Jordan Burroughs predicted it.
For months, the 24-year-old New Jersey native confidently guaranteed a gold medal in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London in the 74-kilogram weight class.
Many words describe Burroughs- confident, charismatic, witty, handsome, and, most importantly, a champion.
Sounds a lot like a cocky, renowned boxer who once proclaimed, “I’m the greatest, I’m a bad man, and I’m pretty!”
Muhammad Ali, born Cassius Clay, burst onto the scene in 1960 winning a gold medal in that year’s Summer Olympics in Rome.
Ali built his reputation by precisely predicting the round he would finish his opponents.
Burroughs may have read a chapter in Ali’s autobiography. Like Ali, Burroughs loves the spotlight.
In 2009, he started his twitter account following his first NCAA title as a wrestler for the University of Nebraska. His twitter handle “@alliseeisgold” may seem cocky to some, but Burroughs has not lost in competition since that year.
The night before his biggest wrestling tournament to date, Burroughs tweeted, “My next tweet will be a picture of me holding that Gold medal!!!”
Burroughs’ confidant demeanor surprised many, including a USA wrestling official who cautioned Burroughs he was doing a lot of talking and tweeting, according to ESPN.
The official warned Burroughs to be careful because it was his first Olympics and he didn’t know what he was getting himself into it.
But Burroughs assured the official he knew what he was doing.
Burrough’s strategy may have been taken out of another chapter in Ali’s autobiography.
On July 12, the young African-American wrestler tweeted a profound quote by the greatest boxer the world has ever seen.
“To be a great champion, you have to believe you are the best. If you’re not, pretend you are,” he wrote.
Burroughs is happy to have silenced his doubters, but even more satisfied to not have let down his many supporters. Not to mention his 50,000 followers on Twitter.
“A lot of people call me cocky. A lot thought I didn’t have what it takes. But no one’s laughing anymore,” he said, according to ESPN.
As for anyone who doubts Burroughs has humility; the Olympic champ knows it’s far from the truth.
“I’m extremely humble,” Burroughs said, according to Sports illustrated. “[But] the fans want someone who’s confident in themselves… I don’t want to be known as a great wrestler. I want to be known as a great athlete.
Is Jordan Burroughs the Muhammad Ali of Wrestling?
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