Penn State Wrestling

2018 wrestling commit Roman Bravo-Young discusses leaving Arizona for Happy Valley

Penn State commit Roman Bravo-Young is looking forward to continuing his friendship with current Nittany Lion Mark Hall — and preparing for the central Pennsylvania cold.
Penn State commit Roman Bravo-Young is looking forward to continuing his friendship with current Nittany Lion Mark Hall — and preparing for the central Pennsylvania cold. Photo provided

Penn State wrestling commit Roman Bravo-Young is considered one of the nation’s top lightweights in his sport, and the Arizona native will be heading to Happy Valley as a member of the Class of 2018.

The U.S. Cadet champion at 120 pounds recently spoke with the Centre Daily Times about moving to the northeast — and about his friendship with current Nittany Lion Mark Hall.

Check it out:

Q: What is it that you are looking forward to the most when you come out to the East Coast?

A: Honestly, just getting better at wrestling and reaching my full potential. Also, a new lifestyle and getting away from Tucson. It’s different down here. I know it’s going to be a whole culture change. I’m just ready to try something new. I haven’t had high-caliber coaching here like I will over there.

Q: If you had to have your dream wrestling match, who would it be against and why?

A: (laughs) Mark Hall — because he bullies me so much. He’s like my best friend.

Q: Do you feel that’s one of the reasons why you decided to come to Penn State — so you can pal around with Mark?

A: Yeah, he’s cool. That’s my homie. We go way back, hanging at the OTC (Olympic Training Center). He was on the world team, and I always watched him when I was a kid. We just became friends, and we play Xbox. Him and all the other guys are cool, and I’m friends with all of them.

Q: You are coming in with one of the most historic recruiting classes when you got the likes of Gavin Teasdale, yourself, Travis Wittlake and Seth Nevills. What’s it like to be in a group with those guys?

A: We are just going to take down every other team, that’s all. Everyone gets put in the right weight. We can just keep dominating like we did in high school and win those team championships. That’s what matters the most.

Q: What was your sense sitting and watching the national championships this year and seeing what Penn State pulled off?

A: I was just kind of like, in about a year or two years, depending if I redshirt or not, that might be me. It just blows my mind. It’s just exciting more than anything. It’s like, wow, that’s really going to be me. You dream of that kind of stuff. Not every wrestler gets to wrestle at the NCAAs. It’s literally the best of the best. It’s mind-blowing because I’m coming from Tucson, Ariz. You don’t even hear a lot of people from the West Coast even getting recruited to the East Coast. If people really sit down and really think about it, it’s a lot to process — but I just think it’s definitely cool and crazy.

Q: What are some of the things you like to do outside of the sport?

A: I play a lot of Xbox. I just hang out. I’m a laid-back kind of guy. I don’t really do much. I drive around, listen to music and hiking.

Q: You said before you’ve seen snow just twice in your life. What do you think it is going to be like when you get your first big snowstorm here in central Pennsylvania?

A: I couldn’t even tell you. Honestly, I don’t even know what to expect. I’m going in there open-minded and just have to adapt to it. Even if I don’t like it, I’m still going to have to adapt; that’s just my mindset going in. I’m just going to prepare for the cold.

Nate Cobler: 814-231-4609, @ncoblercdt