March 13, 2012
NCAA Championships Notes
About the NCAA Championships
This year's NCAA Championships will take place March 15-17 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis, Mo. Bucknell will bring two qualifiers to the event, giving it 20 over the last six years. The top eight finishers in each weight class earn All-America honors. Last year, 2011 graduate Kevin LeValley (7th at 149) became the third Bison to be named an All-American in back-to-back seasons.
Tournament Schedule (All times Eastern)
Thursday, March 15
Session 1: 12 p.m. (First Round)
Session 2: 7:30 p.m. (Second Round)
Friday, March 16
Session 3: 11 a.m. (Quarterfinals)
Session 4: 7 p.m. (Semifinals)
Saturday, March 17
Session 5: 11 a.m. (Place Finals)
Parade of All-Americans: 7:05-7:20 p.m.
Session 6: 7:30 p.m. (Finals)
* Most of NCAA Championship will be televised or broadcast online on the ESPN family of networks
Thanks to its two NCAA qualifiers this year, Bucknell has now had 68 individuals qualify for the NCAA Championships. Twenty of those berths have come in the last six years by 10 different wrestlers. Corey Lear and Austin Miller are both making their first appearance at NCAAs.
How They Earned Spots
Austin Miller earned an automatic berth to the NCAA Championships based on his third-place finish at the EIWA Championships. Corey Lear finished fifth at the EIWA Championships, but had to wait until three days after the conclusion of the conference tournament to find out he received an at-large berth. The top four wrestlers in Lear's weight class received automatic bids.
Austin Miller's first NCAA opponent is Minnesota senior Zach Sanders. Sanders is the second seed in the 33-person bracket and he brings a 25-3 record into the NCAA Championships. Sanders posted a runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships. Miller and Sanders have never faced each other.
Corey Lear's first opponent is top-seeded David Taylor of Penn State. Taylor, a two-time Big Ten Wrestler of the Year, is 27-0 this year and finished second in the 157-pound bracket at last year's NCAA Championships. Lear and Taylor have never faced each other.
Records vs. the Field
Austin Miller is 2-7 against the 125-pound field at the NCAA Championships. His two wins came against Princeton's Garrett Frey and Buffalo's Max Soria.
Corey Lear is a combined 2-7 against the other 32 wrestlers in the NCAA Championships 165-pound bracket. His wins came against Central Michigan's Mike Ottinger and Army's Cole Gracey.
Bucknell's EIWA Championships History
Bucknell first joined the EIWA in 1999-2000 and has wrestled at the EIWA Championships nine times. The first year the Bison competed they were not awarded team points. Since then, they have finished 10th, 12th, ninth, eighth, tied for third, fourth, eighth and 13th.
Bucknell's EIWA Team Finishes
2000: no team points awarded
2001: 10th (30 points)
2002: 12th (12.5)
2007: 9th (40)
2008: 8th (43.5)
2009: t-3rd (79)
2010: 4th (103.5)
2011: 8th (59)
2012: 13th (28.5)
Bucknell has had eight All-Americans in its history, with Bobby Ferraro (1994, 1995), Andy Rendos (2009, 2010) and Kevin LeValley (2010, 2011) earning the honor twice. At least one Bison has earned All-America honors three consecutive years.
1989: Tom Marchetti (4th place, 167 pounds)
1991: Bryan Burns (8th place, 190 pounds)
1994: Bobby Ferraro (8th place, 177 pounds)
1995: Bobby Ferraro (7th place, 177 pounds)
2009: Andy Rendos (5th place, 165 pounds)
2010: Andy Rendos (6th place, 165 pounds), Kevin LeValley (7th place, 149 pounds)
2011: Kevin LeValley (7th place, 149 pounds)
Return of Bucknell Wrestling
The Bucknell wrestling program was discontinued following the 2001-02 season, but was brought back in 2005 thanks in large part to a generous donation from EIWA Hall of Famer Bill Graham '62. The Bison's first season of competition after reinstatement was 2006-07 and they are 55-62-2 (.471) since then. Ten different wrestlers have combined for 20 NCAA appearances and four All-America certificates over that span.
Bucknell's Year-by-Year Records Since Reinstatement
2006-07: 12-9-1, 3-3-1 EIWA
2007-08: 9-11-1, 4-4 EIWA
2008-09: 11-9, 5-3 EIWA
2009-10: 12-6, 6-0 EIWA
2010-11: 7-11, 2-5 EIWA
2011-12: 4-16, 2-4 EIWA
Wirnsberger Second on Wins List
Bucknell head coach Dan Wirnsberger ranks second on the Bison career wins list with 55. He has guided the Bison to a 55-62-2 mark over the last six years and trails only longtime Bison mentor Bob Ferraro, who posted a 169-175-6 mark from 1974-97. On a career level, Wirnsberger owns a solid 81-84-2 mark.