Israel Martinez is one of the most decorated wrestlers and coaches to come through the state of Illinois. Throughout his career, he has experienced success as a coach and as a competitor.
As a youth wrestler, Israel compiled one of the greatest careers in the state’s history. He was a winner of five state titles and a recipient of both the Marty Combe and Ron Irwin awards. These prestigious awards are only given to the best wrestlers in the state at the novice and senior division age groups.
In high school, Israel wrestled for West Aurora High School. While at West Aurora High School, he won three state titles for the Blackhawks with a career record of 118-1. His lone loss coming from an illegal slam that led to a medical forfeit. In addition to his high school state championships, he was also decorated in Freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling. Israel was a three-time All-American in Freestyle and two-time All-American in Greco-Roman at the ASICS/Vaughan Junior and Cadet National Championships, a six time Freestyle champion at the Northern Plains Regional Championships, 3rd place finisher at the Cadet World Championships in Lodz, Poland, and a 2nd place finisher at the Fila Junior World Team Trials. As a senior, Israel was one of the top recruits in the country.
Following high school, Israel competed at North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. In 2002, Israel won an NJCAA Junior College National Championship at 157lbs with a record of 27-0.
In the same year, he won a Western Regional title and received the Outstanding Wrestler award in Freestyle.
Israel’s college career was cut short; however, his competitive career was far from over. He began coaching youth and high school wrestling in 2003. In 2005, Israel opened Izzy Style School of Wrestling. As owner and founder of Izzy Style School of Wrestling, Israel began developing numerous state and national champions; many of which have gone on to become NCAA All-Americans. Most notably, 3x All-American for the University of Illinois, Jordan Blanton and 3x All-American and 2014 NCAA Champion for the University of Iowa, Tony Ramos.
As a high school wrestling coach, Israel has coached numerous IHSA state champions. In 2005, as an assistant coach at the prestigious Montini Catholic High School, Israel leadership helped lead the Broncos to three consecutive Team State Championships in 2007, 2008, and 2009. After the 2009 season, Israel was appointed head coach of the Montini Catholic Broncos. Since taking over the program, Israel has continued the team’s domination in the state of Illinois by winning four consecutive Team State Championships from 2010-2014.
Off the mat, Israel began working with, long time friend and mixed martial artist, Clay Guida, on perfecting his wrestling skills for his career in the octagon. Clay has been fighting in the UFC since 2006 with Israel as his head wrestling coach. Israel has worked with multiple world champions and many others that have been at the top of their divisions in the UFC, including names such as Carlos Condit, Brian Stann, Cub Swanson, Dieago Sanchez, Erik Perez, Isaac Valle-Flagg, Kyle Noke, Tom Watson, Travis Browne, Julie Kedzie, and Holly Holm. Since 2009, Israel has been the head wrestling coach for Jackson’s MMA, located in Albuquerque, NM. Israel is also the head wrestling coach for the reigning, pound for pound, number 1 fighter in the world, Jon “Bones” Jones.
Israel Martinez is one of the most recognized wrestling coaches in the state of Illinois and the most talented coaches in the world. He has a proven method of developing the best wrestlers. Through a mixture of mental toughness and technical wisdom, Israel Martinez has coached his athletes to success at the highest level and on the highest stage.