Former Iowa wrestler headed for Oklahoma State

Tuesday, August 3rd 2004, 1:09 pm
By: News On 6

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) _ Former Iowa wrestler and North Bergen, N.J., native Steve Mocco will continue his college career at Oklahoma State.

Mocco, the 2003 NCAA heavyweight champion, will have two seasons of eligibility with the Cowboys.

He told that Oklahoma State, coached by six-time world champion John Smith, was the best place to help him realize his dream of becoming a world and Olympic champion.

``John Smith is one of the greatest freestyle wrestlers ever and he is one of the greatest coaches ever as well,'' Mocco said. ``With the amount of talent in the room at OSU next year, I feel that I should definitely be able to reach my goals.''

Mocco was the NCAA runner-up at heavyweight as a freshman in 2002 before winning as a sophomore. He did not compete as a collegian last season because he was training for the Olympic trials.

After finishing third at the trials, Mocco asked for and received a release from his scholarship at Iowa, where he was 71-3.

Mocco was the nation's top-rated recruit coming out of high school. He attended Blair Academy in Blairstown, N.J.