This past Sunday the Missouri State University family lost a valued member with the passing of Mike McCarty. A member of the MSU faculty and coaching staff since 1965, McCarty will be remembered not just as the driving force behind the Bears wrestling program, but as so much more. KSMU’s Justin Lux has the story.
In a time where coaches are constantly looking toward the next big payday and flash is all that matters, there are some who fly under the radar, going about their business quietly, yet still producing results. I’m here in McDonald Arena on the Missouri State University campus, where Coach Mike McCarty roamed the mats for the Bears’ wrestling team for 23 years. It was here that he influenced the lives of so many young athletes, and showed them what it meant to be a successful man both in and out of the gym.
On Public:RT: 00:09“His demeanor and the way he dealt with his student athletes was just astounding in my opinion,”
Scott Lowery wrestled under Coach McCarty from 1976 until 1981 and says you’d be pressed to find a better man.
“He was honest, sincere, he always did what he said he was going to do. I can give you a perfect example. One year I was injured and had knee surgery and it was towards the end of the semester. I’m from Tulsa and I basically needed to get home. Instead of putting me on a bus or something like that, he physically drove me to Tulsa in my personal car and then hopped on a bus to go back to Springfield. I mean he would go way beyond,”
During his tenure as wrestling coach, McCarty won 150 dual meets, brought four wrestlers to the NCAA national tournament and was named conference coach of the year twice. On his watch, five wrestlers went on to garner All-American honors.
The funeral service will be held February 18th at 2:30 p.m. at the Missouri Veterans Cemetery in Springfield. Due to his love of animals, McCarty’s family asks that instead of sending flowers, please make a donation to the Humane Society.
For KSMU News, I’m Justin Lux.