Honors and Awards
Coach Chmelka enters his 11th season as Nebraska's head coach prepared to lead the Huskers through their ninth season in the Big Ten in 2020.
In his last 10 years at NU's head coach, he has helped produce seven top-10 NCAA finishes and 17 All-Americans. Chmelka looks to continue leading the Huskers to become one of the nation's top-ranked programs in the years to come.
In 2019, Chmelka led the Huskers to their best national finish since 1999, as the team finished third nationally. Chmelka produced five All-Americans for six All-America awards (Jake Bonnay, Charlie Giles, Khalil Jackson, Josh Martin & Anton Stephenson). He coached Anton Stephenson to his third Big Ten vault title.
In 2018, Chmelka led the Huskers to a fifth place finish at the NCAA Championships. Chmelka produced four All-Americans. Chmelka also developed the vault program, as Anton Stephenson placed second at the NCAA Championships and earned the gold medal at the Big Ten Championships. Chmelka also had three Huskers place in the top three at the Big Ten Championships (Anton Stephenson, Jake Bonnay and Kyle King).
In 2017, Chmelka led the Huskers to the team finals at the NCAA Championships for the first time since 1999 where the team finished sixth nationally. Chmelka produced two All-Americans (Austin Epperson and Kyle King) both on floor. Additionally, Anton Stephenson claimed the Big Ten vault title at the Big Ten Championships, becoming Chmelka's first conference winner and NU's first Big Ten Champion. Chmelka also helped Chris Stephenson claim NCAA Gymnast-of-the-Week accolades.
In 2016, the team shattered school records nearly every week, including total team score, total floor score (twice), total pommel horse score (twice) and total high bar score. Individually, Ethan Lottman and Kyle King broke the program record on pommel horse (15.55) and floor (15.85) respectively. The Huskers made a run in the postseason as well. Daniel Leal placed second on parallel bars at the Big Ten Championships. At the NCAA Championships, the team finished seventh. Four gymnasts took home All-America honors (Ethan Lottman, Sam Chamberlain, Austin Epperson and Anton Stephenson). This was the first time since 1998 that four separate gymnasts each took home an All-America honor.
In 2015, Chmelka helped the Huskers overcome several health issues during the season. Junior, Ethan Lottman, erupted for a breakout year under Chmelka, earning All-America honors on pommel horse at the NCAA event finals. Lottman also captured the Elite 89 Award and second-time CoSIDA Academic All-America accolades.
In 2014, the Huskers completed strong despite being plagued with injuries early on. Senior Wyatt Aycock led the team in the all-around, earning his second All-America honors in a row. Over the course of the season, 15 Huskers tied or set career-highs on individual events. These achievements helped pave the way for NU's eighth-place finish at the NCAA Championships.
In 2013, Chmelka produced three All-Americans (Wyatt Aycock, Grant Perdue and Sam Chamberlain). This trio became NU's 48th, 49th and 50th All-Americans since 1975. At the time, these All-America honors were the most earned in a single season since the program last produced three All-Americans in 1999.
In 2011-12, Chmelka led the Huskers to their first season in the tradition-rich Big Ten Conference. Under Chmelka's leadership, NU completed its inaugural Big Ten season with a 10th-place finish at the NCAA Championships paced by freshman All-American Grant Perdue.
In 2011, the Huskers continued to build by posting another top-10 national finish despite a lineup made up of primarily first- and second-year gymnasts.
In his first season as head coach, Chmelka helped the Huskers return to the national top 10 by tying for ninth with a veteran team.
Before the 2010 season, Coach Chuck Chmelka replaced legendary NU coach Francis Allen, an icon of U.S. men's gymnastics.
Prior to becoming head coach, Chmelka served as an assistant under Allen from 1986-2009, and assisted with three of the Huskers' eight national team championships.
Since Chmelka joined the staff in 1986, he has coached Nissen-Emery Award winnres Wes Suter (1986) and Tom Schlesinger (1988) and helped Nebraska win eight conference titles. Chmelka was named the 2007 CGA West Region Assistant Coach of the Year and was a finalist for the 2009 CGA West Region Award.
Prior to Coaching at Nebraska
Chmelka competed at Nebraska from 1978 to 1981 and was a member of NU's first three national championship teams in 1979, 1980 and 1981.
Sine 1982, Chmelka has been the program director and head coach for the Nebraska School of Gymnastics (NSG) boys' team, producing such athletes as former Nebraska All-Americans Dusty Jakub, Blake Bukacek, Derek Leiter, Ryan McEwen, Burkett Powell and Jason Christie. NSG athletes have competed in the Junior Pan American Games, Junior Olympic Nationals, Olympic Festival and have traveled abroad for various competitions (Junior Pacific Alliance Championships and USA vs Canada).
After completing his eligibility at NU, Chmelka was a volunteer assistant coach while finishing his bachelor's degree in community health, which he earned in 1982. In 1988, Chmelka added a bachelor's degree in education.
An Omaha South graduate and product of Omaha Sokol and the legendary Phil Cahoy Sr., Chemlka was a high school and collegiate teammate of Husker Olympians Jim Hartung and Phil Cahoy Jr.
Chmelka is married to former Husker gymnast and Lincoln native Kim Grabowski. A four-year letterwinner, Grabowski helped the Huskers win the 1983 Big Eight Championship and was crowned the all-around champion the same year. The couple has one son, Alex, who attends the University of Nebraska.