October 1, 2022

The 2020 U.S. Olympic wrestling staff is likely one of the most star-studded teams to ever signify the nation on the worldwide stage. The lineup contains Olympic champions, world champions, NCAA champions, WCWA champions and future stars.

Right here’s what these people completed on the collegiate degree and the way these experiences formed them into the Olympians they’re now. 


57kg: Thomas Gilman, College of Iowa

A 3-time All-American and NCAA finalist for the Iowa Hawkeyes, Thomas Gilman certified for his first Olympic staff with a 2-0 sweep of Cornell’s Vitali Arujau within the finals. Gilman completed his faculty profession with a 107-12 file, ending fourth, third and second in his final three years. He left Iowa as some of the completed, well-known wrestlers to by no means win a title within the trendy period. He proved, together with his trials efficiency, that the most effective remains to be to come back for this scrappy light-weight. 

HAWKEYE HEROES: The whole lot you should find out about Iowa Wrestling Historical past 

The 26-year-old brings world-level expertise to Tokyo as a two-time World Group member and a 2017 world silver medalist. Gilman additionally served because the U.S. rep to qualify 57kg for the 2020 Video games and can now compete on the weight in his first Video games. He represented the Nittany Lion Wrestling Membership within the Olympic trials and can intention to convey gold again to his new house in State School. 

74kg: Kyle Dake, Cornell College

Wrestler of the Decade winner Kyle Dake talks historic Cornell profession, 4 NCAA titles

Kyle Dake had some of the historic NCAA wrestling careers of all time at Cornell, successful 4 NCAA titles at 4 completely different weights in 4 years, the one wrestler to perform such a feat. He additionally completed his faculty profession with simply 4 losses. As a senior in 2013, Dake gained the Hodge Trophy for his stellar season and noteworthy NCAA championship win over NCAA champion and fellow Hodge Trophy winner David Taylor.

4 TITLES, 4 WEIGHTS, 4 YEARS: The unimaginable faculty profession of Kyle Dake

In qualifying for his first Olympic staff, Dake beat 2012 Olympic champion Jordan Burroughs and would be the first American man apart from Burroughs to wrestle at 74kg for the US on the world stage since 2011. He additionally beat three-time NCAA champion and Hodge finalist Jason Nolf within the semifinals.

Dake’s dominance is evident, and he’ll convey high-level world championship expertise to Tokyo this summer time. A two-time world champion at 79kg, Dake will chase his first Olympic gold in a weight that has been tremendously profitable for the US up to now. Dake trains in Ithaca, New York as a member of the Spartan Fight Wrestling Membership, embracing his collegiate roots at Cornell and representing this system with class. 

86 kg: David Taylor, Penn State College

Very like Dake, David Taylor additionally had a legendary faculty profession, successful two NCAA titles and two Hodge Trophies for Penn State earlier than transitioning to, and excelling in, freestyle wrestling. Taylor’s solely collegiate losses got here in opposition to NCAA champion Bubba Jenkins and four-time NCAA champion Dake, and he expertly constructed on that success to say titles on the worldwide degree.

MAGIC MAN: David Taylor named NCAA Most Dominant Wrestler in 2014

In 2018, Taylor gained his first world championship medal at 86kg when he stormed previous Turkey’s Fatih Erdin by technical fall within the finals. An damage saved him out of the 2019 World Championships, however Taylor is again and higher than ever. He earned his spot on the 2020 staff after beating teammate Bo Nickal within the Olympic trials last to qualify for his first Video games, and he’ll additionally signify the Nittany Lion Wrestling Membership in Tokyo. 

97kg: Kyle Snyder, Ohio State College

A 3-time NCAA champion and four-time NCAA finalist for the Ohio State Buckeyes in faculty, Kyle Snyder turned the youngest man in historical past to win an Olympic gold medal for the US when he beat Khetag Gazyumov of Russia within the 2016 finals. Snyder will now return for his second Olympics after topping his former teammate Kollin Moore within the Trials finals, and he’ll now look to defend his Olympic crown. The 25-year-old Maryland native at present trains with the Nittany Lion Wrestling Membership in State School, Penn, and has gained 4 World Championship medals at 97kg, successful gold in 2015 and 2017.

GOLDEN BUCKEYE: Kyle Snyder wins Olympic gold in 2016 

Snyder’s 2015 gold medal got here whereas he was nonetheless in faculty and represents his spectacular skill to stability the calls for of coaching freestyle at an elite senior degree with the expectations of a faculty folkstyle wrestler. As a sophomore in 2016, Snyder opted to take an Olympic redshirt in preparation for the Rio Video games, however he returned to the mat in January to say his first NCAA title simply 5 months earlier than competing on the Olympic stage. Snyder is the one member of the 2020 Olympic Group who has participated within the Video games earlier than, and, regardless of his younger age, he’ll be the veteran on this squad.

125kg: Gable Steveson, College of Minnesota 

The youngest member of the 2020 Olympic males’s wrestling staff, Gable Steveson certified for his first Video games with two convincing wins over 2019 World Group member Nick Gwizdowski and can search for his first senior-level medal in Tokyo. Steveson’s victory got here simply two weeks after the 20-year-old gained his first NCAA title at 285 kilos and earned the Hodge Trophy for his world-class efficiency.

NCAA CHAMPION: Steveson wins his first collegiate nationwide championship in 2021

Steveson is a three-time All-American for the Minnesota Gopher after ending third as a freshman, incomes NWCA first-team honors in 2020 after the COVID-19 cancellation after which successful the load as a junior. Steveson has misplaced simply twice in faculty: within the 2019 Huge Ten finals and within the 2019 NCAA semifinals in opposition to Penn State’s Anthony Cassar. Since then, he isn’t solely overwhelmed all of his opponents, however he is majored practically each single one among them. He’s been imprecise about his collegiate plans subsequent yr, however one factor is evident: Steveson is now on a mission for Olympic gold. 


50 kg: Sarah Hildebrandt, King College

A 2018 World silver medalist, Sarah Hildebrandt will wrestle in her first Olympic Video games this summer time after topping Victoria Anthony 12-2, 10-0 in her two finals matches within the trials. Her qualification represents practically a decade of perseverance in direction of this purpose, as she simply fell in need of an Olympic berth at each the 2012 and 2016 trials. She has additionally gained 4 Pan American titles and is a two-time World staff member for the US. 

Hildebrandt competed collegiately for King College the place she gained two nationwide titles and completed second twice. She’s additionally a four-time All-American and a member of two nationwide staff championships for King.

“King wasn’t the primary program on the time, however after I went and visited, I simply felt an superior really feel on campus,” Hildebrandt informed the Herald Courier. “Undoubtedly, all the time my purpose was Olympics and so I knew faculty was sort of only a stepping stone in that purpose.” 

53 kg: Jacarra Winchester,  Missouri Valley School

A world champion now in search of Olympic gold, California native Jacarra Winchester will signify the US at 53kg, and, like Hildebrandt, this dream has been a very long time coming. 

Winchester gained a College Nationals title in 2014 and a WCWA nationwide title for Missouri Valley School in 2015 and was set to compete for an Olympic spot in 2016 however ended up having to drag out of the trials due to an ACL damage.

She went on to get well and emerge victorious on the World Group Trials in 2018 earlier than capturing a gold medal within the 2019 World Championships.

Winchester can also be a two-time U.S. Open Champion and a 2019 winner of the Dave Schultz Memorial Match.

Her accomplishments converse for themselves, and now the Titan Mercury Wrestling Membership athlete will tackle her largest problem but and intention to face on high of the rostrum this summer time on the Olympics in Tokyo. 

57kg: Helen Maroulis, Simon Fraser College

Helen Maroulis is again to make historical past once more, because the 2016 gold medalist will now look to turn into the primary lady to win back-to-back golds in an Olympic Video games.

Maroulis battled with Jenna Burkert for her spot on the staff, successful the primary finals match 5-3 however then dropping the second 6-5 earlier than pinning her opponent for a second bid to the Olympics.

The 29-year-old is likely one of the most adorned members of this Olympic staff with 4 world medals, two of them gold, and she or he’ll intention so as to add to this assortment in Tokyo. Maroulis can also be a four-time NWCA nationwide champion for Simon Fraser College and went undefeated in her faculty profession.

Initially hailing from Maryland, Maroulis now trains with the Nittany Lion Wrestling Membership and has stated that the surroundings of that wrestling room has helped her attain new ranges. 

EMERGING SPORTS: NCAA introduced ladies’s wrestling as an rising sport in 2020

“It helps loads to 1, produce other ladies there, as a result of it is only a completely different feeling to have individuals pursuing the identical purpose as you. And two, I feel it is simply nice to have a push,” Maroulis informed The Collegian. “After I was residing at house in Maryland, I simply keep in mind telling my mother it is sort of exhausting doing this by myself. So simply to be at Penn State, having the ladies and we’re all serving to one another, it is superb.”

62 kg: Kayla Miracle, Campbellsville

A four-time WCWA Nationwide champion for Campbellsville, Kayla Miracle has continued to wrestle her method into the file books since her faculty days. She’s a three-time U.S. Open Champion, 2019 World Group member, two-time winner of the Dave Schultz Memorial Worldwide champion and now, a 2020 Olympian.

She certified the load on the Pan American Video games in 2020, which allowed her to sit down out of the event till the finals, and she or he did what she wanted to do to win that best-of-three finals when every thing was on the road. She earned an 8-4 win within the first Trials championship bout earlier than dropping the second match 4-3 and having to rebound to safe her Olympic spot after Kilty, a Tar Heel Wrestling Membership athlete, damage defaulted out.

Miracle at present trains with the Sunkist Children Wrestling Membership in Tempe, Arizona. 

68 kg: Tamyra Mensah-Inventory, Wayland Baptist

Tamyra Mensah-Inventory was nearly as shut as anybody to qualifying for the Olympics in 2016. She gained the Trials that yr however didn’t qualify the load, forcing her to observe the Video games from house versus competing in them.

This cycle, nevertheless, was completely different, because the 2019 World Champion confirmed the nation simply how sturdy she was by leaving little doubt in her 2-0 sweep of Kennedy Blades within the 68kg last.

Mensah-Inventory is in a superb place to compete for a medal in Tokyo, and her worldwide resume exhibits a deep historical past of success. Along with her gold medal from 2019 Worlds, Mensah-Inventory has a bronze from the 2018 World Championships and a latest gold from the 2021 Matteo Pellicone Match. She’s additionally a two-time WCWA Nationwide Champion for Wayland Baptist and a College Nationwide Champion, somebody who has been wrestling on the elite degree for practically a decade and constantly discovering a strategy to compete for the highest spot. 

76 kg: Adeline Grey, DeVry, College of Colorado-Colorado Springs

Heavyweight wrestler Adeline Grey will return for her second Olympics a extra skilled, seasoned champion who expects nothing lower than to dominate.

After shutting out Kylie Welker 11-0 in two consecutive matches within the 76kg Olympic trials finals, Grey is again on the Olympic Group and able to end what she began in 2016.

Grey got here into the Rio Video games as a heavy favourite however fell in need of a podium spot. Since then, nevertheless, she’s gone on so as to add two extra World Championship golds to her assortment, changing into the primary lady to win 5 World titles in a profession.

This yr, she’ll unquestionably be one of many leaders of this high-powered ladies’s freestyle Olympic staff and look to seize the medal that eluded her the primary go-round. A graduate of DeVry College, Grey majored in technical administration, with a focus in venture administration and accomplished her diploma whereas coaching for the Rio Video games. 

“The DeVry professors instantly understood the help I wanted and the college’s examine choices are perfect for an Olympic athlete’s way of life,” Grey informed WickedLocal in 2016. “To have DeVry in my nook supporting me, not simply in my schooling, and likewise supporting my athletic desires has been superb.” 


60 kg: Ildar Hafizov

Ildar Hafizov has had maybe probably the most attention-grabbing Olympic journey in that he initially hails from Uzbek and solely began representing the US in 2015. Seven years after representing Uzbekistan within the 2008 Olympics, Hafizov turned a U.S. Citizen and joined the US Military. He now competes as a member of the U.S. Military World Class Athlete Program and is a a two-time U.S. World Group member. A Greco specialist, Hafizov  didn’t wrestle collegiately in the US however informed FivePointMove.com that he thinks the fashion may thrive within the U.S. School Scene. 

“If you happen to put Greco applications within the faculties additionally, they are going to be wrestling Greco from the start,” he stated. “It can undoubtedly profit this system. It can undoubtedly convey extra enchancment for Greco.”

67 kg: Alejandro Sancho, Northern Michigan College 

Like Hafizov, Alejandro Sancho can also be a member of the Military World Class Athlete Program and a veteran Worldwide wrestler, however, in contrast to his teammate Sancho did join with collegiate wrestling coaches after his highschool profession. He defined to TeamUSA.com that NMU-OTS head coach Rob Hermann reached out to Sancho after highschool and requested him to start out coaching with the Northern Michigan Greco program, a chance he could not cross up.

He gained his first main senior degree event on the Invoice Ferrell Invitational in 2014, however his victories on the Olympic trials marks the largest achievement of his profession thus far. Sancho’s Trials win got here by shut margins, as he beat Ellis Coleman 2-0 and 3-1, however he completed his purpose. Sancho is an Olympian. 

87 kg: John Stefanowicz

Nothing may cease John Stefanowicz. The 87kg Greco wrestler labored his method by the bracket with upsets over Pat Martinez, Alan Vera and Barrett Stanghill earlier than topping 2016 Olympic trials winner Joe Rau 6-5 and 2-1. Stefanowicz’s win is the results of by no means giving up, even when he wasn’t probably the most sought-after recruit, even when a pandemic interfered together with his coaching and even when he began to doubt himself. 

Stefanowicz had a profession breakthrough when he made his first World Group in 2019 and gained the 2020 Pan American Video games, however, like a lot of his Greco teammates, qualifying for the Olympics is a unique sort of accomplishment. 

Stefanowicz didn’t compete on the collegiate degree and as an alternative joined the Marines after his highschool commencement, changing into the primary Marine since 1992 to make a U.S. Olympic Group. His path was unorthodox, however it’s labored for him, and he’ll signify his nation and his department on the worldwide stage this summer time in Tokyo. 

97 kg: G’Angelo Hancock, Daymar School

G’Angelo Hancock lived as much as his Twitter deal with nickname, @OlympicKidd, when he beat Braxton Amos 2-0 within the 97kg last on the Olympic trials.

Hancock has had nationwide and worldwide success earlier than, ending third on the Trials in 2016 earlier than successful World Group Trials in 2017 and 2018 and qualifying for the 2019 World Group. The Olympics, nevertheless, are a brand new and unprecedented stage for the Greco athlete. Hancock certified his weight for Tokyo, giving him a cross to the finals of the Trials, and he was clearly the most effective man within the nation on the weight within the Trials. In keeping with TrackWrestling, Hancock credit the help of Matt Lindland, Coach James Johnson, Herb Home, Steve Fraser at Daymar for supporting him all through the early components of his profession, regardless that he did not compete collegiately for the varsity, and he’ll look to construct on that help to problem for an Olympic medal this summer time.

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