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Old 05-12-2009
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Danny Burk Danny Burk is offline
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The Man, The Myth, The Legend

****A new idea for the blog is to try to interview some different types of people involved in the wrestling community. I am going to start simple and then perhaps branch out. Maybe every other blog will be an interview, or if I just have nothing better to discuss.

The first interview is with Mike Bare, better known as ADMIN throughout the message boards. Mike is my brother-in-law, a coaching partner of mine, and runs Illinois Matmen on top of a fairly busy life. I figured it would be nice to hear some of his opinions on here, since he listens to so many of ours.

DB: How did you become the leader of illinoismatmen.com?
MB: To make a long story short, I started a Central Illinois wrestling website in the late 90's while my brother-in-laws were in high school. I would provide information about the Central Illinois wrestlers to Jim Moriarty, who ran Illinois Matmen at the time. When Jim decided to step down in 2000, he contacted me about possibly taking over. I decided to take it on, re-designed the site, and the rest is history.

DB: What is your background in wrestling/athletics?
MB: Well, I've been following wrestling ever since my brother-in-laws were in grade school, so I've seen quite a few matches. I've never "officially" wrestled a match, but I have wrestled many times with my brother-in-laws. As you can imagine, I usually come out on the losing end.

There was this one time at the hotel at nationals when I would have secured a takedown against Duke if my father-in-law hadn't broke it up. Do you remember that Duke?

Other than wrestling, I grew up playing club soccer in Central Illinois. I played 4 years varsity for Peoria Notre Dame High School where I currently coach, and we finished 4th at state my senior year. I then went on to play a little bit of college soccer at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

DB: What else do you do besides run the website?
MB: Contrary to popular belief, Illinois Matmen is not my full-time job. There are many days when I wish it was. I also work full-time as a computer analyst, coach high school soccer at Peoria Notre Dame in the fall, coach club soccer at FC Peoria in the spring/summer, and have three kids under 4.

DB: Where do you see high school wrestling in Illinois in the next 5-10 years?
MB: With the increased number of off-season training opportunities, I only see things getting better. I also see more college All-Americans and National Champions in the next few years.

DB: Who would you say are the most influential people in wrestling in our state?
MB: I think our youth, club, and high school coaches are the most influential people because they are not only responsible for producing greatness on the mat but also quality young men off the mat. I don't want to name names because there are too many to mention.

DB: If you could see one "Dream Match" of any 2 wrestlers ever from Illinois, who would it be?
MB: I would love to see Sean Bormet wrestle Israel Martinez. Can you imagine? Overtime vs. Izzy Style... I need to make this happen. Who would you take in this match up?

DB: You coached a state champion soccer team last fall. Talk about the similarities and differences with soccer and wrestling.
MB: My father-in-law and I have discussed this a lot. He believes that soccer players typically make good wrestlers. In fact, we encourage our soccer players to wrestle in the winter to get stronger both mentally and physically.

Generally speaking, to be a good soccer player, you have to be quick, coordinated, and fairly athletic. I think these same qualities translate to wrestling.

DB: If you could have dinner with 3 people in the wrestling world, dead or alive, who would it be?
MB: I would have dinner with Cael Sanderson to try to get to the bottom of his move to Penn St, Tom Brands to learn more about motivating athletes, and Dan Gable because it's Gable.

DB: Pele' or Gable - who is better at their respective sports?
MB: I would have to say Gable because he excelled as both an athlete and a coach. Not only that, but Gable has been instrumental in promoting wrestling to the masses. The sport would not be the same without Gable.

DB: Soccer has always been a popular sport in America, even though our league (MLS) is not that great. How can wrestling reach the American public the way soccer has?
MB: I would clarify by saying soccer is popular at the youth level. Just about everyone plays soccer when they are kids. It seems to be the sport of choice for the youth of America. Why is that? Well, because the sport is easy to understand (put the ball in the net without using your hands), easy for parents to teach (the downfall of youth soccer), it's safe, anyone can do it, and most kids think it's fun.

Why don't more kids wrestle? Because kids and parents don't understand it, parents can't teach it (unless they have a wrestling background), people think it's too dangerous, you can't hide (pick dandelions) on a wrestling mat, and it's not always fun.

How do we make wrestling more popular/mainstream? I think the only answer is to educate America on wrestling. This can be done by word of mouth and through the media (TV/online). Spread the word!
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Old 05-12-2009
FoxesFan FoxesFan is offline
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Great idea . . .

Danny, great idea to do interviews. Particularly in the off season (? is there an off season?).

And great choice for the first interview, I learned alot about ADMIN.

Keep up the good work, both of you !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 05-12-2009
wrestlersdad wrestlersdad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny Burk View Post

DB: Who would you say are the most influential people in wrestling in our state?
MB: I think our youth, club, and high school coaches are the most influential people because they are not only responsible for producing greatness on the mat but also quality young men off the mat. I don't want to name names because there are too many to mention.
Coach Powell of OPRF is the most influential person in the greater Chicagoland area (especially for the Greco guys) and an excellent candidate for an in-depth interview.
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Old 05-12-2009
cementjob cementjob is offline
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I wouldn't mind reading an interview from Admin's wife.

She pretty much covers the board as far as saints go:

1. Daughter to a wrestling coach
2. sister to 2 wrestlers
3. wife of a coach (which is many times a thankless job)
4. wife of a the guy who runs ILmatmen (an even more thankless job)
4. Mom to 3 kids under 4!

She probably has a unique perspective on a lot of things that go on in IL wrestling and on the boards.

Just a suggestion...........
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Old 05-12-2009
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MR TWISTER MR TWISTER is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wrestlersdad View Post
Coach Powell of OPRF is the most influential person in the greater Chicagoland area (especially for the Greco guys) and an excellent candidate for an in-depth interview.
Very, very debatable. I can name 5-10 guys that could fill that role. Bormet, Q. Harrell, Polz, Bukowski, Martinez, etc. are a few that come to mind...

but it still would be a good Q & A
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Old 05-12-2009
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MR TWISTER MR TWISTER is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cementjob View Post
I wouldn't mind reading an interview from Admin's wife.

She pretty much covers the board as far as saints go:

1. Daughter to a wrestling coach
2. sister to 2 wrestlers
3. wife of a coach (which is many times a thankless job)
4. wife of a the guy who runs ILmatmen (an even more thankless job)
4. Mom to 3 kids under 4!

She probably has a unique perspective on a lot of things that go on in IL wrestling and on the boards.

Just a suggestion...........
...and she is a real nice lady.
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Old 05-12-2009
eaglefan123 eaglefan123 is offline
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Pleaseee do an interview with one of the martinezes.. It would be great and they all had a huge part in shaping il wrestling
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Old 05-12-2009
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Jaguar Jaguar is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cementjob View Post
I wouldn't mind reading an interview from Admin's wife.

She pretty much covers the board as far as saints go:

1. Daughter to a wrestling coach
2. sister to 2 wrestlers
3. wife of a coach (which is many times a thankless job)
4. wife of a the guy who runs ILmatmen (an even more thankless job)
4. Mom to 3 kids under 4!

She probably has a unique perspective on a lot of things that go on in IL wrestling and on the boards.

Just a suggestion...........
I think we should have a whole thread for coaches' wives.
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