Star wrestler sees success in reading, wrestling


Morgan Barr, Reporter

Never judge a book by its cover. This old saying applies not only to books, but to high school junior, Blake Barrick, as well. In Big Spring, this quiet individual is largely known for his amazing accomplishments in wrestling. He has traveled cross country, wrestling in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, North Carolina, Indiana, and Ohio. In only his freshman year of high school, Barrick competed at the Freestyle dual Nationals with fellow wrestler Britian Shields in Daytona, Florida. He also wrestled in Fargo, North Dakota at the Freestyle Nationals. But what most people don’t know is that he also a huge heart for literature. Barrick loves to read, and read a lot.

“I like science fiction, and fantasy books. They provide a nice escapism, and it’s fun to see what people can create with their imaginations.” said Barrick. His love for reading is not new, but a developed love. Barrick said, “When I was 3 or 4, my mom wanted me to get a head start for kindergarten, and made me read the little paper books.” He spends most of time wrestling but when he isn’t wrestling, reading is one of his favorite hobbies. “You get more out of reading than watching a t.v. show, there’s a lot more depth, and a lot more lessons to get out of the text.”

Barrick said. “Some of my favorite books are ‘Ender’s Game’, ‘Harry Potter’, ‘The Hobbit’, and ‘Lord of the Rings’. The ‘Lord of the Rings’ series are the best books. I also really enjoy the ‘Star Wars’ and ‘Lord of the Rings’ movies.” Barrick said.

Barrick has a word of advice for young readers: “Read whatever you find interesting and read as many books as you can. Don’t be afraid to read big books, they can be pretty good to. Never let anyone tell you you’re too dumb to read a book. I was reading 1,000 page books in third grade, so it’s definitely possible if you want to do it.”

Like reading, Barrick started wrestling at a young age as well. “I’ve been wrestling for 13 years, my family has wrestled for a few generations. One day Dad said we’re going to practice and you’re coming too. I didn’t like it at first, because I was always losing, but as I got better, I started to like it more.” said Barrick. One of Barrick’s accomplishments in wrestling include making the PA state team and wrestling at a 4-day camp at the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown, and then taking a 24 hour bus ride with the team to Fargo, North Dakota where he was named an All-American in the Freestyle Nationals. “All-Americaning is a really good thing for [college] scouts, they really look that.” said Barrick.

After high school, Barrick plans to go to college, most likely for business, because of its numerous opportunities. “I’m going to go to college, and I might wrestle, it depends on how that goes, if I like a college that doesn’t have wrestling, I’m not going to force myself to wrestle.” said Barrick.

In recent years, wrestling has become a sport that is taken for granted, and Barrick feels is definitely underappreciated. “It gotten taken out of the Olympics a few years ago it was later put back in, but wrestling has been there since the beginning, and now they only have 6 weight classes, and only show finals on TV.” said Barrick. “People don’t realize how hard it is [to wrestle]. I get my face beaten in every day and people don’t think that’s hard.” Wrestling requires hard work and determination, and Barrick embodies both in his wrestling career to reach success. “What I like most about wrestling, is winning. When you work so hard, it’s nice to finally accomplish something. If you’re going to work so hard, and not get a result, what’s the point?” Barrick said. “Some advice for wrestlers, just work hard. Even if you’re not good now, if you keep working hard, you will get better.”