WVU Wrestling’s Jones, Rader Earn Sixth Year

By Ira Green
WVU Sports Information Office

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (July 1, 2010) – West Virginia University wrestlers Donnie Jones and Brandon Rader each have been granted their sixth year of eligibility, allowing them to compete for the Mountaineers in the 2010-11 campaign.

“Donnie, Brandon and the coaching staff are very appreciative of our compliance staff, which put volumes of materials together and answered a series of questions to where we got the answer that we thought was correct,” coach Craig Turnbull says. “Without their diligence and the time put in, it wouldn’t have happened for either.”

Due to their inability to participate for two years, the NCAA’s Student-Athlete Reinstatement Committee granted Jones and Rader extensions of their five-year eligibility period.

A Parkersburg, W.Va., native, Rader is a two-time All-American. The only true freshman in program history to earn All-America honors, Rader compiled a 30-6 overall mark in 2006. He won the 141-pound Eastern Wrestling League (EWL) title and then collected four victories at the NCAA Championships en route to a sixth-place finish. A year later as a sophomore, he won 24 matches, including another league title. His five wins at the 2007 NCAA Championships were good enough for a sixth-place showing. He currently has a 55-10 overall record.

Jones, a Slickville, Pa., native, earned his third bid to the NCAA Championships this past season. He won a career-high 20 matches at 165 pounds, led the team with 70 takedowns and finished runner-up at the EWL Championships after medically forfeiting the title bout. In 2009, he won 11 matches, going a perfect 6-0 against league competition. Jones owns a 45-28 overall mark.

“I think it’s very important to Donnie, Brandon and the program,” Turnbull adds. “Both have tremendous potential to reach their goals, which is an NCAA Championship. They have been unlucky to some degree to have a certain portion of their career taken from them by inopportune injuries. I believe the granting of the sixth year was appropriate, and I’m glad the NCAA saw it that way. Both are very excited. It provides us that added bit of leadership that is critical to the program being successful next year.”

The Mountaineers only lose two dual match starters from the 2009-10 season, and return pivotal pieces for next year’s squad, including Rader, Jones, Shane Young (125), Colin Johnston (133) and Brandon Williamson (HWT).

Return to the WV-Mat front page