Olympic Spotlight: Wrestling's Andy Rein and Doug Schwab
July 31, 2008
by Jeff Smith
With the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games quickly approaching, BigTen.org takes a look at both former and current Olympians who have made their mark in their respective sports. In today's "Olympic Spotlight" feature, we take a look at the Olympic wrestling careers of Andy Rein of Wisconsin and Iowa's Doug Schwab.
ANDY REIN, WRESTLING, WISCONSIN, 1977-80
Former Wisconsin grappler Andy Rein was a two-time Olympian, but competed in only one Olympiad due to the U.S. boycott of the 1980 Games in Moscow.
In 1984, Rein joined former Badger Russ Hellickson as the only UW wrestlers to ever win an Olympic medal. Rein captured the silver in the freestyle competition at 149.5 pounds in the Los Angeles Games.
In the eliminatory round, Rein defeated Georgios Athanassiadis of Greece, 9-1, and then had a bye in the second round. He returned with a 13-4 round-three win over Switzerland's René Neyer and blanked Australia's Zsigmond Kelevitz, 4-0, in the fourth round. Rein used two victories, another 4-0 shutout of Kelevitz and a 14-4 ousting of Finland's Jukka Rauhala, to advance to the medal round.
It was there that he ended up tied 5-5 with South Korea's You In-Tak, but lost out on the gold medal in classification points as In-Tak held a 3-1 advantage.
Rein's other international wrestling achievements include gold medals at the 1983 Tbilisi Tournament in the Soviet Union and the 1979 Pan American Games in Puerto Rico. He also captured the silver at the 1982 World Cup of Wrestling and the 1985 Super Champions Tournament.
During his time at Wisconsin, Rein won the 1978 Big Ten title at 142 pounds and followed with both the 1980 conference crown and the NCAA Championship at 150 in 1980. He was also a national runner-up at 142 in 1978 and placed sixth at NCAAs in 1979. Rein was a three-time All-American and went 40-0 as a senior to end his career with a record of 115-19-1. He later returned to his alma mater to coach the Badgers from 1987-93. He compiled an 81-41-3 mark as a coach and was named the 1992 Big Ten Coach of the Year after leading the Badgers to a runner-up finish in conference action.
DOUG SCHWAB, WRESTLING, IOWA, 1998-2001
Former Iowa wrestler and current Hawkeye assistant coach Doug Schwab qualified for his first Olympic Games by winning the 145.5-pound bracket at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in Las Vegas in June. Schwab earned the spot on the Freestyle team by defeating former Hawkeye Bill Zadick in the championship match (1-0, 1-0; 1-0, 1-1, 2-1).
Schwab has competed internationally throughout the decade with hopes of earning the coveted Olympic bid. The 2007 U.S. Senior Freestyle champion earned the bronze medal at the 2007 Pan American Games and placed fifth at the 2007 World Championships. He won gold at the 2006 Pan American Games and placed fifth at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in 2004.
This past season, Schwab played an integral role in helping the Hawkeyes to the national championship. From 2005 to 2006, Schwab served as an assistant to current Iowa coach Tom Brands, a 1996 Olympic gold medalist, when the two were at Virginia Tech. As a student-athlete at Iowa from 1998-2001, Schwab was a three-time All-American and captured the 141-pound Big Ten title in 1999, 2000 and 2001. He captured the 1999 NCAA crown at 141 pounds and was second in 2001 and third in 2000. His 130 career wins rank 10th all-time in school history.