Princeton’s Quincy Monday’s Wrestling Legacy Forges Success on and Off the Mat

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Over the weekend, wrestling held its own version of March Madness, and one of the competitors was Princeton’s Quincy Monday.

Monday, a senior at Princeton, has been a dominant force for the Tigers during his four years in New Jersey. During his tenure, Monday became a 3x All-Ivy wrestler, 2x All-American, an All-Ivy Academic athlete and an NCAA finalist at 157 lbs.

But that shouldn’t surprise anyone if you know the significance of his last name in the sport.

Quincy is the youngest son of wrestling legend, Kenny Monday.

Kenny Monday was the first Black U.S. wrestler to win Olympic gold (Seoul, 1988) and has a long list of accolades. He’s a wrestling Hall of Famer, 3x Olympic medalist, 3x All-American and NCAA Champion for Oklahoma St., and is the head wrestling coach at Morgan State, the sole HBCU institution to field a D1 varsity wrestling program.

While wrestling runs in his blood and he’s proud of his father’s legacy in the sport, Quincy never let his name simply carry him. Instead, he put in the work to make sure that both his first and last name continued to thrive in the sport.

“I’m forging my own path,” said Quincy. “I’m going to compete the best that I can and try to be the best wrestler I can be, and he laid a great foundation for that. But I’m trying to be my own person in my own way.”

Being his own person in his own way began at James Martin High School in Arlington, TX. There he won two state titles before his family moved to North Carolina, where he won two more state titles at Carrboro High School.

Then it was on to Princeton, where he moved up to 157 lbs. and forged his successful collegiate career with the Tigers. That includes being Princeton’s first Black All-American wrestler.

“Definitely I’m aware of the significance of doing that,” said Monday in regards to making history at Princeton. “Things kind of go in conjunction with each other as you keep achieving things and progressing.”

But Quincy did more than wrestle, for his impact was felt off of the mat as well.

In the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder, Quincy joined a group of athletes who pushed for change. Their efforts led to the hiring of Miles Smith Jr. as the associate director of athletics for diversity, equity, and inclusion.

He also co-founded the university’s Black Student-Athlete Coalition (BSAC) in 2020 and helped Black athletes in different sports connect on campus. It was his way of building unity and forging connections and mentorship opportunities that many Black athletes, like him, felt was lacking at Princeton.

“Having people that could relate to my sense of experiences, being a minority on the team, also feeling a little disconnected from the larger Black population at Princeton just because athletes are on such different schedules, BSAC was really good for me,” he said. “It was a place of healing and vulnerability where I could be open with them.”

It was also a way to meet more Black athletes in general for collegiate wrestling, despite the number of Black champions (particularly in 20212022 and 2023), which is only 6% Black.

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