Matt Findlay gets his hand raised after a win at the NCAAs (Photo/Sam Janicki, SJanickiPhoto.com)
OREM, Utah -- Utah Valley University head wrestling coach Greg Williams has announced that returning national qualifier Matt Findlay will miss the 2019-20 season with an injury.
Findlay, who is a redshirt junior 149-pounder from Draper, Utah, was originally slated to come back from knee surgery last month but has since suffered another injury and will now miss the entire 2019-20 campaign.
Findlay had a breakout sophomore season for the Wolverines in 2018-19 in which he posted an impressive 17-4 record and qualified for his first trip to the NCAA Championships. At the 2019 NCAAs, the then UVU 141-pounder advanced all the way to the Round of 12 to finish just one-win shy of earning All-American status. The 20th-seeded Findlay went 3-2 at the 2019 NCAA Championships with three straight wins over No. 6 Mike Carr of Illinois, No. 19 Sa'Derian Perry of Old Dominion, and No. 29 Corey Shie of Army while battling through a severe injury at the national tournament.
Findlay capped his first trip to nationals by earning the prestigious NCAA Elite 90 Award after having the highest GPA of any competing student-athlete at the 2019 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships. He also earned NWCA Scholar All-American honors a season ago and is a two-time first team academic All-Big 12 honoree.
Findlay marks the second returning national qualifier for the Wolverines to be sidelined in 2019-20 with an injury, as 2019 Big 12 champion and 165-pound senior Demetrius Romero suffered a season-ending knee injury at the season-opening Journeymen Northeast Duals in November. Romero, who was ranked as high as sixth in the nation in his weight class at the time of his injury, was off to an unblemished 2-0 start to his senior campaign before sustaining his injury. Romero, who hails from Meridian, Idaho, is a two-time NCAA qualifier for UVU. He entered the 2019 NCAA Championships as the No. 9 seed and too reached the Round of 12 to finish just one-win shy of earning All-American honors. The senior 165-pounder went 28-5 a season ago and is a two-time NWCA Scholar All-American as well as a 2019 first team academic All-Big 12 honoree.
Both Findlay and Romero will look to be back and competing for the Wolverines for the 2020-21 season.
UVU will continue its 2019-20 campaign by opening a three-match homestand against Air Force on Thursday, Jan. 30. The Big 12 Conference contest will begin at 7 p.m. MT and will be contested at UVU's Lockhart Arena.