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NCAA reveals conference bid allocations for wrestling tournament

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Penn State looks to send nine, possibly 10 wrestlers to St. Louis

The NCAA announced Thursday that the Big Ten would receive a total of 77 automatic qualifying bids to this year’s NCAA wrestling tournament in St. Louis.

The 77 bids is over 25 percent of the 281 total auto bids and the most of any conference by far, leading the EIWA by 34. The bids for each conference by weight are as follows, starting with 125 pounds and ending at 285, with the conference total in italics.

Atlantic Coast Conference: 3 2 3 3 5 2 4 2 2 5 31


Big 12 Conference: 4 4 4 4 3 5 3 2 5 4 38


Big Ten Conference: 7 9 9 6 9 7 9 9 7 5 77


Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association: 2 4 5 3 4 4 6 7 4 4 43


Eastern Wrestling League: 3 2 2 2 1 2 1 1 1 2 17


Mid-American Conference: 5 6 2 5 2 3 3 3 5 3 37


Pacific-12 Conference: 1 1 3 3 2 2 2 1 3 3 21


Southern Conference: 2 1 1 2 2 1 1 3 1 3 17


TOTAL QUALIFIERS: 27 29 29 28 28 26 29 28 28 29 281

So what does this mean for Penn State?

Essentially, assuming the health of freshman Nick Suriano at 125 points (which I wouldn’t be quick to do), the Nittany Lions should have nine wrestlers that are likely to be assured wild card selections should they not wrestle to seed at the Big Ten tournament. Each of those nine wrestlers, which don’t include George Carpenter at 133, will likely be seeded somewhere in the top 5 in the in the conference. At the weights where the conference is weakest, 149 (six bids) and 285 (five bids), PSU should be seeded first (Zain Retherford) and third (Nick Nevills). Regardless, each of those guys will be safe no matter what happens.

The intrigue comes at 133, where George Carpenter will likely be the representative for Penn State and will likely be unseeded. Carpenter will probably need to find a way to win two matches at the tournament to still one of the nine (!!!) seeds given to the B1G at 133.

So there you have the breakdown for PSU. How many wrestlers do you think the Nittany Lions will send to St. Louis?