NCAA Wrestling: Oklahoma State hopes to end title drought

Cowboys are considered the top threat to defending champion Penn State at the NCAA meet, which begins Thursday in Des Moines, Iowa. Oklahoma's Kendric Maple also has his sights set on an individual crown.
BY J. CARL GUYMON, Tulsa World Correspondent Published: March 20, 2013
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photo - OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY / OSU / COLLEGE WRESTLING: Oklahoma State wrestler Jordan Oliver was named the outstanding wrestler of the Big 12 tournament after winning his 149-pound weight class on March 9, 2013. KT King/For the Tulsa World
OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY / OSU / COLLEGE WRESTLING: Oklahoma State wrestler Jordan Oliver was named the outstanding wrestler of the Big 12 tournament after winning his 149-pound weight class on March 9, 2013. KT King/For the Tulsa World

Perry (31-2) was sailing through an unbeaten season until an upset loss to Missouri's Todd Porter and a defensive pin by Minnesota's Logan Storley. But Perry has beaten Porter twice and Storley once to earn the top seed in a weight class that promises to be the most wide open of the tournament.

Gelogaev (24-3) has split with No. 1 seed Dom Bradley of Missouri but lost twice to defending champion and No. 2 seed Tony Nelson of Minnesota. The OSU senior does own a December 2011 major decision over Nelson before an injury prematurely ended Gelogaev's season.

OSU's hopes also ride heavily on its balance. Tyler Caldwell (30-4, seeded fourth at 165 pounds), Jon Morrison (25-6, seventh at 133) and freshman Alex Dieringer (30-2, sixth at 157), must finish near or above those positions to produce the necessary team points for Oklahoma State to win its 35th NCAA crown.

Chris Chionuma (27-8, seeded ninth at 184) and Blake Rosholt (14-7, 11th at 197) could earn All-American honors by slipping into the top eight and provide extra team points.

Oklahoma coach Mark Cody sacrificed a strong team showing this season by redshirting three All-American seniors: Jarrod Patterson at 125 and Wisconsin transfers Andrew Howe and Travis Rutt.

Howe was the NCAA champ in 2011, and Rutt an all-American. With that trio sitting, the Sooners qualified only five wrestlers for this weekend's tournament. Backing Maple are 133-pound eighth seed Cody Brewer (21-8) and sixth-seeded 165-pounder Bubby Graham (21-4).