Carlyle's Nathen Schmidt is now a member of the University of Regina Cougars wrestling team. The Gordon F. Kells grade 12 student has paralyed his status as a two-time (2016 and 2017) Saskatchewan High School Athletic Association (SHSAA) provincial wrestling champion and his over-90 percent academic average into a career with the Cougars, as well as conditional acceptance into the University's Faculty of Kinesiology and Health Studies.
Cougars' Head Coach Leo McGee says of Schmidt: “We are very excited about Nathen joining our program; we are a young and strong group and he is a great fit.”
Schmidt - a first-pick draft choice - wrestles in the 65-kilogram class and was coached during his high school career by Monte McNaughton.
“I signed in early May with the Cougars,” says Schmidt. “But it wasn't official until June 2. They ranked me as number one, so that feels good. They've told me they have big plans for me, so I'm excited.”
Meeting - and exceeding - the expectations of himself and others is nothing new to Schmidt. In addition to maintaining a high academic average with a full course load and working at Carlyle Home Hardware, he has competed at the championship level in other sports - including football and martial arts.
And after wrestling for only two years - in grades 11 and 12 – he not only captured two provincial championships; he was also offered wrestling scholarships from both the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon.
“I picked Regina because it's closer to home,” says Schmidt. “But I thought about that decision for weeks.”
“Everything with me and my (wrestling) style matches up with theirs,” he says of his decision to sign with the U of R. “And it's the opportunity to be a starter.”
“I'm glad with the decision I've made,” adds Schmidt. “The coaches at the U of R treated me very well and even before school begins, they want me there as often as possible.”
“I've been given a lot of opportunities in my life,” he says. “I've always wanted to do big things and here's my opportunity,” says Schmidt.
“I'll do my best.”