David Taylor leaving Penn State—Did he make the right call or is this a huge mistake?

Kyle Dake has big plans for the 2024 Olympics. The 33-year-old is fixated on turning his Olympic Bronze medal into Gold this time in the French capital and who better to get the wisdom to do so than an actual national hero? David Taylor, the 2020 Olympics’ Gold medalist, won’t be flying to Paris as a part of Team USA to defend his title, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be available to help his colleagues prepare for the big rumble either.

Taylor’s move to OSU as their new head coach still hasn’t settled down among the country’s wrestling community. Stars like Carter Starocci haven’t taken the news of one of Penn State’s very own lending his expertise to one of their biggest opponents in the NCAA scene well. However, Dake is ready to use all the help he can get.

In a post shared by FloWrestling on X, Dake has revealed how Taylor continues to be one of his closest allies. “He came out for a couple days just to train with me. Still in business together,” said Dake in the short video clip.


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While Taylor and Dake now compete in 86kg and 74kg weight brackets respectively, they used to be one of each other’s biggest rivals in the collegiate scene. And yet, they have formed a sort of camaraderie over the years that helps both to push themselves further ahead. ” I would never be the wrestler I am today without Kyle,” confessed Taylor in a FloWrestling YouTube upload from 2021, signifying how their rivalry-cum-friendship is something both wrestlers hold close to their hearts.

Poll of the day

What was the biggest shock about David Taylor leaving Penn State Wrestling?

Unexpected timing

Impact on the team

Rivalry with Kyle Dake

Career uncertainty

Naturally, the news of Taylor’s radical decision after his loss at the US Olympic Team Trials caught his buddy off guard, like many others. “It was a big shock when it happened, but I understand his decisions and that’s what he’s doing,” stated Kyle as he noted how life goes on in his mind. However, David’s move hasn’t been able to make the two friends distance themselves from each other.

Still a close friend, still call him if there’s anything going on,” Kyle was heard saying, as he went on to summarize the tingling feeling he gets not seeing Taylor training for the Olympics. “It’s been odd, going in and not seeing him there, but like I said, that’s life. I’m sure it was odd for people when I left Cornell,” confessed the four-time World Championships gold medalist while calmly stating how challenges help him to stay focused and strive to improve himself. However, one really cannot change reality, can they?

Taylor continues to be a polarizing figure, despite Kyle Dake’s confidence


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In May, the former Cornell Big Red star revealed that, like David, coaching opportunities came his way as well. However, Dake claimed, despite significant financial compensation hopes, he chose to continue his quest to win a gold at the Olympic Games, the one thing that he doesn’t have in his medal cupboard and Taylor alone has the bragging rights to for now.

While Dake embarks on yet another ambitious journey to the top of the world in the 74kg weight class, the wrestling fraternity of the country just cannot meander around the fact that David Taylor will be standing on Penn State’s way at the upcoming NCAA season.


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Taylor’s alma mater has risen to become one of the most coveted wrestling sites in the country. With the NLWC being seen as more like a brotherhood than just another school program, former stars of Penn State have found it difficult to take a stand in the David Taylor debate.

On the other hand, Taylor’s experience on the big stage is something that Team USA members would be wise to pay heed to if they wish to replicate the Magic Man’s success. As Kyle Dake rides on high momentum after his 4th straight gold medal at the Pan American Championships in Mexico earlier this year, it remains to be seen if his training partner can help him find another top-of-the-podium finish on the banks of the Seine in a few weeks.