By: Joe Laland
“Small has never been in my vocabulary,” said Missouri Tiger wrestler J’den Cox.
Cox, now a qualified Olympic athlete, will get to wrestle on the biggest stage, the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil.
“It’s the holy grail of wrestling. You have all the best wrestlers in the world, in one building.”
Cox, a 190 LB junior, has always set the highest goals for himself. His ultimate goal: represent the United States of America in the Olympic games.
That goal has become a reality. Cox has qualified for the Olympics, after he finished 1st in the 86 kg freestyle weight class at the World Games Qualifying Tournament in Mongolia on April 24th. Cox bested his competition in impressive fashion. He defeated his competition by a 36-3 score, across five matches.
“It felt like we were taking care of business,” said Missouri assistant wrestling coach Joe Johnston, who traveled with Cox to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
Cox, who had never been out of the country, said, “The only hard part was the 13-hour flight to Beijing.”
Despite, his dominant success in Mongolia, Cox remains focused. He plans to compete in both the German Grand Prix and the Wrestling World Cup, prior to the Olympics, to gain more experience.
“My goal is to win. I don’t know how to only go halfway. Every time I go out on the mat, I will give my best.”