Gold Medal earned by UNI alum finds home in West Gym - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Gold Medal earned by UNI alum finds home in West Gym

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UNI Athletics UNI Athletics
CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) -

The University of Northern Iowa's only Olympic gold medalist is making sure the campus of his alma mater will be staying golden for ages to come.

Former wrestler Bill Smith has donated his Olympic gold medal he earned at the Helsinki Olympic Games in 1952 to UNI, where it will be displayed inside the West Gym -- the home of the Panthers wrestling team.

“Even though it was won over in Helsinki, it was still made in the West Gym,” UNI head wrestling coach Doug Schwab said. “I think that’s the connection and taking it back to the start and to inspire, not just wrestling, but anyone who comes through the hall. Track is in here and softball. It’s to inspire the next generation. I couldn’t be more pleased that it will be the resting spot for it. It will inspire me every day too and lets us dream a little bit.”

A display of the gold medal is set to be unveiled this weekend, when the Panthers take on Iowa State in a dual in the West Gym. The dual starts at 7 p.m. on Saturday.

Learn more about Smith and his prolific UNI career, which included two NCAA titles and an undefeated collegiate record, on the official UNI Athletics site.

With this winter's Olympic Games set to start later this week, get ready for the action by visiting KWWL's PyeongChang 2018 page. You can also watch the 2018 Olympic Winter Games Opening Ceremony live on KWWL on Friday night, with coverage beginning at 7 p.m.

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