Virginia Tech Wrestler Jesse Dong is More than Just Deadspin Fodder

Virginia Tech wrestling made headlines around the blogosphere this week thanks to some creative headline writing by the sports information department. But the cheap laugh generated by whatever undergrad cranked out that press release would never have happened if Jesse Dong wasn't a damn good college wrestler.

And if it wasn't apparent after being named the outstanding wrestler at the Virginia Duals last weekend, he hammered the point home Saturday. Dong, ranked No. 5 in the nation at 157 pounds, upset the No. 3 wrestler in that division, Thomas Scottson (not to be confused with Scott Thomason) to help the Hokies knock off the Tar Heels in their ACC opener.

Dong finished second at the ACC tournament last year and qualified for the NCAA tournament. He was among a solid group of young Hokie wrestlers who got valuable experience at that tournament. The hope was giving the youngsters plenty of experience last year would pay off this year. That seems to be the case as Virginia Tech continues to build a solid wrestling program.

Tech, ranked No. 15 in the country by Intermat, held its own at the Virginia Duals, beating ranked Edinboro (take that, Pintea!) and Virginia and falling to ranked teams Penn State and Kent State. The Hokies next tough test will come Saturday when they travel to Charlottesville for a dual against the Hoos.

The Hokies have a very tough schedule between now and the NCAA championships, so Dong will get plenty of chances to rise to the occasion. Sorry, sorry. I know. It was there. I had to.

Dong is just a sophomore, so hopefully we only begun to scratch the surface when it comes to Dong jokes made by various members of the media. Hell, it only means he and the Hokies are succeeding.

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