It already seemed like Gable Steveson’s international amateur wrestling career was likely over he didn’t take part in the World Championships last year. Not competing in that event meant he was extremely unlikely to pursue another Olympic gold medal in this summer’s Paris Games.
Since then. Steveson’s been active on WWE NXT’s Florida house show circuit, the so-called “Coconut Loop”. He also worked a dark match before SmackDown last Friday in Vancouver, defeating Cedric Alexander.
And now we have word from his college coach at the University of Minnesota that the two-time NCAA champion will not be using his final year of eligibility to wrestle for the Golden Gophers this season. In his “Coach’s Corner” video on X/Twitter, Brandon Eggum said:
“Also, quick update on Gable Steveson. Unfortunately, he will not be able to compete for us this season. He is a great competitor. He’s always wanted to compete for the University of Minnesota. But ultimately, the WWE would prefer that he’s solely focused on his professional wrestling career at this time.
“So whenever he’s not at the WWE Performance Center down in Florida, he’s up here in our realm working with our heavyweights which is awesome. We just can’t thank him enough for the impact he’s had on our program. We’ve loved following him and watching him compete on the mat, he’s amazing and now we’re excited to watch him in his WWE career so, thank you Gable Steveson from our program and from all the Gopher fans across the country and the world and we look forward to watching you in your career here moving forward.”
Steveson hasn’t wrestled on-screen since his debut match against Baron Corbin at NXT’s Great American Bash last July ended in a double countout — and received a mostly negative response from fans in attendance at that premium live event in Texas.
Seems WWE was undeterred by that reaction, however. We’ll see if keeping the 23 year old grappler “solely focused on his professional wrestling career” gets them the response they want.