YPSILANTI, Mich. (EMUEagles.com) — The Eastern Michigan University wrestling team finalized its schedule today, Aug. 18, for the upcoming 2016-17 season. The Eagles will compete in 14 duals this season, including seven contests at home.
Eastern Michigan enters the third season under the direction of head coach David Bolyard. In his second season at the helm, Bolyard led the Eagles to their second winning season in three years with an 8-7 dual record. They were rewarded for their efforts at the end of the season by sending four wrestlers to the NCAA Championships in New York City, the third time in five seasons EMU has done so.
The Green and White will once again face one of the toughest schedules in the country competing in the Mid-American Conference. Last season, the conference sent the third most wrestlers to NYC. Overall, four MAC schools finished last season ranked in the top-25 of the USA Today coaches poll, with No. 6 Missouri, No. 15 Kent State, No. 19 Central Michigan, and No. 20 Ohio.
EMU begins the season by hosting the first of two EMU Open tournaments at the Convocation Center, Nov. 5. Eastern then hits the road for its first two duals of the season, starting down the road at Olivet College, Nov. 11, followed by a trip to Pennsylvania to face Clarion University, Nov. 18.
Eastern continues its road swing with a pair of tournaments, beginning with the Keystone Classic in Philadelphia. Nov. 20. Then in early December, the Eagles fly west to participate in the Cliff Keen Tournament, Dec. 2-3, in Las Vegas.
The home dual slate begins the following week with a doubleheader dual at the Convo, Dec. 11, with Eastern playing host to Cleveland State and Indiana. To wrap up the calender year, EMU will head to Evanston to participate in The Midlands Championships, Dec. 29-30, hosted by Northwestern.
Beginning 2017, Eastern opens the conference season with home weekend duals against Ohio and Old Dominion, Jan. 6 and 8. The following weekend, EMU will face Adrian College on the road, Jan 13, before welcoming Missouri to Ypsilanti, Jan. 15.
Eastern's first conference road duals come the next weekend with trips west to face Northern Illinois, Jan. 20, followed by a further trip to Northern Iowa, Jan. 22. The road swing continues after a weekend off with a trip to the east to face Buffalo, Feb. 3, followed by a stop on the way home to face Kent State, Feb. 5.
The Eagles will complete the dual season with two more at home, starting with the MAC finale against rival Central Michigan, Feb. 10, followed by the dual finale against in-state Big Ten foe Michigan State, Feb. 12. The regular season wraps up with the second EMU Open, Feb. 18.
The 2017 MAC Championships will be held in Cedar Falls, Iowa at Northern Iowa, March 4-5. Should any EMU grapplers make the NCAA Championships, they will be held March 16-18 in Saint Louis, Mo.