MANHEIM, Pa. -- For the third year in a row, the Saints of Maryville University posted the top team GPA in the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Division II Scholar All-America ranking for the 2019-20 year, released Tuesday.
Maryville bested its own record GPA with a 3.695 in this year's edition of the annual ranking. The University of Indianapolis was this year's runner-up with a GPA of 3.513, with Colorado School of Mines coming in third with a GPA of 3.384. Western Colorado (3.343) and Augustana (3.336) rounded out the 2019-20 top five.
"We try to treat this on the same level as an All-American in our program. We are proud of our guys for their work on the academic side. The culture that we have is what allows us to keep this going; we are so thankful and grateful. I sincerely thank the NWCA for honoring the academic side of our sport, Jim Koch for starting this and to the current committee for their work to continue these honors." -- Mike Denney, Maryville head wrestling coach
Link: Top 10 Scholar All-American Teams
Link: Individual Scholar All-Americans
A total of 273 student-athletes from 50 institutions were honored individually. Half of the national qualifiers to the 2020 NCAA Division II National Championships were among those honored, with 92 of the 273 Scholar All-American wrestlers also being 2020 National Qualifiers. Maryville led all institutions with 16 individual honorees, while Colorado School of Mines had 14 wrestlers named All-Academic. Upper Iowa had 12 honorees, with Nebraska-Kearney, Indianapolis, Lake Erie and St. Cloud State all putting nine on the Scholar All-American team. Super Region 5 led with 56 total honorees, while Super Region 4 and Super Region 6 each had 50 wrestlers honored.
In order for a student-athlete to be nominated to the Division II Scholar All-American Team, he must have a minimum 3.4 cumulative grade point average on a 4.0 scale, with that benchmark at 3.2 for those who qualified for the 2020 NCAA Division II Wrestling Championships. The athlete must also have competed in a minimum of five dates of competition.
Eleven student-athletes earned Scholar All-American honors for the fourth time in their career: Brandon Ball (Fort Hays State University), Brody Conner (University of Indianapolis), Jamie Gehlin (Upper Iowa University), Logan Grass (Mercyhurst University), Tyler Harrington (Maryville University), Walker Johnson (University of Nebraska at Kearney), Tyler Makosy (University of North Carolina at Pembroke), JD Rader (University of Nebraska at Kearney), Bret Romanzak (Ashland University), Jason Slaughter (Western Colorado University), and Alex Waggoner (Maryville University). Twelve student-athletes honored posted a perfect 4.0 GPA: Owen Balas (Gannon University), Alex Dilagge (Limestone College), Keaton Fogler (Lindenwood University), Jamie Gehling (Upper Iowa University), Fred Green (Colorado Mesa), Tyler Harrington (Maryville University), Tyler Makosy (University of North Carolina at Pembroke), Brock Schlough (St. Cloud State University), Mac Spotts (Upper Iowa University), Austin Stofer (Lindenwood University), Conrad Vajnar (Fort Hays State University), and Jordan Will (Minot State University).
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 primary emphasis on developing coaches who work in academic environments. The three core competencies of the NWCA are: Coaching Development, Student-Athlete Welfare, and the Promotion of Wrestling.