Sammie “The Bull” Henson

Meet The Bull | BullTrained Wrestling and Mixed Martial Arts
Meet Sammie Henson | BullTrained Wrestling and Mixed Martial Arts

Meet the Bull

With three world medals to his name, Sammie “The Bull” Henson has become one of the most celebrated wrestlers in USA history.

Born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1971, Sammie has become one of the most decorated and respected wrestlers in America. He started his wrestling career at a young age and went on to graduate from Francis Howell High School in St. Charles, MO.

His resume as a competitor speaks for itself, and it all began in 1988 as a member of the Junior World Championship in Austria. Ten years later, Sammie became a world champion for Team USA at the World Wrestling Championship in Tehran, Iran, which led to him winning the John Smith Award for USA Wrestler of the Year.

He then earned a silver medal at the 2000 Olympic Games at 55kg (121 lbs.) in Sydney, Australia, and took home the bronze medal at the 2006 World Wrestling Championship at 35 years of age.

Collegiate Career

Sammie started his collegiate wrestling career at the University of Missouri, where he was named a Big 8 Champion and All-American in 1991. He then transferred to Clemson, where he became a 2x NCAA Champion and finished his career with a 71-0 record. He was named Clemson’s Male Athlete of the Year in 1994 and was inducted into the Clemson Academics Hall of Fame in 2000.

Coaching Positions

  • 2000-2002, Penn State, assistant
  • 2002-2003, Army, assistant
  • 2006-2007, University of Nebraska, volunteer assistant
  • 2007-2009, Cal Poly, assistant head coach
  • 2009-2011, University of Oklahoma, assistant head coach
  • 2011-2013, University of Missouri, assistant head coach
  • 2014 – 2016, West Virginia University, head coach
  • 2017, coached the Freestyle Paris, France Senior World Championship Team
  • 2021, coached Ava Ward in the Freestyle Budapest Cadet World Championship to a Bronze medal
  • 2021, coached the first USA Women’s Cadet team to win a team title

While at Oklahoma, Sammie helped secure the no. 2 recruiting class in the country, coached seven wrestlers to All-American status at the NCAA Championships, and help the program become the top academic squad in the Big 12.

In the summer of 2014, he guided WVU assistant coach Nick Marable to a spot on the U.S. World Team.

Championship-Caliber Training

Sammie held an impressive 17-year streak of All-Americans, having coached a total of 20 athletes with five NCAA National Championships. Throughout his career, Sammie has mentored numerous national champions, All-Americans, and conference champions from Big 12, Big 10, and Pac 12. They include:

  • Michael Lightner (Oklahoma)
  • Byron Tucker (Oklahoma)
  • Paul Donahoe (Nebraska)
  • J’den Cox (Missouri)
  • Shane and Dane Valdez (Oklahoma)
  • Witt Durden (Oklahoma)
  • Scott and Josh Moore (Penn State)
  • Chad Mendes (Cal Poly)
  • Chase Pami (Cal Poly)
  • Boris Novachkov (Cal Poly)
  • Jarrod Patterson (Oklahoma)
  • Zach Bailey (Oklahoma)
  • Kyle Terry (Oklahoma)
  • Tyler Caldwell (Oklahoma)
  • Eric Lapotsky (Oklahoma)

Today, Sammie’s passion for wrestling and coaching takes him all over the world for clinics, workshops, and as head coach of the Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club.


Olympic Games

2000 Silver Medal, Sydney, Australia

World Championships

2006 Bronze Medal, Guangzhou, China
2005 DNP, Budapest, Hungary
1998 Gold Medal, The Islamic Republic of Iran
2017 World Champion Rings, NCAA Finals, Cleveland, Ohio

Global Championships (1993-2006)

18 Gold |  11 Silver |  3 Bronze

National Wrestling Hall of Fame 2015 Distinguished Member

USA Wrestling 2017 Men’s Freestyle World Team Coach