MANHEIM, Pa. — North Dakota State University was ranked No. 10 in the 2020 National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Division I Top 30 All-Academic team standings announced Thursday, April 30, while NDSU 197-pound senior Cordell Eaton headlined a group of four Bison named to the NWCA Scholar All-American individual list.
Eaton, a redshirt senior Long Grove, Iowa, would have made his first NCAA appearance. He won the 197-pound true sixth place match to earn the AQ at the Big 12 championship. Eaton went 4-2 at the Big 12 tournament and stands at 15-12 overall. He is a two-time NWCA Scholar All-American and was named the Big 12 Conference Wrestling Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Dylan Droegemueller, a redshirt freshman from Champlin, Minn., would have made his first trip to the NCAA tournament. He had a 3-2 record and battled through the 141 loser’s bracket to place fourth at the Big 12 championship. Droegemueller has a 15-10 record with five major decisions, three pins, and a tech fall.
Jared Franek, a redshirt freshman from Hardwood, N.D., would have made his first NCAA appearance. He bounced back from a semifinal loss at 157 and finished third at the Big 12 championship. Franek has a 27-7 record including seven major decisions and three tech falls.
Brandon Metz, a redshirt senior from West Fargo, N.D., would have made his first trip to the NCAA tournament. He placed seventh at the Big 12 championship on his fifth pin of the season. Metz has compiled a 22-10 record and added four major decisions to go with the five pins.
North Dakota State finished the regular season with a 10-4 dual record including 6-2 in the Big 12 Conference. NDSU 133 pounder Cam Sykora became the first-ever Bison to win a Big 12 Conference individual championship and helped the Bison to a fifth place finish at the Big 12 tournament.
North Dakota State tied a program record with six NCAA Division I tournament qualifiers – 133 Sykora, 141 Dylan Droegemueller, 157 Jared Franek, 165 Andrew Fogarty, 197 Cordell Eaton and 285 Brandon Metz. Sykora and Fogarty were four-time qualifiers, while Droegemueller, Franek, Eaton and Metz advanced for the first time.