From the mullet and the cowboy boots to the pick-up truck, hunting and appreciaton for classic country music, there isn’t much that doesn’t say good, ol’ boy about Trevor Hoffman.
“He’s a special character,” Hebron coach Todd Admaczyk said.
And if the Hawks junior continues to work and progress at the rate he did since last season, he could be a special wrestler.
“We’ve said all along, if he puts in the extra time in the off-season, he might be able to do something for us,” Adamczyk said. “He was doing two things in the winter — he was a lifter with the cheer squad — so he missed a lot of practice. Not taking anything away from that, but we’d have him two, three times a week, sometimes for 45 minutes a practice. Now we have him all of practice, every practice, and I think it’s made a difference.”
The proof is in the results. Hoffman finished fifth in the sectional last year, but qualified for the regional as after another wrestler failed to make weight. This season, he was the 195-pound runner-up in the sectional and took third in the regional to earn a berth in Saturday’s East Chicago Central Semistate.
“It’s crazy,” he said. “The excitement, the nerves, it’s all there. I’m ready. I just started hitting the gym a lot in the summer. Wrestling was one of my favorite things. One of my good friends was the reasn I did cheerleading. He graduated, so I decided to give it a break and do more wrestling. I put in the extra time, and it was good for me. We’ve got quite a few really good guys to work with, Iso when you work with guys who are good, you become part of the good.”
If he’s not wearing his boots or the jean shorts that he cut too high, the first thing that stands out about Hoffman is his height. Standing 6-foot-5, he’s probably thought of as a basketball player than he is as a wrestler, but hoops was never his thing. He popped up with wrestling in middle school.
“He’s a counter guy, a defense guy,” Adamczyk said. “He’s got a lot of legs to defend, but he’s able to keep guys off them with a good sprawl. He bought into what we were saying, put in the summer hours, the time in the weight room, doing the extra things the others were doing.”
Hoffman (14-3) opens the semistate against Lafayette Jefferson sophomore Daeveon Cheeks (19-6) and if he manages to reach the ticket round, Justin Swayer of Hobart or Bazle Owens of Tippecanoe Valley stands between him a state finals trip.
“At this stage of the game, there are no more easy matches,” Adamczyk said. “The soft part of the season is over. It’s all heart, drive and want-to from here. We’ll see who shows up.”
Whatever the outcome, Hoffman and Adamczyk are both hyped about his prospects as a senior.
“Our goal next year is to make him a heavyweight,” Adamczyk said. “With that frame, I’d like to make him 230, 240 (pounds), holy smokes, we could have something special at that weight class. We’re going to reintroduce him to the squat rack. They’re going to become best friends.”
While he listens to Enimen and Dr. Dre for match hype, Hoffman is a fan of Hank Williams, Jr., Wayland Jennings and Willie Nelson outside of wrestling.
“That’s what I listen to on the road to school,” he said. “I like the guys that my dad likes.”
When wrestling isn’t occupying his weekends, Hoffman is usually on the hunt, another interest he picked up from his dad Jim.
“Mostly deer, a little waterfowl,” he said. “(Venison) is good. It’s got a unique flavor. It doesn’t taste like beef at all. The only thing that kind of tastes like chicken is frog legs. It’s like a juicy piece of dark meet.
The most exotic meat he’s ever eaten?
“Probably dove,” he said.
And yes, Hoffman knows he shares the exact same name with the San Diego Padres Hall of Fame relief pitche
“Our Social Studies teacher brought me some of his baseball cards,” he said.