by Jim Brown
I had too much time on my hands last week and spent way too much time surfing the 'net for wrestling-related stories and posts. It just got "curiouser and curiouser" as Alice said.
First, from the Iowa Preps wrestling message board: This post was titled, "Wrestling Scholarship Available in Macon, GA."
My name is Kevin Andres, and I coach the wrestling program at Mercer University. I would like to introduce you to our program and let you know about an exciting opportunity for you to continue your wrestling careers in college. Mercer's team just finished 9th in the Nation @ the National Dual Championships and tied for 23rd at the traditional National Championship Tournament.
My program is part of the National Collegiate Wrestling Association, which includes over 130 colleges of all sizes. The NCWA is entering its twelfth season and has grown in size and competition every year.
I would be happy to answer any questions you might have, so feel free to call (478-301-2404) or email ([email protected]).
PS: Mercer University offers many academic scholarships and is also offering wrestling scholarships in various amounts to select wrestlers who qualify. To be accepted you need a minimum 3.0 GPA, 550m/550r on the SAT/ 25 ACT
HIGH NEED FOR 125lbs, 285lbs wrestlers
Kevin Andres Wrestling Coach Mercer University, Macon, GA 31207478-301-2404"
Then I read a press release that the NAIA-affiliated Mid-South Conference is adding wrestling as a conference sport. Five of the conference's 17 members already compete in wrestling and this will certainly add incentive for the other 12 to consider adding a team.
After reading the release I searched for more information on the Mid-South Conference and came across this discussion on the Georgia National Wrestling Alliance wrestling forum about which college in Georgia to target next for the addition of another wrestling program. As you read the discussion you'll see that Coach Andres from the "Wrestling Scholarship"¦" post is a participant in the discussion. It appears that there is a very active group of supporters who are working hard for the growth of intercollegiate wrestling in Georgia.
This is all good news. Participation in high school wrestling is still growing. While the trend among NCAA member institutions to eliminate wrestling programs is continuing, NAIA and NCWA schools are stepping in to give young student-athletes the opportunity to wrestle as a part of their college educations. The NAIA member, Grand View University added wrestling this past season and Baker University will begin varsity competition in 2009/2010.
I couldn't let go of the string "I had to keep searching. It was all so positive. I then found this blog from NAIA expert, Jason Dannelly. More good news.