Madness and surrealism are an understatement. The widespread coronavirus has essentially shut down professional and college sports across the country and beyond.
Breitbach spotted the Wartburg team at a celebration Friday afternoon at Joe’s Knight Hawk, a restaurant he owns near the university campus.
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Instead of a carpet warm-up for Friday night’s quarter-finals at the national tournament in Cedar Rapids, the Wartburg wrestlers ate chicken wings, pizza, and pastries instead.
“It hasn’t completely sunk in yet,” said Keller on Friday night. “It’s a very serious situation with the spread of the virus and it is clear that everyone’s health and safety are of the highest priority. However, it is still difficult. You go through waves of shock and disbelief, accept it, and try to understand it – all the emotions. It will take some time to process and settle everything. ”
The second-place Knights qualified for five wrestlers for the national team, of which three were ranked in the top three. Wartburg is opening fire for his 15th national championship.
“One of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do in my 20 years of coaching is to step into the room and give our people a chance that you guys don’t have a chance to wrestle in the national league,” says Keller. “I have had feelings like this ever since. This is real? Has this really happened? That is a difficult thing to deal with. It’s really hard. ”
The news that the NCAA is being canceled has been particularly difficult for Wartburg’s two seniors Max Forsyth and Martine Sandoval, a pair that entered the national qualifiers for the first time.
Forsyth, from Charles City, is the NCAA’s No. 3 seed at 165 pounds. He’s in his first year of business.
“At first, I didn’t believe they canceled the tournament,” Forsyth said. “At first I didn’t really know how to handle it. Once I started letting it sink in, I probably wouldn’t struggle anymore, I was devastated. I couldn’t believe it was real. I was ready to go on the mat and play, and then they told us we couldn’t wrestle. It’s rough. ”
First of all, I like to do the show. I watched it with my family, and I love it whether I watch it or not. I like positivity and it’s a positive show. It’s fun, but it incorporates crazy outfits, and I know as an artist they have to sweat in it – singing through one mouth is also an eye, no external vision. Because. … To put together – I like to consider myself an amateur detective, so I try to figure out arm size, leg size, height, all of that. So when I got on the show, the first outfit I really wanted was a lot like the Predator, with pants, no bandanas, but the kind that could throw dreadlocks around, but then I thought, “God if I do, I’ll go see one. Don’t do that.” So I went with something else. I said, “I would be a bandana banana, but not a bandana.” As a diabetic … it’s important to stay healthy, and a banana has that natural energy. It has fructose that keeps you active without increasing your sugar intake by 1 million.