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Do you have what it takes to be a WWE Superstar? Well, first, it'll help to be a pro-level athlete. WWE announced yesterday that it will be holding its third large-scale tryout of the year later this week, with this one taking place at the iconic IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. WWE plans to invite 30-35 recruits consisting of current and former college and professional athletes for a two-day evaluation that will include workouts, promos, and visits from current WWE Superstars such as Big E.
The IMG Academy’s state-of-the-art, 600-plus-acre campus is perfect for a WWE tryout. At the first tryout of the year, which took place just prior to WrestleMania, NXT offered 18 athletes developmental deals and an additional 15 after the SummerSlam tryout, which even saw the likes of NBA legend Dwight Howard try his luck in the squared circle.
The tryout will consist of an in-ring evaluation on day one where athletes are monitored and tested physically in the ring and in the gym. The second day will also feature promo classes and an NFL-like workout that allows recruiters to measure the physical skills of prospective athletes.
“There are countless examples of top talent that came into the business via college sports, but there hasn’t always been a system built out. That’s what we’re trying to create here- a true talent development pathway into WWE for college athletes. We’re just scratching the surface. We’ve been working on this for a year, and it’s going to take years, but we’re growing. We’re adding quality and depth, and the work is just starting with college athletes nationwide,” WWE’s Head of Talent Operations and Strategy James Kimball said.
Day two of the upcoming tryout will mark the one-year anniversary of WWE’s NIL program, which initially helped the company expand recruitment efforts to universities around the United States. The first and most notable signee is Olympic Gold Medalist Gable Steveson. “We’re building. This is a long-term investment strategy and we’re all really excited about the potential,” Kimball said.
WWE’s next major tryout will take place next February in Lagos, Nigeria, as part of WWE’s “The Search For Africa’s Next WWE Superstar” campaign. After that, another tryout is scheduled just prior to WrestleMania 39. In addition, WWE plans more college tours in 2023.
In the meantime, you can watch shows such as “Breaking Ground” on the WWE Network on Peacock, which take you inside WWE tryouts!
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