Wrestler weighs college options

March 10, 2009 — by Jordan Waite

It’s the dream of a lot of athletes to play their sport in college, but for senior Nathan Nguyen, that dream has not only come true, but is becoming a difficult decision.

“It was pretty stressful narrowing down,” said Nguyen. “I had to consider schools for not only wrestling, but if I would be happy there socially and academically as well.”

Harvard, West Point, Duke, Brown and Cal Poly have all shown interest in Nguyen’s wrestling abilities and have expressed interest in having him join their programs. However, the Ivy leagues don’t offer scholarships and the colleges that do haven’t offered them to him yet. He still does know whether or not he has been accepted by MIT, his first choice.

“I like MIT the best because it was fun when I visited and I really like Boston,” said Nguyen. “If I don’t get into MIT, I want to go to either Brown or one of the UCs.”

Nguyen is a top student, but it is his talent on the wrestling mat that has attracted so much attention. Nguyen has qualified for the state tournament three years in a row and has the potential to place in the prestigious state tournament in Bakersfield this year. His overall high school record is 117-31.

Nguyen has had an official visit to Brown in October, where he shadowed one of their wrestlers, and also visited MIT and Harvard unofficially on the same trip. It was during his visit to Brown when Nguyen saw how valuable a morning practice schedule could be and suggested trying it at SHS.

“I liked how efficient having morning practices was for [Brown],” said Nguyen. “That’s what made me decide to implement them into our program.”

Nguyen has done a lot of this process by himself, but has also had the help of wrestling coach Art Clark, who has a lot of experience with college recruitment.

“[Nguyen] is a good candidate for college teams,” said Clark. “He has the grades and the wrestling talent.”

Nguyen said he is looking forward to wrestling in college no matter where he ends up.

“From what I saw on my college visits, I know wrestling will have to become a major priority in my life,” said Nguyen, “but I’m still going to put academics first, because that’s what will help me with my future.”

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