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FCA Wrestling update; Dake-Taylor will be fun
By Bryan Van Kley
Editor’s Note: This column appeared in WIN, Volume 19, Issue 2, and printed on Nov. 21, 2012
Talk about putting it on the line. As wrestling’s biggest story for 2012-2013, you’ve probably read a lot about Cornell’s three-time NCAA champ Kyle Dake moving up to face 2012 Dan Hodge Trophy winner David Taylor of Penn State at 165 pounds this year. You have to hand it to Dake, it’s a gutsy and commendable move. (Dake defeated Taylor in their first meeting this year at the All-Star meet, see story on page 36.)
I don’t care what sport you look at…..the truly great, elite-level athletes have the level of confidence Dake is showing by moving up. Obviously he wouldn’t be doing it if he wasn’t certain he could win his fourth NCAA title at four different weights up at 165. (Even with Taylor and former NCAA finalist Tyler Caldwell of Oklahoma State at that weight.) His coach Rob Koll spoke about that in a WIN article earlier in the fall. He’s just a supremely confident competitor who not only thinks he can win, but expects it. And against anybody.
Another part of this which impresses me so much is Dake, Olympic champion Jordan Burroughs and even Taylor are all wired this way and are looking beyond just the here and now of 2012-13. In the current world of only seven weight classes in international freestyle, these three guys and a number of other very talented U.S. 163-pounders will be battling it out for that spot. As Dake said, “iron sharpens iron.”
Dake, for example, isn’t just thinking about what he’s going to need to do to beat Taylor in March. He’s also thinking about what will be needed to defeat Burroughs and the best guy Russia is going to put on the mat in the future.
“I think it’s awesome for the sport,” Dake told WIN Editor Mike Finn last month. “Seeing two NCAA champions going at it; the Hodge winner vs. a three-time NCAA champ.”
Cudos to you, Kyle.
• Another very positive wrestling story of late is FCA Wrestling, headed up by 2000 NCAA champion Carl Perry. FCA, which stands for Fellowship of Christian Athletes, hired Perry as its National Director a couple years ago and the former two-time Virginia state champ has been working to strategically build the ministry ever since.
According to Perry, FCA Wrestling’s main mission is to support wrestling’s coaches. And one of the main ways they’re doing that is through their 3-Dimensional Coaching Program.
“The coach will influence more people in one year than many people will in a lifetime. 3-Dimensional coaching emphasizes the technique side, the psychological side for things like team cohesiveness and motivation, and the third coaching part is learning how to coach the heart of the athlete,” Perry said.
FCA Wrestling equips coaches on how to integrate their faith into their relationships with the wrestlers on their team and into their overall coaching plan. FCA Wrestling has started to host 3D Coaching Clinics at various sites, and the 3D Coaching Curriculum is available on their website at FCAWrestling.org in the resource section.
“We want to provide opportunities for people in the wrestling community to grow in their faith,” he said. “And my personal desire is to provide (wrestling) people the chance to connect and grow in their relationship with Christ.”
Perry said he is also responsible for raising the necessary financial support to cover FCA Wrestling’s entire budget. As with most non-profits, they rely a great deal on large individual donors who believe in the ministry and have a passion for what they’re doing. But in addition to that, they have a Team 300 group which supports the ministry with $25 each month. Perry said FCA Wrestling is currently looking for more families and individuals to get to their goal where 300 people are giving $300 annually in that way.
Anyone interested in finding out more information about the ministry can check them out on-line at FCAWrestling.org. You can also sign up there for their Facebook page of Twitter updates.
Lastly, don’t forget to buy WIN subscriptions for the wrestling fans on your Christmas list. We’ll work hard to make sure it’s the gift that keeps on giving, while promoting wrestling each and every month.