The Jacob Curby Foundation, in association with USA Wrestling, has officially announced that Spenser Mango (Army/WCAP) and Randon Miranda (NMU-OTS) are the recipients of the 2016 Jacob Curby Award. The award, established in 2010, recognizes two United States Greco Roman athletes, one from each training facility, for their character and devotion to the sport.
Both the foundation and award are named after Northern Michigan alum and two-time University World Team member Jacob Curby, who passed away unexpectedly in 2010. Past recipients include Olympians Andy Bisek, Ellis Coleman, Robby Smith, making Mango the fourth Olympian to receive the honor.
His story well-known, Mango dominated the lowest weight class in the US for almost a decade, twice coming in fifth place at the World Championships (2013 and 2014) along with racking up seven US National titles and appearing in two Olympiads (2008 and 2012). Following the 2016 Olympic Trials, Mango retired from the sport and is currently an assistant coach with the US Army’s World Class Athletes Program in Colorado where among his pupils is younger brother and National Team member Ryan.
Miranda is one of the Northern Michigan program’s most promising up-and-coming athletes. After securing a spot on the Junior World Team in 2016, Miranda went 1-1 at the World Championships. He is also beginning to become accustomed to competition at the Senior level, having participated at both the Bill Farrell Memorial during the fall and the US Nationals/World Team Trials Qualifier last month in Las Vegas. Says Northern Michigan head coach of Miranda receiving the 2016 Jacob Curby Award: “He loves wrestling and is always giving 100% on the mat. He has followed the training and tournament schedule which led him to making the UWW Junior World Team. Randon has been great for our program on and off the mat.”
As for Miranda, he is simply blown away: “This is amazing and I take this to heart. It is a complete honor to receive this award as such a young student of the sport. I plan to keep training to the fullest of my abilities and would like to thank Coaches Rob Hermann and Andy Bisek as well as Coach Matt Lindland for teaching important values on and off the mat, and helping me become a better wrestler. This is amazing and I take this to heart, and I will continue to strive for gold at the Junior World level.”
The 2016 Jacob Curby Award will be presented to both athletes in Colorado Springs at the Dave Schultz Memorial International Open.