Jan. 1, 2016
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Kyle Snyder, who intended to take an Olympic wavier and redshirt for the entirety of the 2015-16 season, will enroll in classes for the spring semester and compete for the Buckeyes this year, head coach Tom Ryan announced today.
Snyder became the youngest freestyle World champion in U.S. wrestling history this past September and continues to train for the 2016 Summer Olympics. His 2015-16 debut will come Feb. 5 when Ohio State travels to State College, Pa. to tangle with No. 1 Penn State. Prior to that, he is slated to participate in the Ivan Yarygin Memorial Grand Prix Jan. 29-31 and the Alexander Medved International Feb. 18-19. Snyder could also compete in the Buckeyes’ dual vs. Wisconsin on Feb. 12. He will wrestle in the Big Ten Championships (March 5-6, 2016 at Iowa City, Iowa) and the NCAA Championships (March 17-19, 2016 at Madison Square Garden, New York City). Snyder originally committed to the Buckeyes three years ago today (Jan. 1, 2013).
“Kyle is a leader and recognizes that his team can win a second consecutive NCAA title by his return to the lineup,” said Ryan, the 2015 National Coach of the Year. “He has selflessly chosen to enroll second semester and compete in four events. Kyle is mature beyond his years and our team will get a great boost with his return. His choice speaks volumes about him as well as the culture of the program. He will continue to focus his training on making the Olympic team in April as he will travel overseas twice over the next two months leading up to the Big Ten’s and NCAA’s.”
“I’m excited to be back on the mat helping my teammates as we chase another title,” said Snyder, who will compete for the Buckeyes at heavyweight. “I can get all the freestyle experience I need to be prepared for the Trials in April while also wrestling at the collegiate level. I love Ohio State, the wrestling program and want to do all I can to add to its championship history. This was a well-thought-out plan and I am excited to see how it unfolds.”
Snyder’s explosion to the top of the freestyle scene is well documented – last summer, he won gold at the U.S. Open, U.S. World Team Trials, Pan Am Games and World Championships. Along the way, he defeated 2012 Olympic goal medalist Jake Varner three times and edged returning World champion Abdusalam Gadisov of Russia the gold medal match at the World Championships. Snyder is currently No. 1 at 97kg (215 lbs.) in the United World Wrestling freestyle rankings. He has already qualified for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials, which is slated to take place April 8-10 at Carver Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City, Iowa.
In his freshman season for the Scarlet and Gray, Snyder went 30-4 with a team-high 15 major decisions and two technical falls. He was the Big Ten and NCAA runner up at 197 pounds, finishing 15-1 in the regular season against Big Ten competition. His victory over defending champion J’Den Cox in the 197 lbs. NCAA semifinals was instrumental in helping Ohio State earn its first team national title in school history.
In the classroom, Snyder, a sport industry major, is a OSU Scholar-Athlete and was named in August to the NWCA True Freshman All-Academic Team.