Mason Named NWCA DII Wrestler of the Year

MANHEIM, Pa. — Minnesota State’s Darrell Mason has been named the National Wrestling Coaches Association Division II Wrestler of the Year for his efforts this past season.

A junior from Chicago, Ill., Mason (285 lbs.) went 22-0 this past season as he went on to claim an individual national title at the NCAA Championships. Mason, who was also named the Most Outstanding Wrestler at the national tournament, went 4-0 at the NCAA Championships, including a 5-3 win over Kutztown’s Andrew Dunn to win the NCAA title. He also claimed the Super Region V championship after posting a 4-0 record to advance to the national tournament.

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In one day, Darrell Mason beat heartbreak, made a friend and became a champion

The two wrestlers knelt on the mat facing each other, the winner of a national championship and the guy who lost. The tops of their heads touched as they placed their arms on the other’s shoulders.

They stayed in that position for 25 seconds. They were praying together. Then they stood up, embraced in a tight hug and took turns raising each other’s arm to signal the winner.

It was a cool display of sportsmanship. The backstory to that wonderful moment Saturday at the Division II national championships provided a lesson about character and humanity.

Minnesota State Mankato heavyweight Darrell Mason won the championship on the same day that his beloved grandma Bessie died. He received the news an hour before weigh-ins. Continue reading at startribune.com →