In typical Aggie fashion, OSU named their basketball arena for a wrestling coach. Then again, this is the same bunch that invented the term mythical National Championship. Even before they named themselves the 1945 mythical football national champions, they did the same thing in wrestling.
Since the days of Daniel Boone and Abe Lincoln, guys had been wrestling each other. Oklahoma A&M’s Ed Gallagher decided to turn this event into a sport. It was 1921 and A&M began beating up on high school teams in dual wrestling matches. The Ags won every match for 10 years and every wrestling National Championship for 20. That’s right, this is where all those national championships the Ags love to brag about come from.
After the war, other colleges, including OU and the best college wrestler of all time Danny Hodge got into the mix. As a result Oklahoma became a hotbed for high school wrestling. Both OU and OSU won authentic National Championships in those days.
It was at the tail end of this era that the Bedlam term was created. OU’s Dr. Death (Steve Williams) had worked the Aggies into such a frenzy that OSU officials had to call out the Stillwater fire brigade to hose down the crowd.
In the 70’s girls decided they preferred watching guys run up and down the court while slam-dunking basketballs to guys rolling around on a mat grabbing each other crotches. High school wrestling in Oklahoma began to wane. When the Big 12 disbanded and Missouri and Nebraska left the conference the sport died on the vine.
Today, the Big 12 is made up of an OU program that is on life support, an OSU program in desperate need of a rival and Iowa State that is desperate of a men’s sport. In standard idiotic style, Big 12 officials created a makeshift conference made up these three teams, North and South Dakota State, Northern Colorado and Utah Valley.
That’s right Oklahoma wrestling has gone from Bedlam to riveting matches against Utah Valley. Following suit…at this year’s national tournament, the once proud Cowboys finished 13th while the Sooners collected a measly one point to finish at #56.
Can anyone say…uncle…it is time to put this sport out of its misery.