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Missouri's Ben Askren will receive the Hodge Trophy at halftime of Missouri-Colorado football game



COLUMBIA, Mo. Missouri's 2006 174-pound NCAA Division I Wrestling National Champion Ben Askren (Hartland, Wis.) will receive the Hodge Trophy, wrestling's equivalent to the Heisman, during the first quarter of the Tiger's Saturday, Sept. 30, football game against Big 12 opponent Colorado. Kickoff is set for 11:30 a.m. (CT) and the game will be televised live on Fox Sports.

A senior captain on the third-ranked 2006-07 Tiger team, Askren not only claimed the wrestling program's first NCAA title, but also received the tournament's Most Outstanding Wrestler Award and later was awarded the Hodge Trophy. A three-time All-American, earning runner-up finishes as a freshman (2004) and sophomore (2005), Askren is a two-time Big 12 Champion and two-time Academic All-American.

Over the course of his career, Askren has set a new standard for Missouri wrestling. In 2006, the Tiger grappler won 45 consecutive matches and pinned 25 of his opponents setting new season high marks. In three years, Askren earned victories in 62 of his matches by fall, also a new Missouri record. Named the Wrestler of the Year by Sports Illustrated on Campus and RevWrestling.com, Askren took four tournament titles during the 2006 season, including the prestigious Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational.

The upcoming Missouri wrestling season will begin Thursday, Nov. 16, when the Tigers take on Ohio State on the road and end with the 77th annual NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships, March 15-17, in Detroit, Mich. In between, Missouri will host six duals, the sixth annual Missouri Open and the 11th annual Big 12 Championships (Saturday, March 3, 2007). This marks the second time in Big 12 history that Missouri has hosted the Big 12 Wrestling Championships.
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