Earlier this week, we unveiled the first of our All-Decade series, the top collegiate teams of the 2010s. Now we’re moving on to the actual All-Decade team. The 2010s have featured some incredible collegiate stars, so narrowing down a list like this is incredibly difficult. TOM has picked a first-team, which we’ll describe in detail, along with wrestlers who will comprise the second and third teams. This first team features ten wrestlers that have combined to win 30 NCAA titles. Now, as you’ll see, there are two active wrestlers among the first team, so that figure can only rise!
Before we start, let's get to the ground rules. A wrestler that may have competed at multiple weight classes is only under consideration once (Kyle Dake can’t be named four different times). There aren’t any rules about how much someone needed to compete at a particular weight class to be factored in at that weight. Wrestlers were chosen based on the ability to get the best first team possible. To be considered, you must have competed between 2010-19. Hence, a wrestler that was a senior in 2010 gets credit for his entire body of work. International results are not factored in (The Jordan Burroughs that we consider is the one that finished his career at Nebraska in 2011).
125 - Spencer Lee (Iowa) 2017-Present
Career Record: 48-5
Why He’s Here: The 125 lb weight class is a young man’s weight. During this decade, only two seniors have captured NCAA Championships at 125. That means that we have not seen any three-time NCAA champions at this class in almost 20 years. Someone who is on track to winning three (and possibly) four NCAA titles is Spencer Lee. Even though younger wrestlers have a long track record of success at 125 lbs, Lee became the first true freshman to capture a title at the weight class since its inception in 1998-99. Spencer has battled injuries over his first two years at Iowa to shine when the lights are their brightest on the national stage at the NCAA Tournament. In ten bouts at the NCAA Championships, Lee has earned bonus points seven times and not had a match closer than four points. With the 2019-20 season falling during an Olympic year, Lee will probably miss some matches down the stretch, which will hurt his Hodge Trophy chances, but does not affect him here. We’re banking on Lee’s potential over the next season and a half.
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