Kyle grew up in Ithaca, NY where his love of wrestling began when he first stepped on a mat at age 4. Kyle is the oldest of three children and the sport of wrestling runs deep within the Dake family. Bob Dake, Kyle’s grandfather, began the wrestling program at the Lansing school district, where Kyle would eventually become a two time New York State Champion. Doug Dake, Kyle’s father took over for the program, and was Kyle’s coach from the time he stepped on the mat for the first time, until the time he stepped off the mat to begin his collegiate
Kyle began his freshman year at Cornell University with huge aspirations and goals. As a true freshman, Kyle won his first NCAA title at 141 lbs. with just two losses in the season. After his first season Kyle became known as “Kid Dynamite,” for his outstanding season and energetic personality. His sophomore year, Kyle, moved up a weight class to 149 lbs., and won his second consecutive NCAA title.
Following the pattern, and his growth spurts, Kyle moved up a weight class to 157 lbs. his junior year. Kyle won the NCAA championship and had an undefeated season with a 35-0 record. With his win Kyle became the first ever 3x NCAA Champion at 3 different weight classes.
Finally, entering his senior year of college, Kyle decided to challenge himself, and bring some attention to the sport, by moving up another weight class to 165 lbs. On March 23, 2013, Kyle became the first ever 4x NCAA Champion at four different weight classes by defeating one of the most prolific scorers of all time, David Taylor. He was undefeated with a perfect 37-0 record, was the EIWA Wrestler of the Year, IVY League Wrestler of the Year, and the 2013 Hodge Trophy recipient. Kyle was also named the Outstanding Wrestler at the NCAAs and led the nation in falls that season.
Without the unwavering support of Kyle’s coaching staff and his family he wouldn’t have been able to accomplish what he did. Rob Koll, Jeremy Spates, Damion Hahn, Mike Grey, Matt Azevedo, and Jordan Leen all played a role in his success by offering guidance both on and off the mat. Kyle’s mom and dad, Jodi and Doug Dake, always encouraged him to follow his dreams and told him he could do anything he put his mind to. Kyle’s brother and sister, Corey and Kristin Dake, and extended family were right behind his parents as his number one cheering squad. Kyle knows it was a team effort in making history in the sport of wrestling, and is grateful for everyone who helped him along the way.
As Kyle’s college career started to come to an end, his goals started to expand. He realized he wanted to stamp his name in the history of the sport, and started his pursuit to represent the United States of America and win gold in the World Championships, and ultimately at the Olympic Games.
After his junior season Kyle took a shot at this dream, by wrestling in the 2012 Olympic Team Trials. Kyle ended up coming in third at the tournament, but traveled with the team to London as a training partner and an alternate. Since graduating from Cornell University in 2013 Kyle battled with injuries and came just short of making the World teams, and the 2016 Olympic teams.
In 2018 Kyle earned a spot on the United States World team for the first time at 79kg. He ended up winning gold at the World Championships in Budapest, Hungary that fall. In 2019 he defended his 79kg world title in Nur Sultan, Kazahkstan. After winning the world championships in 2019 his sites were set on making the Olympic team in 2020 at 74kg. The Olympic Games ended up being pushed to 2021 due to the COVID pandemic. Kyle continued to train during these uncertain times.
Finally, on April 3, 2021 Kyle wrestled to claim the 74kg spot on the United States of America Olympic team, and won in a close match against one of the sport’s greatest, Jordan Burroughs. On August, 6, 2021 Kyle won an Olympic Bronze Medal. Kyle got back on the mat in October to wrestle at the World Championships in Oslo, Norway, and claimed his third World Title at 74kg.
Kyle continued his training and made the World team for the fourth time in June of 2022 at the 74kg weight class. He wrestled in the World Championships in Belgrade, Serbia and took home his fourth gold at the world championships on September 17, 2022. His sights are now set on the 2023 world championships, and 2024 olympics.
Outside of wrestling, you can find Kyle spending time with his friends and family. In 2016 he married his high-school sweet heart, Megan Palladino. They now have three children, EllaJo, Emilia, and Leo. Outside of wrestling, you can find Kyle reading and learning anything and everything about how to keep the body, mind, and spirit healthy. He hopes to inspire, coach, and educate people to excel in all facets of life long after he is done competing.