Five Letter Theory for NDSU Wrestling
Published: Thursday, February 20, 2014
Updated: Thursday, February 20, 2014 10:02
The winter can be a depressing time of year. There’s no football, the women’s basketball team can’t seem to set an off ball screen, TrayVonn Wright hasn’t broken any backboards, there’s no football, the softball and baseball teams are still a month and two feet of melted snow away from playing in Fargo and most importantly, there’s no football. Dark, dark times in the Red River Valley indeed.
This time of year is when you have to dig deep into the crevasse of a frozen Dacotah Field to find a story, something worth reading about.
Last year, I wrote a semi-coherent Bison wrestling column after Trent Sprenkle became the first Bison wrestler since 2004 to become an all-American. It wasn’t as much digging as it was challenging.
Now don’t get me wrong, I most likely failed the challenge, but the Bison wrestling team is definitely a topic worth mentioning. But how many of you even know they’re the 20th ranked team in the country, or that their 165-pounder is third in the nation? Or that 165 pounder is a weight class and not a Keystone Light?
My theory is that Bison fans generally don’t know wrestling.
Well you’re in luck, because I have another theory. Welcome to Joe’s Five Letter Get to Know NDSU Wrestling Theory. Let’s do this.
Disclaimer: If any of the following reminds you of George T. Doran’s November 1981 issue of Management Review then keep reading because I totally don’t know what you’re talking about.
The first letter is S.
Steven Monk is the face of Bison wrestling this season and is the 165-pounder I mentioned earlier that is ranked third nationally in his weight class. His season has become so important that the talented Kasey Byers and the good people at NDSU Athletics Media Relations have been documenting his entire season. Check it out: “On the Brink.”
Monk is the most dominant wrestler on the Bison roster. It’s not just a columnist’s opinion; it’s a fact. I spoke with assistant coach Bret Maughan over the phone for “Bison Illustrated” recently, and he made it specific when saying, “Steve is dominant and one of the best wrestlers in the country.”
The second letter is M.
Maughan is not only the son of the greatest wrestling coach in Bison history, Bucky Maughan, he was a two-time all-American in the early ‘90s for the Bison. What he chooses to put on record is very measurable and shouldn’t be taken lightly.
The third letter is A.
The Bison are chasing accolades this season, not only in the all-American category, but in the conference championship column. The Bison were undefeated last season in the Western Wrestling Conference and are poised to achieve back-to-back status again this season.
The fourth letter is R.
Roger Kish is the head coach of the wrestling team and is one bad dude. Kish was a two-time all-American at the University of Minnesota and had a staggering 117-27 record as a Gopher. Kish provides a realistic opportunity for the Bison to reach the big stage in NCAA Wrestling and has the recruiting skills to back it up.
The final letter is T.
Titles are what Kish and his staff are after. The wrestling program has won four Division-II titles and is now in position for a fifth. This time-targeted approach would estimate a National Championship arriving in Fargo very, very soon.
As the season dwindles down, don’t forget about the Bison on the mat. It has been another historic year in BisoNation, and soon enough the wrestling team will join the party.