Mark A. Popple

Category
1995
About This Inductee

Mark Anthony Popple graduated from Coughlin High School in 1979 and Wilkes University, formerly Wilkes College, in 1983, where lie competed in the sport of wrestling, and earned an Bachelor of Science degree in Business. While, at Coughlin High School, Mark won a District II Championship and was the recipient of the outstanding wrestler award in 19.79. After graduation from Coughlin, Mark furthered his education and wrestling career at Wilkes University under John Reese. While wrestling for Wilkes in the period of 1979 through 1983, the Wilkes Wrestling team was ranked in the Division I top twenty several times while competing and beating large schools such as Penn State, Nebraska, Tennessee, Syracuse, Clemson, and Army. During his freshman year, Mark sustained a broken neck while competing in a duel meet at Hoffstra, New York. But his determination and love for the sport earned him four letters, a third-place finish in the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association in 1982, and an Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Champion-ship in 1983; in which he defeated two times returning champion. In his senior year, Mark’s victory in the Wilkes Open, Finals helped Wilkes win its first and only Wilkes Open Team Championship. Ranked and seeded 5th in the nation, Mark unfortunately sustained a knee injury during a Division I National Tournament in his senior year while reaching the quarter finals. After graduating from Wilkes, Mark continued to wrestle competitively in open tournaments and served as head coach for Plains Junior High School for one year. While attending Wilkes University and the years following graduation, Mark competed in the Wilkes Open, capturing a record five titles in seven final appearances competing in six different weight classes. While capturing two of these titles, Mark’s opponents combined only managed to score a total of one point against The Wilkes Open is the oldest tournament in the country and was tabbed the “Rose Bowl of Wrestling” by Sports Illustrated Magazine. In 1987, Mark competed in the Keystone State Games and won four gold medals in four different weight classes, also a record. This feat eventually earned Mark the “Kelly Cup,” or Governors Cup; which is the highest athletic award presented by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Spanning Mark’s wrestling career helms won more than one hundred tournament titles and awards. Mark is currently employed in the family business; Popple Construction, Inc. He is the son of John and Gail Popple of Bear Creek, Pennsylvania. He and his wife, the former Kimberly Ford of Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, presently reside in Bear Creek, Pennsylvania with their three children, Taylor, Morgan, and Joshua.