Frumpfighter

C.R. Washington’s Brandon Burrell wins state wrestling title with grit

Posted on: February 22, 2009

My husband, Jeff, has been a coach of high school sports for more than 30 years. He followed in the footsteps of his father, former Vinton-Shellsburg wrestling coach Don Holmes, who coached in the late ’50s through the early ’70s.

Above all, my father-in-law was a teacher – in the classroom, on the mat and in life. Jeff took these lessons from his father, believing the most important part of coaching was instilling hard work, self esteem and yes, a little fun, in these student-athletes.

Photo by Cliff Jette/The Gazette    Cedar Rapids Washington's Brandon Burrell reacts after defeating Jacob Crawford of Southeast Polk during the Class 3A 285-pound championship match at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines on Saturday, Feb. 21.

Photo by Cliff Jette/The Gazette Cedar Rapids Washington's Brandon Burrell reacts after defeating Jacob Crawford of Southeast Polk during the Class 3A 285-pound championship match at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines on Saturday, Feb. 21. For more state wrestling photos by The Gazette, see http://crgazettephoto.wordpress.com/

Over the years, Jeff has seen athletes burn out by the time they were in high school because of the pressure put on them early on to be the best. During Saturday’s finals of the fabled Iowa High School State Wrestling Tournament, Brandon Burrell, the heavyweight from Cedar Rapids Washington caught Jeff’s attention. Not only because he won a state championship, but because of the way he got there. 

Here’s Jeff thoughts on Burrell’s inspiring journey and win: http://www.v-ssportz.com/2009/02/my-new-wrestling-hero.html

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