The next week will be a busy one for the No. 25 North Carolina wrestling squad as the Tar Heels will wrestle in the historic Ken Craft Midlands Championships on Dec. 29 and 30 followed by the Southern Scuffle Jan. 1 and 2.
The Tar Heels are one of 34 teams set to compete at the 50th annual Midlands Championships in a field that features 15 teams ranked among the top 25 in the country by InterMat.
The Midlands Tournament Committee releases an annual top contenders list and five Tar Heels made the cut in their respective weight classes. Freshman Nathan Kraisser was ranked the highest among the Tar Heels as the 125-pounder checked in at No. 7.
Sophomore Evan Henderson was tabbed the No. 8 contender at 141 pounds, while fellow sophomore Alex Utley was ranked No. 12 at 184 pounds. Joey Ward (133) and Antonio Giorgio (197) were mentioned among other contenders at their respective weights.
The brackets will be released Saturday, Dec. 29 at NUSports.com. Session I is set for 9:30 a.m. CT on Saturday with Session II set for 7 p.m. CT. The semifinals, consolation and seventh place matches will take place during Session III on Sunday beginning at noon CT.
The first, third and fifth place matches will take place at 7 p.m. CT and the finals are set to be televised live on the Big Ten Network.
The Tar Heels will send another group of wrestlers to the annual Southern Scuffle in Chattanooga, Tenn. set for Jan. 1 and 2.
TrackWrestling will feature all of the brackets for the annual Scuffle, while FloWrestling.com will have live video coverage of the entire event for a fee.