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Wrestler Adams has bigger plans

March 18th, 2010

John Carroll University senior Ben Adams has plenty of titles:  team captain, Ohio Athletic Conference champion and, most recently, All-American. Soon he’ll have one more: Adams is planning to become a Lutheran minister.

Adams, who recently finished in eighth place in the 184-pound weight class at the NCAA Division III wrestling tournament, will enter the seminary when he completes his M.B.A. studies this spring. 

Adams, enrolled in the five-year B.A./M.B.A. program at John Carroll, worked two internships during his undergraduate studies, but never felt comfortable in the business environment. Being active in his faith, he was immediately attracted to the thought of being a priest.

It was something Adams felt was right. 

“I’ve gone through the business school at John Carroll for five years and I’ve had a couple internships, and I just didn’t feel any satisfaction,” Adams said. “I talked with my parents, friends and pastor and I just made the decision that this was the path I wanted to take. At this point, it’s God’s calling for me.”

Adams was able to use a fifth year of eligibility to come back and wrestle for the Blue Streaks, and he didn’t disappoint. He won an OAC title and, after two previous trips to the national championship meet that ended in disappointment, won All-American honors for finishing eighth in his weight class.

It was a special moment for Adams. 

“It was a real big honor for me. I felt that it was a goal of mine for a long time, and it eluded me two times before. It was a great thing for me – having my family out there and having all the coaches out there who have been with me along the way,” he said.  

As for holding off on the seminary, Adams felt he had too much unfinished business at John Carroll to drop everything and join the seminary. 

“I wanted to finish what I started here at John Carroll,” Adams said. “Now that I’ve done that, I can move on to the seminary. It [the M.B.A. degree] will be a good thing for me because it gives me a unique skill-set for later on in life, especially if I run my own parish.”

While an undergrad at John Carroll, Adams was active in many organizations. He was a member of the business fraternity Alpha Kappa Psi while also serving as a member of the finance association. 

He also played varsity football for the Blue Streaks, and on top of that, Adams worked at WJCU for two years.

Currently, Adams works for the wrestling team doctor, Dr. Dariush Saghati, a neurosurgeon in Parma, billing patients and scheduling appointments at Parma Neurology. 

When he graduates in May, Adams will leave quite a void that members of the wrestling team will struggle to fill. 

“The most important part of having him as a teammate was the way he led by example,” said senior Travis Hammer. “He was always giving 100 percent in practice. He’d do anything for anybody on the team. He’s always nice to everybody, and treats people like equals.” 

Adams is originally from Livonia, Mich. He completed his undergraduate degree with majors in both economics and finance, with a Chinese minor.