Catching up with Collegiate Take Down King Joe Gonzales at OCG

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What can be said about Joe Gonzales? Well, everything really. Gonzales is one of those guy that hates talking about himself and his accomplishments. He’s a family man, a father and a California native who was born in the Boyle Heights district of Los Angeles and grew up in East LA. Gonzales found his wait out of a blue collar, working class life through wrestling, which opened the door for him to receive an education and in doing so, the world soon new what the American of Mexican Ancestry from Southern California could do.

We caught up with wrestling take down king, Gonzales at Orange County Grappling (OCG) in Huntington Beach, CA. Gonzales is a Division I and Division II Wrestling Champion, having won both titles in roughly two weeks! He has held the collegiate record at 448 take downs in a single season since 1981 and was an Olympian at the 1984 Summer Games in his hometown of Los Angeles, CA.

Olympian Joe Gonzales vs. Olympic Gold medalist, Anatoli Belglasov. Source Orange County Grappling

Gonzales placed in the top eight in the Olympics with a torn bicep, a bad weight cut and what was later discovered to be a broken neck. He went on to the toughest wrestling tournament in the world at Tbilisi in what is now the Republic of Georgia, beating out several former Olympics.

Gonzales is as humble as he is talented and although never having won an Olympic medal may have been a small part of the reason for his humility, you cannot take away all his accomplishments, including being one of the first members of his family to graduate college, earning a degree from California State University, Bakersfield, having been an assistant coach at Arizona State University, becoming a teacher and being honored by the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.

For more information on Joe Gonzales and OCG, click here: http://www.oc-grappling.org/coaches

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