Where do Cowboy wrestlers go once their collegiate mat careers have concluded? Apparently into mixed martial arts.
Oklahoma State's Nick Piccininni has announced that he has signed with Zinkin MMA and will train at the American Kickboxing Academy, following in the footsteps of fellow former Cowboy mat stars Daniel Cormier, Kyle Crutcher, and Jacobe Smith, who revealed similar career plans just three weeks ago.
What's more, Cormier, head coach at Gilroy High School in California, revealed that both Piccininni and Crutchmer will be joining his coaching staff, according to Cowboys Ride For Free, an independent website covering Oklahoma State sports.
Here's how Piccinninni shared his future plans on Twitter:
I want to thank everyone who has supported me over the years! I am proud to let you guys know I'll be starting a new journey in MMA! I want to thank @ZinkinEnt and @AKA_HQ for giving me the opportunity to become a champion! Let's go 🙏🏼�" Nick Piccininni 🗽 (@NickyPich96) April 11, 2020
Piccininni just completed his collegiate mat career at Oklahoma State as a four-time Big 12 champion at 125 pounds, twice earning NCAA All-American honors. (He had been the No. 3 seed at the 2020 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships before the Nationals were canceled because of the COVID 19 pandemic.) Earlier this year, Piccininni became only the 44th Cowboy to reach the 100-victory mark, ultimately tallying a 110-27 collegiate record.
Prior to arriving in Stillwater, Piccininni made a name for himself in wrestling at Ward Melville High School in East Setauket, N.Y., winning four state titles and crafting an incredible 226-5 overall record. In 2015, he was named the New York State recipient of the Dave Schultz High School Excellence Award, presented each year by the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.