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WRESTLING

WRESTLING

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WRESTLING

James Green

Big Ten regular season: Tied for fourth

Big Ten tournament: Fifth

Preseason prediction: The Huskers expected to be better as five national qualifiers returned and a group of talented wrestlers were coming in.

How it played out: Four of the five returning national qualifiers - James Green, Robert Kokesh, JakeSueflohn and Austin Wilson - made repeat trips to nationals. And among the younger wrestlers, freshmen Tim Lambert and T.J. Dudley were nationally ranked in the top 10 at times during the season. The Huskers sent seven to nationals and finished 11th as a team.

Success or struggle: A success. The Huskers lost just two duals, which matched the fewest in a season during Mark Manning's 14 seasons as coach. NU also had two wrestlers finish in the top four at the national championships.

Standout/star: Green and Kokesh. Green, who was seventh at nationals his first two seasons, finished third last season to become a three-time All-American. Kokesh earned his 100th career win at NU on his way to a 37-3 record. After placing third at nationals the previous season, he finished fourth this year, despite suffering a torn ACL during the meet.

Season high: Going 4-0 in Big Ten duals on the road — and all four were against ranked teams. The best weekend of that stretch came in late January when they overpowered No. 11 Ohio State 28-12 and then two days later rolled past No. 21 Purdue 28-9.

Season low: Both of the Huskers' dual losses did come at home, including a 17- 16 defeat to No. 11 Michigan on senior night. The other loss was 23-9 to Iowa, which finished fourth at nationals, in a dual that drew a school-record 3,946 fans to the Devaney Center.

Trending: Up. Eight starters are expected to return. Green, Kokesh and Sueflohn will be among the nation's best at their respective weight classes.

— Gene Schinzel

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