The Midlands Championships has been one of the biggest tournaments during the collegiate wrestling season featuring some big teams such as Iowa, Northwestern, and Wisconsin. Some crazy upsets have went down there in the past couple years including Sebastian Rivera defeating Spencer Lee to earn the number 1 ranking.
This year they will be adding a women’s wrestling division at the tournament which will be big for getting eyes on women’s wrestling. It will be filled with NCAA, NAIA, and JUCO schools all competing against each other.
Life University is the top ranked women’s team in the NAIA team and their men’s team has been the best team in the NAIA for a while and they are lead by Ashley Sword. She said “In the wrestling world the Midlands is a synonym for the best of the best – For the best of women’s collegiate wrestling regardless of what division.”
The tournament itself will take place on December 29-30th and the Women’s division will take place on December 30th only due to a lower number of participants.
So far if we look at the numbers, and the amount of women’s wrestling programs there are 43 in the NAIA, 53 in the NCAA, and 13 in the NJCAA which is a big improvement from where they were just a couple years ago. The future of women’s wrestling being added too many new schools. With a powerhouse like Iowa also adding women’s wrestling in the 2024 season it could be a game changer for the sport as a whole.