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Jake Varner is kind of a big deal in the wrestling world -- the amateur kind, not the Undertaker/Junkyard Dog kind. He was a two-time NCAA Div. I champion and All-American at Iowa State, and this past summer Varner took home the gold medal for the United States in the men's 96 kg freestyle at the London Olympics. Before all that Varner was a two-time California high school state champion at Bakersfield High School in California.
This is where the ECHL's Bakersfield Condors come in.
You might remember them from Charlie Sheen Night or their totally legit contract offer to Justin Bieber. A Puck Daddy favorite, the Condors have come through again with "Jake Varner Night", scheduled for this Saturday. Varner will take part in a Q&A and sign autographs for fans, while the team will be holding auctions throughout the night to benefit League of Dreams, a charity helping mentally and physically disabled children play sports.
Oh, and the Condors will wear these special jerseys to honor their local hero:
Between te stars and striped-themed singlet, gold medal and 8-pack abs, we can't figure out which detail we love the most. (That's Condors defenseman Olivier Dame-Malka acting as our model, by the way)
All of the game-worn Condors jerseys will be auctioned off after the game. There will also be a special auction featuring a Varner/wrestling jersey of Chris Kushneriuk, a member of the Condors who is currently fighting testicular cancer. The Ottawa Citizen profiled his battle earlier this month. The proceeds from that jersey auction will go directly to Kushneriuk's medical bills.
Follow Sean Leahy on Twitter at @Sean_Leahy