Oklahoma coach Mark Cody said Andrew Howe’s impact on the Sooners’ wrestling program goes beyond finishing as a national runner-up Saturday night at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
Disappointed he lost his final match to Oklahoma State’s Chris Perry 3-0 in the 174-pound final, Howe declined comment, but Cody raved about the Wisconsin transfer.
“I’ve coached some national champions and quite a few All-Americans and Andrew Howe is the hardest worker I’ve ever been around,” Cody said. “I’ve never seen anything like it. Our program will benefit for years to come from having Andrew Howe.”
The Bedlam rivals split two meetings during the season. Howe was the aggressor in the rubber match. Perry was given a warning for stalling, but Perry posted the match’s biggest move, a second-period takedown that proved to be the turning point.
“Andrew tried to get in a couple of shots, but unfortunately Perry got an arm between him and blocked him off,” Cody said. “I thought he had a good plan and was pretty aggressive. He just got caught off guard.”
Howe, who won a national title three years ago at Wisconsin, finished 32-2 in his one season at OU.
Led by Howe’s national runner-up finish and three All-Americans, the Sooners finished ninth, an improvement over 12th- and 13th-place finishes in Cody’s first two years at OU.
“Every year we’ve done a little bit better,” Cody said. “We’re going to get there. That’s why guys like Andrew Howe make such a big impact because it’s different than a coach saying something and someone like Andrew Howe displaying it on a daily basis to everyone in your program.”