Chris Silakoski '14

Athletics always seems to come down to what’s measurable: wins and losses, distances and yards, and minutes and seconds. But those methods don’t accurately gauge the student-athletes at The University of Scranton like Chris Silakoski '14.

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Year: Junior
Major: Community Health Education
Hometown: Trenton, N.J.
Sport: Wrestling
Weight Class: 197
Injury: Broken Right Hand, February 2012

You were named a captain for the 2012-13 season. What does it mean to be recognized as a leader on this year’s squad? 

Being named as one of the captains of the 2012-2013 squad is a huge honor. More importantly, it means that I need to act as a leader and do all I can to help the team as a whole on the mat and off.

What is the best advice – sports-related or not – that a coach has ever given you? 

The best advice that I have received from a coach is a lesson about how to win and how to lose. The most influential lessons are those of having humility in victory and class in defeat. When you win, respect your opponent. When you lose, respect yourself.

Describe the feeling after a scoring a pin?

The feeling of getting a pin is one of the greatest feelings that I have ever had. There are so many feelings that rush through your body when the referee finally calls the pin. There is excitement, pride and exhilaration. It’s a unique feeling that you get because you realize the hours of work that you have put into training and competition have all been worth it.

On the other hand, how long does it take to get over being pinned?

In the exact opposite way getting pinned is one of the lowest feelings that I could possibly imagine. It is something that hurts so bad that I can actually recall every single time that I have been pinned since my junior year of high school. Simply put, it’s the kind of pain that stays with you for a long time.

Do you have any pre-match routines or superstitions?

Before a match I prefer to isolate myself. I just put my hood up, put my headphones in and play my favorite music at top volume.

What’s the difference between a good high school wrestler and a good collegiate wrestler?

The major difference that I have seen is all attitude based. Ever since I started wrestling on the collegiate level, the most important thing to have is an attitude that is relentless and aggressive. This sport is a fight between two people who both want nothing more than to have their hand raised in victory. The better collegiate wrestlers are the ones that never back down during training and competition.

What is the most challenging course you’ve taken at Scranton?

The most challenging course that I have taken at Scranton has to be chemistry. The class, combined with the lab, was plenty of work. The workload was definitely enough to keep me busy for two semesters.

Describe your perfect job after college.

I am actually in the process of changing my major to Community Health Education. I am looking forward to being a coach. I am not sure whether I would like to coach at a college or high school level, but I am sure that I want to coach wrestling when I graduate. Besides coaching, I am not entirely sure what my dream job is going to be.

What is your favorite place on campus?

My favorite place on campus is definitely the wrestling room. It sounds cliche, but that is where I feel at home. I can’t count the times that I have gone to practice early just to relax in the room. It’s the only place on campus that is a pure escape for me. It’s like my safe haven where the only thing that matters is being me.

Who was your favorite athlete growing up?

Growing up my favorite athlete was Henry Cejudo. He is an Olympic wrestling gold medalist who has overcome some of the worst things the world has to offer. His story is one of great motivation for me and I truly believe that anyone that knows his story would be motivated in the same way that I am by his life. He has a book titled “American Victory” if anyone is interested.

Facebook or Twitter?

I have a Facebook account that I don’t use very often.

Favorite movie?

The Shawshank Redemption

What musician do you tell people is your favorite? Who is your actual favorite musician?

My favorite band by a landslide is “Love and Theft.” Their music is easy to listen to and I personally believe it is the way music should be. My favorite song by them is “Dancing in Circles.” Listen to it!

What is your worst sports-related injury? How did it affect you?

The worst injury I have ever experienced wrestling is definitely the broken hand I suffered last February. I broke my 4th metacarpal of my right hand during practice and it put me out for the rest of the season.

Tell us one thing only friends and family know about you.

I have an identical twin brother who attends The College of New Jersey.

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