When he arrived at the University of Oklahoma, Mickey Martin was known as the son of a Sooner wrestling legend. By the time he left, he had created a legacy of his own.
As a high school senior, Martin won the 130-pound Oklahoma state wrestling championship in 1961, competing for Tulsa Central High School. Following in his father’s footsteps, Mickey attended the University of Oklahoma.
Competing in the 130-pound class for the entirety of his collegiate career, Mickey turned in an impressive campaign for the Sooners as a sophomore in 1961, placing third at both the Big Eight tournament and the NCAA tournament. As a junior, he won his first Big Eight championship and his first NCAA title.
In 1963, Martin wrestled his way into the history books. In December of that year, he broke his collarbone and missed most of the season, but the injury did not prevent the Sooner superstar from winning the Big Eight and NCAA championships for the second year in a row. For his feat, he was voted Outstanding Wrestler at the NCAA tournament, joining his father, Wayne Martin, also a Distinguished Member, the only father - son combination to win the Outstanding Wrestler award. Mickey finished his collegiate career with a 42-6 overall record.
Martin’s 1963 NCAA title was especially important as it powered Oklahoma to an NCAA team championship over runner-up Iowa State. His victory in the finals was a thrilling 12-8 win over eventual Olympian and Hall of Famer Bobby Douglas of West Liberty State.
After college, Martin turned his focus toward instructing young wrestlers in the sport. He coached at South Dakota State for two seasons (1976-1977) before coaching high school wrestling for more than 25 years, picking up three Oklahoma state team championships along the way.
For historic individual and family achievements that set a standard for generations to come, Mickey Martin is honored as a Distinguished Member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.