Dickies Arena before the start of the 2021 USA Wrestling Olympic Team Trials, Fort Worth, Texas, April 1, 2021. (Photo by Tony Rotundo/WrestlersAreWarriors.com)
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Texas Now Tied For Most Wrestling Olympic Gold Medalists Since 2000

With the Olympics now officially wrapped up, and Texas adding another Olympic Gold Medal with Tamyra Mensah-Stock’s win this past week, I decided to take a look at where the state stands in the sport when it comes to recent gold medals.

I went back to 2000, where Brandon Slay won gold at 76 KG in Sydney, and pushed forward to 2021 and this is how it breaks down.

Gold MedalistHome State
Brandon SlayTexas
Rulon GardnerWyoming
Cael SandersonUtah
Henry CejudoArizona
Jordan BurroughsNew Jersey
Jake VarnerCalifornia
Kyle SnyderMaryland
Helen Maroulis Maryland
Tamyra Mensah-StockTexas
David TaylorOhio
Gable StevesonMinnesota

There are some caveats to include in this list. David Taylor was born in Wyoming but attended high school in Ohio, so he could reasonably be considered as from Wyoming, and Gable Steveson was born in and lived in Indiana up until about the seventh grade when he moved to Minnesota. Also, Henry Cejudo was born in California and moved to Arizona at a young age. But all three are more widely associated with their home states listed here, though there could be an argument made for their other states.

Here ends up being the by state numbers with Texas tying Maryland with two and all other states having one. If Cejudo was switched to California and Taylor to Wyoming, they would both have two as well.

Texas2
Maryland2
Wyoming1
Utah1
Arizona1
New Jersey1
California1
Ohio1
Minnesota1

Ultimately, Texas stands tied at the top with two from whatever angle you look at it as Mensah-Stock and Slay are both born and bred Texans and Olympic Gold Medalists.

Texas is often maligned in the national conversations surrounding wrestling though Brandon Slay, Bo Nickal, Tamyra Mensah-Stock, and now AJ Ferrari are doing a lot to change that narrative. But at the most elite level of the sport with Olympic champions, Texas has been as good as any state in the country in the past 20 years.

What do you think?

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