As a former college wrestler, Andrew Frazer has faced off against countless opponents on the mat. Now the Bridgewater State University mat alum will be seen battling ogres, dragons and agents of a dark lord in the new ABC-TV series “The Quest” making its debut Thursday, July 31, according to a profile in the “Hartford Courant” Monday, July 28.
Here’s how ABC describes “The Quest” at its website: “The executive producer of ‘The Lord of the Rings’ has joined forces with the creators and producers of ‘The Amazing Race’ to conjure a land of magic and malevolence, where mythical creatures lurk in the woods. For 12 lucky souls, a fantastic world will come alive in a unique competition series where players will engage in epic challenges.”
One of those “12 lucky souls” is Frazer, who wrestled at 197 pounds for Bridgewater State in Massachusetts from 2008-2012. The West Hartford, Conn. native is now the fitness coach at Watkinson School in West Hartford, and a water safety instructor in the summer at Winding Trails in Farmington, Conn.
When asked how he got on “The Quest”, Frazer told Maryellen Fillio of the Courant, “About a year ago, there was something on Facebook asking, ‘Do you think you are a hero?’ And there were pictures and it sparked my interest so I filled out a form asking me some questions about why I thought I was a hero. I always thought of myself not so much a hero but I work with kids every day and one of my favorite joys is how I can be a hero to them. I don’t wear a cape or a suit of armor but I can affect and influence something in their lives in a good way. And they can look at me like a Superman or a Batman. The hero is just a symbol of people who really do good things. I’m a ‘Game of Thrones,’ ‘Lord of the Rings’ fan so I kind of figured out there was going to be a reality show. Then I got contacted by the show and went to Boston for an audition.”
When Frazer showed up for the audition in street clothes, he was concerned about his appearance, saying “Everyone else came with their swords and shields and in costume and I got nervous… I was terrified but I’m an athlete so I know how to focus.”
Once he was selected to be on “The Quest” Frazer could not tell anyone – including his parents – where he was or what he was doing. He is still under orders not to reveal the outcome of the show.
Did being a wrestler and athletic trainer help with the physical challenges on the show? “The challenges were a lot of Renaissance Fair type competitions so things like jousting and riding a horse, I had never done those. I had never ridden a horse until I was on the show,” said Frazer, who later added, “You did need to be fit.”
Frazer’s profile at “The Quest” website says, “One of Andrew’s greatest joys is working with kids relating to their vivid imaginations. Halloween is his favorite holiday and he enjoys the opportunity to dress as his favorite video game characters.” When asked to describe himself in three words, Frazer said, “Dreamer, Hyper, Eccentric.”
This is not the first time that a former wrestler has appeared on a network TV reality show. More than a decade ago, CBS’s “Survivor” featured Matthew Ertfelda, a vice-president for Marriott International, who brought along his high school wrestling jacket as his “luxury item.” A few years ago, “The Amazing Race” had a team with former University of Central Missouri wrestler and coach Gary Ervin and his 20-something daughter Mallory.