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  • Photo: Tony Rotundo

    Photo: Tony Rotundo

    ROTC and College Wrestling

    California Baptist's Chaz Hallmark; Photo courtesy of Tony Rotundo; WrestlersAreWarriors.com

    Many young men, 18-22 years old, you come across in life are built similarly - seeking to find their independence and dealing with life’s challenges the best way they know how. 

    Unlike most of their peers, however, there are certain wrestlers who have spent their college careers not only taking on rigorous academics but also competing as athletes, sometimes even nationally ranked, and preparing to serve their country in the United States Military. 

    From the East Coast all the way to the West Coast, wrestlers are making their marks on the mat at the collegiate levels. In order to fund their education, many student-athletes apply for ROTC scholarships. These are awarded for a certain amount of years to give the student-athlete the support they may need for their education. 

    There are parallels between training, the mental toughness you develop as a wrestler, and the discipline needed to become a soldier. There is a serious commitment that comes with accepting these scholarships. 

    Wrestlers often feel a pull between wrestling and ROTC while recognizing the need to perform academically. The physical and mental exhaustion can challenge their time management skills resulting in early mornings and late nights. It is all about finding a balance. 

    Wrestlers hope to positively impact people’s lives and maintain their three facets of college life - academics, athletics, and military service - paving the way for others to face similar challenges and find similar successes. 

    These student-athletes picking this particular path can be commissioned as an officer in any branch their school offers unless they are actively serving already while attending school or enrolled in a specific military school. 


    Wrestlers in ROTC Programs 


    Darian Huff (Bellarmine)

    Thadd Huff (Bellarmine)

    Grant O’Dell (Bellarmine)


    Chaz Hallmark (California Baptist)

    Timothy Cowan (California Baptist)


    Jack Kilner (PennWest Edinboro)

    Nick Lodato (PennWest Edinboro)


    Parker Corwin (Gardner Webb)

    Sam Harris (Gardner Webb)

    Jackson Lusk (Gardner Webb)


    Isaiah Adams (Harvard)


    Ethan Miller (Lock Haven)

    Wyatt Fox (Lock Haven)


    Braden Stauffenberg (Michigan State)

    Manny Laguna (Michigan State)


    Theo Cha (Minnesota)


    Matt Zuber (Northern Illinois)

    Mike Kaminksi (Northern Illinois)


    Jimmy Brown (Virginia Tech)


    Marine Corps

    Nick Marcenelle (Harvard)

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