|Title:||Class of 2017|
Jason Benoit, the 1986 New England Champion in the 126 lb. weight class, was a fundamental force with a 41-3-3 dual meet record for the 1987 regional champions and 1986 runners-up.
“Jason was a physically strong high school wrestler entering WPI,” recalled Hall of Fame head coach Phil Grebinar.”His unbelievable work ethic and his technique soared in a college environment. Beating the defending New England champion from Coast Guard at 126 during his sophomore year was one of his outstanding efforts.”
In addition to his individual regional title, Jason went 13-0-1 in his sophomore campaign. He then moved up to 134 for his junior season that saw the grappler collect nine pins, including four-in-a-row, and boasted a .692 pin percentage for the team champs. All three stats are currently tied for fifth in program history.
“Jason was one of the most exciting wrestlers we had on a couple of the most dominant teams in New England wrestling history,” remarked current head coach and Hall of Fame teammate Steve Hall. “There was never any doubt that he was always going to leave everything out on the mat and his opponent was going to walk away knowing that he had faced someone that was extremely tough.”
The 1987-88 captain was ranked No. 1 in the region before his season-ending injury in his final campaign. Despite the setback, Jason is currently tied for second in career pins (26) and is alone in second with a .533 pin percentage, as well as tied for seventh with three pins under a minute in the Engineers record book. He also claimed NWCA Scholar All-America status as a senior.
In his four years donning the Crimson and Gray, WPI boasted a 65-7 record, Coach Grebinar’s 200th win, and a sweep of Boston College.
Born in nearby Oakham, Jason graduated from WPI in 1988 with a degree in civil engineering. After entering the workforce, he continued as an assistant coach for the WPI wresting team until 1998. He has worked for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in multiple agencies over the past 23 years managing large public projects. Most recently he was the MassDOT project manager for the award-winning Route 9 Burns Bridge over Lake Quinsigamond and he designed the celebrated sails flanking the new bridge. He is currently the Special Projects Engineer at MassDOT District 3 in Worcester. He has been a passionate stone artist for many years and is best known for the larger-than-life stone cow sculpture at the entrance of the Stone Cow Brewery in his hometown. He and wife, Linnea, live in Barre with their son Brent, and Jason's children Owen and Jaeleigh from his first marriage with Dawne (Trombi) Benoit.