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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey, Iowa brothers. Just want to congratulate you all on the Hawkeyes Championship this past weekend. That da** Metzger is a STUD. Not taking anything away from Schlater, but he got a good old Brands manhandling. Looks like you can look forward to Tommy bringing the Hawkeyes back to the physical style that served Gable so well.
 

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How about them "Hawkeyes"! That's why Iowa is the wrestling capitol of the United States. Coach Brands is bringing in some excellent home grown talent in this years recruiting class. He didn't even have to leave Iowa City to land 2 of the most sought after recruits in the nation. Now if we can just get our basketball program going,and I know Coach Lickliter will,and Ferentz can get the football team squared away we will be in high cotton.
 

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It's gonna be fun looking ahead to see what Brands can do. One thing is for sure, it takes a fully committed kid to buy into coach Brands. There's intense, and then there's Brands. Unbelievably intense!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Before I tell this story I want to say that I have no right to be in the wrestling community`s inner circle. I never wrestled beyond high school. Somehow I got involved in accompanying the US team on international trips. Please don`t think I believe I belonged there. In fact, on this particulal trip to the world championships in Iran, `98 if I`m not mistaken, the security people in Iran required us to specify our roles with the team entourage. My official pass read Team TP Carrier.....lol. I didn`t think they would know what that was, but it tells you how unimportant my contribution , or lack thereof was.

Anyway, Gable took good care of me. I had the occasion to chat with Tom Brands in his hotel room. He talked about his goal, which was to coach. Implied was the highest goal of coaching the Hawkeyes. Now, he is there and I am tickled to death for him.
 

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Dan,
That is a neat story. Were you a friend of Gables? What was your connection to the team? Do you have a connection somehow to Iowa? So many questions.:wink: Gable is a living legend around here, truly revered in Iowa wrestling circles (along with many others).
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Tim, it just kind of evolved as my life unfolded. I went to Europe to do the hitchhiking thing right out of high school. Had some tickets to the '72 olympics, wrestling. So I got to watch Dan Gable win his gold. As a kid with a blank slate you can imagine how those memories are burned into my mind, Wells, Petersons, Chris Taylor who has passed away, Saunders who was killed right after the olympics in a car crash in europe......man, I could go on.

In those years the Olympics were very different from today. They were a meeting place for the world. Nowadays, starting from about Los Angeles, they are a meeting place for the WEALTHY. Well, I`m not wealthy, but still found a way to get there most times, sleeping in the woods, or in youth hostels. As I got a family, we just made room somehow in our budget to take the kids......

Anyway, in the years after that I made it to most of the olympics and got to watch many of the US wrestlers. You know, if you wanted to get to visit with an NBA star or a NFL star, it would be impossible. But wrestling is a different thing altogether. These guys are on a personal mission, without the fanfare. As Tim Vanni`s mom and I were chatting in the stands in Sydney 2000, we decided the wrestlers were the REAL DREAM TEAM. Tim was our guy for many years, always fueled by that dream.

So, I kind of got to know Gable and many of the other guys, from an outsider's position. The neat thing was, USA wrestling allowed a handfull of individuals to accompany the teams to World Championships, staying with the group in their hotel and riding to the venue on the bus with them. These were some really out of the way destinations, Tehran, Ankara. For someone who loves to travel and loves wrestling, it was wonderfull.

Gable used to vacation in SW Florida, and once the local HS coach asked if I could take him fishing offshore. He was gratefull and sent me an Iowa jacket. So, in Iran, when the rest of the team went back to the hotel before the session was over, we stayed to watch the wrestling and then found our way back. I would not have had the hair to negotiate the Iranian streets but for his company. It was pretty wild, as the "Death to America" slogans were still permanantly painted in Farci inside the wrestling hall.

Sorry to go on so....brings back a lot of memories.
 

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Dan, thanks for taking the time to make such an informative and entertaining post. While you stated that you weren't wealthy, I think we both know that that's not quite true. With the experiences you've had, and the friendships you've established, you are indeed very rich!

I was never a wrestler, but I had close friends that were. And my son-in-law is a 3 time place winner at the IA state meet and comes from a fanatical wrestling family. I would imagine when they get around to having kids I'll be at a few pee wee meets. I think that wrestlers are probably the most under appreciated athletes out there, except for those in the know. The work and sacrifice it takes to get to the highest level is a huge commitment.

Again, thanks for sharing.
 

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Glad we have one team doing good only other Iowa team is Drake and they get to go to the big show.
Don't give up on the basketball team,Lickliter will bring them back. He just has to get some ball players that can run his system. He didn't inherit much in the way of talent from the previous coach. I'm not sure what's going on with the football program right now but if Ferentz doesn't get it turned back around soon,I'm afraid he may be looking for a different job. My personal opinion is we need some new assistant coaches starting with a new offensive coordinator. If we can't come up with a better QB than Christensen the next 2 years aren't going to be much fun.JMO
 

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Its good to see the wrestling world is thinking about the Hawkeyes again. I wish some of the guys would have wrestled a bit better at the big tens, I really thought Iowa would have 3 to 5 guys in the finals. I really think the loses will refocus a few of them and we should see some fireworks at the NCAAs. I believe we could see three or four national champions wearing black and gold at the end of the tournament.
 

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GO CLONES!! Don't forget that Iowa State is sending 10 wrestlers and Iowa is sending 9. Should be a great showing for the whole state of Iowa! Best of luck to both teams but hopefully ISU can flex there muscles a little more this time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
That`s right, the REAL NCAA Championship is this weekend.

And it will be a very competitive year, from what the commentators say.

Nobody is forgetting the `Clones, bet on that. They have too good a coaching staff to not be competitive.

Good luck to every one of your favorite teams!
 
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