Author Topic: R.I.P. Paul Orndorff  (Read 1780 times)

Offline Bob H.

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R.I.P. Paul Orndorff
« on: July 12, 2021, 06:49:41 PM »
The Brandon Bull, Mr. Wonderful, Paul Orndorff passed away today at 71 years of age.  Possibly the most famous alumnus of my high school, Brandon High.  He was on the state runner-up football team in 1969 before playing for the University of Tampa.

https://slamwrestling.net/index.php/2021/07/12/mr-wonderful-paul-orndorff-dies/

Offline mspart

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Re: R.I.P. Paul Orndorff
« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2021, 01:38:10 PM »
What about Russ Cozart, Multiple Veteran World Champion Wrestler?

mspart

Offline Bob H.

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Re: R.I.P. Paul Orndorff
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2021, 03:52:40 PM »
He coached at Brandon, but wasn't an alumnus.  He went to high school in California and college at 'Bama.  Since Orndorff was a national entertainment figure, he was likely more well known than Russ.

Offline mspart

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Re: R.I.P. Paul Orndorff
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2021, 07:34:13 PM »
I know Russ more than Orndorff.  Never heard of him. 

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Offline Bob H.

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Re: R.I.P. Paul Orndorff
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2021, 12:43:30 AM »
Headliner in Wrestlemania 1, among other things.  I'm pretty sure he is in the WWE hall of fame.  The Tampa Bay area was a hotbed for pro rasslin' (I still don't call it wrestling) back in the 70's and 80's.  The University of Tampa also had a good football team when he played for them, with stars such as Freddie Solomon and John Matuszak.  The link in the first post detailed his career, if anyone is interested.

As much as I like and respect Russ, I doubt if anyone outside of the amateur wrestling community or Tampa Bay area know who he is.

As an aside, Hiro Matsuda started a wrestling school in the early 70's.  Masao Hattori was the primary instructor for the amateur wrestlers and Hiro would work out with the heavyweights when he could.  Other pros and aspiring pros would sometimes work out with the high school kids.  Our coach, Jim Graves, encouraged us to attend when we could, especially since he was learning about coaching wrestling on the fly (he was volunteered to be the coach, even though he didn't know a thing about wrestling).  He was the one who got the Brandon program going and recommended Russ to succeed him when he stepped down.

Offline mspart

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Re: R.I.P. Paul Orndorff
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2021, 12:25:03 PM »
I understand.  Nancy Wilson of Heart went to my HS.  And a local DJ was in my graduating class.  So I get it.  Sorry for appearing to  disparage Paul.  I was not.  It is quite the accomplishment to be at the top in any field of endeavor.  And there are not many of those around. 

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Offline Bob H.

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Re: R.I.P. Paul Orndorff
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2021, 03:23:07 PM »
I didn't take it as any insult to Orndorff. I just assumed you didn't follow "professional wrestling" and hadn't heard of him.

One of my former coworkers went to a rival high school and didn't like Orndorff.  He said Orndorff competed in the shot put and had his girlfriend follow behind him, carrying a gold painted shot on a pillow.  Sounds like he was a showman, even in high school, although my coworker just thought of him as an asshole.

While I never met Orndorff, my youngest brother bumped into him in another state and struck up a conversation.  My brother said he was a nice guy who was happy to talk to someone from his home town.