GopherSports: Why did you choose to come to Minnesota?
Zane Zeman: Minnesota is a great wrestling team. It is an honor to be a part of a team that has such a history of national champions and championships.
GS: What other schools did you consider?
ZZ: Chattanooga, Tennessee, LU, and Drexel. It was really between here and Chattanooga.
GS: Your family has a tradition of wrestling in college with your dad wrestling at Kent State and grandfather wrestling at OU. How did that affect your involvement in the sport growing up and now into college?
ZZ: It was always a family thing with me and my dad. I have been [wrestling] since I was little. My grandpa was always a good coach. He would drive me from practice to practice and my dad would do the same thing. They were always behind me and I started to take off from that.
GS: When did you first realize you could compete at the college level and that it was something you wanted to do?
ZZ: I always knew I wanted to wrestle at the college level. I mean, maybe not at the college level but wrestling has always been a part of my life. I never saw myself giving it up.
GS: What are some of your goals for your first season as a Golden Gopher?
ZZ: Just to get better. Get a lot better and win some matches in my freshman year.
GS: What are you most looking forward to about starting college?
ZZ: The wrestling part of it more than the academic part of it. Bonding with the team is going to be really fun because every other team I have been on hasn't necessarily been very competitive. I didn't get as much of a team aspect. It was just me wrestling.
GS: You are planning to major in science and bioengineering. How did you choose those areas of study?
ZZ: I have always loved science and math. It is what I have been good at my whole life and it's the only thing that really interests me as far as academics go. I always loved being in the labs in chemistry, learning about different chemical and bio processes.
GS: You are the current record holder for wins, takedowns, and pins at Avon HS. Is there one of those that you are most proud of?
ZZ: Wins is cool. It really is cool to kind of have the best state record. Taking second and third; nobody else did that. So, probably the career-wins just because that is the biggest one.
GS: You were four-time conference champ in high school. Do you have a favorite?
ZZ: Probably my freshman year because the kid I beat in the championship match had beaten me earlier in the season.
GS: Aside from wrestling at school, you were also a member of the All-American Wrestling club. What kind of experiences were you able to have through that?
ZZ: That was where I started. Those are my roots. There was this old guy with a white beard and he would just yell at you for two and a half hours every Tuesday and Thursday for the first six years of my wrestling experience. That's really what it was. It was great.
Seven Gophers Will Enter Season Ranked
Seven Gophers will begin the 2017-18 season as top-20 wrestlers, with the team coming in at No. 6 in the dual meet rankings and No. 7 in the tournament rankings.
Meet Newcomer Steve Bleise
This week we meet with Steve Bleise, a redshirt junior from Chelsea, Mich. who was an All-State wrestler in high school.
Wrestling Welcomes Fans to Open Practice
Fans who are eager for wrestling season will have an opportunity to come have an early look at the 2017-18 Gopher wrestling team.