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March 17, 2018

Michael Macchiavello

Cleveland, Ohio


THE MODERATOR: We're joined by the 2018 NCAA Division I national champion at 197 pounds, Michael Macchiavello, from NC State. Questions?

Q. Talk about what it means to buy into the NC State program and having the success and becoming a national champion and buying into the work that Coach Pop says and the whole culture you guys have there at Wolfpack?
MICHAEL MACCHIAVELLO: When you ask me that question the first thing that comes to mind is how tough it is. Not every team in the country has that culture. And I don't think it's the easiest thing to buy in. I think the hardest thing to do is to trust the coaching staff and the coaches that they created and trusting that. Living that lifestyle is going to get you to where you want to be.

And I don't want to sound cliché but that's exactly what I did, I trusted the coaching staff. I'll tell you right now it's definitely not easy. There's definitely a lot of ups and downs. But at the end of the day, you just have to believe you're going to get there at the end of the day. And, you know, I don't know what else to say, just buy in and believe and you'll get to where you want to be at NC State.

Q. What a sweet feeling to win that national title. Has anybody told you that you just tied North Carolina State with Michigan in fourth place?
MICHAEL MACCHIAVELLO: Man, that's a team goal we've been trying to do since I got there as a freshman. And hopefully, nothing against Adam Coon, but hopefully Snyder pulls out the win so we can fulfill our goal as a team and get that team trophy. That's what we've been striving for. It's not just for me it's for the whole team. I am glad I could help put us in that position.

Q. Being in the ACC, it doesn't get a lot of prominence in the team races going on. What was it like to have all the energy and knowing that you guys kind of had a piece of history there with the ACC, and you guys were after all that Penn State/Ohio State rivalry?
MICHAEL MACCHIAVELLO: Can you ask the question one more time?

Q. Going into that there's a lot of team energy with the team race, Ohio State and Penn State. And you had to come after that. Could you feel the vibe?
MICHAEL MACCHIAVELLO: I could kind of a little bit. It was definitely something that was in the back of my mind. But I talked to our sports psychologist about the mental process and where I should be to be in the best mental space to win.

And we talked about not looking ahead and having this future-oriented perspective and thinking ahead towards the team race and where we're going to finish is too far ahead. I just had to stay where my feet were and think about what I had to do in that current moment to get prepared for the match and to win. So it's not something that I was trying to think about a whole lot. I knew if I just took care of business I'd put us in that position.

Q. How does it feel to get it done against Haught after losing to him twice earlier in this year?
MICHAEL MACCHIAVELLO: I don't have any words. It's a great feeling. I think I was thinking about if Haught wouldn't have made it to the finals, you could have potentially made the argument, oh, if I had won, which I did, thankfully, if I had won, oh, he won because the way the bracket played out, you know what I'm saying? Because he's the only guy who beat me twice in the year.

And for me it was a great challenge because it's (indiscernible) about the fact that if I won the NCAA title beating him then I was the best 197-pounder in the country this weekend. So I knew that was my challenge going forward and it excited me, and I was happy to take it head on.


FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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