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Coach David Bell

Russell “Rusty” Read was a freshman during my first season as an assistant coach at Hawthorne High School. It was evident from first meeting that he was very talented and would make an immediate impact at the varsity level. Rusty won three district championships and was a state qualifier his junior year. It was during Rusty’s senior season that he realized his full potential as a high school wrestler, and for me, transformed my coaching career. Early in the season of 1993-1994, Rusty faced a wrestler that he defeated his during his junior year in a dominant match. In an early season match at the beginning of his senior year Rusty lost the second meeting with this same wrestler by a narrow margin. That match transformed Rusty’s mindset and focus. Rusty would go undefeated for the remainder of the season, winning a region final rematch by a major decision, earning him the most outstanding wrestler award and he would conclude the season by winning a state championship. As coaches we strive to have our athletes fully believe in their training and ability. To witness Rusty remove all doubt and fully realize his ability was an affirmation of everything that I believe about the psychology of sport and a testament of his toughness and resolve. Rusty’s grit and toughness caught the attention of legendary coach Carl Adams at Boston University. He would be a four year starter and make two appearances at the NCCA Tournament. Rusty overcame a serious knee injury to qualify for the NCAA National Wrestling Tournament as a junior, where he fell just shy of All American status. Following surgery, Rusty again qualified for the NCAA National Wresting Tournament. Equally as impressive as his college wrestling career, Rusty would distinguish himself in the classroom. He was selected the Boston University Scholar Athlete of the Year. I have had the pleasure of Rusty’s friendship for twenty-five years. He is well respected by everyone involved in the sports of wrestling and MMA in the state of New Jersey. His character, work-ethic and knowledge are above reproach. He is committed to excellence and helping all athletes reach their goals. He is an asset to all athletes that are serious about their training.

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