NMInsiders.com: What can we expect from your team this season?
Coach Alderman: The goal for team this year is to continue the growth patterns we started last year. We are a very young team, so we know that we need to focus on basic wrestling and learning fundamentals.
NMInsiders.com: Which wrestlers from last season will your team really miss?
Coach Alderman: We only lost one senior last year. He was a great workout partner for the rest of team and anytime you lose someone that has a passion for the sport you miss them.
NMInsiders.com: Who are your top wrestlers returning for this season?
Coach Alderman: We have a great group of older guys this year that should do some great things this year. Payton Henderson, at heavyweight, should be the leader for us this year.
NMInsiders.com: Which wrestler is probably not a name right now but is ready for a breakout year?
Coach Alderman: This year should be an interesting year as far as underdogs go. We obviously are hoping for some great performances from some kids that aren't known. Michael Rode and Nick Maestas should both do well, and freshman Robert Lopez should surprise some people.
NMInsiders.com: Which team is the favorite to win your region this year?
Coach Alderman: For our district, Eldorado is the clear
favorite. Los Lunas and
NMInsiders.com: Who is the best wrestler you have ever coached?
Coach Alderman: I have had the opportunity to coach some great kids. A few stand-outs would be the Eye twins from Manzano and Corey Morrow. Morrow is just a little guy, but you'll hear his name a lot in the future.
NMInsiders.com: Give us your personal coaching philosophy.
Coach Alderman: My philosophy is pretty simple. I believe that wrestling is a sport where the most successful athletes are the hardest working, most dedicated individuals. I push the athletes to understand that success outside of wrestling is as important as success inside the sport.
NMInsiders.com: To you and your program is winning at the lower levels more important than players understanding your system?
Coach Alderman: My players and I agree that the program and its philosophies are what matters. We know we are young, and we know we are working towards being a competitive team. What is important is what each individual takes away from the sport.
NMInsiders.com: Tell us what makes wrestling such a different sport compared to everything other sport.
Coach Alderman: The most common adage about wrestling is you can't blame your teammates for losing. I also think wrestling is unique because of its ability to teach the true understanding of teamwork. It is true that you can't blame someone else for losing, but without practice partners willing to work as hard as you, wrestling becomes a very frustrating sport. Also, once someone has tried wrestling, they seem to have a sense of reverence for those that wrestle regularly.
NMInsiders.com: What kind of off-season training does your team participate in?
Coach Alderman: I encourage every athlete in our program to participate in as many athletic endeavors as possible. We do lift and there is an Olympic style wrestling club that practices in the off season, but ultimately I believe that as long as the athletes are staying active they will continue to grow.
NMInsiders.com: Give us an example of one of your practices.
Coach Alderman: We tend to spend quite a bit of our practice time focusing on learning the basics of the sport. So, the typical practice will start with a good warm-up, and then we teach and drill. Drilling is the major key to success in this sport. We spend a lot of practice drilling. Some conditioning towards the end, but our conditioning focus is on constant movement during the entire practice. I believe that constant movement is the key to being in shape.
NMInsiders.com would like to thank coach Alderman for his time. Wrestling is a very tough sport and we really respect all wrestling coaches and wrestlers out there. We wish coach Alderman and his wrestlers the best of luck this season.