Big 10 Wrestling
 
Jeff Smith
Assistant Director of Communications
BIG TEN CONFERENCE
1500 W. Higgins Rd.
Park Ridge, IL  60068
Office - (847) 696-1010 ext. 142
Fax - (847) 696-1110
jsmith@bigten.org

Lineups Set for Big Ten v Big 12 Challenge

The rosters and lineups for the Big Ten vs. Big 12 Challenge, an exhibition men's freestyle wrestling dual meet, have been finalized. The Challenge will be part of the NCAA Fan Festival, taking place at the 2010 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in Omaha, Neb.
USA Wrestling and the NCAA are teaming up to present the event, being held at the NCAA Fan Festival in Exhibit Hall C of the Qwest Center Omaha on Friday, March 19 from 1:45 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Central time. The NCAA Fan Festival is a short indoor walk north from the Qwest Center Omaha, site of the 2010 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships.
The Big Ten team will be coached by Mark Johnson, who coached at the University of Illinois. The Big 12 team will be coached by Bobby Douglas, who coached at Iowa State University. Prior to their retirement, both coaches had outstanding careers during their tenure as collegiate wrestling head coaches. Both were also members of the U.S. Olympic Team as athletes.
The Big Ten vs. Big 12 Challenge will feature matches in seven international wrestling weight classes. The competitors are former student-athlete wrestlers who competed for the universities in these prestigious conferences as undergraduates, and are now pursuing their Olympic dreams in men's freestyle wrestling.
The Big Ten team will be represented by former student-athletes who competed for Michigan State University, University of Illinois, University of Michigan, Penn State University and Northwestern University. The Big 12 team will be represented by former atudent-athletes from Oklahoma State University, University of Oklahoma and Iowa State University.
A marquis matchup will happen at the 84 kg/185 lbs. weight class, when Jake Herbert, a two-time NCAA champion for Northwestern, will battle Chris Pendleton, a two-time NCAA champion for Oklahoma State. Herbert won a silver medal at the 2009 World Wrestling Championships.
Another two-time NCAA champion will be Steve Mocco, competing for the Big 12 team, who won national titles for both Oklahoma State and Iowa. Other past NCAA champions Coleman Scott of Oklahoma State and Trent Paulson of Iowa State will be representing the Big 12 team.
Two members of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team, Mocco and former Michigan wrestler Andy Hrovat, will be showcased at the event.
There will also be two additional exhibition matches held, featuring top freestyle wrestlers who were also All-Americans in college. In an exhibition at 120 kg/264.5 lbs., Tervel Dlagnev, a two-time Division II national champion for University of Nebraska-Kearney, will battle Blake Gillis, a Division III national champion for Wartburg College.
The dual meet will be held on the mats where USA Wrestling's Team USA will hold their popular public workouts between sessions of the 2010 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships each day.
Admission to the Fan Festival is free, so there will be no charge to watch the men's freestyle action. For the Big Ten vs. Big 12 Challenge, there will be close to 1,000 seats and many more standing room only viewing opportunities provided mat side on a first-come, first-serve basis. In addition, as many as 1,000 fans will be able to watch the dual meet on two large projection screens flanking the main stage within the NCAA Fan Festival.
For those who cannot attend the 2010 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in person, the Big Ten vs. Big 12 Challenge will be Web cast live on NCAA.com/wrestling and available through TheMat.com, with USA Wrestling's Jason Bryant and Kendall Cross calling the action.
The rules for the Big Ten vs. Big 12 Challenge have been modified. Instead of having individual match winners, there will be a cumulative point total for each conference. Team scores will be based upon adding up the technical points scored in each match by the athletes. At the end of the dual meet, the points will be tallied up, and the winning conference team will be announced.
Another rule modification is that each match will consist of two, two-minute periods. There will not be any third periods contested, which is possible in an international freestyle match.
This year's NCAA Fan Festival will feature wrestling exhibit booths, displays, memorabilia, interactive games, souvenirs, food and beverage sales, and a number of other featured events. In addition to the Big Ten vs. Big 12 Challenge, the lineup Friday includes a USA Wrestling autograph session at 3:15 p.m. and the annual Semifinals Preview Show featuring Nate Carr, Scott Casber and Wade Schalles at 4 p.m. Central.
For more information on the NCAA Fan Festival at the 2010 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in Omaha, Neb., visit NCAA.com/wrestling.
Any journalist wishing to cover this event should immediately contact Gary Abbott of USA Wrestling at gabbott@usawrestling.org or on his cell phone at 719/659-9637.
TENTATIVE BIG TEN VS. BIG 12 CHALLENGE LINEUPS
(Big Ten athlete/school vs. Big 12 athlete/school)
55 kg/121 lbs. - Nick Simmons (Michigan State) vs. Obe Blanc (Oklahoma State)
60 kg/132 lbs. - Jimmy Kennedy (Illinois) vs. Coleman Scott (Oklahoma State)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. - Andy Simmons (Michigan State) vs. Jared Frayer (Oklahoma)
74 kg/163 lbs. - Mike Poeta (Illinois) vs. Trent Paulson (Iowa State)
84 kg/185 lbs. - Jake Herbert (Northwestern) vs. Chris Pendleton (Oklahoma State)
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Andy Hrovat (Michigan) vs. David Bertolino (Iowa State)
120 kg/264.5 lbs. - Aaron Anspach (Penn State) vs. Steve Mocco (Oklahoma State)
Exhibition bouts
96 kg/211.5 lbs. - J.D. Bergman (Ohio State) vs. Kyle Cerminara (Buffalo)
120 kg/264.5 lbs. - Tervel Dlagnev (UN-Kearney) vs. Blake Gillis (Wartburg)
Big 10 Coach: Mark Johnson (Illinois)
Big 12 Coach: Bobby Douglas (Iowa State)

Cliff Keen to Sponsor Big Ten Wrestling Championships

ANN ARBOR, MI – In its continued support of Big Ten Wrestling, Cliff Keen Athletic announces their sponsorship of the Big Ten Wrestling Championships event, to be held March 6-7 at Crisler Arena on the campus of the University of Michigan.

Cliff Keen Athletic will be on-site at the Big Ten Championships to support the competing teams, along with fan interaction, prize give-aways, and a product display showcase.

In December, Cliff Keen began a media partnership program with the Big Ten Network for its Wrestling telecasts of the 2009-10 scholastic calendar.  The Ann Arbor, Michigan-based wrestling company showcased its wrestling-specific media to the Big Ten Network each week during the college season.  The Big Ten Network boasted some of the premier wrestling dual meet match-ups this season, culminating with LIVE coverage of the Big Ten Wrestling Championships airing March 7th at 2:00 PM.

The current media plan includes commercial spots, on-air mentions, spotlights on Cliff Keen and their products each week, as well as a special feature and links on the bigtennetwork.com. 

For over 50 years, Cliff Keen has been the leading manufacturer of wrestling equipment and uniforms, serving the collegiate, high school, and international wrestling marketplaces, as well as the officiating market.  In addition, Cliff Keen has long been a provider to dozens of nationally recognized collegiate wrestling programs.  Cliff Keen Athletic is the namesake company of former University of Michigan wrestling coach Cliff Keen, who spent nearly a half-century as the school’s winningest wrestling coach and assistant football coach.

     Iowa's Borschel Earns Big Ten Weekly Honor

PARK RIDGE, IL -- University of Iowa 174-pound wrestler Jay Borschel has been named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week. It is the first time the senior from Marion, IA has earned the honor in his Hawkeye career, and the second-straight week that a Hawkeye wrestler has earned the conference honor. Senior 149-pounder Brent Metcalf was named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week January 5.
Borschel, who is ranked first in the nation by Amateur Wrestling News and W.I.N. Magazine, and second by Intermat, picked up the honor after being named Division I Outstanding Wrestler at the 2010 NWCA/Cliff Keen National Duals in Cedar Falls, IA, last weekend. Borschel, who went 4-0 at the two-day tournament, helped the Hawkeyes win their third-straight and sixth overall National Duals tournament team title. Iowa joins Oklahoma State (2003-05) as the only schools to win three consecutive team titles in the tournament's 22-year history. He is only the second Hawkeye to earn the Division I Outstanding wrestler honor. Metcalf earned the award in 2008.

Borschel opened the tournament with a 10-7 win over #3 Stephen Dwyer of Nebraska and a 8-2 decision over #16 Nate Lee of Boise State. He posted one of Iowa's two major decisions in the championship semifinals over #13 Scott Glasser of Minnesota (11-3). He then scored the only team bonus points in Iowa's finals match with #2 Iowa State, beating #14 Duke Burk, 10-2. He is now 5-0 against Burk, and is undefeated at 17-0 (13-0 in duals) this season. Borschel has a career record of 79-10 at Iowa and is 17-2 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. He ranks first on the team in collegiate and dual winning percentage (1.000), and dual wins (13); and ranks second in dual meet team points scored (61), pins (7) and major decisions (5) this season.

Top-ranked Iowa (13-0) will host #4 Oklahoma State (8-0-1) Saturday at 7 p.m. at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. It is a "Gold Rush" event, where fans are encouraged to wear gold attire to the meet. In order to avoid long lines at the arena entrances Saturday night, fans are encouraged to purchase their tickets for the dual in advance. Tickets are available at the UI Athletic Ticket Office in Carver-Hawkeye Arena (1-800-464-2957, 319-335-9327) or at www.hawkeyesports.com, where fans can take advantage of a print-at-home option. Tickets purchased in advance are $13 for adults, $7 for youth and $2 for children ages 5 and younger. Tickets purchased at the meet are $15 for adults, $8 for youth and $2 for children ages 5 and younger.
Iowa's Metcalf Earns Big Ten Weekly Honor

PARK RIDGE, IL -- University of Iowa 149-pound wrestler Brent Metcalf has been named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week. It is the fourth time the junior from Davison, MI, has earned the honor in his Hawkeye career.

Metcalf, who is ranked first in the nation at 149, earned the weekly honor after winning his third straight title at the annual Midlands Championships in Evanston, IL, last week. He was named the Dan Gable Most Outstanding Wrestler for the tournament, and took home the Individual High Scorer Award for racking up 32.5 team points. Iowa won its 21st overall and third straight Midlands title with 168.5 points. Metcalf pinned three Midlands opponents, and recorded a technical fall and major decision before beating #2 Kyle Ruschell of Wisconsin, 9-2, in the finals.
Metcalf is undefeated (15-0) this season with 10 pins, going 9-0 in dual competition. His 41 career pins ranks 10th in Iowa school history. He scored team bonus points in 13 of his 15 victories, and has a career record of 87-2.

Metcalf is the first Hawkeye to earn the honor this season. He and the Hawkeyes will compete at the 2010 NWCA/Cliff Keen National Duals Saturday and Sunday at the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls. The Hawkeyes have a 62-10-3 record at the National Duals, winning five team titles, including the last two.

Big Ten Wrestling 2009 Pre-Seeds

PARK RIDGE, Ill. - Conference officials announced the preliminary seeds for the 2009 Big Ten Wrestling Championships today. The pre-seeds are determined by a vote amongst the conference's head wrestling coaches after consideration of regular-season results. This year's Big Ten Wrestling Championships will take place Penn State University in University Park, Pa., at the Bryce Jordan Center on March 7-8. The official Big Ten Championships bracket will be set on Friday, March 6.

Five different schools are represented as No. 1 seeds in the 10 weight classes. Iowa and Wisconsin lead the way with the most top seeds at three apiece, while Northwestern features two wrestlers atop the preliminary seeding chart. Overall, of the 10 No. 1 seeds, nine rank among the top three in the nation in the latest USA Today/NWCA/InterMat Poll.

Iowa's Daniel Dennis (24-2 at 133), Brent Metcalf (28-0 at 149) and Daniel Erekson (18-6 at Hwt.) represent the Hawkeyes as top pre-seeds for this year's event. The Hawkeyes were Big Ten regular season dual champions and are currently the No. 1 nationally ranked team. Metcalf is in search of his second consecutive 149 lbs. conference title after winning at last year's competition where his performance also earned him Wrestler of the Championships honors. Dennis and Metcalf are the top-ranked wrestlers in the land at their respective weight classes, while Erekson currently ranks seventh among the national leaders.

Zach Tanelli (23-3 at 141), Andrew Howe (22-4 at 165) and Dallas Herbst (20-2 at 197) earned top-billing for Wisconsin. Tanelli, Howe and Herbst currently rank one, two and three, respectively, in the nation. After adding a 55th pin to his all-time Wisconsin pin record last Sunday against Ohio State, Tanelli remained in the top spot on the national leaderboard for the fifth-consecutive week. Howe's No. 2 ranking currently makes him the highest ranked freshman in the country. Herbst will look to improve upon his previous third-place finish at this year's Big Ten Championships.


Northwestern's top seeds consist of Brandon Precin (25-2 at 125) and Jake Herbert (26-0 at 184). Precin is ranked third in the country. Top-ranked Herbert will look to enter Saturday's championships coming off an impressive win over Phillip Keddy of Iowa, who ranks third on this year's pre-seed list.

Rounding out the top seeds are Illinois' Michael Poeta (10-0 at 157) and Michigan's Steve Luke (24-0 at 174). Both Poeta and Luke will be looking to retain their 2008 Big Ten titles at 157 and 174, respectively, joining Metcalf as the only three defending champions to be featured among this year's top seeds.

Last year Iowa won the conference championship with a score of 127.0 points, headed by 2008 Big Ten Wrestler of the Year Metcalf, who was the only Hawkeye to claim an individual title in the 149-pound bracket. Minnesota placed second (112.5) and Michigan (97.5), Illinois (94.0) and Ohio State (92.5) rounded out the top five.
Konrad Named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week

All-American Cole Konrad was named Big Ten Co-Wrestler of the Week after
recording seven straight wins. He won the heavyweight crown at the Southern
Scuffle last Friday and then clinched Minnesota's win over Arizona State
with a win against fourth-ranked Cain Velasquez. It is the second time
Konrad has been honored this year.

At the Southern Scuffle, Konrad rolled to the title with six straight
victories, five coming by pin. He needed just 1:12 to pin Missouri's Sean
Connole to advance to the quarterfinals. In the semifinals, he dominated
15th-ranked Mike Faust of Virginia Tech with a 17-4 major decision. In the
championship, he pinned eighth-ranked Tanner Garrett of Navy in just 1: 28.

Last night with the second-ranked Golden Gophers holding a 20-19 lead over
No. 16 Arizona State, Konrad delivered with a 3-2 decision against
Velasquez. It was Konrad's fourth win in five tries against the Sun Devil
All-American.

Konrad is ranked number one in the country with a 20-0 record. Ten of his 20
wins have been by fall. The two-time All-American has won 49 of his last 50
matches and currently sports a 99-13 career record.

Konrad and the Golden Gophers return to the mat on Jan. 14-15 when they
travel to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for the National Duals.

Illini Wrestlers Are Big Ten Champs!

Tirapelle and Friedl Win Big Ten Individual Titles, Mark Johnson Named Big Ten Coach of the Year

 

IOWA CITY, Iowa - Behind the performances of Big Ten Champions Alex Tirapelle (157) and Pete Friedl (174), the Illini wrestling team won their first Big Ten team title since 1952 with a final score of 130. Head coach Mark Johnson was named the 2005 Big Ten Coach of the Year, his second time to win the award (2001). Tirapelle won his second Big Ten title and Friedl his first. The Illini placed nine wrestlers in the conference's top-6 to ensure all nine will be in St. Louis in two weeks for the NCAA Championships. Illinois' 130 points also tie the school record for the Big Ten Championship.

 

"This is a great accomplishment for our program," Johnson said. "I have said all along that this is a step for our program. If you can win this tournament, then it means you can win a national title - they are almost one in the same. It was very special to win it here (Iowa City). I spent 10 years of my life here. If it wasn't Champaign, I'm glad it was Iowa City."

 

"Our team wrestled pretty well today, not great," Johnson continued. "But we talked on the way over here about finishing and that's what Alex (Tirapelle) and Pete (Friedl) did today. We knew we had clinched the title heading into the Brian's (Glynn) match and that took a little bit of the pressure off us."

 

The Illini entered the day's activities with five individuals in the finals, but lost the first two bids at titles. Kyle Ott (Jr., Huber Heights, Ohio), the 125-pound No. 1 seed, got the first takedown over No. 2 Nick Simmons of Michigan State, but Simmons scored a takedown in the second to give him a 4-2 win. At 133 pounds, Mark Jayne (Sr., Elyria, Ohio) lost only his third match of the year, but unfortunately all three came at the hands of No. 2 seed Mack Reiter of Minnesota. Reiter locked Jayne up for a pin at 4:34. The team race became heated at that time as Illinois only led the Gophers by 5.5 points. Michigan also became a factor in the team race as they pulled to within eight points of Illinois with champions at 141 and 149.

 

The 157-pound final became pivotal in Illinois' title hopes as Tirapelle (Jr., Clovis, Calif.) faced Michigan's Ryan Bertin for a rematch of last year's finals. Bertin got on the board first with a reversal in the second period. Two escapes for Tirapelle tied the match at two apiece. With the clock ticking down, Tirapelle scored a quick single-leg takedown at the 18-second mark for the final 4-3 victory. Tirapelle won his 96th career victory with his finals championship. With the win, he also tied the series record with Bertin, each having four wins apiece. The four points for the team gave Illinois 125, a six-point cushion over Minnesota. Still not out of harm's way, the Illini solidified the race with its win in the 174 pound finals.

 

"I am definitely more excited about the team win," Tirapelle said. "We haven't won since 1952, that's a long time for a team. Ryan and I have wrestled eight times and we're four and four. Nothing really changes with us. We both go out and wrestle our own match."

 

Friedl (Jr., Orland Park, Ill.) met Northwestern's Jake Herbert for the rubber match between the two wrestlers. Working off a shot by Friedl, Herbert scored first with a takedown in the first period. Friedl got two escapes to tie the match, but a Herbert escape in the third gave him a one-point lead, until Friedl hit a strong double-leg with three seconds remaining to win 4-3. In the last of Illinois' five finals matches, senior Brian Glynn (Orland Park, Ill.) couldn't come up with the offensive score, dropping a 3-2 decision to Penn State's Eric Bradley, the tournament's No. 2 seed at 184.

 

"We can celebrate this for awhile. We worked extremely hard all year for this title and I think we deserve it," Glynn said. "I am almost more happy about winning it for Mark (Johnson) and Jim (assistant coach Heffernan) because it shows the hard work and dedication they have given to the program."

 

Four other wrestlers placed for the Illini. At 141 pounds, Cassio Pero (So., Chicago Heights, Ill.) exceeded his seed (No. 4) with a third-place victory over Northwestern's Ryan Lang, 4-2. Junior Tyrone Byrd (Jr., Clinton, Ill.) got the upset at 197 pounds over No. 2 seed Nathan Moore of Purdue. Donny Reynolds (So., Frankfort, Ill.) at 165 and heavyweight Mike Behnke (So., Villa Park, Ill.) both took sixth.

 

The Illini will be back in action in two weeks at the NCAA Championships in St. Louis, Mo., March 17-19. During Mark Johnson's 12-year tenure at Illinois, the Illini have finished in the top-10 on eight occasions with the best placing of fifth in 2001.

 

TEAM STANDINGS

1. Illinois - 130

2. Minnesota - 123.5

3. Michigan - 118

4. Iowa - 94.5

5t. Indiana - 89

5t. Wisconsin - 89

7. Penn State - 72.5

8. Michigan State - 70.5

9. Northwestern - 68.5

10. Purdue - 38.5

11. Ohio State - 26.5

 

ILLINOIS PLACEWINNERS

1st: Alex Tirapelle (157), Pete Friedl (174)

2nd: Kyle Ott (125), Mark Jayne (133), Brian Glynn (184)

3rd: Cassio Pero (141)

5th: Tyrone Byrd (197)

6th: Donny Reynolds (165), Mike Behnke (Hwt)

 

125: No. 1 seed #2 Kyle Ott (17-3)

Quarterfinals: Technical fall No. 8 seed Charlie Falck (Iowa), 18-3

Semifinals: Dec. No. 5 seed Bobbe Lowe (Minn), 3-1

Finals: Lost to No. 2 seed Nick Simmons (MSU), 4-2

 

133: No. 1 seed #5 Mark Jayne (28-2)

Pigtail: Won by fall Daniel Quintela (NW), 4:49

Quarterfinals: Major dec. No. 8 seed Ryan Froese (MSU), 13-5

Semifinals: Dec. No. 4 seed Mario Galanakis (Iowa), 4-3

Finals: No. 2 seed Mack Reiter (Minn)

 

141: No. 3 seed #12 Cassio Pero (25-13)

Quarterfinals: Lost to No. 6 seed Ryan Lang (NW), 3-2

Consolation 1st Round: Dec. Jason Johnstone (OSU), 8-6

Consolation Quarterfinals: Won by injury default No. 7 seed DeWitt Driscoll (PSU)

Consolation Semifinals: Won by injury default No. 4 seed Mike Simpson (Ind)

Third-Place Match: Dec. No. 6 seed Ryan Lang (NW), 4-2

 

157: No. 2 seed #3 Alex Tirapelle (28-2)

Pigtail: Major dec. Matt McCarty, (MSU), 15-3

Quarterfinals: Dec. No. 7 seed C.P. Schlatter (Minn), 4-1

Semifinals: Dec. No. 3 Joe Johnston (Iowa), 9-5

Finals: Dec. No. 1 seed Ryan Bertin (Mich), 4-3

 

165: No. 5 seed #12 Donny Reynolds (21-9)

Pigtail: Won by fall Greg Hagel (NW), 4:54

Quarterfinals: Lost to No. 4 seed Jake Donar (Wis), 6-2

Consolation 1st Round: Dec. Keegan Mueller (OSU), 6-5

Consolation Quarterfinals: Dec. No. 8 seed Bryan Harney (MSU), 7-1

Consolation Semifinals: Lost to No. 3 seed Matt Nagel (Minn), 5-1

Fifth-Place Match: Lost to No. 6 seed Max Dean (Ind), 3-2

 

174: No. 1 seed #3 Pete Friedl (33-3)

Quarterfinals: Dec. No. 8 seed James Yonushonis (PSU), 10-6

Semifinals: Dec. No. 5 seed Brady Richardson (Ind), 6-2

Finals: Dec. No. 2 seed Jake Herbert (NW), 4-3

 

184: No. 1 seed #4 Brian Glynn (30-3)

Quarterfinals: Dec. No. 8 seed Andy Rios (Ind), 6-2

Semifinals: Dec. No. 4 seed Ben Wissel (PU), 5-2

Finals: No. 2 seed Eric Bradley (PSU)

 

197: No. 5 seed #14 Tyrone Byrd (24-9)

Quarterfinals: Dec. No. 4 seed Phil Davis (PSU), 2-1

Semifinals: Lost to No. 1 seed J.D. Bergman (OSU), 2-0

Consolation Semifinals: Pinned by No. 7 seed Ryan Flaherty (WI), 0:48

Fifth-Place Match: Dec. No. 2 seed Nathan Moore (PU), 6-3

 

Hwt: No. 7 seed #20 Mike Behnke (14-11)

Quarterfinals: Lost to No. 2 seed Greg Wagner (Mich), 7-5 ot

Consolation 1st Round: Dec. Max Lossen (MSU), 5-4

Consolation Quarterfinals: Dec. No. 6 seed Kirk Nail (OSU), 3-1ot

Consolation Semifinals: Lost to No. 4 seed Dustin Fox (NU), 5-2

Fifth-Place Match: Lost to No. 5 seed Matt Fields (Iowa), 12-3

PRE-SEEDS FOR 2005 BIG TEN WRESTLING CHAMPIONSHIPS ANNOUNCED

PARK RIDGE, IL -
The preliminary seeds for the 2005 Big Ten Wrestling Championships were announced today by Conference officials. The pre-seeds are determined by a vote amongst the League's head wrestling coaches after consideration of regular-season results. The 2005 Big Ten Wrestling Championships will take place on Saturday, March 5, and Sunday, March 6, at Carver Hawkeye Arena on the campus of the University of Iowa in Iowa City, Iowa. The Championships bracket will be set on Friday, March 4.

Illinois and Michigan lead all schools with four top pre-seeds apiece. Kyle Ott (125 lbs.), Mark Jayne (133 lbs.), Pete Friedl (174 lbs.) and Brian Glynn (184 lbs.) all received top seeds for the Fighting Illini. For the Wolverines, Josh Churella (141 lbs.), Eric Tannenbaum (149 lbs.), Ryan Bertin (157 lbs.) and Ryan Churella (165 lbs.) each earned the top spots in their respective divisions. Illinois' Jayne is the defending Big Ten Champion at 133 lbs., as is Michigan's Churella at 149 lbs. 

Minnesota and Ohio State each boast a No. 1 preliminary seed entering the Championships.  J.D. Bergman of Ohio State will wrestle as the top seed at 197 lbs., while Minnesota's Cole Konrad will battle as the premier grappler in the heavyweight division. Konrad placed third at Big Tens last year and carries a 31-2 record, including an 8-0 record in Big Ten dual action, into the Championships this weekend. 

Less than one week remains until all 11 League schools will take to the mats for the 2005 Big Ten Wrestling Championships. Iowa will look to defend its Big Ten title, which they won last season at Ohio State. The Hawkeyes (129.5) bested runner-up Minnesota (124.5) by five points, while Illinois (98.5), Michigan (96.0) and Penn State (90.0) rounded out the top five.

For the second consecutive year, Illinois and Michigan will enter the Big Ten Championships as the League's Dual Meet co-Champions. The Fighting Illini and Wolverines each ended the 2005 campaign with 7-0-1 records. Then-No.5 Michigan tied No. 2 Illinois, 17-17, on February 6 in Ann Arbor, Mich. 

Tickets may be purchased by contacting the University of Iowa Athletic Ticket Office at 1-800-424-2957 or online at <http://www.hawkeyesports.com>www.hawkeyesports.com.

The complete list of pre-seeds follows.

2005 BIG TEN WRESTLING CHAMPIONSHIPS PRELIMINARY SEEDS


125 lbs.

1. Kyle Ott, Illinois
2. Nick Simmons, Michigan State
3. Joe Dubuque, Indiana
4. John Velez, Northwestern
5. Bobbe Lowe, Minnesota
6. Adam Smith, Penn State
7. Brandon Tucker, Purdue
8. Charlie Falck, Iowa
      
133 lbs.
1. Mark Jayne, Illinois
2. Mack Reiter, Minnesota
3. Tom Clum, Wisconsin
4. Mario Galanakis, Iowa
5. T.J. Enright, Ohio State
6. Mark Moos, Michigan
7. Bryan Heller, Penn State
8. Brian Dyer, Indiana

141 lbs.
1. Josh Churella, Michigan
2. Andy Simmons, Michigan State
3. Cassio Pero, Illinois
4. Mike Simpson, Indiana
5. Alex Tsirtsis, Iowa
6. Ryan Lang, Northwestern
7. DeWitt Driscoll, Penn State
8. Ed Gutnik, Wisconsin

149 lbs.
1. Eric Tannenbaum, Michigan
T2. Ty Eustice, Iowa
T2. Doug Withstandley, Purdue
4. Anton Dietzen, Illinois
5. Darren McKnight, Michigan State
6. Craig Henning, Wisconsin
7. Steven Wolery, Ohio State
8. Jack Decker, Penn State
      
157 lbs.
1. Ryan Bertin, Michigan
2. Alex Tirapelle, Illinois
3. Joe Johnston, Iowa
4. Nathan Galloway, Penn State
5. Brandon Becker, Indiana
6. Tyler Turner, Wisconsin
7. C.P. Schlatter, Minnesota
8. Mike Kimberlin, Northwestern

165 lbs.
1. Ryan Churella, Michigan
2. Mark Perry, Iowa
3. Matt Nagel, Minnesota
4. Jake Donar, Wisconsin
5. Donny Reynolds, Illinois
6. Max Dean, Indiana
7. Nick Hayes, Northwestern
8. John DeCeault, Purdue

174 lbs.
1. Pete Friedl, Illinois
2. Jake Herbert, Northwestern
3. R.J. Boudro, Michigan State
4. Nick Roy, Michigan
5. Brady Richardson, Indiana
T6. Gabriel Dretsch, Minnesota
T6. Kelly Flaherty, Wisconsin
8. James Yonushonis, Penn State

184 lbs.
1. Brian Glynn, Illinois
2. Eric Bradley, Penn State
3. Brady Reinke, Wisconsin
4. Ben Wissel, Purdue
5. Paul Bradley, Iowa
T6. Roger Kish, Minnesota
T6. Mike Tamillow, Northwestern
8. Andy Rios, Indiana

197 lbs.
1. J.D. Bergman, Ohio State
2. Nathan Moore, Purdue
3. Matt Delguyd, Northwestern
4. Phillip Davis, Penn State
5. Tyrone Byrd, Illinois
6. Willie Breyer, Michigan
7. Ryan Flaherty, Wisconsin
8. Matt Koz, Minnesota

HWT
1. Cole Konrad, Minnesota
2. Greg Wagner, Michigan
3. Pat DeGain, Indiana
4. Dustin Fox, Northwestern
5. Matt Fields, Iowa
6. Kirk Nail, Ohio State
7. Mike Behnke, Illinois
8. Joel Edwards, Penn State

Illinois' Byrd Named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week

Byrd gave the Fighting Illini a huge boost in their 25-12 win at No. 15 Wisconsin, which opened the Conference dual season for Illinois. The 197-pound junior scored a huge upset over No. 8 Ryan Flaherty, 3-1, and then went on to win his second match of the weekend, 9-2, over Zach Garren of N.C. State. Byrd claimed his second victory on very little rest as the match against N.C. State took place just 14 hours after the team returned home from Madison.  For Byrd, the win over Wisconsin's Flaherty was his third upset of the season. He improved to 14-4 on the season.

This is Byrd's first career Wrestler of the Week selection.  He is the first Illini grappler to claim the weekly honor since Alex Tirapelle on January 2, 2004.