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Monday, January 20, 2014

No Holds Barred: Gretchen Malalad, Carl Fronhofer 

Journalist and martial artist Gretchen Malalad and Eddie Goldman, Jan. 17, 2014, at Havana Central, formerly known as The West End.

Columbia head wrestling coach Carl Fronhofer.

Columbia heavyweight Wyatt Baker going for pin over Buffalo heavyweight James Benjamin. Baker won, 10-4.

On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman spoke with journalist and martial artist Gretchen Malalad, and Columbia University head wrestling coach Carl Fronhofer.

We spoke with each of them Friday night, shortly after Columbia scored a 24-9 win over Buffalo in a dual meet at the University Gym on the campus of Columbia in New York.

Coach Fronhofer, now in his third year as head coach at Columbia after serving as an assistant coach, was himself an NCAA Div. I runner-up in 2003 at the University of Pittsburgh and a member of the U.S. national team in freestyle wrestling in 2009. We spoke with him right after the meet about how he evaluated his team's performance and prospects as we get closer to this year's NCAA national championships in March. Columbia has the oldest college wrestling program which has been continuously running in the U.S., dating back to 1903.

Gretchen Malalad is a woman of almost countless talents. She is from the Philippines, where she was a karate champion, a beauty queen, a TV news reporter, a reality TV star, and a member of the Philippines Air Force. In addition, she has trained with Alvin Aguilar, the founder of the URCC, the long-running MMA promotion in the Philippines which also works with ONE FC.

Despite her fame and many accomplishments, she is now in New York as a student at the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. The topic of her master's thesis is on why MMA is illegal in New York.

We spoke with Gretchen Malalad shortly after the Columbia-Buffalo meet, the first college wrestling meet she had ever attended live, at the Havana Central bar and restaurant, which was formerly known as The West End, right across the street from Columbia.

"We're here for the truth, as every journalist wants it," she said. "It's the goal of every journalist, I think."

We discussed why she decided to return to school, why she chose MMA in New York as the topic of her master's thesis, how she views the tasks of journalists, her career plans, why there are things in life which are far more important than money, and much more.

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