Thank you to everyone who checked out last weeks interview with Tripp Cassidy. We’re back with Episode 10 of Class Wars (above) and another interview. This weeks interview is with one of the most charismatic members of the School of Roc, Remi Wilkins. Remi has had the chance to compete all over in places like HWA, IPW, CZW and Dragon Gate USA. Remi has a bright future, so I encourage you to read one to find out about “Mr. All Purpose” before everyone else does.
KF: How did you first become a fan of professional wrestling?
RW: Been a fan since I was 3 years old. As I child, my family used to order a lot of the Wrestling PPVs. The first one I can remember was Wrestlemania 3. Watching Hulk vs Andre at age 3, thats what hooked me.
KF: When did you decide you wanted to become a professional wrestler? Was there a specific moment, match, or person that inspired you?
RW: I wanted to be a pro wrestler my entire life, every since I started watching it. But there wasnt a lot of pro wrestling outlets growing up in Kalamazoo. When I moved to Indianapolis, thats when I realized that I had a real shot at training.
KF: When did you start training at the School of Roc, and why did you decide to train there?
RW: I started training at the SOR in February of 2010. I trained at the SOR because I was familiar with head trainer Billy Roc. I watched him a lot at IPW, and I am a fan of him and the companies he works for. I also knew that Billy would continue to help his students even after training was complete. It was a no brainer.
KF: Much like Tripp Cassidy (our interview from last week), you’re a consistent competitor for IPW and HWA. These are two companies from the Midwest that don’t often get the credit many think they deserve. What do you make of your experiences with both groups?
RW: You are correct, BOTH companies do not get the credit they deserve. These are two great companies with talented and deep rosters. The competition level is amazing. IPW is the first company I went to as a fan. I used to bug Dan Garza and Mike Williams about training, and thats when I met Billy. IPW was intimidating at first, many of the guys on the roster were elite talents, and I was just trying to fit in. It took me a little while to crack the main roster, but now we’re rolling. HWA threw me right to the wolves! As soon as I stepped in the door, I was right in the thick of things. HWA gives me a platform to compete on every week, and its been a blessing. Wrestling guys like Dave Crist, Jake Crist, Jesse Emerson, Ron Mathis, ect on a weekly basis will make you step up your game quick! Love it!
KF: Speaking of HWA, you are going to be apart of the second annual Heartland Cup in a just a couple of weeks. The roster they have put together is quite impressive. You are going to be matched up with your trainer, Billy Roc, in the first round. If you are able to make it past him, who else would you like to face in the tournament?
RW: I believe HWA nailed it on the head matching me up with Billy Roc. They know that with our history, we would give the fans one hell of an opening round match, and we will! If I had to choose another competitor, I would choose DJ Hyde. He’s a big dude, a huge name, and I would love to showcase my skills against the CZW boss.
KF: You refer to your fans as “The Barracuda Gang.” How did you come to identify them as such? What is about the barracuda you find relatable?
RW: I actually was telling a few guys at the SOR that I wanted to start a gang for the fans. Something different that was catchy (laughs). How many people do you hear talk about Barracudas? Barracuda stood out to me because of the description. They are described as being attracted to “shiny” things. Now in the world of Pro Wrestling, “shiny” things would have to be compared to Championships, Money, and all out Glory! It’s fitting. The fans can relate to that.
KF: Over the course of the School of Roc: Class Wars show, it seems apparent to me that you’re a “locker room” leader. You’re the guy who helped motivate Nate Stone to stick up for himself, helped out Logan Williams when he was attacked and has been there for Dale Patricks as his corner man and as a friend. Do you identify yourself as being a leader, or is it just in your nature to go to bat for your friends when they’re in need?
RW: It would be hard to describe myself as a locker room leader since I havent been in the game that long. But naturally if one of my friends is in a state of need, I will help them. With The League and The Uprising on this show, it seemed fair to round up the other guys. Strength in number is huge, thats what make The League and The Uprising so dangerous.
KF: One of the most talked about matches in all of Class Wars was your three-round match with Reed Bentley. It’s arguably one of, if not the best match of the show so far. That match ended in a draw, but you were able to defeat Bentley one-on-one in the quarter-final round of the School of Roc Summit. It’s very apparent you and Bentley don’t see eye-to-eye, as both he and Tripp had some unkind words for you in our interviews. Forgetting your personal differences, how do you see Reed as a competitor? Do you think if he changed his attitude he would have a better chance to make it far?
RW: Reed Bentley is a talented dude. He hits hard, he’s focused and he has The League backing him up. His in-ring style is very physical. As far as his attitude, he definitely needs to check that. His mouth and his cheap tactics will get him in a lot of trouble in this business. He has a chance to be big in this industry, but only if his respect level for others can increase.
WARNING: This section of the interview contains spoilers regarding this weeks School of Roc episode. If you have not watched the episode already, I encourage you to do so before reading on.
KF: As I said earlier, you and Reed had a three-rounds match earlier in Class Wars that ended up a draw. I was actually surprised that you chose a ten minute one-round match instead of another three-rounds match because you seemed comfortable in that environment and were more familiar with it than Jeremy Hadley, your opponent. Why did you decide to take the ten minute round?
RW: I decided to take the ten minute match because of the continuity. Hadley is a great athlete and I thought the viewers would appreciate a straight up match between us instead of one that provided the 60 second break. Plus it gave me more experience in both match styles. If I were to advance, I would be ready for whatever stipulation.
KF: Even though Hadley tried to cheat, you picked up the win and will now be heading to Class Wars finals. You will either be facing Big Sue Jackson or Dale Patricks. Big Sue has dominated this tournament so far and is the #1 seed. On the other hand, Patricks is a good friend of yours and helped even the odds during your match this week. If you could pick, would you rather face Sue or Dale in the finals and why?
RW: It really wouldnt matter, but if I had to pick one, it would be Dale Patricks. His in-ring style is similar to mine, he’s a good dude and I think we could give the viewers an explosive finale. Plus I wouldnt have to look out for The League. That would probably be the case if Sue Jackson wins. Dale and I could have a clean and fair finale match. But like I said earlier, IT DOESNT MATTER! I want to win!
KF: If (or when) you win the School of Roc Summit, what will you do next?
RW: I will keep the momentum going. I’d definitely want to enter more competitions and tournaments. I’d continue to compete at various promotions and try to rack up the wins! It wouldnt hurt to walk into a venue with that trophy in hand (smiles).
KF: Finally, what goals do you have in professional wrestling overall, both immediate and in the future?
RW: My immediate and future goals are almost one in the same. I want to continue improving inside the ring, I want to stay healthy. I want to make money, I want to travel the world. I want to keep my name buzzing, as well as the #BarracudaGang. I want to debut for more companies, and I want to build a legacy.
KF: Remi, I want to thank you for granting me this interview. Before I let you go, please feel free to plug anything and everything you wish.
RW: Thanks for having me! First I wanna give a shout out to all my family and friends in Kalamazoo Michigan and in Indianapolis! Without yall, I wouldnt have these oppertunities. Shout out to all the companies who have given me a chance! HWA, IPW, CZW, DGUSA, FEW, D1W just to name a few, get familiar with these places!! Come check me out every Tuesday night in Hamilton Ohio at HWA Adrenaline. April 20-April 21 is the HWA Heartland Cup, be there! For bookings, contact me a RemiWilkins@gmail.com. Hit me on FB! Facebook.com/RemiWilkins. Follow me on Twitter @Remi_Wilkins, and stay tuned Ladies and Gents!! #BarracudaGang
I want to think Remi once again for joining us this week. I hope you learned more about him and will give him a follow on his pages. I also want to wish him the best of luck at the upcoming HWA Heartland Cup. If you haven’t watched the School of Roc: Class Wars episodes, you can find them all on their YouTube Page. You can also follow them on Twitter. Be sure to check their shiny new website as well.
Be sure to check out past interviews I’ve conducted for School of Roc: Class Wars:
Thanks to everybody who read this weeks interview. We’ll see you next week with a brand new episode and a brand new interview.
Kevin Ford has been a wrestling fan for as long as he can remember. His first legitimate writing gig was with the now defunct ‘Cool Kids Table’ website where Kevin wrote about Ring of Honor, CHIKARA, and did CHIKARA DVD reviews. Kevin continues to write about CHIKARA at 411mania.com and has an entire blog dedicated to CHIKARA reviews (chikaraspecial.wordpress.com). Here at PWP, Kevin serves as a co-founder and mainstay on the podcasts. Kevin also contributes various reviews on independent wrestling DVDs. He also loves films and television, They Might Be Giants, Yuengling beer, and Chipotle. He hopes this combination will bring him success in his life.
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