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Marion hopes to compete again

[ 0 ] December 14, 2010 |

Montell Marion remains a student at the University of Iowa.

He would like to become a student-athlete again for the Hawkeyes.

But nothing has changed regarding Marion’s status with the Iowa wrestling program, associate athletics director Fred Mims said Tuesday.

“Not right now that I am aware of,” said Mims, who oversees the program. “He’s been lobbying and been doing a lot of great things that you would hope a young person would be doing on their own and he has been. He’s had some conversations with our athletics director (Gary Barta) and (Iowa coach) Tom (Brands). He’s called me once or twice and given me updates on what he’s doing, but there’s no change in status.”

Marion, an NCAA runner-up at 141 pounds last season, was suspended from the program in May after a drunken driving arrest. Iowa officials called it a “permanent suspension” at the time.

When asked Tuesday if there was a crack in the door for Marion’s return, Mims said: “You never want to deny a person an opportunity, but I want to say it would take something substantial to change his situation.”

Marion compiled a 27-6 record last year as a sophomore. He has the remainder of this season plus another year left on his eligibility clock.

Mims said in May that Iowa would support a transfer pursuant to the NCAA’s one-time transfer policy, but Marion opted instead to remain in school.

“I guess once the semester is over he and his folks will need to make a decision with what they’re going to do,” Mims said. “I’m assuming all of this will come to a head once finals week is over. He’ll probably talk with Gary, talk with the University and see where he stands and present whatever case he has and go from there.”

NCAA rules would allow Marion, with a release, to transfer and compete during the second semester. Marion’s father, Del, said in May that his son had no desire to leave the Hawkeyes and that Montell wanted to “correct the situation” and continue his career at Iowa.

“I’ve noticed a lot (positive changes in him),” Mims said. “I feel for the young man because he really seems to be a different person.”

Del Marion said his son has no intention of petitioning for an entry into Midlands Championships later this month in Evanston, Ill. He said there’s currently “no wrestling plan” in place for Montell. Del Marion said his son has been concentrating on academics and “doing the things he needs to be doing.”

“My son has been doing outstanding,” he said. “Right now, he’s got about a B average, he’s keeping his nose clean and doing all the things I expect him to do.”

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Category: Wrestling

About Andy Hamilton: University of Iowa graduate Andy Hamilton is originally from Williams, Iowa, and started at the Des Moines Register in August after 12 years at the Press-Citizen. He covers wrestling for Hawk Central. View author profile.

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