Gable Steveson knew his life had changed after he won Olympic gold. The Minnesota star remains shocked by how wrestling fans have celebrated him this season during what has amounted to a college farewell tour.
He drew a standing ovation at the Big Ten Tournament after he was announced the heavyweight winner. He didn’t even have a championship match — he won by injury default. Still, the fans took advantage of one of the final chances they’ll have to let him know how much they have appreciated the dominance, showmanship, athleticism and celebratory backflips that have made him unique.
“It’s weird,” Steveson said. “I don’t know, it’s odd to have that love from everybody, every single fan base. You know, people are supposed to root for their team, and they’re out here — I go out there and get a forfeit and they’re on their feet going crazy … It’s outrageous.”
Steveson also received a standing ovation at Iowa — one of Minnesota’s longtime rivals — in January. Fans at road venues such as Michigan lined up after duals to get his autograph. Continue reading at washingtonpost.com →