Written by Bryan Messerly
Dean Morrison, a native of Amityville, N.Y., who competed for the Mountaineers from 1990-94, produced the West Virginia University wrestling program’s second individual national title at the 1994 NCAA Championships held in Chapel Hill, N.C.
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Morrison accumulated 103 wins during the course of his career, the sixth most in WVU history, became the first wrestler in program history to win three consecutive Eastern Wrestling League titles and qualified for the NCAA Championships three times.
During Morrison’s run to the national title, he notched 33 victories, which stands as the 10th-most in a season by a WVU grappler, second-most at 177/184 pounds and fifth-most by a senior.
At the 1994 NCAA Championships, Morrison entered his bracket as the No. 2 seed and defeated three ranked opponents to reach the finals. In the championship match, Morrison beat Wyoming’s Reese Andy, 3-2, to cap a season that saw him win 22 of his final 23 matches and earn his second straight season of 30 wins or more.
Following a redshirt season in 1991, Morrison qualified for the NCAA Championships for the first time and recorded 25 total victories.
Morrison had yet another solid campaign in 1993 when he put his name in the WVU record books for the first time, recording his first of two 30-plus win seasons. Morrison’s 32 wins during the 1993 season stand as the third-most by an individual at 177/184 pounds and seventh-most by a junior.
Following his career with WVU, Morrison competed for USA Wrestling, where he held a national ranking as high as No. 2 in the 96 kg/211.5 lbs weight class.
Among his achievements at the professional level are a 1995 University Nationals championship, a 2003 Pan American Games championship and a Gold medal at the 2003 World Team Trials.
After completing his career in 2004 as a resident athlete at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., Morrison went to work with Beat the Streets Wrestling Inc., and has started his own non-profit organization called Prodigal Sport.
Morrison currently resides in New York City, with his wife, Carolyn, and their children, Josiah and Aaron. The couple is expecting their third child in September.