Maybe, but perhaps the Great Depression was the primary factor that limited the Kansas Whirlwind's competitive opportunities. The article also points out that Mehringer experienced a very similar problem in high school. "As a high school sophomore, he began coaching his school’s wrestling team and met with a good deal of success. The young coach’s victory as a competitor in the final of the state tournament helped his team secure a fourth-place finish. Economic times proved too dreary to allow Kinsley High the chance to improve upon their placing in Mehringer’s junior and senior years, although as a senior the ambitious youngster hitchhiked to the state tournament where he won his second state crown."
Mark Palmer, in an Intermat Rewind article on the 1932 Olympics, noted how the Depression affected the Games in which Mehringer won his gold medal: "Los Angeles was the only city to place a bid to host the Games of the X Olympiad. (The city had put in a bid for the 1928 Olympics, losing to Amsterdam.) Many athletes and nations were unable to afford the trip to California. Fewer than half as many athletes competed at the Los Angeles Olympics as had in 1928."..."One of the most heartbreaking stories about poverty and sacrifice involved the Olympic athletes from Brazil. Severely impacted by the Depression, the only way Brazil could afford to send its athletes to Los Angeles was to put them on a barge loaded with 25 tons of coffee, with the expectation that profits from selling the coffee at ports along the way would fund the $1 per person head tax to enter the U.S., and the $2 per athlete entry fee for the Olympics. Sadly, they were able to sell only $24 worth of coffee by the time they reached California. The athletes' last hope: the Brazilian consulate in San Francisco, which sent a courier to Los Angeles with a check for $45 U.S. However, in the time the courier was traveling south from San Francisco, Brazil's currency devalued … and the check was worth only $17 when it arrived in Los Angeles. To add insult to injury -- the check bounced."