William "Billy" Wicks
Wicks (3)

Billy with The Title belt.

Ring Names Billy Wicks
Height 5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight 180 lbs (82 kg)
Born April 4, 1932 (age 80)
St. Paul, Minesota
Resides Asheville, North Carolina

Trained by

Henry Kolln
Debut 1951

William "Billy Wicks" (born April 4, 1932) is an American practitioner and teacher of Catch Wrestling and former Gulf Coast Champion.

Early DaysEdit

William Charles Wicks was born on April 4th, 1932 in a little house at 536 Sherburne Avenue in St. Paul Minnesota to Norwegian imigrant parents. He attended the Faith E. Lutheran Church School.  As a young man he was a member of the Boy Scouts of America.

Billy started wrestling at the age of 15 at Ober Boy's Club & St Paul YMCA. In his early wrestling days he realized how bad he really was when he got beaten by two different blind kids on two different days. That was kind of an awakening for him. After that he started working out with an Olympic wrestler four or five nights every week.

At the age of 19, Billy started working out with McAllister College Wrestling Team & started wrestling in Carnivals. Wicks would take on "all comers' being taught, trained & tutored by a 63 year old Carny wrestler named Henry Kolln. Kolln trained with Farmer Burns. Billy was also trained by Tony Morelli, Joe Pazandak, and Ed "Strangler" Lewis, former Heavy Weight Champion of the World in the 1920's.

He enlisted in the United States Army on February 28, 1951 and married Margaret Alice Kroening in July 1951.

While serving in the US Army, he continued his wrestling career, becoming the heavyweight wrestling champion there.  He was honorably discharged on June 25, 1956 and obtained his license to wrestle professionally in the state of Texas in 1957.

Billy has wrestled several Olympic Champion Wrestlers, Alex Cadier, Leopolde Sternberg, Danny Hodge, Jim Larock. He was Pro-wrestling Gulf Coast Champion in 1958, Tri State Champion 1959, & half of the NWA World Tag Team Champions.

After WrestlingEdit

After retiring as an active competitor, Billy went into law enforcement work in Memphis, his adopted home & part of the training for deputy sherifs was a three-minute wrestling match with Billy.

Billy was also the personal body guard for Judge Preston Battle who heard the trial of James Earle Ray for the shooting of Dr. Martin Luther King.

In the 1960's & 1970's he refereed high school matches & was an assistant wrestling coach at Southwestern university in Memphis.[1]

Billy taught Carny-style submission wrestling, commonly called hooking or catch at the W.N.C. Barbell Gym in Asheville, North Carolina for many years. 

He has retired from public coaching today. However, Johnny Huskey and John Strickland continue to teach and coach his style, with Billy's fullest respect and support.

For the past 15 years Billy Wicks has trained and instructed Johnny Huskey in this art and has passed on all of his knowledge of this great art to Mr. Husky for him to instruct future generations.


  • After retiring, he served as a law enforcement officer.
  • One day he took on his deputies & did fine untill all of them ganged up and tossed him into a shower after the match dressed in his full uniform.

Wrestling FactsEdit

Favorite Techniques

  • Toe Holds
  • Double Wrist Locks
  • Neck Cranks


  • "Billy"
  • "Pops" is what his student's call him these days.

Wrestlers Trained

  • Johnny Huskey
  • Patrick Greene
  • Matthew Covan
  • Martin Steiner
  • Christopher Rogers
  • Michael Allen
  • John Strickland
  • Jeff Presley (1982-)
  • John Driver
  • Greg Reynolds
  • Adam DeHart

Championships and AccomplishmentsEdit

  • 1958 Gulf Coast Champion


See also

External linksEdit (Billy's Website)



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