When the University of Minnesota wrestling team started the season with its first practice on Oct. 10, Shakopee graduate Alex Crowe was not in the room.
Crowe, who joined the Gophers wrestling team after a stellar career at Shakopee High School where he won an individual state title in his senior season, decided to step away from wrestling after two years with the Gophers.
Crowe is still in school at Minnesota as a junior majoring in sports management.
He joined the Gophers for the 2017-18 season where he went 13-5 in a redshirt season. During that season, he went 3-2 at the National Collegiate Open, finished first at the Worthington and Cobber Opens, and went 4-2 for fifth place at the Daktronics tournament.
He didn’t compete in 2018-19 season because of injuries and he just couldn’t shake those injuries which ultimately led to his decision to step away from the sport he loves.
“I decided to step away from wrestling due to some troubles with injuries and trying to stay healthy, and ultimately just didn’t have the same passion I once had for the sport,” Crowe said. “I spent a lot of time trying to have my body feel healthy and decided by stepping away it would allow me to recover properly and focus on my other passions.”
Even though things didn’t go as planned for Crowe with the Gophers, he loved his two years in the wrestling room.
“My two years were great, I met a lot of great people and was able to take my wrestling to entire new level,” he said. “It was tough being off the mat for over half the time during my college career due to injuries and rehab. I was able to build a strong support system through wrestling and still have that same support today.”
Of course, there’s a lot Crowe said he’ll miss about the sport.
“I’m probably going to miss competing the most,” Crowe said. “No other sport I’ve been apart of allows you to just let everything go and put everything on the line.”
For now, Crowe will be cheering on his former teammates including long time friends and Shakopee graduates Brent Jones and Owen Webster and trying to help out anyway he can.
“At this point in time I don’t plan on returning to compete,” Crowe sad. “However, I do look forward to being able to help other wrestlers and future wrestlers out in the sport.”