Updated Mon, Dec 3, 2012 3:14 pm
With a standout All-American like Jeremy Johnson on the Ohio Wrestling squad, it is not uncommon that his accomplishments overshadow those of his fellow Bobcat wrestlers. Ohio has a very young roster – only five juniors make up the group of Ohio’s most experienced wrestlers. The fact is, several Bobcats are off to great starts for the Green and White.
Redshirt freshman Cody Walters exemplifies this group. Walters, who wrestles at 174 lbs., has won 12 straight matches to start his season.
Walters hails from Macedonia, Ohio, where he attended St. Peter Chapel High School. There, he compiled quite an impressive high school resume.
Four trips to the state championship, three state placements, one state championship, three All-American honors and a 171-21 record are his most shining accomplishments.
“We had college practices in high school. It helped me get better day by day so when I got to the college level I knew what hard work was about,” said Walters.
The former Firebird was redshirted last year, but he could still compete in open competitions, in which he posted a solid 21-10 record.
“I always hope for better,” said Walters about his record. “But 10 losses is not a lot, and I beat a lot of national qualifiers, and over the year I got a lot better.”
The redshirt freshman’s success from last season coupled with the work he put in in the offseason has carried on into this year’s hot start.
“I think my redshirt year led to my (success so far),” said Walter. “It was a long year and I learned a lot.”
Ohio Wrestling head coach Joel Greenlee says about his wrestler, “He has put in a great year of work as far as changing his body, getting strong and getting lean. He has gotten mentally tougher and he has better techniques. He really improved every facet of his game.”
Walters cited these improvements to his game, such as playing at the neutral position or grinding on an opponent.
“He does a great job of being tactical. He knows what he’s good at and sticks to it,” said Greenlee. “He makes you wrestle in positions he’s good at.”
Walters’ favorite position is playing down on the mat. But Greenlee emphasizes that the redshirt freshman has become just as effective in other positions.
“He has added on his feet what he does in the neutral position. He’s very successful at it and its high percentage for him. He does the same thing on the mat, and the same thing up top,” said Greenlee.
While he has had great success so far, Walters knows that he has to keep working hard in order for it to continue. As for the future, he his coach both look at how he can improve.
“In wrestling you are never as good as you are going to get. There is always room for improvement,” believes Walters. “I think I can improve everywhere, everyday.”
If Cody Walters continues to work as hard as he has been, and improving all aspects of his game, he should be on the right track to accomplishing his goals of being a MAC Champion and All-American.
As the wrestling season gets into full swing, and Ohio Wrestling stalwart Jeremy Johnson continues to rack up accomplishments, make sure not to forget about the others, especially Walters. Cody just might join his heavyweight teammate on the list of award-winning Bobcats.