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OSU Wrestling: With Newest Rankings Out, Cowboys Can Officially Accomplish 19-Year Feat

OSU leads the country with 12 ranked wins.



[Devin Wilber/PFB]

The Cowboys can officially accomplish something Sunday that hasn’t been done in nearly 20 years in Stillwater.

NWCA released its last rankings of the regular season on Tuesday, with Oklahoma State staying put at No. 2 behind Penn State. The Cowboys’ own ranking wasn’t what affected their chance at making some history, though. Iowa, which OSU hosts at 2 p.m. Sunday, remained inside the top five at No. 4 after recovering from back-to-back losses with a win against Wisconsin this past weekend.

If OSU beats Iowa on Sunday, it would become the first team to beat four top-five opponents in a season since 2004-05. The Cowboys have already beaten NC State, Iowa State and Missouri — all of which were ranked somewhere in the top five when OSU met them. Iowa State is still just inside the top five at No. 5.

That 2004-05 squad finished its campaign at 21-0 as national champions with a record five individual champions. Along the way, that team also beat 13 ranked teams. That’s another mark the 2023-24 Cowboys could reach with a win Sunday. Both teams have also beaten a ranked OU team twice.

OSU leads the nation with 12 ranked victories, 10 of which have been in a row. Here’s a look at the most recent rankings, with teams that OSU has beaten in bold.

1 Penn State
2 Oklahoma State
3 Nebraska
4 Iowa
5 Iowa State
6 Ohio State
7 Missouri
8 NC State
9 Cornell
10 Michigan
11 South Dakota State
12 Minnesota
13 Virginia Tech
14 Rutgers
15 Lehigh
16 Northern Iowa
17 Little Rock
18 West Virginia
19 Arizona State
20 Stanford
21 Oregon State
22 Campbell
23 Pittsburgh
24 Appalachian State
25 Oklahoma

The Nittany Lions have been atop the rankings since the beginning, as OSU has ascended the ranks while getting through its tough schedule unscathed. Penn State and the Cowboys are the last unbeaten teams left in the country, as no other team in Division-I wrestling has less than two losses. But with no sort of dual championship in college wrestling, the two will have to wait until the NCAA Wrestling Championships on March 21-23 in Kansas City to find out which program deserves to be on top.

The Cowboys haven’t met Penn State since a 27-13 loss on Feb. 19, 2017, in the NWCA National Dual finals, an event that no longer exists. That dual, though, broke a Gallagher-Iba Arena attendance record with 14,059 fans.

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