When you think Ohio University athletics more than likely your first thoughts will be the football and basketball team. While both of these teams have had success in recent years, it hasnt matched that of the wrestling team. Yet, no matter how well the wrestling team does at the NCAA wrestling tournament its very rare to ever hear anything about it. The past two seasons the Ohio University wrestling team has been the highest finishing team on campus at the NCAA tournament.
Not only has the wrestling team been the highest finishing team at the NCAA championships, but the past three, and four of the past five seasons, the wrestling team has had an All-American. One of the greatest aspects of wrestling is the fact that unlike basketball or football, All-Americans aren’t named by a media source or news publication. In college wrestling you have to earn your All-American status. To become an All-American in college wrestling you must finish in the top 8 of your individual weight class at the NCAA tournament. At mentioned earlier at least one Bobcat as become an All-American four of the past five seasons. This is not an easy task to do as their are 71 division one wrestling programs, and 33 wrestlers make the national wrestling tournament at each weight.
Not only has the team had success at an individual level, but as a team as well. Two years ago Ohio finished in 29th place at the NCAA tournament, and this past year 34th. Both of these finishes are higher than any other team on the Ohio University campus. Multiple times, both last season and this season, Ohio was ranked in the top 25 of USA Today/Coaches poll.
Despite all of this success, getting no attention is something wrestlers are use to. “Your whole career you’re use to being in the shadows of all the other sports,” Ohio wrestler and two-time All-American Jeremy Johnson said. “Obviously you would like to get more attention not for your ego, but just so the sport can have more attention because the more people that hear about and see the sport the more popular the sport is going to be,” Johnson added.
I in no way intend to downgrade or belittle the other sports team on campus I just would like the wrestling team to get the attention that they deserve.