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Marysville, OH– Even though wrestling has been around the world for many centuries, only a few athletes have reached international prominence. Among American wrestling legends, there is one name that stand out: Kenny Monday.
Utilizing his signature lateral-drop takedown, Monday amassed four state high school championships at four different weights with a nearly perfect record of 140-0-1. This amazing feat secured his position in Oklahoma history as the first high school wrestler to ever accomplish this. Monday would also earn the highly coveted title, Outstanding Wrestler, at the prestigious Tbilisi tournament.
Kenny joined a very elite circle of 3-time Olympians, culminating in a gold medal in Seoul ‘88, and a silver medal in Barcelona ‘92. Monday also made history becoming the first African-American to win an Olympic gold medal. Monday won an NCAA title at the storied Oklahoma State wrestling program in ‘84, holds the ‘84 NCAA Season record (97.06 win-pct), and still ranks second on OSU’s all-time falls list.
Kenny Monday has worked hard to make his name one of the biggest in the wrestling world. He competed in numerous national and international competitions where his commitment and superior work-ethic made him an unstoppable force on the mat.
Kenny Monday found solace, early on in his career, in the value of being a team-player. His first neighborhood coach, who lived and breathed the foundational YMCA principles, instilled the value of collaboration into Kenny. This regimen, combined with a strong sense of direction and belief system, allowed him to persist and build a resilience that’s necessary for success in the wrestling arena. His innate ability to measure up in competition was evident. He also had an uncanny capacity to go to mental and physical places that he wasn’t sure he could go. Monday once stated emphatically, “ I never felt like I wasn’t going to win!”
Overall Kenny Monday has had a story book journey. Monday is a National Wrestling Hall of Fame inductee, and has an astonishing accolade of having coached 30 NCAA champions and 50 All-Americans.
Kenny Monday is also a strong family man. His two sons, Kennedy and Quincy, are both nationally-ranked collegiate wrestlers. Currently, Monday is the newly-appointed head coach of the HBCU Morgan State University in Maryland, another role that he carries with esteem and pride.
Kenny Monday’s story is one of resilience, family, and hard work. He is an American hero who proves that regardless of odds and setbacks, success is always possible.