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RIC wrestling champion authors book

The adrenaline running through my body fueled a nervous excitement, electrifying me even more than the buzz of the packed arena. I was the top seed, undefeated in Division III, wrestling for a school from the smallest state in the nation. My gold singlet shone brightly with the words “Rhode Island College” plastered in maroon across the front.
– Michael Bonora, from the preface of “Wrestling with Your Destiny”



RIC grad Michael Bonora ’08 used hard work and perseverance to set records on the wrestling mat, and he put those same qualities into writing his new book, “Wrestling with Your Destiny.”

The book was a way for Bonora – RIC national Div. III wrestling champion in 2008 – to give back to a sport that he said “made me who I am.” It offers a glimpse into the mental, emotional and physical aspects of wrestling and how Bonora’s dedication enabled him to reach his goals.

“I owe so much to wrestling and I wanted to help others get as much out of it as I did,” Bonora said. “When I was younger I always wanted to read a book that I could connect to as a wrestler and I had difficulty locating one. Hopefully this book will be that for many younger wrestlers.”

Bonora said that he thoroughly enjoys writing. In addition to “Wrestling with your Destiny,” he has an instructional wrestling blog called michaelsmat.com, which has the tag line “Where Dedicated Wrestlers Become Champions.”

He has also finished a rough draft of a novel that he is “very excited about.”

Bonora’s time at RIC was exciting as well. As a senior on the RIC wrestling team, Bonora went 44-2 en route to capturing the Div. III National Championship at 141 lbs. He became just the second RIC grappler to accomplish this since Billy Cotter in 1994. He also finished the season undefeated against Div. III opposition, the first wrestler to do so in program history.


RIC wrestling champion Michael Bonora.
In 2008, he received RIC’s John E. Hetherman Award, given annually to a male student for his success in athletics, scholastic achievement, and participation in campus activities.

“The best parts of my time at RIC center around my teammates and friends on the RIC wrestling team,” Bonora said. “We had so much fun doing what we did, and we were real good at it. I will never forget my time at RIC because my teammates, and coaches made my time unforgettable.”

Bonora, who lives in New Jersey, misses the friendliness of the people at RIC and in Rhode Island in general. “ I guess in New Jersey, we are a bit rougher around the edges. It was the little things like cars stopping to let you cross the street that blew my mind,” he said.

Since graduating from RIC, Bonora has been active in education in various capacities. He has worked as a program coordinator for the non-profit Playworks, whose mission is to provide safe, and meaningful play for children in low-income communities by specifically focusing on recess at schools.

Though he is not sure what the future holds for him, Michael Bonora does know he will continue being involved with at least two things: wrestling and writing.

“Wrestling with Your Destiny” can purchased at Amazon.com (Kindle and Nook versions available) or at https://www.createspace.com/3548519.