Gopher Wrestling 2022-23


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Apr 9, 2022
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Head coach: Brandon Eggum (seventh season)

Assistants: Luke Becker, Trevor Brandvold, Zach Sanders

2022 NCAA tournament finish: 11th

2022 B10 tournament finish: 6th...

Last NCAA champion: Gable Steveson (2022)


Minnesota has up to 12 returning national qualifiers headlined by Gable Steveson, who could return for his final season of eligibility. The Golden Gophers return 2022 All-Americans Patrick McKee (125) and Jake Bergeland (141) along with 2021 All-American Brayton Lee (157) who was out last year with an untimely end-of-the-year injury.

Few teams have the balance and overall depth that Minnesota has, but that doesn’t necessarily mean NCAA tournament points.....

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STILLWATER, Okla. - For the first time since 2014, the University of Minnesota wrestling program has defeated Oklahoma State after marching into the historic Gallagher-Iba Arena to knock off the No. 5 Cowboys, 18-12.


And one last time.... Last year's 2022 NCAA Champion Gable Steveson highlights.

Upon the 2022 season the program moves forward into 2023.

Minnesota Wrestling has a rich history of champions. 23 individual champions (by 18 athletes), 3 national championship years, 195 All-Americans. 11 were Olympians.

This season so far is mixed.


Haven't been able to get excited about this program for years.

I don't have any proof of this, but I feel so many of our Gopher teams have a tough time getting up for their matches on Friday night.

Minnesota was ranked #12 in the nation as of last week. New rankings to come out soon.

and 19th on intermat, just barely ahead of North Dakota State

as Lee and others have dropped in the rankings, the gophers' prospects for points in the tournament continue to drop.

Critical meet for the Gophers -- and they are leading 14-3.




Gophers are on a roll!


And a huge win for Bailee O'Reilly over a really good wrestler Donnell Washington.

Minnesota leads 20-3.


Minnesota is dominating.


What a match! Slightly controversial win due to the stall point in this even, exhausting, hard-battled match.

With one match left, Minnesota leads 28-3. A dominating win for Minnesota.


Minnesota wins decisively over Indiana.


A great win for Coach Brandon Eggum and team.


Gophers trounce Indiana in road Big Ten wrestling dual meet​

Minnesota won seven of 10 matches, getting bonus points in three. Isaiah Salazar had a technical fall at 184 pounds and Patrick McKee at 125 and Jake Bergeland at 141 had major decisions.


just noting that its unlikely indiana will finish in the top 10 at the big ten wrestling tourney. this win was not a resume builder

Minnesota Gophers won all their close matches against Indiana.

It was entertaining to watch. Great effort! Way to go Gophers!

#11 MINNESOTA (28), #22 INDIANA (6)

125: #5 Patrick McKee (MINN) maj. dec. Jacob Moran (IND), 10-2

133: #31 Henry Porter (IND) dec. Jake Gliva (MINN), 3-1

141: #11 Jake Bergeland (MINN) dec. Cayden Rooks (IND), 12-0

149: #16 Michael Blockhus (MINN) dec. #31 Graham Rooks (IND), 6-2

157: #16 Brayton Lee (MINN) dec. #19 Derek Gilcher (IND), 3-2

165: Cael Carlson (MINN) dec. Nick South (IND), 5-1

174: #15 Bailee O'Reilly (MINN) dec. #18 Donnell Washington (IND), 9-8

184: #11 Isaiah Salazar (MINN) tech. fall Clayton Fielden (IND), 15-0

197: #28 Michial Foy (MINN) dec. Nick Willham (IND), 3-2 TB1

HWT: #30 Jacob Bullock (IND) dec. #27 Garrett Joles (MINN), 5-3

For Sunday's important match against Purdue at home, fans can buy a ticket for only $5.

I am going to a game next weekend.

Dual sport athlete the pride of Waconia High School, will wrestle for Gophers

WACONIA, Minn. -- Raw talent is raw at any age. Max McEnelly has gone from kindergarten free for alls, to wrestling freestyle on the US U17 World Team. This summer, he went to Rome and came back with a bronze medal.

"It's just cool a experience that not everyone gets to take and I'm grateful for it. But this isn't the end. I hope to make many more world teams after this. That's the goal," said McEnelly.

McEnelly is the top-ranked 195-pound high school wrestler in America. But he's also the most accomplished running back in Waconia history.

"I'm just excited I got to play my last year. A lot of people didn't know if I'd play because people didn't think I wanted to get hurt for wrestling. But I've been playing with them since I was a freshman in high school so felt like I'd let a lot of people down if I didn't come out and help my team win some football games," said McEnelly.

He did that. The Wildcats went 7-3 behind McEnelly's 31 rushing touchdowns -- top ten in the state in scores and yards....

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Max Mcenelly is a two-time Minnesota AAA state champion from Waconia High School. He won his first title as a freshman in 2020 at 170 pounds, and his second in 2021 at 182 pounds.


If J would have stepped down when he should have and let Morgan take over I think we would be in a much better place.
Can't let that one slide.

In 2005, after making a career change, I was a student teacher in Corvallis, Oregon. One day, after class, I struck up a conversation with a 16 year old wrestler. We talked about U of M wrestling and J Robinson. He knew all about him.

About 8 years ago I began teaching in the Alaskan villages and ended up as wrestling coach for two years. There were kids - not a lot but a few - in bush villages wearing J Robinson wrestling camp sweatshirts. He was the "rock star" of wrestling coaches around the country. But we let him go.

Not that much different with Clem Haskins and the basketball program. Things were booming in Williams Arena. Soon after we went to the Final Four, Clem miss-stepped. We let him go.

What happened to the basketball program also happened to the wrestling program. A coach made a mistake and they were pushed out the door. And, the programs took a downward trajectory.

Now, anyone in a long career is going to make a miss-step or two. It is the job of their supervisor to get them back on the right path. In the case of Gopher athletics, the athletic director has that role.

Instead of using a helping hand to redirect our sports programs, we elect to "blow them up". How's that working for us?

Dual sport athlete the pride of Waconia High School, will wrestle for Gophers


"In Rome, McEnelly helped Team USA win its first ever U17 Freestyle championship, earning a bronze medal at the 2022 World Cadets Wrestling Championships. The Waconia wrestler was one of the nine Americans that medalled at the championships (out of 10), skyrocketing them to first place with 190 points."


Max McEnelly [at time of article] is a three-time Minnesota state champion for Waconia high school, posting a perfect 138-0 record in his past three prep seasons. He slots in as the pound-for-pound best wrestler in the state of Minnesota according to TheGuillotine, and is ranked as the No. 8 recruit in MatScouts' Class of 2023 Big Board. McEnelly is also highly accomplished in freestyle, becoming a Fargo national champion in 2021 and a U17 World bronze medalist this past summer at 92-kilograms. [Also see other articles.]

Gavin Nelson is a two-time state champion for Simley high school under head coach and Gopher alumni Will Short. Nelson is a four-time state placewinner and the second-ranked pound-for-pound wrestler in Minnesota per TheGuillotine. Nelson is also a highly-touted recruit nationally as the No. 23 wrestler in MatScouts Class of 2023 Big Board, and was also a 2021 Cadet World Team member at 92-kilograms.

Ethan Riddle earned his first Wisconsin state title at 160 pounds in Division-I and is a two-time state placewinner and three-time state qualifier. WIWrestle has Riddle ranked as the No. 8 pound-for-pound senior in the state of Wisconsin, and MatScouts puts Riddle at No. 138 in the Class of 2023 Big Board.

Rhett Koenig, hailing out of Prairie Du Chien, Wis. Koenig is a three-time Wisconsin state champion in Division-III, and currently holds a 119-9 career prep record. Koenig also excels academically, sitting at the top of his class with a 4.0 GPA.


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