Don’t miss a moment of wrestling’s greatest moments this holiday season

Updated: December 3, 2015

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Every month, WIN talks to some of the most influential people in the sport and/or these leaders express their views in columns that appear in WIN. The following shows what some of the sport’s biggest stars said in the Dec. 7, 2015 issue of WIN Magazine:

  1. Jordan Burroughs on the United States becoming a dominant wrestling country:

“To give you a perspective on time since our last (World

Jordan Burroughs

Jordan Burroughs

Championship) team title, (Kyle) Snyder in September became our youngest World champion ever and he was born in 1995. The last time America was dominating the world in freestyle wrestling, our current champ was snuggled up tightly in momma’s belly, waiting patiently to enter the world. “


  1. From Dan Gable on why the Grapple on the Gridiron, which drew an NCAA-record 42,287 fans in Iowa’s football (Kinnick) stadium on Nov. 14.:

grapple on gridiron art          “Both coaches (John Smith and Tom Brands) seemed a little different than from any time I’ve talked to them before. I know what game faces look like and both of these guys — leading into, during and after the event — were not the same guys that I have known. They were for the sport. They both talk about being stingy and winning, but because it was the middle of November, they have four months so it wasn’t like the results from the Grapple are going to lead into who wins (at the NCAAs).


  1. From Iowa coach Tom Brands on the most important lessons learned from the Grapple on the Gridiron:iowa coaches look into the sun

“As a competitor looking back on this, you can say that I was a part of it and there are going to be a lot of posters and pictures for a long, long time. The biggest thing is that they got ready to go. The performances that we had that were positive, those guys definitely got ready to go.”


  1. From Oklahoma State’s John Smith, the former six-time World/Olympic champ, on coaching his son and teaching him to deal with future comparisons to John and other great wrestlers in the Smith family:

john an joe smith“We’ve always told Joe to embrace the family and their accomplishments and if he wants to do anything in wrestling, he will do it because he has a passion for it … and that he wanted for himself. That’s the way he goes about it. I don’t see a lot of worry from him on what his father or uncles or cousins have done.”


  1. UT-Chattanooga Div. I coach Heath Eslinger on “Why does young generation feel entitled?heath eslinger

“Maybe in an attempt to do everything for “this generation” to be successful in areas that are all temporal and fading, we have actually taught them that the world centers around their 10-year-old universe … We have traded the team and community approach for flat-billed hats, brand new bats and bags and travel teams that are too good to play in their hometown.”


  1. Kyle Dake on college wrestling’s new rules

kyle dake winning            “The absolute worst thing that happened to the wrestling rules were the stalling calls made throughout a match. The referees are so focused on calling stalling “by the book” that they forget to recognize who is being the offensive wrestler.”



  1. Steve Fraser on how wrestlers can stop bullying in our schoolsBEIJING - AUGUST 04: Head coach Steve Fraser of the United States Wrestling team answers questions during a news conference in the Main Press Centre ahead of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games on August 4, 2008 in Beijing, China. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

“We can take a “stance” and come together as a sport to stop bullying … on the spot. I don’t mean to suggest that wrestlers need to fight bullying with violence. Wrestlers should stand up and make it known that we will not look the other way. We will not be mere bystanders when it comes to bullying. What better sport could represent the effort of bringing awareness and solutions to the serious matter of bullying?


  1. Frank Popolizio, the creator of the Journeyman/ASICS Northeast Duals and brother of Pat Popolizio, the head coach at NC State:

POPOLIZIO FAMILY            “You don’t deserve anything in wrestling. You deserve what you earn. For Pat, he’s gotten what he’s earned and I believe I’ve gotten what I think I’ve earned.”




  1. Two-time NCAA champ Nick Gwiazdowski from NC State on why he chose not to take an Olympic redshirt this season:Gwiazdowski

“I don’t think (redshirting) is make or break. I feel like I am capable of making the Olympics (despite wrestling the college season). Guys have done it before. If I stay healthy and keep a freestyle mindset in a training aspect, I don’t think I will be far behind.




  1. Cole Spree, the head coach of the top-ranked JUCO program from Ellsworth CC, on how tough it is to get junior college wrestlers to succeed in just two years at his DSC_0303program:

“We have kids from all over the place with multiple different personalities and multiple different skills. It’s our job as coaches to get them to jell and mesh. That’s why we’ve been able to have the success that we have. We know we have something special with the kids that we have. We’ve put a lot of emphasis on retention the last two or three years. At this level, that is so huge and one year can make a world of difference in who they are as a person, as an athlete.”

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