Chat with Anthony Robles
He finished his wrestling career 122-23 and a three-time all-American.
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, former collegiate wrestler and Jimmy V ESPY Award winner, Anthony Robles stops by to chat about his new book "Unstoppable" that hit stores last week.
"Unstoppable" tells Robles' story of becoming a three-time Pac-10 wrestling champion, finishing his 2010-11 senior season at Arizona State undefeated at 36-0, winning the Pac-10 and national 125-pound divisions. Born with only one leg, Robles, @arobles125, developed himself into one of the top wrestlers in the country. Prior to college, he won two Arizona high school state championships, going 48-0 over his final two seasons.
Send your questions now and join Robles Friday at 3 p.m. ET!
Buzzmaster (2:51 PM)
Anthony is here and we will get started in a few minutes!
It seems like your story would be a natural to make into a movie...any chance that happens
Anthony Robles (2:55 PM)
We're actually in talks with a few different production companies now. Our main goal was to get the book published first, now that's done my manager is talking about doing the movie.
How long did it take you to write the book?
Anthony Robles (2:56 PM)
It took us about 6 months. It was just a process. Me and my author sat down and first me telling him my lifestory and then we went through each part and put it together. I recalled some memories and stories.
was there anything that you realized about yourself while writing the book that may have surprised you?
Anthony Robles (2:57 PM)
I know when writing the book it was very therapeutic for me. I talk about a lot of uncomfortable things growing up. I talk about walking through school feeling uncomrfortable. I usually keep those emotions to myself. The book made me come out with it and talk about it. It lifted a weight off of me.
It seems like your lifestory would warrant a book even before winning the ESPY and the national championship...how long have you been thinking about doing this?
Anthony Robles (2:58 PM)
Actually, the idea for a book came up after nationals and I won. I planned on getting into motivational speaking even in college. The book opportunity came up to get more into my story. In the book, the reader can really see my life and where I came from. More personal. When I'm speaking it's only like 45 minutes.
So, who would you want to play you in the movie?
Anthony Robles (2:59 PM)
We're still figuring that out. There is a chance I might play myself. I keep joking with people that if I had my choice, I would take Denzel Washington. That would be my pick.
What kind of response have you gotten from the book so far?
Anthony Robles (3:00 PM)
It's been out a little less than a week now. I've gotten a lot of great responses from it. Wrestlers and non-wrestlers. I've gotten an email or Tweet about it. I wanted to reach out to those that are facing a challenge.
Are you going to go into TV?
Anthony Robles (3:00 PM)
Well, I'm actually doing some color commentary for ESPN in wrestling. My first year was last year. I love doing it and it was a lot of fun. I'll keep doing it as long as they'll let me.
Is wrestling more physically or mentally draining?
Anthony Robles (3:01 PM)
Honestly, I think it's more mentally draining. It beats up your body a lot. Mentally, the weight cutting, pushing through it. It's all mental. And you're out there all by yourself. You can't hide anywhere, you can't call a substitute. It's a mental battle as well as a physical one to bring the toughness every time.
when did you know you could be a champ?
Anthony Robles (3:02 PM)
It was actually my freshman year in high school, my first year. I finihsed last in my city of Mesa. It was that night I decided no more, no more losing, I wrote down that night state champion. I kept it in my pocket even now. It helped me stay focused on my goal.
what stories do you tell?
Anthony Robles (3:04 PM)
I told a ton of different stories. Some wrestling stories. Some stories of me missing my leg and some of the funny things I did growing up, climbing over my crib because I had a strong upper body. I wanted it to be more than wrestling. It has some funny things in there, some sad stuff and hopefully some inspiring things as well.
Anthony, did you ever come to see your disability actually becoming an advantage in wrestling? I'm sure the other guys were not used to competing against you.
Anthony Robles (3:05 PM)
Every wrestler has their advantages. That's what makes wrestling so great, you have to find your style. For a while, it was a disadvantage for me. We focused on my strengths and hid my weaknesses. We kept me out of positions that showed my weaknesses.
I am a fan and respect what you did and how good you are and am not trying to take any of what you have done away. But have you ever seen your situation as an advantage? You do have the upper body of a 49 or 57 pounder and the strength of a 65 pounder.
Anthony Robles (3:06 PM)
See, I actually hear that a lot that I have an upper body of a higher weight class, if you add an extra leg, which is about 20 pounds, and subtract the upper body strength. I would still be the same weight class, because of the weight you have to cut. Every wrestler is unique. Some are tall, some are skinnier. It's about using your body type and using your style.
Anthony Robles (3:07 PM)
I just want to thank everybody for your support. Team Unstoppable is building every day. I hope you enjoy the book!
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