Although the Hawkeye wrestling team didn’t come home with an NCAA title this year, the hawkeyes still had a tremendous season.
Individually, the Iowa wrestling team did not produce any champions, but they did produce six All-Americans, the most of any team at the NCAA tournament. Seniors Mike Evans and Bobby Telford both received All-American honors for the third time in their careers, junior Nathan Burak and sophomore Cory Clark became All-Americans for their second time each, and sophomore Thomas Gilman and redshirt freshman Brandon Sorensen became All-Americans for the first time.
Some of the team achievements that the team had during the season were winning the B1G tournament (tied with Ohio State), winning the B1G regular season dual title, winning the Midlands Tournament (and setting a new record for points there), finishing second at the national duals, and of course placing second at the NCAA tournament. Iowa finished the regular season 17-1.
Other notable accomplishments for the Hawkeyes include sending all 10 wrestlers to the NCAA tournament (the 19th time in school history), sending a wrestler to the finals of the NCAA tournament (for the 26th consecutive year), and receiving B1G wrestler of the week honors five times (2 for Sorensen, 2 for Telford, and 1 for Evans). Iowa also had 9 academic All-Big Ten in Nathan Burak, Josh Dziewa, Jeremy Fahler, Brody Grothus, Jake Kadel, Michael Kelly, Kris Klapprodt, Phillip Laux, and Alex Meyer.
Some indidual career milestones were passed when both seniors Mike Evans and Bobby Telford passed the 100 win mark this season. Head Coach Tom Brands passed a milestone of his own this season as he became the coach with the second most duals wins in school history (he is now 163-16-1) behind only Dan Gable of course.
The fans set worked just as hard as the wrestlers to get in the history books too. Iowa led the nation in attendance for the ninth straight year by averaging 8,358 fans in its six home duals. Iowa also led the nation in total attendance with 55,390 fans. The three dual meets with the highest attendance this season also featured Iowa. These were the dual meets agains Penn State, Minnesota, and Iowa State.
The Hawkeyes will graduate five starting seniors from this season, but the future is still bright for Iowa next season as the Hawks will return four All-Americans. The team also showed its depth this year with standout performances on the varsity level from Alex Meyer and Kris Klapprodt. One thing is for sure looking ahead to next year: with depth like Iowa showcased this year, no spot is safe for next year. Iowa looks to be competitive as always and exciting to watch next season.