Sept. 23, 2008
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
University of Wyoming head wrestling coach Mark Branch has announced that on Jan. 10-11, 2009, the Cowboys will participate in the prestigious National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) National Duals in Cedar Falls, Iowa. The 16-team, double-elimination event is widely regarded as the head-to-head dual national championship in collegiate wrestling.
"These duals are a great opportunity for our program to wrestle against some of the best teams in the country," stated Branch. "It is an honor for Wyoming to have been asked to join this field and we are looking forward to the challenge. Our guys will benefit from the exposure to this event and the environment that surrounds it."
The Division I schools participating in this year's dual championship are Boise State, Buffalo, Cornell, Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Northern Iowa, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin and Wyoming. This is the first time since the event began in 1989 that the Cowboys have been included in the field.
Over the course of those two days, the NWCA also hosts dual championships for Division II, III, NAIA and NJCAA schools at the UNI Dome in Cedar Falls. Seedings and brackets will be announced at a later date.
Iowa is the defending 2008 DI team champion. Minnesota had won the title the previous two years, 2006 and 2007.
The National Duals are part of a widely varied season schedule for UW. Wyoming will wrestle in multiple national tournaments during the first few months of the 2008-09 season and then go head-to-head with a wide range of opponents in dual competition prior to their conference championship and the NCAA Tournament in March.
The Cowboys begin their competition slate on Nov. 8 in Powell, Wyo., at the Northwest Wyoming Tournament. The `Pokes will then host back-to-back home events, a dual versus PAC-10 school Stanford on Nov. 14 and the Cowboy Open Tournament on Nov. 15. Over the following month UW will send wrestlers to the Omaha Open, the Las Vegas Invitational and the Reno Tournament of Champions. Wyoming's dual season gets into full swing in January of `09 with 17 team match-ups, including the likes of Duke, North Carolina State and Oklahoma State on the road, as well as league meets against South Dakota State, North Dakota State and Air Force at home. UW will qualify for nationals at the Western Wrestling Conference Championship on March 7 in Greeley, Colo., and then hope to send a strong contingent to the NCAA National Championship, March 19-21 in St. Louis, Mo.
For the Cowboy's complete 2008-09 schedule, CLICK HERE.