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On this day in 1948, America's greatest amateur wrestler was born in Waterloo, Iowa. Undefeated in high school, Gable went unbeaten in 181 collegiate matches before finally succumbing in his final collegiate match against Larry Owings to go 181-1 for his collegiate career.
He was equally dominant in international competition, bagging a gold medal at the 1971 World Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria, in the 68kg class.
In 1972, he claimed the biggest prize of all, winning an Olympic gold medal in the lightweight division at the Munich games. Incredibly, Gable did not drop a single point en route to victory.
When his own career ended he turned to coaching, taking over as head coach at the University of Iowa. From 1976–1997, he led his team to 16 NCAA team titles.
Over his career as a wrestler and a wrestling coach, he has inspired countless people around the world with his pursuit of excellence. Happy Birthday, Dan Gable!
Here is a 1972 Olympic Special on Gable:
Here is more on Gable from 1997: