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    NWCA DI All-Academic top 30 & individuals announced

    MANHEIM, Pa. -- There's a new king at the top of the National Wrestling Coaches Association's All-Academic teams and individuals on Friday.

    Eastern Michigan's wrestling team checked in with a team grade-point average of 3.382, edging second-place Harvard, which checked in with a 3.372. It's the first time Eastern Michigan has claimed top honors, while Harvard was the top team each of the past two years.

    Link: NWCA All-Academic Top 30 Teams

    Link: NWCA All-Academic Individuals

    Awarded annually, the NWCA All-Academic Team contains 118 student-athletes and of those, 28 were All-Americans. This year's list also includes half of the Division I champions and eight of the 20 wrestlers who competed in the finals in St. Louis back in March.

    "What's extremely promising about the All-Academic standings for the teams and the individuals is there is a lot of competition for the top spots in these rankings," said NWCA Executive Director Mike Moyer. "As you might expect, some of our nation's finest academic institutions, like the Ivy League schools for example, are represented very well, but when you see schools like Eastern Michigan, SIU-Edwardsville and South Dakota State, it goes to show the nation that great educations and great educational resources can be found everywhere. These schools know they have top-notch academics and we're glad to be able to have our student-athletes showcase it through wrestling."

    The team grade-point average was determined using a system that includes 12 student-athletes from each program. A total of 10 of these came from the wrestlers that were entries in the NCAA tournament conference qualifier.

    American University (3.358) Gardner-Webb (3.352) and Brown (3.328) rounded out the top five teams. It's the second straight year Harvard, Gardner-Webb and Brown have landed in the top five.

    Duke, Bucknell, Stanford, SIU-Edwardsville, and Minnesota rounded out the top 10.

    Eastern Michigan was 30th least year. The Eagles are represented individually by graduate student Brandon Zeerip. The Michigan native and 157-pounder is pursuing his Master's Degree in Business Administration with a 3.88 GPA.

    Harvard's top individual was 197-pound senior James Fox. The Psychology major has a 3.803 GPA.

    SIU-Edwardsville broke into the Top 10 for the first time. Coach Jeremy Spates' team came in ninth with a 3.242 GPA. The Cougars had two individuals on the All-Academic Team, Jake Residori and Jake Tindle.

    Individually, NCAA champions Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State), Matt Brown (Penn State), Gabe Dean (Cornell), Kyven Gadson (Iowa State) and Nick Gwiazdowski (N.C. State) were all on the All-Academic Team.

    Three other finalists -- Brian Realbuto (Cornell), Tyler Wilps (Pittsburgh), and Adam Coon (Michigan) -- were on the team as well.

    Two schools -- Missouri and Stanford -- each had five wrestlers on the All-Academic team while Duke, Lehigh, Nebraska, Old Dominion, Penn State, Penn and South Dakota State had four each.

    Of note, Penn State's Brown earned an NCAA postgraduate scholarship, while Old Dominion's Tristan Warner ended his career as a two-time recipient of the NCAA's Elite 89 Award.

    NCAA team champion Ohio State had two wrestlers on the All-Academic Team -- Tomasello and All-American Bo Jordan.

    Ninety-six wrestlers on the team qualified for the NCAA Division I Championships, which is an increase of 19 wrestlers compared to the 2013-14 team.

    Of the 77 Division I wrestling programs, 56 teams had at least one representative on the All-Academic Team.

    "The NWCA All-Academic Team and Individual Team is one of the best acknowledgements that we can give to our coaches and athletes at the end of a physically grueling season" said NWCA Executive Director Mike Moyer. "These young men have proved that they are not only talented competitors but are leaders in the classroom as well. The NWCA Board of Directors and staff look forward to watching these student-athletes continue their success at the collegiate level and eventually as the leaders of the future once they earn their college degrees."

    About National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA)
    The National Wrestling Coaches Association, established in 1928, is a non-profit organization for the advancement of all levels of the sport of wrestling with a primary emphasis on developing coaches who work in academic environments. The membership embraces all people interested in amateur wrestling. The three core competencies of the NWCA are: coaching development, student-athlete welfare, and the promotion of wrestling.

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