Jordan Burroughs was born in Camden, New Jersey. He was a New Jersey state wrestling champion for Winslow Township High School in 2006. He was a three time district champion and two time regional winner. In high school, he also won a senior national championship.
Burroughs committed to the University of Nebraska where he earned two Division 1 national wrestling championships in 2009 and 2011. He was named the 2011 Dan Gable Most Outstanding Wrestler at the Midlands Championship. He was a three time All-American and a four time NCAA tournament qualifier. In his senior year, he won the Hodge Trophy, wrestling’s equivalent to the Heisman. He was also named InterMat’s wrestler of the year.
In 2011, Burroughs won the world wrestling championships in freestyle wrestling in Istanbul and also won the Pan American games title in Guadalajara.
On August 10, 2012, Burroughs defeated Sadegh Saeed Goudarzi of Iran to become an Olympic Champion.