Jacob Brendel was 1932 Olympic champion in bantamweight Greco-Roman, also winning a bronze medal in 1936. Brendel also won three medals at the European Championships, gold in 1937 bantamweight freestyle, silver in 1930 bantamweight Greco-Roman; and bronze in 1935 bantamweight freestyle. Nationally, he was German champion in 1929, 1930 and 1935 in Greco-Roman and 1936-37 in freestyle. Brendel was born in the Palatine town of Speyer, but started for the club ASC Sandow Nürnberg, who helped him financially to compete in the Games. At the 1932 Olympics, angry about his defeat in the final, his opponent Marcello Nizzola went after Brendel in the locker room with a knife, and police had to intervene.