SIOUX CITY, IOWA (KCAU) – Many Iowans remember “The Dual” from 1986, one of the most anticipated collegiate wrestling duals in NCAA history between the 8-time consecutive NCAA Champion Iowa Hawkeyes and upset-minded Iowa State. Moreover, the battle between then-Hawkeye wrestling head coach Dan Gable and then-26-year-old ISU rookie head coach Jim Gibbons.
On Saturday night, wrestling royalty came to the RE/MAX City Centre in Sioux City as Gable and Gibbons joined the premiere for episode five of “The Dual”, a six-part documentary series chronicling the classic event.
Directed by former Eagle Grove, Iowa wrestler John Myers, the project was made possible through a collaboration between former NCAA champion wrestler and Executive Producer Jim Gibbons, the National Wrestling Hall of Fame (NWHOF)–Dan Gable Museum, and the Siouxland Chamber of Commerce.
The documentary features extensive video coverage of the competition from the Iowa Public Television (IPTV) archives, as well as contemporary interviews with the head coaches, assistant coaches, athletes, television commentators, and others. All ten matches that fateful day were highly contested. Now, 35 years later, the series takes a look back at the legacy of this event, through interviews with the athletes, coaches and the media.
“It’s about the guys that wrestled in it, it’s told by the guys that wrestled in it, the guys that coached it, the guys that reported on it later, but more so than anything it’s a time capsule of what wrestling was like back in that era,” former Iowa State wrestling head coach Jim Gibbons said.
“I got emotional,” former Iowa wrestling head coach Dan Gable said. “These two guys (Gibbons and Myers) put this together and all I had to do was watch one clip to know that this is good work. This is really good work.”
“We’re excited to roll it out because it is unique to our state and to our sport and I think we’re pretty proud of what we put together here,” director John Myers said. “We can’t wait to share it.”
Ames, Des Moines, Iowa City, Waterloo and Sioux City are the locations of episode premieres. The series will be released in full in late November to streaming services. More information can be found at thedual.org