Jordan Oliver's bucket list is short, but it's important.
The 149-pound senior has accomplished what most collegiate wrestlers dream of — a No. 1 individual ranking, a Big 12 Championship, an individual NCAA Championship — but as his Oklahoma State career winds down, there is still something to achieve.
That includes an individual and team title at the 2013 NWCA/Cliff Keen Dual Meet Championship Finals. Oliver, who moved up two weight classes this year, and the Cowboys begin their quest for that championship Friday in Minneapolis at Williams Arena.
“It's definitely going to be a great experience, one to remember,” Oliver said. “I've competed in it three years, including this year, and I've never had a National Dual title. So I'm looking to leave my senior year and leave my legacy getting a National Dual team title.”
But it won't come easy. The field of eight is stacked with the nation's best teams. Said OSU coach John Smith, “I can't remember wrestling in the National Duals where it just looks really competitive.”
OSU leads as the No. 1 seed, followed by Iowa, Minnesota, Ohio State, Missouri, Virginia Tech, Cornell and Illinois. The Cowboys will face No. 8 seed Illinois first at 6 p.m. Friday, in a somewhat unusual scenario. Illinois was one of four teams to receive an automatic bye of the qualifying rounds to enter the finals, but the Illini wound up with the lowest seed. OSU had to qualify for the finals, because of a seeding system based on individual results from last season.
It's just become more motivation for Oliver, along with a chance to bring down Minnesota. It was the Golden Gophers who toppled OSU in the National Duals last year in Stillwater.