Published On: Sun, Feb 26th, 2012

Talking Sports with new Hofstra wrestling assistant coach Gregor Gillespie

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Gregor Gillespie, a new Hofstra wrestling assistant coach, recently took time to do an interview with The Capital Sports Report. His interview is about his wrestling career.

Gregor Gillespie (Credit: GoHofstra.com)

TCSR: Why did you choose to attend Edinboro?

GG: “I chose Edinboro, because the location was good for me. It is only 3 hours from my house. Also, that year, I did not have a lot of interest from schools in terms of recruiting. I’m not sure why, because I had a lot of success during my high school career. I didn’t have the interest I thought I would have. Edinboro was the only one that shown any interest in me. The next day after a visit to the school, I decided that it was the place, where I wanted to go to school.”

TCSR: You were 40-4 during your freshman year. Why do you think you were so successful during your freshman year when a lot of freshman struggle right away?

GG: “I think it had to do with my natural ability when it comes to wrestling. I think the coaches, especially Coach Tim Flynn, instilled a sense of confidence in me. He made me feel like I was that good. That made me feel like I didn’t need to red-shirt, but win now. The confidence was something that I never really had. I was always good in high school, but Coach Flynn took my confidence to a whole new level. I knew when I walked out there on the mat; I could do whatever I wanted.”

TCSR: What did it mean to you to be the first Edinboro All-American as a freshman?

GG: “Well, that was something that hadn’t been done at Edinboro before. It was really cool. It was kind of like a game to see how long I could stay against them (the opponents). It was awesome.”

TCSR: What did it mean to you to be the 149-pound champion as a sophomore?

GG: “That was something that I dreamed about for a long time. I finally came through to make a dream come true. It is a feeling that’s hard to describe. It was a once in a lifetime accomplishment obviously. I was able to win in front of 30,000 fans and it was on national television on ESPN. It was an unbelievable feeling.”

TCSR: What did it mean to you to break Jason Robinson’s record?

GG: “Breaking Jason’s record wasn’t something that I was thriving to do. I just wrestled one season and one match at a time. I knew what my record was, but then it just happened. I was not surprised when I broke it, because I knew I was getting close to his mark.”

TCSR: Could you talk about winning the PSAC Wrestler of the Year Award in back-to-back years?

GG: “There were some OK teams in there, but it’s not the toughest conference. It was cool, but being an All-American meant more to me than winning the PSAC Wrestle of the Year.”

TCSR: Why did you decide to go into coaching after your collegiate career?

GG: “I think originally it was because of my brother. I wanted to coach to be like my brother. Plus, I was able to help some of the guys from when I was there. In addition, I have been wrestling for 20-years, and I couldn’t just leave it behind.”

TCSR: Could you talk getting into coaching with the Edinboro Sportsman Wrestling Club?

GG: “Basically, my responsibility was to wrestle with the guys. I also had the opportunity to help the head coach if they needed an extra coach. I thought it was really cool to be able to give back.”

TCSR: Could you talk about being a Hofstra wrestling assistant coach?

GG: “To be able to coach at a Division 1 program wasn’t too much of a change. The coaching style is a little different with every head coach that you work with. The same work ethic and mentality is there. We go to the same tournaments that my college team used to go to. I think Long Island is the perfect fit for me. I get to wrestle with the guys, which is definitely my favorite part.”

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- Anthony Caruso III is the Publisher for The Capital Sports Report. He has covered local and national events, including numerous Heisman Trophy ceremonies, two Little League World Series, and the Army-Navy college football game.