Chamberlain's Nash Hutmacher

Chamberlain's Nash Hutmacher celebrates after winning his match against Beresford/Alcester-Hudson's Nick Casperson in the Class A 285-pound weight class during the South Dakota state wrestling championships in Sioux Falls in 2018.

Nash Hutmacher won a wrestling state title last week faster than you brush your teeth, assuming your hygienic practices are in order.

The heralded South Dakota heavyweight, who doubles as a priority Nebraska football defensive tackle recruit for the 2020 cycle, pinned four opponents in a grand total of 1 minute, 59 seconds of action en route to his third consecutive state championship.

The state final: Nine seconds. Handshake, whistle, shoot, bear hug, takedown, pin. 

Hutmacher, listed at 6-foot-5, takes a simple approach to the dominance, which stands in stark contrast to the eye-popping numbers.

“You’ve just got to set bigger and better goals for yourself throughout the whole season,” Hutmacher told the Journal Star this week. “If you don’t have a goal, you’ve got nothing to shoot for. You’ve just got to have big goals, big dreams, and that’s how I keep it fun.”

Fun’s come in spades for Hutmacher, nicknamed "Polar Bear" on the mat. The three-time defending state champion has won 123 consecutive matches and hasn’t lost a high school match since he hit the ninth grade. According to the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, he pinned every opponent he faced as a junior at Chamberlain High School. His overall record, he says, is 181-34. How’s that? He wrestled varsity in middle school.

“My seventh-grade year I qualified for the state tournament but didn’t place,” he said. “Eighth grade I was fifth at state in the heavyweight division.”

Hutmacher is also among the Huskers’ most coveted football prospects for the 2020 cycle. He fits a need — defensive line — and he’s regional.

NU head coach Scott Frost has been up to Chamberlain to visit Hutmacher’s school and Hutmacher says he’s keeping in near-daily touch with Frost and running backs coach Ryan Held. He had been recruited by departed defensive line coach Mike Dawson and newly hired Tony Tulioti will likely join the fray soon.

“I would say for sure they’ve made me feel like a priority,” Hutmacher said. “They’re texting me all the time and they were coming up to see me just about every week.”

The plan is to try to get all of his official visits taken care of this spring and summer, and then to make a decision before his senior football season starts. He knows two of his visits will be to Nebraska and Wisconsin.

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Fitting it all in, though, could be a challenge. Now that wrestling’s over, Hutmacher will gear up for track. He’ll also be preparing, though, for folkstyle nationals at the end of March and more national tournaments through the summer. Currently, he’s the No. 3-ranked 285-pound high school wrestler in the country, according to TrackWrestling.

Despite the year-round competing, Hutmacher finds a way to, seemingly, live in the weight room. His dad, Joe, is a former competitive power lifter, and they started lifting together when Nash was in middle school.

“He put up some big numbers back when he was in his prime,” Nash said with admiration.

Dad isn’t the only one.

Hutmacher in recent months has put videos of himself overhead pressing 225 pounds and squatting 590.

“I kind of lift around wrestling tournaments and duals,” he said. “I’m still going in and lifting the big three lifts — squat, deadlift and bench — for sure and then it just depends on when wrestling is. When we get closer to wrestling, we move to not lifting so much weight but just doing more explosive stuff.”

As attention turns, at least somewhat, back to his football recruitment, Hutmacher says he’s leaning toward wanting to play defense in college. That’s right where the Huskers want him. He admits Dawson was one of his favorite coaches to talk to, but also said, “I wouldn’t say it’s really affected my interest in Nebraska too much” that he left for the New York Giants.

Wrestling and track may prevent Hutmacher from attending NU’s late-March junior day and perhaps also the Red-White Spring Game, but the Huskers appear to be right in the thick of the race for him.

Contact the writer at pgabriel@journalstar.com or 402-473-7439. On Twitter @HuskerExtraPG.


Sports writer

Parker joined the Journal Star as the University of Nebraska football beat writer in August 2017. He previously covered Montana State athletics for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2012.

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