NORMAN, Okla. -- The Oklahoma wrestling team takes its No. 2 national ranking to Brockport, N.Y., for the season opener in the Brockport/Oklahoma Gold Classic on Saturday, Nov. 12.
SoonerSports.com presents this Sooner Spotlight feature on redshirt freshman wrestler Jarrod King. The Connellsville, Pa., native is ready to take his place on the mat for the Sooners.
King was a junior national champion in 2004 and a two-time Pennsylvania state champion at Connellsville High School. He will wrestle in the 165 weight class this season for the Sooners.
What kind of season should we expect from the Sooners?
“It should be great. Our team is ranked No. 2 right now, but we are hoping to take over the No. 1 position from Oklahoma State.”
Are you especially looking forward to the Bedlam matches?
“I am ready for that, it will be awesome. We wrestle OSU twice, once in Stillwater and once in Norman. I get to wrestle the returning national champion (OSU junior Johny Hendricks), so another goal of mine is to win that match and take over his position. I am anticipating this match and I am sure that I will get a little nervous when it comes around.”
How do you feel about this year’s team?
“We are a really close team; we hang out together a lot. Some of the older guys say that this is the closest team that they have been on. It’s neat that they think we are real close and I can come in and be a part of that.”
What are some of the things that have drawn you to the University of Oklahoma?
“Being from Pennsylvania, it was the history here at Oklahoma that attracted me the most. All of the things that the Sooners have done in the past, what Coach Spates has done and where he has been were important factors in my decision.
"I know that Oklahoma has always had a good program and I knew that they weren’t going to let that history and tradition fall. It was something that I wanted to be a part of.”
What is your favorite aspect of wrestling?
“There is always the team part in wrestling, but I like the one-on-one aspect the most. I have control over everything that goes on in my match. I control what I contribute to the overall team effort.”
What are some childhood memories about how you got started?
“My dad has been my coach since I was three years old. He wrestled in high school and in college, and then got my older brother started. When my older brother began going to practice with my dad, I would beg my dad to let me go so I didn’t have to stay home with my mom and my sister.”
Are you all doing anything different in terms of training?
“We are doing a lot of hard training. The coaches are making sure that we are in good shape at the beginning of the season. They are spending a lot of time with us individually, so that we can each improve our own skills. They want each person to be ready in their own way.”
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Sooner Spotlight by Emily Milberger
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