Jan. 20, 2011

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CORVALLIS, Ore. - Colby Covington is No. 7 nationally at 174 pounds and is the highest ranked Oregon State wrestler in the initial NCAA Coaches Individual Rankings that were released on Thursday.

The rankings are the first of three this season, with the final set determining qualifiers and seeding for the NCAA Championships in March.

Wrestlers in each weight class will be measured by winning percentage, rating percentage index (RPI) and coaches' rankings to earn spots for the 2011 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships. The coaches' rankings are compiled by a vote of coaches across the nation. Each qualifying tournament has five coaches rank the top 33 wrestlers in two weight classes. For ranking purposes, coaches must select a wrestler as a starter at a designated weight class. In addition, coaches may only select one wrestler per weight class.

All told, the Beavers have eight wrestlers ranked in the top 25 of their respective weight classes. Covington is the highest-ranked at No. 7. He is joined by 125-pounder Jason Lara, who is at No. 15, Garrett Drucker, who ranks 11th at 133 pounds and Mike Mangrum, who is No. 12 at 141 pounds. Scott Sakaguchi checks in at 25th at 149 pounds, while Brice Arand is No. 24 at 184 pounds. Chad Hanke is ranked 16th at 197 pounds while Clayton Jack is 13th in the heavyweight class.

In terms of rankings among Pacific-10 Conference wrestlers, Lara is third, while Drucker is third and Mangrum is second. Sakaguchi also finds himself second, as does Covington, Arand and Hanke. Jack is first among Pac-10 heavyweights according to the NCAA rankings.

Check out each of the Beavers Friday night when they host Cal Poly at legendary Gill Coliseum. The dual starts at 7 p.m. PT.

Support Oregon State University Athletics by making your tax deductible donation to the Beaver Athletic Student Fund. For more information follow this link or call 541-737-2370. You can make an "everyday champion."Follow Beaver Athletics on Twitter.


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