The Dream Team of 1947

Every once in a while something happens in the world of sports that reminds us why we care about such things.


“This inspirational book is about a small private college in Iowa that, overcoming tremendous odds, succeeded in dismantling the traditional major college wrestling powers in the United States following World War II. It’s a story about a clever coach who utilized his many talents to assemble the studs that could get the job done on the mat and in the classroom.”
Lee Roy Smith
Executive Director, National Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum
“When I first read that Cornell College of Iowa won the NCAA team title in 1947, I thought it must be a misprint. I was further dumbfounded to learn that Cornell shut out Lehigh 36–­0 in a dual meet on its home mat that same year. This interesting book tells those stories and much more. It describes one of the most improbable and heart-warming sagas in the annals of collegiate wrestling.”
Jay Hammond
Historian, National Wrestling Hall of Fame and Museum
“In 1947, tiny Cornell College of Mount Vernon, Iowa, recorded one of the greatest seasons in collegiate sports history. The story of this remarkable wrestling team and its legendary coach had been largely forgotten until Arno Niemand brought it back into focus. The Dream Team is a fascinating book about a remarkable era and people, and I highly recommend it to one and all.”
Mike Chapman
Author of 21 books, founder of W.I.N. magazine, and five-time National Wrestling Writer of the Year
“This wrestling history is so enjoyable to read that I wonder why it took so long to be written. Thanks for giving me and others another reason to love the sport.”
Dan Gable
NCAA, World and Olympic Champion, legendary coach of the Iowa Hawkeyes
“Arno gives us the details—and they are fascinating. He tells how Scott lured three kids from Waterloo West—Hauser, Lange and Leo Thomsen—away from Iowa State Teacher’s College. It’s also a story of the role played by American history in this feat. I most enjoyed Niemand’s analysis of how the post-war rivalry between ISTC and Cornell changed the face of college wrestling. Thirty years before the Iowa State/Iowa wrestling rivalry heated up, the “70 mile rivalry” was the most influential in wrestling. The book gripped me and I read it in a single sitting yesterday. I highly recommend it.”
Jim Brown
From his wrestling blog, "The View from Section GG", on Monday, October 18, 2010