The toughest conference tournament is coming to Minneapolis, Minnesota. Saturday and Sunday the Big Ten Championships will be held on the campus of the University of Minnesota and four of the top five schools in the country, along with ten others will do battle for a coveted Big Ten Championship and one of 78 automatic bids to the 2019 NCAA Championships in Pittsburgh. As always, that number is by far the largest in the country for one single conference.
There are four weight class where the top nine finishers will punch their ticket to Pittsburgh. The weight class (197) with the smallest number of bids available is five. Some, like 285 lbs, already appear to require more, as the talent in these weight classes is overflowing.
Even though Penn State has captured three straight national titles, it is Ohio State who has come away with the Big Ten Championship in each of the last two years. This years Nittany Lion squad looks better equipped to handle the Big Ten than in the past two seasons. All told, nine of the ten wrestlers ranked number one in the country at their respective weight classes are from the Big Ten and will be in action. Ten wrestlers have entered this tournament with perfect records for the 2018-19 season, and in two instances we could feature a final with undefeated wrestlers colliding.
So, here is TOM’s breakdown of important quarterfinal matches, projected semifinals and finals, along with analysis and projected automatic qualifiers for the Big Ten.
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