Pfarr puts on pounds to move up

The redshirt junior will wrestle at 197 lbs. this year after adding on weight.

Jack White

Brett Pfarr was given a challenge before the season started. 
 
The redshirt junior had to gain 13 pounds before the Gopher Duals, the first tournament of the fall season on Nov. 7. Pfarr finished last year at 184 pounds, but he wanted, along with his coaches, to move up a weight class to 197 pounds.
 
“Over the summer, I was lifting four times a week,” Pfarr said. “I really increased my calorie intake. I was [eating] a lot of protein, just eating right but just making sure I was eating four or five times a day.”
 
Pfarr is coming off his first year as a full-time starter at 184 pounds, where he went 24-12 on the year. He took second at the Big Ten Championships last season, losing to
Michigan’s Domenic Abounader on a late takedown. 
 
“He wrestles really hard,” head coach J. Robinson said. “We need him to keep his consistency through the seven minutes, where his last minute is as good as his first minute.”
 
Sophomore Nick Wanzek is also switching weight classes like Pfarr to make room for younger wrestlers to compete at lower weight classes.
 
Wanzek and Pfarr have been working together in the offseason to gain weight. 
 
“Me and him lift pretty similar weights usually,” Wanzek said. “We pair up every once in a while, kind of challenge each other. If he beats me on squatting or something, I kind of want to catch up to him. It’s kind of a friendly competition of who can be the strongest in the weight room.”
 
Pfarr said he consumed anywhere between 4,000 and 5,000 calories a day in the offseason. Junior Michael Kroells said Pfarr has his diet under control to manage his weight.
 
“Brett is pretty knowledgeable about nutrition management,” said Kroells. “For him it was an easy change from what he was doing. He knew what he had to do, he just had to implement the change.”
 
Pfarr’s weight room routine changed with the addition of Kane Thompson to the Minnesota staff in September, in place of former strength coach Bob Rodhe. Thompson works with both wrestling and football for the University of Minnesota.
 
“[Thompson] has a new formula, breaks things down kind of like a wrestling match,” Robinson said. “It’s different than [former coach Bob Rhode], and our guys are enjoying it.
 
Weight training usually changes every four or five years no matter what. We’re always looking for something new, something fresh that will help guys get in the weight room.”
 
The switch in weight class will mean Pfarr will square off against some new opponents. He said he’s looking forward to facing Nathan Burak of Iowa, who finished seventh at the NCAA Championships last year, and Morgan McIntosh of Penn State in particular.
 
“Those are two good competitors from the Big Ten that I’ll be able to see,” Pfarr said.