Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Gone, Lost & Forgotten: Their Best = Tampa

I haven't been able to find out a lot about Tampa wrestling, but I believe that I can name the Spartans two best wrestlers.

Fletcher Carr
Without a doubt the best wrestler to ever come out of Tampa, was also a star member of the Spartan Football team, Fletcher Carr.   A five time All American while at Tampa, Carr took fourth place honors at the 1970 NAIA championships as a freshman.   In 1972 as a junior, Carr would win the NCAA Division II title & place sixth at the NCAA Division I championships. He'd follow it up with another NCAA Division II title & a fourth place finish at the NCAA Division I championships as a senior.   That year he also won the 1973 Southeastern Karate Championships.

Post college Carr was sought out at the University of Kentucky as an assistant football coach.  He agreed under one condition.  He'd come help out the football program if Kentucky agreed to field a wrestling team & let him coach it.  Kentucky agreed & along with UC Santa Barbara's Bobby Douglas he became the first black head coach of NCAA Division I wrestling.  He led the Wildcats to two SEC titles & two top 10 finishes at the NCAA championships. 
Dave Hauser 
Another standout grappler on the Spartan team, Hauser won three conference titles while at Tampa.  His junior season of 1975, Hauser took runner-up honors at the East Regional qualifying for the NCAA championships. 

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