Perennial wrestling power is college choice for Pirates’senior standout Dieringer
The winningest wrestler in Port Washington High School history will head to Oklahoma State University next fall.
Alex Dieringer has signed a letter of intent accepting a wrestling scholarship from the Big 12 Conference school after considering offers from several Division I college programs.
“It was a real hard choice,” said Dieringer, who will enter his senior season as a two-time WIAA state champion.
“I had other schools interested in me, but I was looking for the best one for wrestling, academics and after college.”
Dieringer has a 128-4 career record, including a 45-1 mark as a junior, when he won the Division 1 state title at 140 pounds. He placed second in the Division 2 state tournament as a 125-pound sophomore after winning the Division 1 title at 103 pounds as a freshman.
Dieringer has also earned numerous honors at national freestyle and Greco-Roman tournaments. In July, he placed first in the USA Junior Nationals freestyle competition at 145 pounds as a member of the Wisconsin state team.
He is currently ranked No. 1 nationally in his age group at 145 pounds.
“Alex has everything you need to be great in his sport,” Port wrestling coach Angelo LaRosa said.
“A lot of people have talent but not the work ethic, or are real strong but lack technique. He’s on top of everything in practice and the way he approaches wrestling.
“And he’s probably the best athlete on our team.”
After weighing his college options for several months, Dieringer picked Oklahoma State (in Stillwater) from a group of finalists that also included schools such as Wisconsin, Central Michigan and Missouri. He narrowed the list to Oklahoma State and Wisconsin before making his choice.
Dieringer said he will be redshirted his freshman year, followed by four years of eligibility. He plans to pursue a degree in education or coaching.
A perennial wrestling power, Oklahoma State has won 34 national team titles, the most in NCAA history. The Cowboys have had 133 individual NCAA champions and 213 wrestlers earn All-American honors.
Oklahoma State is coached by John Smith, a six-time world champion and two-time Olympic gold medalist in wrestling.
“They have a great program with a coach who’s been an Olympic champion,” Dieringer said. “I want a chance to go to the Olympics, too.”
Dieringer said he appreciates the advice he got from LaRosa and his family, who “told me to consider all the positives at each school” before making a decision.
He is the son of David and Cindy Dieringer of Port Washington.
“Alex made a really good choice with Oklahoma State,” LaRosa said.
“I think getting this done is like getting a gorilla off his back. If he hadn’t signed until later, it probably would have been a distraction during the season.”
Dieringer began wrestling practice this week at Port with the ultimate goal of winning his third state title in four years, an achievement that would put him in select company in WIAA history.
“That will be my goal,” he said. “It would be a nice way to finish high school.”
LaRosa has no doubt about Dieringer’s ability to reach that goal.
“He’ll be focused. He always has been,” LaRosa said. “He’s setting the bar pretty high for all the kids coming through our program.”
ALEX DIERINGER, Port Washington High School’s two-time state champion, has signed a letter of intent to accept a wrestling scholarship from Oklahoma State University. Joining the senior were (from left) his mother Cindy Dieringer, Port athletic director Thad Gabrielse and Port wrestling coach Angelo LaRosa. Photo by Sam Arendt