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The Best of Kansas (2000-19)

original photo courtesy of Cam Kramer

Last year at about this time, we introduced the All-2000’s team’s for a particular school. Those articles tended to be very popular amongst fans and generated plenty of talking points. This time around we’re doing something similar, but instead of focusing solely on one school, we’re looking at one state and the wrestlers it has produced. The Best of….

So we’re going weight-by-weight with the top wrestler in each weight class from a particular state. The caveat is that they must have competed within the last 20 years (2000-19). Even if only one season of their career is within this span, they can be under consideration. Each wrestler must have competed in at least one postseason at their weight class (even if it wasn’t the weight they are most known for). Also, we’re using hometown’s provided by their respective school’s websites. 

Prior Best of’s…..

Michigan

Today we’ll look at Kansas. Kansas is a compelling case because most of the top-end talent in the state came through in the early-mid 2000s. Only one wrestler on the first team has competed within the last five years. That being said, even though it doesn’t have the reputation as being a powerhouse, Kansas’ number one’s stack up with most other states. The first six wrestlers in their lineup were all NCAA finalists at some point in their career and nine of the ten weight classes feature an All-American. Now at most weight classes, there is a significant drop-off between the first and second team. 

The first team for Kansas is responsible for two NCAA titles, six NCAA finals appearances, and 22 All-American honors. 

Introducing the Best of Kansas

125 - Shawn Bunch:  Leavenworth (Edinboro)  2006

Second Team: Tanner Gardner: Berryton (Stanford)  2008

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