Northern Michigan’s Alex Rose To Represent Samoa In 2020 Olympics

WEST BRANCH – With the 2020 Olympics just months away, athletes are getting ready to take the biggest stage in the world.

That includes northern Michigan native, Alex Rose.

Rose is originally from West Branch and attended Ogemaw Heights high school and Central Michigan University. Though he is from Michigan and originally did compete for the United States, he now represents Samoa, his father’s home country and where he has dual citizenship.

“I realized that I did have an opportunity to compete for them, and explore my heritage a little bit more maybe travel to Samoa and the Pacific Islands for competitions and get the opportunity of a lifetime so I jumped into that and since 2012 I’ve been competing for Samoa, so about 8 years now,” said Rose.

Most people don’t know how this dream of being a discus thrower became reality.

“I really do think that I can surprise some people. I was ranked 16th last year but most people don’t know my story,” said Rose. “That I was lifting at midnight and throwing 2 or 3 days a week sometimes when I should be six. I really was not getting the training I needed to be good and I still managed to qualify for the Olympics and be ranked in the top 20 in the world.”

Now he’s trying to take it even further.

“My goal is to be ranked in the top 3 of the world this year and hopefully come back with a medal, I think that would be really cool,” added Rose.

Before heading to Tokyo, he has other meets to compete in. Next is one in California at the Olympic Training Center in April.