One of the most exciting programs to follow the past few years have been the Princeton Tigers. It seems like every time they take the mat, head coach Chris Ayres’ squad, is setting a program record or setting a mark that is the “first time since….” Ayres is entering his 14th season at the helm for the Tigers and has been responsible for one of the most impressive turnarounds in college wrestling (perhaps all of college sports). In his first two years at Princeton, Ayres’ teams combined to go 0-35 in dual competition and he didn’t have a national qualifier until his fourth year. Now in 2018-19, his squad was 15th at the NCAA Championships and had a program-record three All-Americans, all of which finished in the top-six. The team has finished third in each of the previous three EIWA Championships, behind traditional conference powers Lehigh and Cornell. Last year’s Princeton group went 9-6 against a grueling out of conference schedule and defeated Ayres’ alma mater, Lehigh, for the first time since 1968. The team’s recent success had led to more exposure nationally, which in turn has produced some impressive recruiting classes. The incoming group of Tigers was ranked 25th in the nation and will add even more depth to a team that features eight returning national qualifiers and three All-Americans. Now, our “Early Lineup Look” will reveal some information about one of those previous All-Americans and his status for the upcoming season.
Also hear from Coach Ayres at Fargo where he talks about his daughter’s All-American performance and the Tiger program.