The 2 primary goals at the Fried Wrestling Academy are:
1. To implement sound fundamental skills that form the building blocks for continuing improvement, and
2. To keep wrestling interesting and FUN as the wrestlers work their way up through the levels of improvement.
Any young wrestler willing to put in the work can experience great personal success. Talent will take a wrestler some of the way, but hard work, discipline and focus are the great equalizers of wrestlers who have vast differences of natural athletic ability.
Coaches from all around agree that the real elements to success in wrestling have nothing to do with athletic ability. In general, these elements are:
1. Being coach-able
2. Being consistent, and
3. Being inspired to improve.
Excelling in each of these 3 elements, a wrestler can earn great accomplishments, earn respect from his peers and family and learn to respect himself for doing such difficult work. There is no other feeling like attaining a goal in the sport of wrestling. It becomes a life-long source to draw confidence from in tough situations.
More importantly than gaining the credentials or accolades is that a young wrestler learns how to focus on a task and how to enjoy the work involved with improving. The young wrestler should learn to be competitive yet humble and excel in sportsmanship.
Coach Fried knows very well that any and all of his success on the mat was built upon very fortunate circumstances of having excellent coaching from day one and hopes to provide the same foundation for everyone who becomes an Academy wrestler.
At the Youth level, Coach Fried was a member of the Longwood YMCA and was coached by Dave Mariola, Tim Rutherford, Graham Coghill and Bernie Weiskopf. Longwood was a very hard working and successful youth club in the N.E. Ohio area that trained and competed in both Folkstyle and Freestyle and produced some of the most successful and well known wrestlers in our area.
In high school, Fried’s Head Coach was the legendary, Howard “Ferg” Ferguson at St. Edward H.S.. In 13 seasons as Head Coach, Ferg’s teams won 5 National Team Championships, 11 State Team Championships and produced 32 individual State Championships. Coach Ferguson was also the pioneer of cross-state high school in-season competition in the early 1980’s when he invited the 3 best teams from across the country to his annual “Quad of Champs”.
In College, Fried wrestled for the historic 34 time National Championship team, Oklahoma State University. At OSU, Fried was coached by the present Olympic and World Team coach, Bruce Burnett and the current OSU Head Coach John Smith. Coach Smith has won 4 NCAA Team Championships as Head Coach at OSU and as a legendary competitor, Smith was a 2 x Olympic Champion, 4x World Champion and 2 x NCAA Champion.
Notable names of All-Americans, National Champions and Olympic level competitors among the training partners and coaches populating the OSU wrestling room during Coach Fried’s college years were: John Smith, Pat Smith, Kenny Monday, Kendall Cross, Randy Couture, Bruce Burnett, Nick Purler, Tony Purler, Hardell Moore, Chris Owens, Chuck Barbee, Todd Chesbro, Tommy Chesbro, Chris Barnes, T.J. Jaworsky, Cory Baze, Eddie Woodburn and perhaps a dozen more.
Coach Fried was also an active participant in Freestyle training and competition. As a member of USA National Freestyle Team, two age-group World Championship Freestyle Teams and winner of 9 age-group Freestyle National Championships, Coach Fried trained and competed for well over a decade with the most elite wrestlers and coaches both from the USA and the International Olympic circuit.
Training and competing at the highest level has given your humble Coach a vast amount of experience, knowledge and information to share with any young wrestler.