In 2015, Brandon Reed was a state runner up for Iroquois High School. It was only his second year wrestling, and it’s when he really started to fall in love with the sport. Sadly, after placing second at state his coach resigned, and Brandon was scared about his future in wrestling.
Luckily, Philip Mckenna, a fire fighter for the Okolana fire department, stepped up to coach at Brandon’s school. When Brandon found out, Brandon messaged him, and became very close to him. The relationship was strengthened more and more over time as coach Mckenna did a lot for Brandon. He taught him how to drive, gave him his first job, and basically became the father that Brandon never had.
During coach Mckenna’s first season as a coach, Brandon placed third at state. Shortly after, coach Mckenna and his family planned to move to a place called Spencer County. Mckenna asked Brandon to come with him and live with his family, and while Brandon was reluctant at first, he finally gave in. While this gave Brandon new opportunities, this unfortunately disqualified Brandon from competing his senior year of high school.
Although Brandon couldn’t wrestle in the state tournament, Mckenna still made sure he did everything to get Brandon ready for the next year, as he committed to wrestle at Lindsey Wilson College. Later that year he placed fourth at Flo Nationals, and seventh at Fargo.
During Brandon’s first year of college, he had a very successful year and ended up finishing fourth at the NAIA National Championships Tournament (at heavyweight). The next year, as just a true sophomore, Brandon won the entire thing and is now a National Champ going into his junior year. He says he owes all of his success to coach Mckenna, and wouldn’t be to where he is today without Mckenna’s guidance.
What was your biggest moment in wrestling so far and describe what that moment felt like?
“My biggest moment was winning the national title, of course. It felt like all those hard days, extra workouts, and intense diets paid off. It felt like it was all really worth It.”
What was your worst moment in wrestling that inspired you to change as a person and or wrestler?
“My worst moment in wrestling was losing in the quarter finals of state my junior year to a kid I had beaten earlier that year. I really gave up on myself in that match and following the match i focused on creating a more confident version of myself and it worked out well.”
What has wrestling done for your life?
“Wrestling has done a lot, but mostly it’s given me a grind mindset. I can do a lot of things like lift, learn a new language, pass classes, and even eat a lot better because of wrestling. It made me who I am today.”
What was it like moving to en entirely different place with your coach and living with him?
“It was really interesting. It was a totally new environment. The culture in Spencer county was much different than at Iroquois. It was a bit of a scary change. It’s like I traveled to another planet. However, it was an awesome experience and really allowed me to get out of my comfort zone and I gained many friends from it who are amazing.”
How important has it been to have positive mentors such as your coach?
“It’s been incredibly Important. He taught me so much from driving, wrestling, exercise, to life skills in general, and really helped me develop my mental toughness. I don’t know where I’d be without him. He means the world to me as a mentor.”
“Miyachi – Japanese Rapper”
Favorite D1/world team wrestler?
“Favorite D1: NIck Suriano, Favorite World Team Member: Kyle Snyder”
Which D1 team will win nationals next year?
Favorite sport to watch outside of wresting?
What state do you wanna live in as you settle down and have a family?
“I want to live in Japan. Not sure of the prefecture yet. I have been learning Japanese for over a year now and have an internship in Japan next summer. After that i will graduate and apply to be a teacher in Japan. I don’t really have an ideal area. I just want to be put in the best situation to learn the language and teach english!”