Renowned Cornell wrestler Kyle Dake has been nominated for the Sports Illustrated College Athlete of the Year award.
In four years, Dake has won four national wrestling titles in four different weight classes. He competed as a true freshman in the 141-pound weight class and won his first national title. The next year he moved up to 149 pounds and won again. Then as a junior, he went undefeated at 157 pounds. Finally, his senior season he wrestled at 165 pounds and won the national title once more (and again was undefeated). Kyle Dake finished college with a 137-4 overall record for Cornell, and the icing on the cake was the fact he is a three-time academic All-American at an accomplished Ivy League school.
Despite going undefeated in his final year, some of his toughest matches were against Penn State’s David Taylor (2012 Hodge Trophy winner). They wrestled three times including an epic 5-4 national title win over Taylor.
Dake has plans to go forward to the Olympics in the future, in what will be his biggest challenge yet. He will have to unseat defending Olympic gold medalist Jordan Burroughs at 163 pounds, not to mention transition from folk-style wrestling to freestyle.