strong for March."