Wrestling is not a sport of big stars, bigger money, and even bigger coverage. At least, not to the general population.
Most people have probably heard of Rulon Gardner, but there are and have been so many great wrestlers and great people who wrestle.
This year's Olympic team is no different.
I wrote yesterday about the excitement of the U.S. Olympic Team Trials, as well as the heartbreak. Today, I want to tell one of the amazing stories from the competition.
Perhaps if you've paid close attention to the sporting world in the past couple days you've heard murmurs of Jake Deitchler. His performance made the ticker on ESPN Saturday night, the issue of Sports Illustrated that came out today features an article on him, and USA Today named him the athlete of the week.
In April, after Deitchler placed second at the National Championships, I wrote a feature story on him for our magazine. I read back over it yesterday and it's rather ironic, considering he's now a member of the Olympic Team.
So, what exactly is so special about this wrestler?
He's the first 18-year-old in 32 years to make the team. He defeated a two-time World bronze medalist and a wrestler 14 years his senior. Deitchler is well-spoken, entertaining and confident.
I remember after I got the assignment to write the story on him, I was a little worried about doing a phone interview with a high school boy. I've known some high school boys over the years, and many of them are not what you would call well-spoken.
But Deitchler doesn't fall into that category. This is a kid who ended his press conference at the event in Vegas with, "I'm going to go to the arcade now."
And his first big concern coming off the mat from the big win was where his Mountain Dew was.
I don't know how well Deitchler will do at the Olympics. He definitely has the attention of many now. I'll definitely be watching in August to see if he can shock the World just as he shocked the wrestling nation this weekend.
Check out the SI article on Jake:
This is just one of many stories from the Trials. To check it all out, tune into MSNBC at noon ET this Sunday, June 22.