Iowa’s Spencer Lee named NCAA Division I most dominant wrestler

IOWA CITY – Spencer Lee of Iowa won another award for his performance during the 2019-20 varsity wrestling season.

In addition to being named a finalist for prestigious amateur honors like the Sullivan Award and the Hodge Trophy, Lee was named the NCAA’s most dominant wrestler on Tuesday.

The prize is determined by dividing the number of team points earned in individual matches by the total number of matches. Lee averaged five team points per fight, posting an 18-0 record.

Lee helped propel the Hawkeyes to an unbeaten season, including doubles tournament and Big Ten conference titles. The two-time NCAA champion and 2020 Big Ten titlist has collected four pins, nine technical drops and four major decisions. Lee was second in DI in technical falls with the most count for an Iowa wrestler since 1999.

On Monday, Lee was named one of 10 finalists for the AAU James E. Sullivan Award, which is awarded to America’s most outstanding amateur athlete based on athletic success, leadership, character and of his sportsmanship over the past year.

Lee’s impressive college season was accompanied by the US Senior Nationals Men’s Freestyle title, Academic All-Big Ten and All-American Academic Team honors from the National Wrestling Coaches Association.

The winner is determined by a combination of public vote, media vote and committee vote. The Sullivan Award began in 1930 and golfing legend Bobby Jones was the first recipient.

Other Sullivan finalists include Evita Griskenas (rhythmic gymnastics), Grant Holloway of Florida (athletics), Markus Howard of Marquette (basketball), Sabrina Ionescu of Oregon (basketball), Trevor Lawrence of Clemson (football), Dana Rettke of Wisconsin (volleyball), Kyla from UCLA. Ross (gymnastics), Maryland lacrosse player Megan Taylor and Californian Abby Weitzeil (swimming and diving).

Fans can vote for the finalists once per day online until March 30 at 11 p.m. In the final round, the hashtag vote will also count. Any tweet or retweet using #VoteForSpencer and #AAUSullivanAward will count towards the final tally.

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Spencer Lee of Iowa fights Brandon Meredith of Penn State in their 125-pound Iowa Hawkeyes wrestling matchup with the Penn State Nittany Lions at Carver-Hawkeye Arena in Iowa City on Friday, January 31, 2020. Lee won by fall technical. (Rebecca F. Miller / The Gazette)


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Robert J. King