Nine Badgers earn spot on Big Ten Championships pre-seed list
? Complete Release from the Big Ten Conference
MADISON, Wis. ? Nine Wisconsin wrestlers slated a spot on the pre-seed list at their respective weight class for the 2011 Big Ten Wrestling Championships, it was announced Monday. The pre-seeds, which rank the top eight wrestlers in each of the 10 weight classes, are decided based on a vote by the conference coaches.
The event will take place Saturday-Sunday at the Welsh-Ryan Arena in Evanston, Ill. The final seeds will be released after the coaches? meeting on Friday.
Three Badgers earned a top pre-seed including Andrew Howe (165 lbs.), Travis Rutt (184 lbs.) and Trevor Brandvold (197 lbs.).
A two-time Big Ten Champion, Howe is scheduled to return to the mat after suffering a leg injury on Jan. 16. The junior enters the weekend with an 18-2 record, which includes one loss by injury default.*
Rutt, who hasn?t dropped a match since Dec. 4, boasts a 26-1 record at 184 lbs. The junior looks to earn his first Big Ten title after placing fifth last year.
In his final season, Brandvold, the defending Big Ten Champion at 197 lbs., boasts an 11-0 record,* which includes eight wins by bonus points.*
Slating a No. 2 seed, redshirt sophomore Tyler Graff falls behind Penn State?s Andrew Long. Graff has a 25-2 overall record at 133 lbs. with one of his two losses coming to Long on Feb. 18.
The remaining Badgers who were seeded are No. 8 Tom Kelliher (125 lbs.), No. 8 Shane McQuade (141 lbs.), No. 5 Cole Schmitt (149 lbs.), No. 6 Ben Jordan (174 lbs.) and No. 6 Eric Bugenhagen (285 lbs.).
Check back to UWBadgers.com on Friday night to view the final seedings.
Wisconsin in the Big Ten pre-seeds
? 125 lbs. - No. 8 Tom Kelliher
? 133 lbs. - No. 2 Tyler Graff
? 141 lbs. - No. 8 Shane McQuade
? 149 lbs. - No. 5 Cole Schmitt
? 165 lbs. - No. 1 Andrew Howe
? 174 lbs. - No. 6 Ben Jordan
? 184 lbs. - No. 1 Travis Rutt
? 197 lbs. - No. 1 Trevor Brandvold
? 285 lbs. - No. 6 Eric Bugenhagen