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Wrestling: Trio looks to make more history for Ohio State

OSU junior heavyweight Kyle Snyder lifts Wisconsin’s Connor Medbery before slamming him to the mat for a takedown in the heavyweight finals of the 2017 NCAA Division I Wrestling Tournament in St. Louis, Missouri. OSU placed second, behind Penn State. Credit: OSU Athletics

No three teammates in NCAA wrestling history have become four-time All-Americans together. This season, Ohio State seniors Kyle Snyder, Bo Jordan and Nathan Tomasello will attempt to do just that.

The season-opening Princeton Open in Princeton, New Jersey, on Nov. 4 marks the beginning of the end for Snyder, Jordan and Tomasello. Even with a campaign still left to go, their legacy might already be carved out in Ohio State wrestling lore, head coach Tom Ryan said.

“Those three have really taken the program to a level of commitment that is pretty sky-high,” Ryan said. “They’ve set an incredible culture here.”

Snyder, a heavyweight, is the most decorated of the three. Outside of being a three-time All-American, he owns two individual national championships and two Big Ten individual championships. The senior also won a gold medal at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

Tomasello, a redshirt senior at 125 pounds, also won a 2015 individual national championship at 125 pounds and is a three-time individual Big Ten champion. While Tomasello suffered a right-knee injury earlier this month and is currently out of action, he will begin his quest to become a four-time All-American when he returns in January.

An individual national championship is the only accolade that has eluded Jordan, who wrestles at 174 pounds. The redshirt senior has finished in the top three at the NCAA tournament three times and became a Big Ten champion in 2017.

Another plot of common ground for the trio is the experience of bringing a team national championship to Columbus in 2015. Ryan said there has been a culture shift during the trio’s tenure with the Buckeyes as the Columbus program is now seen as a wrestling powerhouse. Just last week, two top-10 recruits at their respective weight classes committed to Ohio State on the same day.

“You can have a great team and have your culture be average,” Ryan said. “But you can also have a great team and have your culture be through the roof. And this culture is through the roof right now. And really the foundational pieces of it were those three.”

Though the trio has had its fair share of individual success over the group’s collective three years at Ohio State, Snyder said he likes to focus on the impact his teammates have made on him.

Tomasello was roommates with Jordan during his freshman year and has lived with Snyder the past three years.

“I know them really well,” Tomasello said.  “We’re good friends and it’ll be really exciting to achieve that with them come March. It’ll be just a great experience I think just to cap off our college wrestling careers.”

The curtain call will not be without nostalgia, especially for Jordan. He called the chance to train and be alongside Snyder and Tomasello a privilege while expressing that teammates like them are not common. Most of all, Jordan has already started to reflect on his time at Ohio State and harkened back to one of his first memories at the Steelwood Training Facility.

“I remember, the first preseason I had here I was like, ‘I don’t know how I’m going to do four more of these, this is so hard,’” Jordan said. “And now, all of the sudden I’m a senior and I’m like, ‘Wow. This is my last one, last of these that I’m ever going to do, last practices, more practices down to my last one.’”

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