During the baseball off season, I decided to test the waters with something new. I was a bit reluctant to try something new, as I am an old horse stuck in my own ways. In 2017, I was lucky enough to meet up, both via Twitter, then in person, with a childhood hero of mine from my professional wrestling days, Gerry Brisco. I had very fond memories of watching Mr. Brisco and his brother, Jack, growing up in Florida. I couldn’t tell the difference between a take down from a near falll and bonus points! But it’s been a great experience and I am already hooked on NCAA wrestling and will be following for a long time!
My first introduction to wrestling was as a kid growing up in Florida watching Championship Wrestling From Florida with Gordon Solie. My heroes in the day were Jack and Jerry Brisco, Dusty Rhodes, Mike and Eddie Graham, and a host of other faces and heels. I remember trying to plead with my 4th grade teacher that it was all real! I mean, who couldn’t argue with a promo like this??
This, of course, was when then the Brisco’s were “heels” against Jay Youngblood and Rickey Steamboat. I knew a little a bit about the Brisco’s at the time and eventually learned a bit more over the years. Jack was an NCAA heavyweight champion, and was never taken down once during his season as a champion. Gerry also wrestled for the Oklahoma State Cowboys later, so they had great amateur pedigrees going into the professional ranks.
My meeting with Gerry Brisco and intro to NCAA wrestling
I hooked up with Mr. Brisco was casual at first, trading Twitter messages, then asking about how things were going with Hurricane Irma in Florida. We traded a few messages during that tough time in September, and I finally got to meet him in the aftermath of the storm. Great meeting him! He really turned me on to amateur wrestling, and he suggesgted that I see some college meets. I’m so glad for the meeting, and subsesquetly he has been honored with an induction into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame for his life long support for the sport!
I can proudly say I will be in Florida in August for his induction! In addition,Mr. Brisco is a very proud member of the Chickasaw Nation, and has been featured in their profiles of famous Chickasaw Nation profiles. Truly a great guy!
First live matches
Mr. Brisco suggested I contact Frank Beasley, the new head coach of George Mason University wrestling. Coach Beasley is in his first year at GMU, and came from the ACC powerhouse NC State. Coach Beaseley is building a program at GMU and an awesome guy. I got to see them wrestle at their home arena a couple of times, and he’s an incredible coach. In his first season he had two NCAA qualifiers, Tejon Anthony and Matt Voss. I visited GMU for two meets and Coach Beasley was most gracious both times. In my newbie eyes, I see good things coming out of this program going forward! Here are some photos of GMU wrestling. Look out for these guys!
My final live matches were the NCWA All Star Classic in Princeton, and a dual between Maryland vs Iowa. Both were incredible events. These are my reviews:
Thank you, ESPN
I was blessed by ESPN broadcasting college wrestliing throughout the season. Some of the commentary was hit and miss but the action was incredible. Penn State vs Iowa, and NC State v Oklahoma State in Italy come to mind. Pack wrestling v Va Tech, and other meets that I can’t recall, all good stuff!
NCAA Chanpionships, wow!
I wasn’t able to watch some of the preliminary matches of the championship matctches due to work restrictrictions, but caught the action Friday night and Saturday. All I can say is Wow! Too many tweets to include here but the action was amazing. There were upsets, amazing action, and how many sports can you see Rutgers and Cornell being competitive in?? Saw the likes of Hidlay v Noff, Moose v Nevills, Hayden from NC State, Conel getting a standing O,and more that I can’t recall. I do remembet jumping off my couch at unexpended and/or fast pins! Too many to remember at this point!
For a rookie, this season has been a whirlwhind. I am truly looking forward to following this sport to the next level. I’ve met some great coaches along the way, and I am looking forward to learning more about this great sport! Thanks everyone!