May 19, 2011
The National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) announced today that Wyoming student-athletes Cole Dallaserra and Joe LeBlanc were selected to its 2010-11 All-Academic team. The Cowboys, who both earned a perfect 4.0 grade-point average during the spring semester, joined 90 other wrestlers around the nation in earning the honor.
"These men have personified the total effort we expect from our wrestling team," UW head coach Mark Branch said. "Our team as a whole has made steady improvements in the classroom over the past few years and this trend needs to continue. We expect to have multiple student-athletes on the Academic All-America list every year and we are not far from our team being nationally ranked academically. I am proud of the leadership Cole and Joe have shown on the mat and especially in the classroom."
LeBlanc, a kinesiology major, earned his second-straight accolade with a 3.34 cumulative GPA after the spring semester. Last season he was the first UW wrestler to earn the NWCA academic award and All-America honors on the mat since Brandon Alderman in 1996. LeBlanc wrapped up his junior season in March with a sixth-place finish at 184 pounds in the NCAA Championships to become a three-time All-American, after posting a 29-5 record during the campaign.
Dallaserra claimed the academic honor for the first time in his career with a 3.48 GPA and graduated with his degree in rangeland ecology this May. The senior concluded his Cowboy career with his best effort, as he went 29-9 this season at 149 pounds to win the West Regional tournament and qualify for the NCAA Championships. He earned UW's Joe McDaniel Most Improved Wrestler award after the season and was also named a National Strength and Conditioning Association All-American.
To qualify for the NWCA All-Academic team, wrestlers must have at least a 3.2 cumulative GPA, been an NCAA qualifier or won 60 percent of his total schedule and must have competed in at least 60 percent of said schedule. Wrestlers can also earn a spot on the team if they have a 3.0 cumulative GPA and been an NCAA All-American.