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Kids On The Move - William Otto George IV
08/22/2010 - By Teja Anderson
IVY LEAGUE WRESTLER
It is no surprise that William “Billy” Otto George IV is an unbelievable athlete; the George family name is legendary around the Jersey Shore for nearly all sports, swimming, running, football, track, paddle boarding, lifeguarding and most of all, wrestling. But it is remarkable that Billy, who just graduated from Long Branch High School this past June, was recruited by all of the Ivy Leagues (except, oddly, Princeton), and offered full scholarships to countless top academic and prestigious colleges and universities around the country for his abilities as a wrestler (139 career wins), football player (captain) and honor student.
Billy’s father William Otto George III is a superintendent of schools in Hazlet, but was a former wrestling coach at Long Branch and can often be seen participating in Jersey Shore water competitions. His mother Helen is a successful realtor and his siblings Jake (16) Sarah (13) and Mary Kate (11) are all gifted athletes, breaking records of their own. Billy’s uncle, Danny George, is going into his 20th season as the head wrestling coach at Long Branch High School, after leading them to consecutive State and Shore Conference Championships the last three years. However, it wasn’t a given that Billy would focus on wrestling. His love of the ocean and all water sports, his skills in track and football and maintaining a 98.2 grade average in advanced placement classes and serving as president of the National Honor Society kept him well rounded and busy all year. And, he had to have time for his girlfriend of two years, Claire, a graduate of Allied High School in Neptune who will be attending Rutgers this fall to study pre-med. Billy also holds down a job lifeguarding at a beach club in Monmouth Beach.
It came down to Harvard and Cornell, and Billy went with Cornell. “Coach Koll was the one who showed the most interest. There are rules they are governed by, like only calling you once a week. Coach Koll was the best at it; he stayed right on top of it and called right at the same time each week. He also came here three times to visit with me. Let’s not forget, Cornell was second in the country for wrestling last year, loosing only to Iowa,” he points out. Billy did, however, have nightmares about choosing the right school, not from a career point of view but rather because of the financial burden it will be putting on his parents and also because he didn’t want to disappoint any of the other recruiters. Although none of the Ivies give full athletic scholarships, Billy has received many financial scholarships for both academics and athletics to help his parents with the staggering $55,000 a year tuition bill. Billy is also taking the next year off to better prepare for his studies but will be living in Ithaca and training with Cornell’s wrestling team. So why was wrestling his chosen sport?
“You decide your own fate in wrestling. It’s about how hard you work because it’s just one on one; you and the other guy. It’s all about the opportunity and the challenge,” Billy says. His most prized wrestling award is not a belt, or a trophy. It’s a poster with brackets. Seventy names, each winner moving up to the next bracket after every round, and there is his name as the final winner. It’s pretty impressive. And although Billy is obviously proud of his accomplishments he is neither vain nor conceited in any way.
Billy doesn’t watch the WWF on his down time but he won’t put them down either; “I really admire those guys, it’s pretty cool that they all have a wrestling background…I just don’t think I could get punched in the face for a living.” The truth is, Billy just doesn’t have time for television and is hard pressed to even come up with a movie he likes for our “Stat Box”. But he does surreptitiously check the local waves for the next few days on the family computer. Chances are pretty good that this young man will be returning to the Jersey Shore and raising his own brood of athletes once he is done wowing them in Ithaca!
Sallee Tee’s, Monmouth Beach
People who blow things way out of proportion; in a bad way.
THREE PEOPLE YOU WOULD LIKE TO HAVE DINNER WITH
Both of my Grandmothers; Mary George and Rosemarie Giordano so I can thank them properly and my Aunt Ann Leuin
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