USA Wrestling Kyle Dake ready to r...

Kyle Dake ready to roll in 2017, looking to drop to 74 kg this year

By Xcel Worldwide | Jan. 12, 2017, 1:14 p.m. (ET)

Kyle Dake, shown competing at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials, is healthy and ready for the new year. Photo by Tony Rotundo, Wrestlers Are Warriors.

Four time NCAA Champion, and arguably one of the best collegiate wrestlers of all time, Kyle Dake is back after suffering a string of injuries that has kept him out of international competition. At this moment, he is training for the upcoming Paris International Tournament, his first action of the new year.

Dake was an explosive wrestler for Cornell, bringing back titles in each of his years as an undergrad. He was one of only four wrestlers to win four national titles in the 90-year history of the NCAA Tournament. Unlike the other three wrestlers (Pat Smith, Cael Sanderson, and Logan Stieber), Dake dominated in four successive weight classes each year, in spite of the incredible and diverse talent waiting at the highest levels of each of those weight classes.

He went on to become a National Team member in freestyle after graduation in 2013, as well as in 2015 and 2016, despite several injuries to his foot, hand, and shoulder.

Now, after shoulder surgery and extensive rehabilitation, the 26-year-old says he is feeling better than he did in college, and is set to blaze a trail starting in Paris with an eye towards Tokyo 2020. He faces a challenging path studded with the greatest wrestlers in the world, not least the USA team where he will step in at a lean 74 kg/163 lbs.

Always considerate of his formidable fan-base, The Kid states “I am so happy to be able to compete for my fans again – they have been waiting since my shoulder surgery and I am really excited to put on a show for them!” he said.

Manager Nick Garone is feeling bullish about Dake’s prospects now and for the future.

“He’s had some tough breaks and missing the Olympics was obviously huge but Kyle doesn’t think like that. He’s a competitor. At the end of the day, the joy comes from being on the mat, whether in practice with his world-class teammates, or on the international stage competing for gold. It’s always fireworks. He puts his heart into his work and you can see the difference,” said Garone.