Wrestling holds third annual outdoor practice

Members of the Kent State Wrestling team jog around the mats set up in Risman Plaza for their third annual outdoor wrestling practice. Oct. 12, 2015.

Dan Armelli

The Kent State wrestling team held its third annual outdoor practice Monday at Risman Plaza.

Though the wind was blowing, the weather was near perfect for students, families and visitors to spend time watching the team practice.

Associate head coach Matt Hill said the outdoor practice is a good way to get the wrestlers visible to the Kent State student body.

“Some of the students might not even know we have a wrestling team,” he said. “It’s a perfect setting. I don’t know how many students walk by, but I’m sure it was a couple thousand throughout the process.”

Kent State’s mascot, Flash, attended the practice and handed out Kent State apparel such as sunglasses and beanies.

“It sells itself because you have all these students walking by,” Hill said. “I think it’s just a promotional idea that’s easy. You don’t have to put any money into it, you just come down and throw some mats on the ground. Most of the guys like it (and) some other guys complain, but it’s a good event.”

Hill said depending on the wrestler, the outdoor practice does not have much of an effect on their mentality.

“Some kids will probably wrestle really hard out here,” he said. “In the (wrestling) room it’s just us 30 guys and a couple of coaches. Most of them have a really good mentality of competing. Whatever we put in front of them, they’ll do their best.”

As far as the outlook for this season, Hill thinks the Flashes have a great combination of hungry, young and veteran wrestlers who know what they need to do to succeed.

“They have big expectations for themselves,” he said. “Expectations are only good if you back them up with your actions. I think we’ll be a pretty good team in the Mid-American-Conference this year. Last year we had some hiccups… We have probably one of the toughest conferences in the country. I would say we’ll be right in the mix with the top two or three in the conference.”

Contact Dan Armelli at [email protected].