STILLWATER — In a typical season, Stillwater wrestling coach Doug Chesbro would have his team penciled in as the preseason favorite in Class 6A.
But with three 6A teams ranked in the top 25 nationally, this is no typical season.
Defending state champion Edmond North, ranked No. 16 nationally by InterMat Wrestling, sits atop the preseason coaches' poll with four returning state champions.
Second-ranked Broken Arrow, runner-up to the Huskies last year and No. 15 nationally, has two state champions and a wealth of talent on its roster.
Those two teams have combined to win the past four tournament titles. This season, No. 3 Stillwater has emerged as a third contender for the 6A title.
“In any given year if you told me the team Broken Arrow has, or that Edmond North has, or that I have, I would say right now that'll probably be the state championship team,” Chesbro said. “This year there's three teams that have the ability to do that. It's going to be a dogfight, and we're looking forward to it.”
With two returning state finalists from last season and some key additions, the Pioneers — No. 22 nationally — are looking to have their best season since finishing runner-up in 2006.
“I think we had a pretty good core of kids coming back from last year that was going to put us somewhere around fourth or fifth (in Class 6A),” Chesbro said. “But with the addition of a couple kids, we're in a position where we have about 10 really quality wrestlers that can go a long way. If that's the case we will be right in the mix at the top.”