The NCAA DIII Wrestling Championships are just days away from kicking-off, and that means the final collegiate event for Buena Vista senior 184-pounder Brian Broll (Chaska, Minn.Waconia), who’s taking part in the championships for the fourth straight year. He’ll begin his quest for a potential national championship when action gets underway inside of the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, this Friday morning, March 15 at 10:00am. The event is being hosted by Cornell College.
Broll, who is 103-23 in his career, earned the automatic bid into the event after taking second at the Central Regional Tournament back on March 2 in Dubuque, Iowa. He will be the seventh-seed heading into Friday’s opening round and open up with a match against un-seeded sophomore Daniel Olsen of Wheaton College (Ill.). Olsen, who took third at the Midwest Regional Tournament, enters with a season record of 28-4.
“This is the last tournament I will be competitively wrestling in,” says Broll. “My approach to it is to try to wrestle my best and try to focus on doing my best and enjoying my last wrestling competition.”
Fifth-year head coach Sevond Cole says that if Broll wrestles to his ability, it will be tough for anyone to slow him down.
“The game plan is simple and is no secret,” he says. “We need to take more shots and be very aggressive on our feet. When Brian opens up and keeps his feet moving, he is unstoppable.”
Since there is a two-week lay-off between Regionals and the NCAA Championships, Broll has been able to fine-tune a few things and also get himself mentally and physically prepared.
“I have been focusing on polishing my technique and getting some good workouts in,” he adds. “I have also been trying to make sure I stay healthy and injury free as I've been having some bad luck with that this year.”
BVU hasn’t had an All-American at 184 pounds since Dave Doebel back in 2001 (4th). Broll, who’s been ranked second nationally virtually all season, could give BVU its first national finalist since Ben Strandberg took second in 2007. The last national champion for the Beavers was Jamie Taxted in 2002 (125lbs.).
“The guys that really excel in wrestling are the ones that learn from mistakes and grow as individuals,” Cole says. “Every year that Brian has qualified, he has learned something about himself at the tournament. Few, if any, wrestlers at the national tournament have the experience that Brian has at this tournament. He knows what it will be like to wrestle in front of that crowd and he knows what it is going to take to get himself past that All-American round of the tournament.”
For more information on the NCAA Championships, visit the championship website at http://www.cornellrams.com/fw/2013_NCAA_Wrestling_Championships.php
Check out photos of our student-athletes in action in the Beaver sports photo galleries.