PHILADELPHIA -The University of Pennsylvania will have five wrestlers competing this weekend at the 2015 NCAA Championships in St. Louis, Mo. Before the national tournament, they sat down to answer a few questions.
Two years ago, C.J. Cobb earned the No. 10 seed at the NCAA Championships at 141 pounds, this season he is back as the No. 13 seed at 149 pounds. A unanimous first-team All-Ivy selection this season, Cobb was fifth two weeks ago at EIWAs.
Q: How long have you been wrestling? What are some of your earliest memories of the sport or reasons you got into wrestling?
A:I have been wrestling since I was 6 years old. My dad encouraged me to get into wrestling so young because every day when he would come home from work I would jump on him and attack him.
My earliest memory is actually of my first pin, which is funny because I might be able to count on one hand the number of pins I've gotten at Penn. I still remember the room, the color of the mat and where the opponent was from. That was my first year too.
Q: Describe Your Wrestling Style.
A:I like to think I have an explosive, technical, offense oriented style. I have attacks to both legs, a decent short offense, a drag, a shrug and an underhook. And I gravitate towards whichever ones I'm feeling partial to at the time. I'm also not afraid to scramble.
Q: What is your all-time favorite wrestling memory?
A:Beating Cornell wrestlers at Cornell. Both times I've went up to Cornell for the dual, I was the underdog, and both times I won. In fact, I don't think I've ever lost to a Cornell wrestler.
Q: What do you like best about being a Penn Wrestler?
A: We have a well rounded team. I can go in the room and battle with some of my best friends, but then in the locker room have one of said friends explain quantum physics or financial derivatives to me. I couldn't think of a better life.
Q: If you could wrestle one wrestler from the past, who would it be and why?
A:This is a tough one, but I'd have to say Mavlet Batirov. He was a great Russian wrestler, a 2 time Olympic Champion. Most likely he'd beat me with ease, but I'd love to see if I could get a few takedowns on him. And he could teach me his single.
Q: What is your favorite restaurant on campus? What is your go-to order?
A:Also a tough one. I don't know if this counts as on campus, but I'd say Honest Tom's. I'm partial to Mexican food and they make awesome burritos. After that, Sitar is pretty good.
Q: What has been your favorite class at Penn? Why?
A:CIS 502 (Algorithms). Algorithms are a special part of computer science and math, in which the final answer is elegant and pretty. On a traditional math test, you have pages of calculations, where a missed negative sign could mess up your whole answer. Most algorithms are only a few lines long and are written in English. You can often do the reasoning totally in your head, or maybe via a few pictures scribbled onto a sheet of paper, and only start writing the answer when you got it. It's kind of like solving riddles to be honest.
Q: Do you have any pre-match supoerstitions?
A:No prematch superstitions. Just eat the right food, get a good warm up and be excited.
Q:What is your favorite TV Show?
A:I don't watch TV very often. Workaholics is pretty funny and I could actually watch The Big Bang Theory for hours.
Q: What are you looking to do when you graduate?
A; I'm not totally sure what I want to do when I graduate. Right now I'm on pace to be a software engineer, as I had an internship last summer and another this summer doing just that. But I haven't made up my mind. A lot of my friends will work in finance, so I'm keeping that option open. I am also entertaining the idea of going to grad school to pursue research, probably in some type of computer science (cryptography maybe?). Lastly, knowing myself, there's always a chance that I throw all of that out the window and go join the Peace Corps or some other non-profit. Or even become a teacher. Who knows.
Q: Describe your fellow Penn Wrestling NCAA Qualifiers in one sentence.
Brooks Martino: Pretty boy who will make you squeal if you let him sink double boots in.
Lorenzo Thomas: A noodle with a moustache who will inside trip you to your back.
Caleb Richardson: Apprentice of the dark wizard.
Canaan Bethea: Even though he looks like the Hulk, at one point we benched the same weight.
You can catch C.J. and the rest of the Penn Wrestling NCAA qualfiers this week at the 2015 NCAA Championships March 19-21. Every match will be broadcast live on ESPN3 and WatchESPN in addition to coverage on ESPNU and ESPN. A full schedule can be foundhere.