Friday, July 23, 2021

Defending the Title: 1956: Those Who Did and Those Who Didn't Defend The Title

Quite an eventful tournament held in Stillwater, Oklahoma.   Myron Roderick was crowned champion for the third time in front of a hometown crowd.  Terry McCann of Iowa, Ed Peery of Pittsburgh, Eddie Eichelberger, and Danny Hodge all won title #2.  

1956 Champion 137 
Jim Sinadinos of Michigan State 

A two time State champion out of Lansing Eastern High School, Sinadinos would take third place All American honors in both 1954 and 1955, before capping off his Spartan career with a NCAA title. His son, also named Jim, wrestled for both Michigan State and Arizona State, where he took third place at the PAC-12 tournament. 

1956 Champion 157
Larry TenPas of Illinois 

A two time State champion out of Waukegan high school, TenPas would finish third at the NCAA's as a sophomore in 1954, taking runner up honors in 1955.  He won the NCAA title as a senior in 1956. He later coached at Waukegan. 

1956 Champion 167 
Eddie DeWitt of Pittsburgh 

After finishing third in 1955 as a sophomore, DeWitt went on to win two NCAA titles both 1956 and 1957.  He later made the Olympic team in 1960. 

1956 Champion 191 
Ken Leuer of Iowa 

A Minnesota native, Leuer finishing second in the NCAA's as a junior in 1955, before winning the NCAA title as a senior in 1956.  He then served 32 years in the United States Army, earning the rank of Major General. 

1956 Champion UNL
Gordon "Goose" Roesler of Oklahoma 

Roesler didn't even start wrestling until his senior year of high school at Perry, but he caught on quick enough to finish third at the state tournament.  Winning the NCAA title here as a sophomore, he would finish third in 1957 and cap off his career as an NCAA runner-up in 1958.   He then spent his life between running a bulldozing operation and farming. 


McCann, Peery, Roderick, Eichelberger and Hodge previously mentioned. 

Sinadinos, TenPas and Leuer all seniors in 1956

DeWitt repeated

Roesler did not 

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