Luke Becker to be inducted into MN Wrestling Hall

Cambridge-Isanti H.S. and U of M grad Luke Becker will be a member of the 2012 induction class into the David Bartelma Wrestling Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony will take place on April 28 at McKinney’s on Southside in Benson.

Luke Becker pictured winning the NCAA national title in 2002. Photo courtesy of U of M

Luke wrestled varsity for the Cambridge-Isanti Bluejackets for six seasons. He was a five-time State placewinner, taking 4th in 1994, 3rd in 1995, then earning three Minnesota State titles  (at 135 lbs. in 1996, 145  in 1997, and 152 1998). He helped his team win two section titles, placing 6th at State in 1994 and 5th in 1998. He was also a member of two section runner-up teams in the always-competitive Section 7. Luke’s high school record was 210-29, and he was Minnesota’s wins leader at the time.

Luke continued his wrestling success at the University of Minnesota, becoming a four-time All-American, including winning a national title in 2002 at 157 lbs. He was also a member of the Gopher National Championship teams of 2001 and 2002, along with being a member on three Big Ten Championship teams from 2001-2003.  He was a Big Ten Conference champion in 2002 and 2003.  Luke finished his collegiate career with a 126-29 record (10th best at the U).

In the 70-plus years of Minnesota’s amateur wrestling, only eight wrestlers have attended a Minnesota high school and then proceeded to win a NCAA Div. I title. Luke joined a very elite group that includes former Gophers Dick Mueller, Evan Johnson, Pat Neu, Marty Morgan and recently Jason Ness. Two other athletes, James Kammen and Joel Sharratt, also attended a Minnesota high school and won a national title outside of Minnesota.

Luke Becker clinching the second of his three State Wrestling titles for the Bluejackets. NEWS file photo

Luke’s accomplishments have only been achieved by a handful of young athletes, and it speaks volumes to Luke’s abilities. He was a solid wrestler in all positions, and he will long be regarded as one of Minnesota’s finest ever.

Upon graduating from the University with a degree in Educational Psychology/Youth Studies, Luke has served as an assistant coach for the Gophers. Luke is married to Christa, and they have one daughter, Brittlyn.

More 2012 entrants into the Minnesota Wrestling Hall of Fame are: Gary Alexander (Athlete– Hopkins, U of M, US Greco-Roman Olympian), Bill Hinchley (Contributor– Owatonna, Minnesota U.S.A. Wrestling organizer), Dean Hiscocks (Contributor– Mankato State, Grand Meadow coach), Duane Koslowski (Athlete– U of M-Morris, Minnesota Greco-Roman Wrestling Club), Chuck Ofsthun (Athlete– Robbinsdale, U of M, Robbinsdale coach), Jeff “Bro” Olsen (Coach– Benilde, Mankato State, Roseau coach), Howard Schultz (Contributor– Chisholm, Bemidji State, Bemidji H.S. assistant coach).

– Contributed by Steve Ricard