O'Connor and Wrestling Team Recognized for Academic Success

The National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) announced its annual Division I All-Academic Top 30 teams and the NWCA Individual All-Academic wrestling team for the 2008-09 season Thursday and Harvard is one of the top teams in the national.

The Crimson finished second behind American with a team grade point average of 3.2585. It was the highest finish for the Crimson under Jay Weiss, the David G. Bunning Head Coach for Wrestling. Rounding out the top five teams are Stanford, Duke and Davidson. All eleven conferences were represented in the top 30 with the EIWA leading the way with six teams.

For teams to be eligible for consideration, the team GPA is comprised of 12 student-athletes, including the 10 wrestlers that were the entries in the NCAA tournament conference qualifier. If teams had less than 10 entries for their respective qualifier, they may fill those spots with wrestlers that competed in at least one varsity dual during the season.

Junior co-captain and two-time All-American J.P. O'Connor was named to the Individual All-Academic wrestling team. This is the second time O'Connor has been named to the team. O'Connor made it to the round of 12 at the NCAA Championships after finishing as the runner-up at 157 pounds at the EIWA Championships. The human evolutionary biology concentrator is also a two-time Academic All-Ivy League recipient.

The 2008-09 All-Academic individual team is highlighted by a total of 51 NCAA qualifiers, 17 NCAA All-Americans, eight NCAA finalist and five NCAA champions. In total 73 individuals representing 45 schools are being honored this year on the All-Academic Team. Individually, wrestlers must have at least a 3.2 cumulative GPA, been an NCAA qualifier or won 60 percent of his total schedule - and must have competed in at least 60 percent of said schedule. The other way to qualify for the All-Academic team is have a 3.0 cumulative and been an NCAA All-American.