ON THE MAT
The University of Iowa wrestling team travels to Tulsa, Oklahoma, to compete at the 2023 NCAA Championships from March 16-18 at the BOK Center. The three-day tournament begins Thursday with Session I starting at 11 a.m. (CT) and Session II at 6 p.m. The quarterfinals and consolation round begin Friday at 11 a.m and the semifinals begin Friday at 7 p.m. The medal round starts Saturday at 10 a.m. and the championship finals begin Saturday at 6 p.m.
• Morning sessions will be available on ESPNU, while evening sessions will be live on ESPN. Individual mat coverage will be available on WatchESPN.
HAWKEYE WRESTLING HISTORY
The Hawkeyes have won 24 national titles and 37 Big Ten titles. Iowa’s 55 NCAA Champions have won a total of 85 NCAA individual titles, crowning seven three-time and 16 two-time champions.
• The Hawkeyes’ 118 Big Ten champions have combined for 210 conference titles. There have been eight four-time, 19 three-time and 31 two-time Big Ten champions from Iowa.
• Iowa’s 161 All-Americans have earned All-America status 357 times, including one five-time, 24 four-time, 38 three-time and 40 two-time honorees.
CHASING THE HAWKEYES
Gary Kurdelmeier led Iowa to its first NCAA Championship in 1975, and in the 48 years since, the Hawkeyes have accumulated 24 team titles, more than any other school — Penn State (10), Oklahoma State (7), Minnesota (3), Iowa State (2), Ohio State (1) and Arizona State (1).
NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS OUTSTANDING WRESTLERS
Ten different Hawkeyes have been named NCAA Championships Outstanding Wrestler. They include Chuck Yagla (1976), Bruce Kinseth (1979), Jim Zalesky (1984), Barry Davis (1985), Mary Kistler (1986), Tom Brands (1992), Terry Steiner (1993), Lincoln McIlravy (1997), Joe Williams (1998) and Brent Metcalf (2008).
Iowa has six All-Americans and a combined 15 All-America honors in its NCAA lineup.
• Iowa’s All-American lineup includes Abe Assad (1X), Tony Cassioppi (3X), Spencer Lee (4X), Max Murin (1X), Jacob Warner (4X) and Real Woods (2X).
• The Hawkeyes have crowned at least one All-American in 51 consecutive tournaments, a stretch dating back to 1972. Iowa has totaled 317 All-America honors during that stretch.
• Iowa has had at least five All-Americans in nine straight seasons and 14 times in head coach Tom Brands’ 16 seasons.
• The six All-Americans in Iowa’s postseason lineup have a combined record of 109-17 ( (.865) in 2022-23.
• Spencer Lee and Jacob Warner are both four-time All-Americans, Tony Cassioppi is a three-time All-American, Real Woods is a two-time All-American (at Stanford) and Abe Assad and Max Murin were 2020 All-Americans.
LEE TARGETS FOURTH NCAA TITLE
Spencer Lee can join an elite list with a fourth NCAA title this week in Tulsa. Lee can become the first Hawkeye and fifth/sixth wrestler in NCAA history to win four Division I national titles. Cornell’s Yianni Diakomihalis (149) is also going for a fourth national title.
• The four wrestlers to win four NCAA titles are Oklahoma State’s Pat Smith (‘90-92, ‘94), Iowa State’s Cael Sanderson (‘99-02), Cornell’s Kyle Dake (‘10-13), and Ohio State’s Logan Stieber (‘12-15).
TWO MORE FIVE-TIMERS?
Fifth-year seniors Spencer Lee and Jacob Warner have the opportunity to join the five-time All-America club. Michael Kemerer was the first Hawkeye to garner five All-America honors, earning the distinction from 2017-18; 2020-22.
• Lee is a three-time NCAA Champion at 125 and he earned first-team All-America honors during the COVID-shortened 2020 season.
• Warner was the NCAA runner-up at 197 in 2022 to go along with a seventh place finish as a freshman and fourth as a junior. He also earned All-America honors in 2020.
Senior Tony Cassioppi can become Iowa’s 25th four-time All-American at the NCAA Championships in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
• There have been 24 four-time All-Americans in the history of Iowa wrestling. Joe Scarpello was Iowa’s first four-timer. He won the NCAA title in 1950 to earn his fourth All-America honor.
Tom Brands has coached eight four-timers and one five-timer since his first national tournament as Iowa’s head coach in 2007. Mark Perry won NCAA titles in 2007 and 2008, the third and fourth All-America honors of his career.
Derek St. John, Cory Clark and Brandon Sorensen were four-timers under Brands. St. John won a national title in 2013 and was an All-American from 2011-14. Clark capped his fourth straight All-America honor with a national championship in 2017. Sorensen earned All-America honors from 2015-18.
Spencer Lee, Jaydin Eierman and Michael Kemerer became four-time All-Americans in 2021. Lee won NCAA titles in 2018, 2019 and 2021, and was named an All-American after COVID-19 cancelled the 2020 national tournament. Kemerer was an All-America honors in 2017-18 and 2020-22. Eierman earned three All-America honors at Missouri from 2017-19 and was runner-up at the 2021 NCAA Championships.
• Austin DeSanto and Alex Marinelli both earned their fourth All-America honors in 2022. DeSanto earned the nod honors from 2019-22, while Marinelli was an All-American from 2018-20, 2022.
The Hawkeyes are sending a 10-man lineup to the NCAA Championships for the fourth straight year and for the seventh time since 2007, Tom Brands first year as head coach (2010, 2014, 2015, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023).
Each of Iowa’s 10 qualifiers earned automatic bids to the NCAA tournament at the 2023 Big Ten Championships. It marks the second straight year that all 10 Hawkeyes earned an automatic berth at the NCAA qualifying tournament. Prior to 2022, the last time it occurred was 2010.
Iowa is one of four schools sending 10 wrestlers to the national tournament (Missouri, Oklahoma State, Virginia Tech).
The Hawkeyes won national titles with a 10-man lineup in 2010 and 2021. Iowa placed fourth in 2014 and second in 2015 and third in 2022. The 2020 NCAA Championships were cancelled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Iowa has sent at least eight athletes to the NCAA Championships in each of head coach Tom Brands’ 17 seasons.
The Hawkeyes have eight wrestlers with previous NCAA experience. Those eight wrestlers have wrestled in a combined 15 NCAA Championships.
• Two Iowa wrestlers — Cobe Siebrecht and Patrick Kennedy — are making their national tournament debuts. Abe Assad, Max Murin, Jacob Warner and Tony Cassioppi were all in the 2020 field before the tournament was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
1st: Cobe Siebrecht (Jr., 157), Patrick Kennedy (So., 165)
2nd: Nelson Brands (Sr., 174), Abe Assad (Jr., 184)
3rd: Brody Teske (Jr., 133), Real Woods (Sr., 141)
4th: Spencer Lee (Sr., 125), Max Murin (Sr., 149), Jacob Warner (Sr., 197)
HAWKEYES IN THE FINALS
Jacob Warner advanced to the 197-pound finals of the 2022 NCAA Championships to extend Iowa’s streak of NCAA finals appearances to 32 consecutive tournaments. Iowa has had at least one wrestler in the NCAA finals every year since 1990, and in 46 of the last 47 tournaments dating back to 1975.
125 | #1 SPENCER LEE | SENIOR
• Three-time NCAA champion Spencer Lee enters the tournament with a 17-0 record with 15 bonus point victories — eight falls, four tech falls and three majors. Lee can become the first Hawkeye and fifth wrestler in NCAA history to win four NCAA titles.
• Lee earned a spot in the NCAA Championship after winning the Big Ten title — the third of his career — to earn an automatic berth. Lee was named the Big Ten Wrestler of the Year and Most Outstanding Wrestler of the Championship. He is the second Hawkeye all-time (and third Big Ten wrestler) to be a three-time Big Ten Wrestler of the Year (Mark Ironside).
• Lee is 9-0 against ranked opponents this season and he is 11-0 against other wrestlers in the NCAA field.
• Lee is 15-0 all-time at the NCAA Championships with three pins, four technical falls, four majors.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won five NCAA titles at 125 pounds (Matt McDonough 2010, 2012; Spencer Lee (2018, 2019, 2021).
Spencer Lee – 4th Appearance
2018 – #3 seed, National Champion (5-0)
2019 – #3 seed, National Champion (5-0)
2021 – #1 seed, National Champion (5-0)
133 | #24 BRODY TESKE | JUNIOR
• Brody Teske will be making his third NCAA Championships appearance and first as a Hawkeye. He earned an automatic berth after finishing seventh at the Big Ten Championships.
• Teske is seeded 24th at 133 pounds as he brings a 9-4 record to Tulsa with two bonus point victories — one major, one tech fall. He is 3-4 against the NCAA field this season.
• Teske is 4-4 all-time at the NCAA Championships, competing at 125 pounds at Northern Iowa (2021-22). The Fort Dodge, Iowa, native was the No. 5 seed in 2021 and the No. 15 seed in 2022.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won four NCAA titles at 133 pounds (Eric Juergens 2000, 2001; Tony Ramos 2014 and Cory Clark 2017).
Brody Teske – 3rd Appearance
2021 – #5 Seed (125) – Lost in consolations (2-2)
2022 – #15 Seed (125) – Lost in consolations (2-2)
141 | #1 REAL WOODS | SENIOR
• Two-time All-American Real Woods is the No. 1 seed at 141 pounds after winning the Big Ten title. It will be Woods’ third NCAA appearance and first as a Hawkeye.
• The New Mexico native is 16-0 this season with nine bonus point wins — two falls, four tech falls, three majors. During his career-long 16-match winning streak, Woods is outscoring his opponents, 144-16. He is 10-0 this season against the NCAA field.
• Woods is 5-5 all-time at the NCAA Championships. He advanced to the semifinals last season, falling 3-2 to top-seeded Nick Lee before going on to finish sixth. Woods lost in the consolations, going 2-2 in 2021.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won two NCAA titles at 141 pounds (Doug Schwab 1999, Cliff Moore 2004).
Real Woods – 3rd Appearance
2020 – #3 seed, All-American
2021 – #21 Seed – lost in Round of 12 (2-2)
2022 – #4 Seed – 6th Place, All-American
149 | #8 MAX MURIN | SENIOR
• Max Murin is making his fourth NCAA appearance after placing third at the Big Ten Championships to earn an automatic berth. The Pennsylvania native enters the tournament with a 21-4 record with a career-best 12 bonus point victories. He is 8-4 against the NCAA field this season.
• Murin is 6-6 all-time at the NCAA Championships. He went 2-2 at 141 as the No. 22 seed in 2019 before falling in the quarterfinals and in the Round of 12 on the backside of the bracket. Murin was an All-American in 2020 and was the No. 7 seed at 141 at the NCAAs before the tournament was cancelled due to COVID-19.
• Murin earned an at-large berth in 2021 at 149 where he won two matches on top side before losing a pair of overtime decisions — first in the quarters and later in the Round of 12. Last season, Murin advanced to the quarterfinals before losing a 6-3 decision to Yianni Diakomihalis and in the Round of 12.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won three NCAA titles at 149 pounds (T.J. Williams 1999, Brent Metcalf 2008, 2010).
Max Murin – 4th Appearance
2019 – #22 Seed (141) – Lost in Round of 12 (2-2)
2020 – #7 Seed (141) – All-American
2021 – #12 Seed (149) – Lost in Round of 12 (2-2)
2022 – #8 Seed (149) – Lost in Round of 12 (2-2)
157 | #14 COBE SIEBRECHT | JUNIOR
• Junior Cobe Siebrecht is making his first NCAA appearance after finishing seventh at the Big Ten Championships to earn an automatic berth. The Lisbon, Iowa, native is 13-6 this season with seven bonus point victories (four majors, three falls).
• Siebrecht is 8-5 against the NCAA field this season.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won three NCAA titles at 157 pounds (T.J. Williams 2001, Derek St. John 2013).
Cobe Siebrecht – 1st Appearance
165 | #6 PATRICK KENNEDY | SOPHOMORE
• Sophomore Patrick Kennedy is making his first NCAA appearance. He earned an automatic berth after finishing as the Big Ten runner-up at 165 pounds. The Minnesota native is 19-3 this season with his only three losses coming to David Carr and Dean Hamiti. He has 12 bonus point victories (six majors, three falls, three techs).
• Kennedy is 8-3 against the NCAA field this season.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won two NCAA titles at 165 pounds (Mark Perry, 2006, 2007).
Patrick Kennedy – 1st Appearance
174 | #11 NELSON BRANDS | SENIOR
• Senior Nelson Brands is making his second NCAA appearance after earning an automatic berth with a fifth place finish at the Big Ten Championships. Brands, the No. 11 seed, is 10-6 this season.
• Brands went 1-2 at the NCAAs in 2021, competing at 184 pounds. He is 5-6 against the NCAA field this season.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won one NCAA title at 174 pounds (Jay Borschel, 2010).
Nelson Brands – 2nd Appearance
2021 – #12 Seed (184) – Lost in consolations (1-2)
184 | #12 ABE ASSAD | JUNIOR
Junior Abe Assad will be making his second career NCAA appearance. He finished seventh at the Big Ten Championships to earn an automatic berth.
• Assad is 18-4 this season with seven bonus point victories. He is 6-3 against the NCAA field.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, no Hawkeye has won the 184-pound NCAA title.
Abe Assad – 2nd Appearance
2020 – #11 Seed – All-American
2022 – #18 Seed – Lost in consolations (1-2)
197 | #14 JACOB WARNER | SENIOR
• Four-time All-American Jacob Warner enters the national tournament as the No. 14 seed following a fifth-place finish at the 2022 Big Ten Championships.
• Warner is 16-6 with nine bonus point victories. He is 6-6 against the NCAA field this season.
• The Illinois native is 13-5 in his previous four NCAA appearances. He finished as the NCAA runner-up last season, following a fourth place showing in 2021 and a seventh place finish in 2019. He was an All-American and the No. 5 seed in 2020 when the NCAA Championships were cancelled.
• Warner’s five NCAA losses have been by a combined seven points, including a pair of overtime setbacks.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, no Hawkeye has won the 197-pound NCAA title.
Jacob Warner – 4th Appearance
2019 – #5 Seed – 7th Place – All-American (4-2)
2020 – #5 Seed – All-American
2021 – #5 Seed, 4th Place – All-American (5-2)
2022 – #6 Seed – 2nd Place — All-American (4-1)
285 | #3 TONY CASSIOPPI | SENIOR
• Three-time All-American Senior Tony Cassioppi enters the NCAA Championships with a No. 4 seed after placing third at the 2023 Big Ten Championships. The Illinois native is 21-3 this season with 14 bonus point victories, including a team and career-high 11 falls — the most by a Hawkeye since Thomas Gilman in 2016-17.
• Cassioppi is 8-3 against the NCAA field with his only losses coming to top-seeded Mason Parris and three-seed Greg Kerkvliet.
• Cassioppi is 9-3 in his career at the NCAA Championships. He finished seventh in 2022, he lost in the semifinals to Gable Steveson before finishing third in 2021 and earned All-America honors in 2020 when the NCAA meet was cancelled.
• Since 1999, when the NCAA implemented the weight classes used today, Iowa has won one NCAA title at 285 pounds (Steve Mocco, 2003).
Tony Cassioppi – 3rd Appearance
2020 – #3 Seed – All-American
2021 – #5 Seed – 3rd Place – All-American (5-1)
2022 – #4 Seed – 7th Place – All-American (4-2)
Senior Spencer Lee won his 55th consecutive match with his 8-2 victory over Nebraska’s Liam Cronin in the Big Ten final at 125 pounds on March 5. It was his third career Big Ten title, making him the 19th three-time champion in program history.
• Lee is 17-0 with 15 bonus point victories this season. He has eight falls, four tech falls and three majors. He is outscoring his opponents, 187-32.
• During the 55-match winning streak, that dates back to the 2019 NCAA Championships, Lee has outscored his opposition, 640-73. It is the eighth-longest winning streak in Iowa wresting history and one shy of passing Lincoln McIlravy for seventh on the list. Iowa’s longest winning streaks: Jim Zalesky (89), Troy Steiner (74), Tom Brands (69), Brent Metcalf (69), Mark Ironside (67), T.J. Williams (67), Lincoln McIlravy (56).
• With five wins in Tulsa, Lee would notch his 100th victory of his collegiate career. He would be the 42nd wrestler in school history to reach 100 career wins.
• Lee is 95-5 in his collegiate career with 81 bonus point victories — 34 pins, 32 technical falls and 15 majors (85.3 percent). Thirty-eight of his wins have ended in the first period, including 11 falls in under one minute.