2023 Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational

The 2023 Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational Team Race

The 2023 Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational Team Race

Keeping tabs on the team race at college wrestling's toughest in-season tournament!

Dec 1, 2023 by Andrew Spey
The 2023 Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational Team Race

There's no tougher in-season college wrestling tournament this year than the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational. Teams are also only allowed to bring one starter per weight class so it very much has the feel of the NCAA Championships. 

The team race has been a dog fit for the past several seasons, with Nebraska winning the last three events and Ohio State taking the crown in the three prior to that. And the year prior to that? It was none other than the Missouri Tigers with the first place trophy. 

Projected team scores based on pre-seeds (which are subject to change due to scratches etc) have Nebraska as the favorite, but perennial powers such as Michigan, NC State, Iowa State, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, and Cornell are not far behind. 

Real time brackets and team scores can be found here, inside FloArena. See below for the full projected team finishes based on pre-seeds. 

After the Finals: Iowa State Triumphant!

The Cyclones already had team title clinched by the time Yonger Bastida won the final bout of the tournament over Lucas Davison, but it was an appropriate finale to a tremendous tournament for Iowa State.  

1) Iowa State: 130.5

2) Nebraska: 125.5

3) Ohio State: 123.5

4) NC State: 115

5) Oregon State: 98.5

6) Cornell: 93.5

7) Stanford: 85.5

8) Michigan: 81.5

9) Oklahoma State: 78.5

10) South Dakota State: 74

Before the Finals and 3rd Place Bouts

After the semis they wrestled both the consi semis and the 5th and 7th place bouts, which got us closer to the final standings.

1) Iowa State: 125.5

2) Ohio State: 117.5

3) Nebraska: 116.5

4) NC State: 104

5) Oregon State: 98.5

6) Cornell: 93.5

7) Michigan: 81.5

7) Stanford: 81.5

9) Oklahoma State: 73.5

10) South Dakota State: 69

10) Virginia Tech: 69 

Ohio State snuck up on Nebraska and overtook the Huskers for second place but the Cyclones are still holding strong at first. 

After the Semifinals

There are still a set of consolation semifinals to be wrestled and some of those results may have even factored into these scores but for narrative purposes these semifinal results were far more important to the team race and that's when I wanted to take a snap shot of, the scores after the semis. 

Those scores are:

1) Iowa State: 116.5

2) Nebraska: 112

3) Ohio State: 109.5

4) NC State: 98.5

5) Oregon State: 89.5

6) Cornell: 89

7) Stanford: 75.5

8) Michigan: 71

9) Oklahoma State: 67

10) South Dakota State: 64.5

10) Virginia Tech: 64.5

An astounding 14 different schools put a wrestler in the finals while 24 teams have a top 8 placer. 

Iowa State and NC State got three in the finals, while Nebraska and Cornell got two through. Those were the only four teams to have multiple finalists. 

After the Quarters and Bloodround

The second session ended with the bloodround so everyone who wrestles tomorrow is a placer. 

There were big points up for grabs as a win in the quarters is a guaranteed sixth place and means you could finish off the podium. And a great round by Iowa State pushed the Cyclones into the lead. 

1) Iowa State: 88.5

2) Ohio State: 86

3) Nebraska: 82.5

4) Cornell: 73

5) NC State: 72

6) Oregon State: 69

7) Michigan 67.5

8) Stanford: 65

9) South Dakota State: 57.5

10) Oklahoma State: 50

Iowa State has the most wrestlers still alive on both sides of the brackets (and thus the most placers) with seven, and are tied for the most left on the championship side with four. Michigan and Nebraska also have four still alive for first but the Wolverines only one wrestler in the consolation bracket while the Huskers have two wrestling for third. 

The Cyclones had the most successful session but Ohio State and Nebraska are right on their heels, while about five other teams are still in contention for a team trophy. 

This has been a wild tournament and that is reflected in this team race! Tomorrow should be another crazy one!

After the Round of 16

With 138 nationally ranked wrestlers and 48 top 10 competitors, there were bound to be upsets, and the early rounds had their fair share (link to every CKLV upset).

It's still too early to see which of those upsets may prove to be deceive in the team race. The next round, with the quarters and the round of 12, will bring much clarity to the competition. But here's where things stand after we've gotten a good chunk of the tournament in the books. 

1) Ohio State: 46.5

2) Nebraska: 45

3) Iowa State: 41

4) Oregon State: 39.5

5) Cornell: 37

6) NC State: 36

7) Oklahoma State: 33

8) South Dakota State: 30.5

9) Michigan: 30

10) Northern Iowa: 29

10) Stanford: 29

The Cyclones have the most still alive on the topside with 7. Oregon State has all 10 alive for the podium, with 5 on the top and 5 in the consolation side. 

After the Round of 32

The round of 16 matches began while the last heavyweight bouts in the round of 32 were still taking place so these may not be the exact scores between round but the top 10 looks like this after first round. 

1) Nebraska: 30

2) Ohio State: 27.5

3) Cornell: 24.5

4) Iowa State: 23.5

5) NC State: 22

6) Oklahoma State: 21

7) Stanford: 20

8) Oregon State: 19.5

9) Michigan: 17

10) North Carolina: 16.5

Obviously, quite a lot of wrestling still to be done on both the top and backside of the brackets. Nebraska and Iowa State are the only two teams to put all 10 of their wrestler into the round of 16.

Projected Team Placements & Scores

1) Nebraska: 98.5

2) Michigan: 83.5

3) NC State: 81

4) Iowa State: 75.5

5) Ohio State: 73.5

6) Oklahoma State: 70

7) Cornell: 62.5

8) Oregon State: 53

9) Northern Iowa: 48.5

10) Arizona State: 46

11) South Dakota State: 45.5

12) Virginia Tech: 34.5

13) North Carolina: 31

14) Navy: 28.5

15) Maryland: 27.5

16) Purdue: 27

17) Air Force: 25.5

18) Campbell: 24

19) Stanford: 21

20) Cal Poly: 21

21) Northwestern: 17

22) Columbia: 14

23) Wyoming: 12

24) Rider: 9

25) Appalachian State: 6.5

26) Binghamton: 5

27) Utah Valley: 4.5

28) Ohio: 4.5

29) Hofstra: 2

30) Harvard: 1.5

Scroll past the updates for a stroll down memory lane with team pictures of the winners and links to brackets and full team scores. 

2022: Nebraska (link to brackets)

2021: Nebraska (link to brackets) - there was no 2020 tournament due to covid

2019: Nebraska (link to brackets)

2018: Ohio State (link to brackets)

2017: Ohio State (link to brackets)

2016: Ohio State (link to brackets)

2015: Missouri (link to brackets)