Teyon Ware shares his story at Best of the Arbuckles Preps banquet

Beau Bearden
The Daily Ardmoreite
Teyon Ware, a two-time national champion at the University of Oklahoma and current assistant coach at the University of Wyoming, speaks Tuesday during the 2021 Best of the Arbuckles Preps banquet.

Teyon Ware has a successful history on the mat as a wrestler and a coach. Not everyone knows the Oklahoma native’s story though, so he shared it with more than 500 student-athletes on Tuesday, May 25 during the 2021 Best of the Arbuckles Preps banquet.

“It’s always good to give back,” Ware said. “In the sport of wrestling, if you’re wrestling, you are family. It doesn’t matter where you from, it’s family. So that’s why I didn’t have a problem giving back because even if this was in New Mexico or Arizona, it’s giving back. I ask myself, ‘Can my story affect one?’

"That’s all it needs to do," Ware continued. "Because then one person will reach another. It doesn’t matter that it was back here. But I’m grateful it’s back here. It’s always good to see family, handle business and get back out.”

It’s safe to say Ware knows how to handle business after winning two NCAA Individual championships at 141 pounds for the University of Oklahoma wrestling team. He also clinched a spot in the final three times.

That success helped propel him to a coaching career and he’s in his sixth season as lead assistant coach for the University of Wyoming wrestling team.

However, Ware doesn’t just focus on athletics. He does use it as a platform though, which is why his story was so important.

 “We’re athletes, we’re students, and in our sports, no matter what we do, we have to work hard,” Ware said. “You have to be a good team player. Once again, you can’t just go off your feelings. As athletes, we don’t want to be practicing every day. We don’t want to compete all the time. But the deal is, none of us like to lose. So we all have that in common.

“If we don’t like losing games, we sure as heck don’t want to lose in life,” Ware continued. “That’s the main thing. I’m not just talking about games. I’m talking about life. If you want to come out on top, you have to use your pain to fight through it and allow yourself to come out on top.”

And that pain was the key to Ware’s speech. He centered his message around it, which was timely due to our nation’s current struggles.

“We’re all going to experience pain as humans,” Ware said. “As a country, we experienced pain this past year. We lost family members, we lost close ones and lost friends. We’ve experienced pain, but the question is – are we learning from it? Everybody says, ‘I can’t wait to get things back to normal.’ But do you really want things back to normal?

“When you go through pain, you’re not going to come back to normal,” Ware continued. “You’re either going to better or you’re going to be worse. That’s pretty much the message I want to leave with these individuals. You’re going to experience pain, but are you going to pity yourself and have the world feel sorry for you and victimize yourself? Or are you going to use your pain to get your glory and make your story even better. You’re going to go through it, but the question is how you’re going to react it to.”