Dawson Sweet, Senior Spotlight, Cedar Rapids Jefferson

By G Wyatt Schultz

Do you have any family who wrestled before you? How did they do?

Nick Dreckman, who is my brother was a state qualifier for the J-Hawks. He wrestled 182 pounds.

Did you catch on to wrestling quickly or was it a gradual process?

I think that I caught on to wrestling quickly. I think I caught on quickly because I found success early on in Junior High.

Did you wrestle in a club growing up, and if you did, how would you describe your experience with the club?

I started wrestling for Bad Boys in fourth grade, Our youth club at Jefferson at the time was very demanding for a young kid.

What are a couple memorable moments from youth/junior high wrestling?

My 8th grade. My brother and I both earned the Richard Winey Memorial Wrestling Award for Roosevelt Middle School. This is kind of like the MVP of the team. I also remember winning our home Bad Boys tournament.

Who were your wrestling heroes growing up?

I looked up to my brother quite a bit growing up. He is four years older than me.

How did you finish at state tournaments as a youth?

I never competed at the youth state tournaments.

How did you finish at the state tournaments you wrestled in at the high school level?

I finished sixth place at 285 my junior year.

Was there ever a point in your career where you noticed yourself jumping levels and making improvements?

I believe I made a huge jump in my prep career from my sophomore year to junior year, where I finished fourth at districts and then placed sixth at state my junior year.

Who were some of your toughest competitors in high school?

Griffen Liddle from Bettendorf and Andrew Snyder from Waverly. They both were in the finals at 285 last year.

Who did you have the best battles with?

Josh Vis from CR Kennedy

What is your favorite style of wrestling, Folkstyle, Freestyle or Greco-Roman?

My favorite style of wrestling is folkstyle. I enjoy wrestling in all positions.

What are your wrestling goals for the upcoming high school season?

My goal is to be the 3A 285 state champion.

What are some of your favorite tournaments?

Our home J-Hawk tournament is my favorite. Keith Young and the Red Owens are great tournaments as well. Nothing compares to battling in Des Moines however.

How would you describe your wrestling style? Who would you compare yourself to?

I would say that I am more of an offensive heavyweight who likes to score points. I will never be that guy to just push opponents out of the wrestling area and hope for stalling calls.

Do you have any regrets involving wrestling that you want to make up as a senior?

I find it hard to think about regrets now at the beginning of the season.

What other sports do you play and how have you done at them?

I used to play football, and I was successful. I was a starter for both offense and defense, but I really lost interest in it as I got older.

What are some of your hobbies besides wrestling? And what is a favorite memory?

Hunting and fishing are my favorite things to do outside of wrestling. My favorite memory of hunting is when my brother and I both nailed a deer with a bow about 1 minute a part. I shot my deer first, then Nick who was on the opposite side of the field shot his deer moments later. We were both playing phone tag with dad and my other brother. We were all fired up!

What is some of the best advice you ever received, and who gave you that advice?

Trust your coaches. Don't feel sorry for yourself when things get difficult.

Do you have any advice for up and coming wrestlers?

I would tell young wrestlers to trust the coaches and believe in their ability.

Who were some of the most influential coaches you worked with?

Ryan Phillips, Mac Mahmens, and Riley Welsh all have had a big influence on me. There have been a lot of coaches who have helped along the way as well. Chad Garber and Cody Northern have also been a huge asset to me.

What are your college plans? Is wrestling in your future, whether it be competing or coaching?

I plan on competing after high school. Currently, my top three are: Luther, Upper Iowa University, University of Dubuque.

CR Jefferson has had some outstanding teams, not only in wrestling but other sports, what is the future of Jefferson wrestling?

We have a great team right now, which we think we could be strong contenders down the road this season. There is a lot of potential in the room right now, and the future is super bright for the large group of freshmen and sophomores.