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No. 9 Nebraska wrestling will have experience on their side this season

No. 9 Nebraska wrestling will have experience on their side this season

Check out the head coaches of Nebraska Athletics.

An experienced Nebraska wrestling team begins its season hosting a pair of in-state programs Thursday.

The ninth-ranked Huskers open with a dual against Chadron State at 7 p.m. then face UNK, the Division II runner-up last season ranked No. 2 this season.

Nebraska's lineup remains largely intact after the Huskers placed third in the Big Ten meet and 12th at nationals last winter. The team returns 29 letterwinners, including eight of the nine wrestlers who competed at nationals.

Leading the way is 174-pound senior Mikey Labriola, who placed third at nationals and is ranked third in his weight class in InterMat's preseason poll.

CJ Red, who placed at nationals for the third time last season, is back at 141. Other returners include Taylor Venz (184) and Eric Schultz (197), who like Red has been in Nebraska's starting lineup since 2017.

Among NU's newcomers are 125-pound transfer Boo Dryden, who qualified for the NCAA tournament with Minnesota. NU's starter at 125 last season was Liam Cronin, who transferred from Indiana.

Like the Huskers, UNK's lineup is loaded with experience as it returns 10 starters. The Lopers finished 1.5 points behind St. Cloud State for last year's national title.


November: 11, Chadron State and UNK, 7 p.m. 17, North Carolina, 8 p.m. 21, Daktronics Open, Brookings, S.D.

December: 3-4, Cliff Keen Invite, Las Vegas. 18, South Dakota State, 2 p.m.

January: 7, Purdue, TBA. 14, at Minnesota, 8 p.m. 21, at Wisconsin, TBA. 23, at Northwestern, TBA.

February: 4, Michigan, 8 p.m. 6, at Penn State, 11 a.m. 13, Illinois, 11 a.m. 20, Iowa, 6 p.m.

March: 5-6, Big Ten meet at Pinnacle Bank Arena. 17-19, NCAA meet at Detroit.

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