- Cornell Alumni
Mike Mormile '06
The photo has been on the wall of the Cornell Wrestling offices for years.
Mike Mormile ’06 remembers vividly when his sister took the picture, after Cornell finished fourth at the 2005 NCAA tournament, earning a team trophy that solidified the Big Red as a wrestling powerhouse.
“It was very special being part of the group of Cornell wrestlers that went from improving in the rankings to becoming a top 5 or 10 team in the country every year,” he said. “Standing on the platform getting that trophy at Nationals was a proud moment.” (See the starters for that team below**).
Mormile was a key member of squads that finished 11th, fourth, and fifth at the NCAA tournament. A team captain, he won over 90 matches and was a three-time EIWA top four placer and three-time NCAA qualifier (twice at 125 pounds and as a senior at 133). Former assistant coach Steve Garland said Mormile was known for “never being tired.”
“The guys were amazing - we fed off each other’s motivation,” Mormile said. “The team was full of great friends and training partners. I wrestled with Travis Lee every day and not too many people get to have that experience. I had a blast and a pretty successful career, but it didn’t end the way I wanted it to. But that’s wrestling and that’s also life. I knew I had to take my competitive spirit and bring it into the business world.”
He certainly did.
Mormile had a head start on his professional career after internships during his undergraduate days. Between his sophomore and junior years in college, he worked at Cayuga Venture Fund and the following summer he lived in New York City and interned with Deutsche Bank.
“At Cayuga Venture Fund, I had a fantastic experience, attending meetings, participating in due diligence on potential investments and more. Then, at Deutsche Bank I got to work on interesting projects in investment banking in media and telecom. They offered me a full time job after graduation, and I accepted.”
After two years as an Analyst there, Mormile joined a distressed debt hedge fund, Monarch Alternative Capital. Later, he moved to Point State Capital as Managing Director for about seven years before taking his current job as Portfolio Manager at Citadel LLC. He said he and the team that works for him invest a pool of capital in emerging market debt.
How did his Cornell student-athlete experience help him?
“You have to be prepared during various circumstances, and you learn that from wrestling training, from your classes, and from juggling your schedule,” Mormile said. “Those lessons of staying dedicated and being able to make uncomfortable decisions when times are tough are so important. You have to be able to do that in wrestling, in school, and in the investing world. It’s a skill set a lot of people don’t have, but you get it wrestling at Cornell.”
In addition, Mormile said the Cornell Wrestling community is something that remains with him.
“Being a part of the Cornell Wrestling community extends beyond the practice room and beyond your time in school,” Mormile said. “The alumni network is second to none. It was instrumental in helping me get my first internship, which was a stepping stone to getting a job on Wall Street. There’s nothing like meeting lifelong friends and seeing them become successful in their careers, become husbands, and become fathers. It’s an incredible journey. I was lucky to meet my wife at Cornell.”
Those connections remain. In fact, Mormile said he went to barbecue at former roommate Joe Mazzurco’s house just a few weeks prior and has attended numerous weddings and dinners across the country, with more plans with former teammates in the works.
“You go to Cornell if you want to put yourself in the best position possible to be successful on the mat and at the same time put yourself in the best spot post wrestling,” he said. “The ability to study not only any topic you want but also learn from people from all over the world - it’s a melting pot of culture and experience at Cornell. It’s a combination you can’t get anywhere else.”
He enjoys being a supporter now, saying that “it’s super exciting to see where Cornell Wrestling will go from here.”
When he comes up to the Friedman Center to watch, he’ll likely see his sister’s 2005 Cornell team trophy photo once again.
**2005 Cornell Trophy Team at NCAA Tournament
125 Mike Mormile Qualifier
133 Travis Lee - Champion
141 Jordan Leen - Qualifier
149 Dustin Manotti - 6th Place
165 Joey Hooker - Qualifier
174 Joe Mazzurco - 5th Place
184 Tyler Baier - 2nd Place
197 Jerry Rinaldi - Qualifier
285 Tyler Shovlin - Qualifier
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