UTC's Eslinger Points to Friday Night Wrestling Opener

Iowa, Virginia , Cumberland at Maclellan Gym

Tuesday, November 13, 2012 - by B.B. Branton

"To be able to wrestle against Iowa in Maclellan Gym Friday night is comparable to the football team playing Alabama at Finley Stadium or the Mocs basketball team playing Kentucky at McKenzie Arena.  Iowa wrestling is that big ... maybe bigger. "

---- Heath Eslinger, UTC wrestling coach

 

 UTC wrestling coach Heath Eslinger is a visionary and a pro-active kind of guy.

 First he brings the nationally-known Southern Scuffle to McKenzie Arena this past New Year’s Day.

And this Friday he has convinced Iowa and Virginia – a pair of nationally-ranked team – plus Cumberland University for an afternoon and evening of wrestling at Maclellan Gym.

“To wrestle Iowa in our gym is the ultimate,” said Eslinger at Monday’s Chattanooga Quarterback Club. “They are wrestling’s version of Alabama football and Kentucky basketball.”

Iowa is ranked second in the nation and has five returning All-Americans, including two-time national champion in Matt McDonough (125).

Virginia is No.16 and led by All-American Derek Valenti (149) and NCAA qualifier Joe Spisak (133).

“UTC has never had an NCAA Division I national champion, but I think our Nick Soto at 125 is on that path,” stated Eslinger.

“He faces McDonough Friday night at 7 p.m. in Big Mac and I am excited to see how he does.’'

Eslinger illustrated his point on how big wrestling is in Iowa.

“The Lady Vols under Pat Summitt won eight NCAA titles which was a great accomplishment. Iowa has won 23 in wrestling.”

Friday’s Schedule - Maclellan Gym  UTC campus

 2 p.m.  Virginia vs. Cumberland

 3:30 p.m. -  Iowa vs. Cumberland (a kids club match on adjacent mat)

 5 p.m. – UTC vs. Cumberland … No.2 Iowa vs. No. 16 Virginia

7 p.m. – UTC vs. No. 2 Iowa

 Tickets:  Adults- $5  Students - $2  UTC Students – Free with ID

“During the Jim Morgan Era of the 1970s the wrestling Mocs drew big crowds at Maclellan Gym and we are hoping for a large turnout on Friday for our home opener,” Eslinger said.

Developing a Great Era: “Anyone can have a great year, but we want to develop our great era. Iowa, Iowa State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State have done that.”

Shine at the NCAAs: “Winning conference titles is nice, but to be recognized on the big stage with the elite programs we have to have success at the NCAA tournament,” said Eslinger. “That is how you are measured as an individual and a program.”

For UTC, the measuring begins Friday night at 7 p.m.

contact B.B. Branton at wiliam.branton@comcast.net

 


Lee Golfers Lead Division II Tournament

With sophomore Taylor Davis leading the charge, the Lee University men's golf team is flexing its muscles once again in a top-flight NCAA Division II tournament. The Flames put together impressive rounds of 290-283 (573) on the par 72, 7133-yards Turtle Point Yacht & Country Club course and will hold a seven-stroke advantage over second place Columbus State (Ga.) heading ... (click for more)

Dalton State's 1st “Coach K” ID Camp Was Successful

Dalton State soccer coach Kerem Daser says his first “Coach K” Identification Camp was a great first event that included 45 talented and enthusiastic campers. “I was so excited to run my first ID Camp at our new Dalton Soccer Complex at Lakeshore Park,” said Daser. “We had a strong group of players who were here from the local soccer community, other states and countries.” ... (click for more)

Erlanger Refinancing To Provide Cash For New Children's/Women's Hospital, $50 Million Erlanger East Expansion, $8.5 Million Surgical Improvements

Erlanger Health System officials said an overhaul of the hospital's debt will include $70 million in new loans for several major hospital projects - including $11.5 million toward a new $30 million Children's/Women's Hospital. The overall cost of the latter facility is $30 million, but the hospital is seeking significant outside gifts and support. It will also pay for a $50 million ... (click for more)

Legendary Radio Broadcaster Luther Dies At 92 After Record 74 Years On The Air; Funeral Will Be Thursday At 2 PM At Engel Stadium

Legendary radio broadcaster Luther Masingill died early Monday morning at Memorial Hospital surrounded by family and friends. He was 92 and had been on the air for a record 74 years. Funeral services will be held on Thursday at Historic Engel Stadium, 1130 E 3rd St., at 2 p.m. with Pastor Todd McElyea officiating.   Honorary pallbearers will be the staff at ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Has Lost Its Most Popular Citizen - Luther Masingill

Chattanooga has lost its most popular citizen – Luther Masingill. Although we are saddened we cherish the memories.  All of us have a Luther story.  Mine is the first time I met Luther.  This was before TV and all of Chattanooga listened to Luther on the radio.  I was 12-years-old.  Some of my buddies and I had gone to the State Theater in downtown ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: UT Ain’t Heard Nothing Yet!

Just moments before Florida would seal a football 10-9 victory over Tennessee in early October, the student section in Neyland Stadium stooped to a new low when it vociferously chanted, “F*** you, Florida! F*** you, Florida!” It was shocking, a loud and vulgar display of all that sportsmanship isn’t, and served as a great embarrassment to Knoxville and the university. Jimmy Cheek, ... (click for more)