COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- The Maryland wrestling team will compete in its third-ever Big Ten Wrestling Championship event March 4-5 in Bloomington, Indiana.
The Terps will look to qualify wrestlers for the NCAA Championships while making a climb up the team standings ladder after finishing 14th the past two seasons.
Sessions I and II on Saturday, as well as Session III on Sunday will be streamed live on BTN Plus. The final Championship Session (Session IV) will be broadcast live on the Big Ten Network.
Live stats/results will be available throughout the tournament via Trackwrestling.com
- Redshirt senior Billy Rappo (133), redshirt sophomore Alfred Bannister (149) and sophomore Youssif Hemida (285) earned top-eight pre-seeds in a release made by the conference offices on Feb. 27.
- The pre-seeds, as voted on by the conference’s coaches, rank the top eight wrestlers in eight weight classes, along with all 14 starters in five weight classes due to the Big Ten receiving nine or more NCAA Championships qualifier allocations in those classes.
- Maryland has produced four NCAA qualifiers out of the Big Ten Tournament over the past two seasons, which included Goeffrey Alexander last season. Alexander posted an eighth place finish in the 133-pound division.
- Alexander, in addition to Lou Mascola (157) and Spencer Myers (285) punched their tickets to the 2015 NCAA Tournament at the 2015 B1Gs. Myers is the top placer all-time for the Terps at the event, when he took seventh in the heavyweight class that year.
- This will be the second career B1G Championship appearance for Michael Beck (125), Alfred Bannnister (149), Justin Alexander (157), Youssif Hemida (285).
- Billy Rappo (133), Ryan Diehl (141), Patrick Gerish (165), Josh Ugalde (174), Idris White (184) and David-Brian Whisler (197) will all make their first career appearance at the Big Ten Tournament.
- The NCAA has announced qualifier allocations for the 2017 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships on February 23.
- Each qualifying tournament was awarded spots per weight class based on current year data. Each wrestler was measured on the following: Division I winning percentage at the weight class; ratings percentage index (RPI); and coaches’ ranking.
- The Big Ten received the most automatic qualifiers of any conference and 77 total wrestlers between the 10 weight classes will punch their ticket to the NCAA Tournament this weekend.
- After all of the qualifying events have concluded, the NCAA Division I Wrestling Committee will meet in-person to select the remaining 49 at-large qualifiers, which will be announced on March 7. All weight classes will consist of 33 wrestlers. The at-large selections will be made based on the following criteria: head-to-head competition; quality wins; coaches’ ranking; results against common opponents; RPI; qualifying event placement; and winning percentage.
- Redshirt senior Billy Rappo has come into his own down the stretch of his final collegiate season, winning six out of his last eight matches.
- Rappo won his final three Big Ten dual matches which included a fall over Tristan Law (Penn State). Rappo is the only wrestler to pin a Nittany Lion at Rec Hall this season, and the first to do it since December 14, 2014.
- Rappo finished the year 13-11 overall, and is 9-5 since dropping down to 133 pounds at Midlands.
- Sophomore Youssif Hemida has put together a stellar second half of his sophomore campaign, going 9-2 over the months of January and February to nab the #7 seed in the heavyweight division.
- Hemida’s lone losses over that stretch came at the hands of #1 Kyle Snyder (Ohio State) and #3 Nick Nevills (Penn State), while the Mamaroneck, N.Y. native is 17-9 overall on the year.
- Hemida picked up a ranked win to end the regular season on Feb. 19, defeating #17 Joey Goodhart, 6-4 in SV-1. It was his fifth sudden victory win of the season.
- Maryland's qualifiers will next gear up for the 2017 NCAA Championships in St. Louis, Mo. March 16-18.