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March 17, 2017

Connor Medbery

Kyle Snyder

St. Louis, Missouri

CONNOR MEDBERY: Yeah, I think it was a good semifinal win, obviously, and just excited for the finals, excited for the opportunity to go and compete for a national title.

Q. Rematch tomorrow, under the big lights, big stage against one of the all-time greats in Kyle Snyder, Olympic gold medalist. I think you're right there, I think you think you're right there. What do you have to do tomorrow to knock him off?
CONNOR MEDBERY: Yeah, learning from that experience at Big Tens, that was kind of a warm up. So trying to build off that and take things away from that. I think I was able to stop a lot of his shots, but I think I need to get to some of my own and be able to score off his shots, and I think that's kind of what I did, started doing towards the end of the match, and that's when I got my take down. Building off that, obviously he's a great competitor and it's going to be a hard seven minutes, but I'm looking forward to the challenge.

Q. Would you be here this year if you had not taken a redshirt last year, and during that redshirt did you train with Kyle?
CONNOR MEDBERY: Yeah, I think that's a good point. I don't know if I would be. I think I made some great strides over this past year, and a lot of that has to do with being able to do down to Ohio State and train with Trevell and Kyle and those guys. So I was down there quite a bit and then a couple other universities. It was a great experience just to be able to have that opportunity and to learn from those experienced guys that have been successful at a high level.

Q. Ty Walz is a tough kid. It isn't easy to beat him. What was the key to getting the edge in that match because obviously both you guys are talented enough to be finalists?
CONNOR MEDBERY: Yeah, you know, I think beating him once is pretty tough and I've had to beat him three times this year, so I think just trying to take the challenge head on, know what kind of match it is, know what kind of style it's going to be, and it's going to be aggressive, and it turns into a wrestling match. I know there's a stereotype with heavyweights that it's just kind of pushing around and stuff, but I think that's changing a lot, and I think these -- look at the semifinalists, I was the biggest one at 260, and just being able to move well and being able to circle and get off shots and get to your own attacks is really important.

Q. Everyone always talks about Kyle Snyder being undersized. Does that even mean anything to you or not really?
CONNOR MEDBERY: Yeah, you know, I think that's one of the advantages I have is being a little bit bigger and being -- just being able to use my size to wear on him so in the third period if I need a takedown or need to ride him out or something, I can do that. But that's easier said than done, obviously, but I think it's something that I need to use to my advantage, and maybe it's not so much him undersized but using my size to my advantage.

Q. Did you know he hurt his ribs? And obviously we're talking about size; are you going to put the groceries on him tomorrow?
CONNOR MEDBERY: You know, I did hear that. I'm not sure what the extent of it is or anything, but I'm just going to try to focus on my match and focus on getting to my attacks, and obviously if he's taking shots, I need to stuff him and try to get points. I'm going to try to do that and come out on top.

KYLE SNYDER: Felt good in the match. He was a good opponent. He wrestled well this year. He beat a lot of guys, so I was happy to wrestle him. I was excited to wrestle him because I heard about some of the stuff he said, seemed a little arrogant to me, and I was hoping he would back it up. But not too much.

Q. The big news with you obviously is the ribs, and you got a shot in your ribs before the match. It didn't look like there was an injury there. It looked like Kyle Snyder, you might be one of the most mentally strong guys, you guys wrestle through injuries. It's incredible. How did it feel? Did it affect you at all?
KYLE SNYDER: Yeah, I felt pretty good. I got shots in it after the 165 match, to that numbed it up pretty good, and I'm going to get shots again tonight and then shots tomorrow. So I think that really helped. I felt it like crunching a little bit. I could like hear it. But I didn't feel the pain because of the shots.

Q. What exactly did happen? How did you hurt them?
KYLE SNYDER: I hurt it in the second match of the day, of the first day against Garrett Ryan. He was like wrapped on a body lock, and I kind of extended, and his grip went from the top of my rib to the bottom of my rib, and they just think that like the cartilage pulled off from the bone, so it's kind of like a little separated on the top part.

But yeah, and then in the third match against Kroells when he was on top, it was just hurting really bad. I didn't really feel it on my feet, but then it like hurt to breathe, and got a little worse than it was before that.

Q. Talk about the challenge of having to beat Connor Medbery again. Obviously he was on the trip to Rio and you guys worked out some and then you obviously know quite a bit about him, including matches against him this year. He looks strong coming in, and he's looking forward to another shot at you.
KYLE SNYDER: Yeah, he looks really strong, and he is strong. He doesn't just look it. He's got big legs, really big neck. He's hard to hand fight with, and his legs are heavy. But Connor is a great guy, great wrestler. We've trained a lot together. He's a good friend of mine. I know it'll be a good match. I just want to try my best to shoot a lot and score points, and we'll see what happens with the wrestling when we get there tomorrow night.

Q. I'm always asking you about helping old ladies across the street, signing autographs, kissing babies. Your life has totally changed since August and your Olympic gold medal, and it hasn't stopped. You're going overseas, missing dual meets. Is it going to slow down? Are you finally going to take a break and let your ribs heal after tomorrow night?
KYLE SNYDER: No, I'm not going to slow -- I'm just kidding. Yeah, I'll probably slow down a little bit. I'm definitely going to let my ribs heal. I wasn't expecting my ribs to get hurt. I kind of had a similar thing done -- this is my left ribs, but on my right ribcage I had a similar injury, and it took me about a week to get it completely good. So I'm hoping this one heals up fast, but people always ask me if I'm going to take breaks, and I mean, right now, I mentally feel motivated to train. I feel physically motivated to keep working out, keep lifting, keep conditioning. Obviously I wasn't planning on my ribs being hurt, but I'll try to get back on the mat as soon as I can after this tournament, just because I like practicing. I like being around the guys on the team and talking, and I like the hard work. I like that part of it.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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