As reported by the Centre Daily Times, Penn State wrestlers Andrew and Dylan Alton were cited for a couple of misdemeanors just after 1am in Lock Haven this morning. No one was seriously injured in the apparent alcohol influenced event - and there aren't any other details to note at this time.
So a couple of Penn State wrestlers - both 21 - had a drink over the holiday break and got a disturbing the peace and public intox each. What's the big deal? Just this: Head Wrestling Coach Cael Sanderson doesn't suffer foolish behavior. He has a strict no alcohol policy during the season, and the only instance where a wrestler had a drink and stayed on the team in-season was - as best as jtothep and I can recall - reserve upper-weight Clay Steadman, on his 21st birthday in 2009. Clay was still suspended, but stayed on the squad. Most others - All-American Andrew Long, top recruit Sam Sherlock, and one or two others - never made it back on the Rec Hall mats.
Imagine that - a head coach who never lost a collegiate match, was named Most Outstanding Wrestler 4-times, and then won Olympic Gold - that guy doesn't like distractions, and wants his wrestlers focused on school and wrestling. He wants wrestlers who want a national championship and Olympic Gold. And he, apparently, struggles to understand how and why mere mortals experience moments of weakness.
To this point, the school has nothing to say other than the standard 'we're aware, and waiting to get the full story' comment from (totally awesome) Wrestling SID Pat Donghia. But if a public intox after 1am is a fair citation, then we probably will not see Andrew or Dylan at the Southern Scuffle event January 1st and 2nd - at a minimum. And if that's the case, then expect Jim English and Jimmy Vollrath to step right into the holes at 149 and 157lbs. Both are experienced and can put points on the board for our Lions, though neither are likely to be the point scoring title threats that the Altons are.
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