RPW Staff Writer
Jared Lawrence is one of the youngest and most promising wrestlers on the U.S. National Freestyle Team. He is an extremely focused and conditioned athlete willing to take risks and creates excitement in every match. From an early age Jared has experienced success as a student-athlete through hard work, dedication and sacrifice. This relentless pursuit of excellence has put him in the forefront in a run on the 2008 Olympic games and also becoming a successful entrepreneur.
You would be hard pressed to find another wrestler with the credentials of Jared Lawrence. Below is just a highlighted version of his outstanding career so far"¦
"¢ 2005 World Cup 3rd (Uzbekistan)
"¢ 2004 U.S. Olympic Team Alternate
"¢ 2002 NCAA Champion
"¢ 4X NCAA All"“American for University of Minnesota
"¢ 4x Undefeated Idaho State Champion
"¢ High School mark of 133-0
"¢ FILA Junior freestyle national champion
"¢ Cadet Greco-Roman national champion
Jared also won gold at the Clansman Invitational and the NYAC Christmas tournament where he defeated Kazuhiko Ikematsu, a Japanese wrestler who placed 5th in the 2004 Olympic Games. His road to Bejing is paved in gold so far.
In addition to his success on the mat, Jared also hit the books with the same intensity as the mat earning a 4.0 GPA in high school. In college Jared won the Big Ten Medal of Honor.
"It is an award that is given to one male and one female athlete out of all the athletes based on their athletic and academic achievements, "said Jared.
Jared also wrestled in Real Pro Wrestling Season 1 were he was a member of the Minnesota Storm.
"RPW is great for the sport of wrestling, "said Jared. "It gives hope for the wrestlers that there is a future in wrestling with an opportunity to make some money. "
Jared recently traveled to Uzbekistan and wrestled in and placed third in the World Cup. That alone is an awesome accomplishment but coupled with the adversity Jared experienced on his trip shows just how intense and focused of a champion he really is.
"I left for Uzbekistan on Tuesday, "said Jared. I flew into JFK airport in New York and was waiting for my connecting flight when I got snowed in. I had to stay the night there and then got re-directed on a flight to Istanbul, Turkey the following day. When I arrived in Turkey I missed my flight to Uzbekistan and had to stay there for a night. By the time I arrived in Uzbekistan and got to the venue to wrestle it was three hours before the tournament started. Five days it took to get there!"
"What made things worse was that none of my bags made it to Uzbekistan with me, "said Jared. "I had my carryon bag and had some gear I used to workout with at the different places I was stranded. We had to take turns using each other's shoes. After one of us would wrestle I would have to give the shoes to the next guy up."
Five days of traveling the world to get to a wrestling tournament without gear and without the proper rest and still takes a bronze "¦ that is a champion.
Off the mat Jared has used his intensity and smarts to start two of his own businesses while working another job!
"When I graduated I did promotions for the wrestling program at the University, "said Jared. "I also worked with Tim Hartung, a former teammate, with his wrestling school, The school of Champions. After about two years Tim moved to Iowa and started coaching there and I ran the wrestling school along with Luke Becker, another former teammate."
Right about this time some major opportunities presented themselves to Jared and he capitalized on all three!
"I wanted to have my own wrestling school so I left and started Pinnacle Wrestling School. I have about 60-70 kids of all ages from grade school to high school and it is going great. "
"Around the same time an opportunity to get into the apparel business came my way. A former wrestler had a large screen printing company and offered me a chance to start my own company under his guidance and with support in the form of low overhead and low cost buying of materials and labor. It was a great opportunity so my brother (Brett) and I jumped at the chance and formed Gut Wrench Gear."
You can check out their broad selection of athletic apparel, equipment and custom screen printing options on: www.gutwrenchgear.com. They specialize in outfitting teams so coaches "¦ support your local Olympic hopeful and check out what Jared and Gut Wrench Gear has to offer."
And for the hat trick "¦ Jared earned a job with Home Depot through a program called "O Job". The object of the program is to allow elite level athletes vying for a spot on the Olympic Team the opportunity to continue their training full-time while working part-time but earning full-time wages.
"It is a great opportunity and it really helps financially, "said Jared.
"In business I have a lot going on right now with my Pinnacle Wrestling School and Gut Wrench Gear, "said Jared. "I hope to do well with both; it will take a lot of hard work but it will pay off.
"With my wrestling career, my sights are on 2008 Olympic games in Bejing, China, "said Jared. "I have only been wrestling at the elite level for two years and there is no where to go but up. I have a lot to learn and I am going to keep working and training hard."
I will end with an appropriate quote from Aristotle Jared has posted on the homepage of gutwrenchgear.com: "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit. "
I hope Bejing is your next habit, Jared.
Coaches Corner with Jared Lawrence:
For the kids
"Dig the well before you are thirsty."
Put effort in the entire year.
Drilling is how you get better. You have to learn to wrestle before you wrestle.
For the parents
You have to work just as hard as the kids.
Make sacrifices and commitments for your kids.
Set good examples and work ethic.
For other coaches
Go to clinics to constantly improve coaching skills. Technique, fundamentals, styles etc"¦