A transgender wrestler from North Texas is hoping to defend his title state title this year.
Mack Beggs made headlines last year when a lawsuit, which he supported, failed to stop him from competing against girls.
Beggs' family was there to cheer him on again Saturday as he wrestled in, and won, the regional tournament. It was about this time last year that Beggs, now a senior at Euless Trinity, competed in and won the girls’ 6A state title. He hopes to do the same this year.
“It was amazing. I couldn't stop crying, it was so great,” said his mother Angela McNew.
Now he’s back at it, and according to his family, working hard than ever.
“We're proud of him because he's come so far from the first day he went and his personality has come far,” said grandmother Nancy Beggs, “everything about him has changed.”
Some parents we spoke with say Beggs has an unfair advantage over his competition because he has been taking testosterone to start transitioning to a male since he was 15.
“She's not built like a girl and she dominates everyone she wrestles. I mean all you have to do is watch one of her matches for yourself and go see what everyone's talking about. It's not a competition,” said parent Omar Palomarez.
Others did not want to go on camera but agreed; Beggs should wrestle boys. That is what Beggs wants to do but UIL rules state competitors must compete against the gender on their birth certificate.
“I think he's disappointed he didn't get to, but they didn't really give us that option,” said McNew.
The issue was thrust into the spotlight last year, when a Coppell attorney and father of a female wrestler filed a lawsuit to keep Beggs from competing against girls. Beggs’ family argues he is taking a minimal amount of testosterone, prescribed by a doctor to continue his transition.
“You can't change laws overnight, and we're going to chase the laws in order for this to be effective in Texas,” said Nancy Beggs.
For now, Beggs and his family are focused on State next week and looking forward to college next year, where he’ll be able to wrestle boys.
“If you break those barriers and let kids be who they want to be and be in the sports they want to be in, then that starts breaking the walls down,” said McNew.
Beggs’ mother tells FOX 4 he hasn’t decided where he wants to attend school next year, but has already been offered a scholarship and will most likely head out of state.