The NCAA wrestling season comes down to three days in St. Louis, where the 2014-15 champions will be crowned. Check out the biggest storylines we'll be following throughout the tournament and be sure the catch all the coverage, beginning Thursday on ESPNU, ESPN3 and WatchESPN.com.
Ohio State's Logan Stieber claws for No. 4
Saturday night in St. Louis, Ohio State's Logan Stieber will hope to become the fourth wrestler in NCAA wrestling history to ever win four straight Division I national titles. And by his side for his historic run will be his brother and teammate, Hunter Stieber.
Logan, the top-seeded 141-pound wrestler in the tournament, will first need to face two days of stiff competition to make it to the finals, but assuming the currently undefeated Ohio native can plod through the crowded field, he'll have an opportunity to join one of sport's most elite fraternities. Only Pat Smith of Oklahoma State, who became the first to achieve the four-peat at the 1994 NCAA championships; Cael Sanderson for Iowa State in 2002; and Kyle Dake of Cornell in 2013 have won four titles at the Division I level.
"I don't think about how good you have to be to win the four titles; I just look at all the great wrestlers, some of my idols, who won three or two or one," Logan said. "I think about their talent and it makes me feel like achieving this goal is something unique."
Logan, who has only lost three times since his redshirt freshman season of 2011-12, didn't realize his ability to win four titles until he broke his hand in 2010 and took a medical redshirt for the season.
The Buckeye wrestler got a big boost the following year when younger brother Hunter also enrolled at Ohio State. Together the duo trained like they did in high school, when they led Monroeville (Ohio) to its first and only high school state championship in 2010.
"They're like Siamese twins," Ohio State head wrestling coach Tom Ryan said. "Hunter is Logan's biggest fan in the world. They're really, really close and they are wrestling this year to bring our program its first-ever NCAA title."
Logan and Hunter (wrestling at 149 pounds this season) both made the semifinals of the NCAA tournament in 2012 and 2013, with Logan going on to win and eventually capture titles both years. Hunter redshirted in 2014 as Logan won his third title. This season, Hunter has only wrestled a handful of matches due to injury, but the younger brother wants to help the elder win Ohio State a team title like they did in high school, something Logan knows and appreciates.
"We do what we love to do and we do it at a place, Ohio State, that we love very much" Logan said. "Winning a fourth title will be special, but winning a team title with my brother and for our coaches is what we both want.
"My brother is my best friend. I can't imagine being on this journey without him."
Among crowded field, Iowa looks for first title in five years
The top-ranked wrestling team in the nation for much of the season, Iowa, and its rabid fan were been hopeful at the beginning of the season that 2015 would end with the Hawkeyes' first NCAA Division I team title since 2010.
After five months on the mats and a Big Ten championship title split with up-and-coming Ohio State, the Hawkeye faithful are less certain of this year's outcome. Iowa, which has won 23 NCAA titles and remains that sport's most well-known program, is facing a deluge of late-blossoming teams, including the aforementioned Ohio State, top-ranked Missouri and longtime rival Minnesota.
The Hawkeyes, who have eight wrestlers seeded in the top 10 at their respective weight classes, will likely need to produce an equal number of All-Americans at the tournament if they are to guarantee their 24th NCAA title.
"We're at the time of the year where we gotta be at our best," Iowa head wrestling coach Tom Brands said. "Enough said."
Cox carries nation's longest win streak into NCAAs
Top-ranked Missouri, led by defending NCAA champion at 197 pounds J'Den Cox, hopes to earn its first NCAA title in wrestling this weekend.
Cox carries an impressive 53-match winning streak into the tournament. The sophomore wrestler is one of the most physically dominant competitors in the country, and should he take home a title this weekend, he'll be halfway to joining Logan Stieber in the Fraternity of Four.
Mizzou, which is the host school for the 2015 NCAA Division I championships, upset top-ranked Iowa in late February and will need Cox and fellow top seed Alan Waters at 125 pounds, to win their respective weight classes in order to win the team title.
All in the family
Cousins Isaac and Bo Jordan are two of the top-ranked wrestlers in the nation, but where most family members choose to compete for the same school, the Jordans split their allegiances and stayed at the same weight class.
The duo, both ranked in the top five nationally at 165 pounds and are set to face each other during the second day of the NCAA tournament
Like his father, two-time NCAA wrestling champion and U.S. Congressman Jim Jordan (R-OH, Fourth District), Isaac wrestles for Wisconsin. Bo, the son of legendary St. Paris (Ohio) Graham High School coach Jeff Jordan is enrolled at Ohio State.
Isaac won the cousins' first matchup last weekend in the finals of the Big Ten championships, 3-2. Isaac will be the No. 3 seed this weekend, and Bo the fifth.