Alfredo Gray and Nick Corba have placed at the United World Wrestling University Nationals Greco-Roman division at 63 kgs and 85 kgs respectively. Alfredo placed 7th and Nick placed 4th.
CSU scored a perfect 1000 academic progress rate that the NCAA tracked for the 2013-2014 period. CSU wrestling was one of only five D1 wrestling schools to get the perfect score for this most recent tracking period. It is the first time in the history of the NCAA APR that CSU wrestling scored a 1000. Cleveland State now has the highest multi-year (4 year average) APR in the Eastern Wrestling League with a 964 overall.
The National Wrestling Coaches Association came out with its academic awards this week for Division 1. CSU was in the top 30 for 2014-2015 team GPA. Most importantly, Riley Shaw and Ben Willeford were named Academic All-Americans for this season for their performance on the mat as well as the classroom. Shaw and Willeford led CSU to its best record in both the classroom and collegiate competition in over ten years. They were ranked in the top 20 of their weight classes virtually all season and were a combined 19-1 in dual meets. Shaw was undefeated in all duals (the first CSU wrestler to accomplish the feat in over a decade) while Willeford was 9-1 with eight wins coming by bonus points for a remarkable team-high total of 42 team points. Both placed in the Southern Scuffle marking the first time two CSU grapplers placed in the major in-season tournament since the early 1990s. Willeford graduated this spring ending his career as a two time EWL finalist and one time champ, while Shaw will lead the Vikings as a senior next season and look to make it two EWL titles to go along with his two third place finishes.
CSU's Horizon League Championship team is competing in the Seattle regional this week. Senior golfer Michael Balcar was first team All Horizon League for the third straight season.
Former CSU wrestler and baseball player Stipe Miocic once again proved he is one of the best mixed martial artists with his TKO over Mark Hunt. The win moves him to 7-2 in the UFC and 13-2 overall as a professional fighter. Of course, he is also a professional everyday as a firefighter and paramedic in Valley View just outside of Cleveland.
At the Student-Athlete Honors luncheon, nine wrestlers were recognized for their outstanding work in the classroom. Those invited were Chas Busz, Michael Carlone, Jayce Carr, John Martin, Nick Montgomery, Riley Shaw, Ramon Stone, Benjamin Willeford, and Nathan Wynkoop. Ben Willeford was given the day's highest honor in the John McLendon Award, given to the graduating student-athlete that best displays integrity and dedication in their efforts for CSU Athletics. John McLendon, former CSU basketball coach, is one of the most underappreciated name in sports as the first college basketball coach to win three national titles (NAIA) when he coached down South and known as one of the great ambassador for all that athletics stands for if you talk to anyone who knew him.
At the VESPYS, the CSU Athletics Award Show, Ben Willeford and Riley Shaw were honored. Riley Shaw won the most outstanding male athlete of the year award. Ben Willeford was awarded Mr Viking which goes to the graduating male senior with the most school spirit. Last year, senior wrestler Corbin Boone also won the award. These awards are voted on by fellow student-athletes as well as coaches and athletic staff.
CSU wrestling has much to be proud of in these young athletes. Thank you to everyone who supports their efforts.