Led by Olympic medalists Kyle Snyder, Jordan Burroughs and J'Den Cox — as well as the hero of last year's world cup former Penn State great David Taylor — Team USA is seeking its first United World Wrestling Men's Freestyle World Cup title in 15 years.
The two-day international dual meet, which comprises 16 duals and 160 matches, kicks off at 11 a.m. Saturday in Iowa City, Iowa.
Despite Taylor pinning Iran's Olympic gold medalist Hassan Yazdani in the 86-kilogram final in last year's world cup, the Americans narrowly missed out on the title to Iran, which has won the past six cups.
Iran, as well as international wrestling juggernaut Russia, will not be attending this weekend's World Cup, making the Americans the team to beat.
“Any time you have an opportunity to wrestle for the United States, that’s pretty special,” Taylor said via TeamUSA.org. “We’re hungry and we’re definitely ready to roll.”
Attempting to add a World Cup title to its 2017 World Championship team title, Team USA will wrestle against Japan, Georgia and India in Pool A. Azerbaijan, Cuba, Kazakhstan and Mongolia will be wrestling in Pool B.
The first matches get underway at 11 a.m. Saturday and can be streamed live on Trackwrestling.com, NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app. Team USA matches can also be viewed on either NBCSN or the Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA, while the championships gold-medal matches will be broadcast live on NBCSN from 5-7 p.m. Sunday.
Other former college wrestling standouts representing Team USA this weekend include Thomas Gilman (57 kg), Kendric Maple (61 kg), Logan Stieber (65 kg) James Green (70 kg), Kyle Dake (79 kg) and Nick Gwiazdowski.
UWW World Cup info
When: 11 a.m. Saturday - 7 p.m. Sunday
Where: Carver-Hawkeye Arena, Iowa City, Iowa
How to watch/stream online: Session I: 11 a.m. Saturday, streaming on Trackwrestling.com; Team USA vs. India: 11 a.m. Saturday, Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA; Session II: 3:30 pm. Saturday, streaming on Trackwrestling.com; Team USA vs. Japan: 3:30 p.m. Saturday, NBCSN; Session III: 11 a.m. Sunday, streaming on Trackwrestling.com; Team USA vs. Georgia: 11 a.m. Sunday, Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA; fifth- and seventh-place matches: 1:30 p.m. Sunday, streaming on Trackwrestling.com; Bronze-Medal Match: 3:15 p.m. Sunday, streaming on Trackwrestling.com; Gold Medal Match: 5 p.m. Sunday, NBCSN
How to follow on Twitter: @USAWrestling