Jan. 24, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - With the release of the first NCAA Coaches Panel Rankings of the 2013 season, the Purdue Wrestling team has seven individuals ranked at their respective weights. The poll represents one of three criteria in securing NCAA Championship bids for the national qualifying tournaments.
Seniors Ivan Lopouchanski and Tommy Churchard, juniors Camden Eppert and Cashe Quiroga, sophomores Braden Atwood and Patrick Kissel and freshman Chad Welch all earned top-33 spots at their respective weights, led by Lopouchanski's No. 9 spot at 149 pounds. Eppert, Quiroga and Atwood are ranked 14th at 125, 133 and 197 pounds, respectively, while Kissel is tied for the No. 24 spot at 184 pounds, Welch is 29th at 174 pounds and Churchard shares the No. 32 spot at 157 pounds.
Along with their individual winning percentage and the rating percentage index (RPI), the coaches' panel helps the NCAA allocate the 29 automatic qualifying bids for the NCAA Championships to the various qualifying tournaments in March. If a wrestler earns a top-33 spot in two of the three criteria at their weight class, they earn a bid for their conference or region. Last year's Big Ten Championship Tournament awarded a record-74 automatic bids to the NCAA Championships, including 10 of the 12 entries at heavyweight and nine spots at 149 pounds.
The initial release of the RPI is scheduled for the next two weeks, and both the coaches panel and RPI will have one more release before the final polls in the last week of February. The required winning percentage and rankings threshold will be on a sliding scale at each weight in order to determine the 29 automatic bids.