My friend. Tom, posted a reply to my recent entry about Rick Rude that reminded me of the great WWF wrestling history enjoyed by Robbinsdale (MN) High School. It’s almost unbelievable that one school could put out that many well-known wrestlers in a three-year period, but it happened with the following stars:
- Brady Boone (Class of 1976), who wrestled under that name in the 1980s and also as Battle Kat in the WWF in the 1990s, before ending his career in WCW. He died in a car wreck in 1998.
- Barry Darsow (Class of 1978), who wrestled under many gimmicks, most notably as Smash in Demolition in the 1980s and ’90s in the WWF. He was also well-known in the NWA as Krusher Khrushchev, part of Ivan Koloff’s stable. Darsow also played his fair share of dumb characters, like Repo Man in the WWF in the 1990s and “Mr. Hole in One” Barry Darsow in WCW.
- Curt “Mr. Perfect” Hennig (Class of 1976), who was one the WWF’s most memorable characters from the 1980s and ’90s. Hennig was a gifted wrestler who held the Intercontinental Title twice and helped put Bret Hart on the map as a singles star. He also had a ton of success elsewhere, including a run as AWA World Champion. Hennig died from an alleged cocaine overdose in 2003. There’s a lot more to be written about Hennig’s legacy in the WWF.
- John Nord (Class of 1977), who wrestled in the early 1990s in the WWF as the Berserker, a character who in some ways paid tribue to Brusier Brody. Nord has since retired and works at an auto dealership, last I read in the Wrestling Observer.
- Rude (Class of 1976), who had a long career across the glode and died young in 1999, allegedly from a medication overdose.
- Tom Zenk (Class 0f 1976), who wrestled with Rick Martel as part of the Can-Am Connection. Zenk didn’t last long in the WWF and left after WrestleMania III following a dispute, but he had a long in career with many of the major groups, including the AWA and WCW.
Although Nikita Koloff never wrestled in the WWF, it’s worth noting that he also graduated from Robbinsdale High School in 1977 under his real name of Scott Simpson.
And wait … there’s more: AWA founder and legend Verne Gagne went to Robbinsdale High School, and Mean Gene Okerlund originally hailed from the city, too.