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2017 NCHSAA Realignment



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#1 Jim Baxter

Jim Baxter

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Posted 13 January 2018 - 01:36 AM

Wrestling is a virus that when it gets in your blood you simply cannot get rid of it. And even if it fades to lay dormant it is still there, inside.

I started grappling as a middle schooler in the early 70s. Loved it. I was hooked. It rivaled football in my life at that time. High school was a blast. My coach, Baxter Williamson at Lexington High School, was a good man. He made it easy to be passionate about the sport. Being around and watching the coaches like Jim Barnes and Phil Williams taught me a lot about coaching. I spent four years on the All Air Force wrestling team, affording me the opportunity to wrestle around the world. Each of those four years the interservice championships was the toughest freaking tournament I'd ever seen and participated in. When I came back home, I couldn't get rid of it, despite the injuries to joints hidden beneath the skin. Coaching and running the Palmetto Midlands Freestyle club in the late 80s into early 90s was a blast. But life...kids, family and career took over.

Despite football being the bread winner for SCVarsity, I've always tried to support this sport, simply because I love it.

Three weeks ago I watched my nephew take the mat. First time I'd seen him wrestle. It wasn't pretty. I decided he needed some help. And here came the insanity.

I pulled out my old asics...same ones I wore in Sri Lanka...Turkey...Europe...and all over this great country. I put them on and I got on the mats for the first time in 25 years. The smell of the mat...the burns on the knees...abrasions on the face...all refreshingly familiar and enables some incredible memories to scale the wall of time in my mind.

It is insanity. I thought I was in pretty good shape, working with and training quarterbacks weekly as I do. But not quite. My quads hurt. My back hurts. The mat burns on legs, arms and face hurt. But you know what? I still love it. And that passion I thought was gone? It resurfaced. Because this sport LIVES inside every one of us who has ever stepped in the circle.

I know I am not alone in that thought.

#2 JCarron



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Posted 13 January 2018 - 05:46 AM

Thanks for your attention to this sport! BTW, we are not young, anymore.

#3 BuckkillerSC


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Posted 13 January 2018 - 07:12 AM

I didn’t wrestle but my children did. I can’t express how much wrestling changed them and me. Although I didn’t wrestle the fire inside me burns for the sport and the althlets wrestling. I care about this sport, the wrestlers and coaches. I take it personal when someone try’s to take advantage of a wrestler or a team. That’s any team and not just my team. I’ve made friends across this state because of wrestling and their children wrestle. I care for their children as i did mine. Great post Baxter!!