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Hidetora Hanada, CSU's sumo wrestling champion defensive lineman, awarded scholarship

CSU head football coach Jay Norvell shared the news of Hanada's scholarship on social media Friday.
Colorado St Hawaii Football
Posted at 8:30 AM, Dec 16, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-16 12:47:01-05

Hidetora Hanada, the Japanese sumo wrestling world champion now playing football for Colorado State, has been awarded a scholarship with the Rams.

CSU head coach Jay Norvell announced the scholarship in a tweet written in Japanese on Friday.

Hanada hails from Wakayama, which is about 50 miles south of Osaka. The natural path for athletes there of his size and strength is sumo wrestling. Hanada didn't just succeeded in sumo, he became a world champion – a feat he called "easy" in an interview with Denver7.

A fan of NFL football since he was a boy and in search of a new challenge, he went to a scouting combine for the Canadian Football League.

CSU defensive line coach Buddha Williams was in attendance, and, as they say, the rest was history.

And now Hanada is a scholarship athlete in Colorado.

Colorado St Sumo Wrestler Football
Colorado State defensive lineman Hidetora Hanada warms up takes part in drills during the team's NCAA college football practice on the university's campus Tuesday, Aug. 8, 2023, in Fort Collins, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)