Wyatt Smith graduated from Dawson County High School, knowing that he was going to be a part of the wrestling team at Reinhardt University, an NAIA school in Waleska, Ga.
“My favorite memory from the Dawson County wrestling team would most definitely be one of the trips that we all went on as a team and got to stay the night,” Smith said.
Smith knew his journey would be a unique one, after tearing his labrum and knowing he would need to spend the entirety of the wrestling season on the bench, cheering on his fellow Reinhardt Eagles.
“The biggest struggle after surgery was having to stay in a sling for a month and then after that not being able to lift even a pound to begin with,” Smith said. “It just made a life harder with only one arm.”
The Reinhardt Wrestling Team spends at least half of the normal school day together, and Smith said that it felt closer to a family than a team.
“I learned that collegiate wrestling is a whole different animal,” Smith said. “Everything there is 10 times more intense than it is in high school. You will not wrestle someone who is bad.”
But after wrestling competitively his entire life, Smith decided to step away from the sport and give something else a try.
Smith said that he wanted to work on becoming financially independent and believes a career in real estate is the best way to reach his new goal. He said that though he would like to continue to wrestle, his schedule would be too crammed.
“I decided to leave wrestling not because I don’t enjoy it anymore, but simply don’t have time to complete the courses I need to get my license while having two practices a day,” Smith said.
Smith made the decision with both of his parents. His father is a real estate agent and Smith believes that will give him an ‘upper edge’ when studying for his real estate license.
“I’m looking forward to making big steps and becoming 100% self-reliant and learning about that field of work,” Smith said. “I enjoy looking at houses and meeting new people, so I feel that I’ll be perfect for the real estate industry.”
Smith believes that he has wrestling to thank for teaching him self-discipline to stick to your goals no matter what. Though he is excited about this new chapter of his life, he knows it has yet to hit him that he is no longer going to be wrestling.
“If I could tell the sport of wrestling one thing, I would definitely just thank it for all the friendships and the good times,” Smith said.