It's hard to beat a champion, and as UNO wrestling is coming to find out, it can be hard to be one as well.
The decision to recommend reclassifying UNO to Division I athletics to the Board of Regents was based on financial sustainability, said UNO Chancellor John Christensen. The proposed move would eliminate football and wrestling.
I caught up with UNO Athletic Director Trev Alberts on Monday. He's a busy man these days, but he let me pick his brain about his decision to recommend eliminating the university's wrestling and football programs.
Nearly 500 hundred people gathered Sunday for a rally at Sapp Fieldhouse to show support for the UNO Wrestling Program, which is in jeopardy of being eliminated.
In a scenario that seemed like something from the Twilight Zone, UNO lost another series to Bemidji State and finished its first WCHA playoffs 0-2. Ever since the Mavs split with North Dakota, then got swept in Bemidji the next weekend, the Beavers have been a head scratcher.
The UNO Wrestling team won the battle but may have lost the war, capturing a third consecutive national championship just hours before learning the program is poised to be permanently cut.
When Dean Blais was hired as UNO's head hockey coach two summers ago there was an immediate shift in expectations. In the 12-year history of the program, UNO had been to the NCAA tournament just once and finished with 20 or more wins only three times.