Weatherman brothers provide motivation for one another


Photo: Tim Reuter/Iowa State Daily

Freshman Trent Weatherman wrestles Minnesota’s Joe Gyrgelko during the meet on Sunday. Iowa State lost to Minnesota with a score of 13-26.

Dan Cole

Trent and Tanner Weatherman aren’t just teammates. 

They are friends, motivators and one of four pairs of brothers on the ISU wrestling team. The Cyclones’ wealth of fraternity is something ISU coach Kevin Jackson sees as a definite advantage.

“Anytime you have a brother on your team, it’s positive,” Jackson said. “It motivates you to work even harder just to make sure you’re

doing everything your brother’s doing, maybe even more.”

There are a number of reasons the Weathermans decided to wrestle at Iowa State, but the main one was Cael Sanderson. The former ISU coach and wrestler was a boyhood icon for the brothers and made sure he recruited and committed Trent before leaving Iowa State.

Once Sanderson left, Trent had a decision to make: follow Sanderson or remain a Cyclone. He chose Iowa State, largely in part to the program itself but also due to the proximity of Ames to Huxley, Iowa, the Weatherman’s hometown.

When it came time for Tanner to commit, the decision was not nearly as difficult.

“Growing up, we were 10 or 15 minutes away from here; we came up for the meets often,” Tanner said. “Then my brother committed here, recruited by Cael originally. Cael left, and then [Jackson] recruited me, and then it was pretty easy to follow my brother.”

The proximity to home was a big selling point for the brothers as their father, Tim, has been a big influence on their mental development as both athletes and men.

Tim was an assistant coach for their high school wrestling team and while his role as a coach was not great, his role as a father was paramount to his sons’ success on the mat.

“My dad’s really relaxed, so he helped with kind of taking a step back and just realizing it’s only wrestling [and reminded us of] getting back to the basics if we’re struggling with a certain technique, [just] little stuff,” Tanner said. 

As is the case with most brothers, there is no shortage of competitiveness between Tanner and Trent, which is something Tim said is present within the entire family.

“Whether it’s cards at home or whatever, everything’s a competition; that’s the way they grew up,” Tim said.

As Tanner and Trent have matured, the competitive nature between them has also undergone changes. As they’ve gotten older, they have become closer as both friends and brothers.

In the wrestling room, there’s a definite big brother-little brother rivalry going on between Tanner and Trent. The two are near the same weight now and are always eager to get after one another in practice.

“We’ve both kind of matured equally, and he’s even a little bit bigger than I am. So that kind of makes the matchup a little more fair,” Trent said. “When we get into the wrestling room now, it’s go time.”

Trent wrestled just two matches last season due to a bulging disk in his neck. In November 2011, he began feeling a pain in his arm and had an MRI that revealed his injury.

After waiting and seeing that his injury was not taking care of itself, Trent decided to have surgery in February. After rehabbing all last summer, the pain returned a few weeks ago, and he has not competed since.

“As of right now, I’m still working out,” Trent said. “I’ve trained a lot with assistant coach Travis Paulson. I do stuff with him every day, just so I can kind of stay sharp and stay in shape.”

Cyclone fans will have to wait and see if Trent can make a return to the mat this season. Until then, they will have Tanner every step of the way.