I wrestled at Iowa from the fall of 1987 to the spring of 1991. My goal was to place at US senior freestyle nationals or die trying. Preferably the former.
I kept a journal during those 4 years, and this website is a collection of those journal entries.
I competed for The Hawkeye Wrestling Club, the freestyle offshoot of Iowa's NCAA team; at that time there were no NCAA rules requiring separation of freestyle and collegiate practices, so everyone trained together.
My daily workout partners were a Who's Who of the best lightweights in the country: Barry Davis, Brad Penrith, Tom and Terry Brands, Steve "Rat" Martin, Chad Zaputil, Jack Griffin.
Dan Gable was the head coach, leader of practices, and chief inspiration.
Wrestling at Iowa taught me to set higher standards for myself, push through barriers, learn from setbacks, and never give up.
I was fortunate to achieve my goals. I beat an Olympian, a Jr. World Champ, and several All-Americans. I also lost an awful lot of matches because I was out-slicked, out-smarted, or--the most humiliating of all--out-hustled. I was a lot more humble when I left than when I arrived.
Click on a chapter on the right to get started.
Posted by Todd Tarpley