Jones Named To All-Decade Team
- By Tim Goodenow
- July 12, 2012 09:09 AM
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – West Virginia’s three-time national champion Greg Jones has been named to InterMat’s Top 10 College Wrestlers of the 2000s. Jones, who became one of only 20 wrestlers in NCAA history to win NCAA titles at two different weight classes, checks in at No. 3 on the listing.
During his Mountaineer career, Jones won a title as a freshman at 174 pounds and two more as a junior and a senior at 184 pounds. He is also a four-time Eastern Wrestling League champion and WVU's all-time leader in wins with an impressive 126-4 record.
Ranking first is Iowa State’s Cael Sanderson who became the first-ever, four-time undefeated NCAA Division I champion. Listed second was three-time NCAA champion Stephen Abas of Fresno State.
“Jones is simply one of the greatest college wrestlers of all-time,” states T.R. Foley, InterMat Senior Writer. “He won 97 percent of his matches and won an NCAA title in each of his three NCAA finals appearances.
“His style wasn't always punishing, but by executing with perfect technique and explosive power he often turned what might have been contestable matches into blowouts.”
It’s been more than seven years since Jones captured his third national title, yet the current WVU assistant coach fondly remembers his time in a WVU singlet.
“It’s very humbling to be listed alongside so many great competitors and athletes,” says Jones. “I was fortunate enough to pick a school like WVU that allowed me to pursue my goals, as well as team goals, in a true pursuit of excellence.”
Jones is the only Mountaineer to be named the NCAA Tournament’s Most Outstanding Wrestler, and closed out his career with an impressive 51-match unbeaten streak.
“His junior and senior efforts did enough to outshine that (sophomore season) lapse,” states Foley. “In those last two seasons, Jones' dominance became even more evident with a variety of attacks on his feet and a re-upped top game that transitioned into more falls for the Mountaineers.”
Jones’ supremacy on the mat firmly planted the Slickville, Pa., native as one of the NCAA’s all-time best wrestlers.
“Through his competitive career, Greg achieved a lot that many wrestlers don’t even come close to,” says WVU head coach Craig Turnbull. “This recognition is very deserving as Greg will go down as one of the all-time greats.”
A complete listing of the Best of 2000s can be found at intermatwrestle.com.