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Ruth All-Time?

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While Ed Ruth is obviously a highly respected wrestler, it seems to me he has kind of existed in the shadow of David Taylor. But years from now, should Ruth be considered the better wrestler? If we were going to put together a "Top 10 of All Time" list of NCAA wrestlers Ruth would absolutely have to be on that list, and probably above Taylor. Assuming they both go undefeated this year (which they should)...

 

Ruth:

3x NCAA Champion

3 consecutive undefeated seasons

2 career losses

 

Taylor:

2x NCAA Champion

2 undefeated seasons

3 career losses

 

I think looking back, Ruth will be regarded as the better wrestler...

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I have always regarded Ruth as a the better of the two. Perhaps it's because I'm not a PSU fan. I mean no disrespect, but for lack of a better term, Taylor has always been PSU's "Golden Boy". Ruth has beaten tougher competition and most likely will win NCAA's this year, making him the more accomplished. Ruth is a beast!

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Should Ruth and Taylor finish the 2013-14 season as undefeated National Champsions, each will do something no other Penn Stater has accomplished:

 

Ruth - 3 time National Champ

 

Taylor - 4 time finalist

 

Ruth would finish with the fewest number of total losses in school history, with Taylor right behind him.

 

However, Taylor's losses would all be to National Champions (1 to Jenkins, 2 to Dake). Neither of the wrestlers that beat Ruth won NCAAs (Amuchastegui and Letts combined for 3 AA honors, Taylor's victors had 6 - all finals appearances with 5 NCAA titles).

 

Ruth has 1 Gorriorian award

Taylor has 2 Gorriorian awards, a Hodge and an OW award

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Nice problem to have Marine!!!

 

Should Ruth and Taylor finish the 2013-14 season as undefeated National Champsions, each will do something no other Penn Stater has accomplished:

 

Ruth - 3 time National Champ

 

Taylor - 4 time finalist

 

Ruth would finish with the fewest number of total losses in school history, with Taylor right behind him.

 

However, Taylor's losses would all be to National Champions (1 to Jenkins, 2 to Dake). Neither of the wrestlers that beat Ruth won NCAAs (Amuchastegui and Letts combined for 3 AA honors, Taylor's victors had 6 - all finals appearances with 5 NCAA titles).

 

Ruth has 1 Gorriorian award

Taylor has 2 Gorriorian awards, a Hodge and an OW award

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Your core my core Marine Corps...Agree and folks are probably looking at a bigger problem!!!

 

P.S. I never met a "Marine" I couldn't work with...It is Friday the 13th...Enjoy my friend!!!

 

Nice problem to have Marine!!!

A GREAT problem to have.

 

I won't try to determine which is/was better. I'll appreciate both for what they've done and contributed.

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I remember first seeing Ruth at PIAA states when he was this untamed, undisciplined, extremely talented 10th grader. He upset Frick of Nazareth in the quarters and had a wild match against Q Wright in the semi's that Quentin won. It was obvious that Ruth was oozing with untapped potential.

 

Seeing where Ed Ruth ended up is very satisfying, having seen the potential develop into reality. It often doesn't work out that way. The Ruth we see today must be the result of great coaching applied to unbelievable talent coupled with just a ridiculous body. He's the complete package.

 

When I first saw David Taylor he was a fully developed superstar. He remains a fully developed superstar.

 

Any comparison between the two is going to be flawed. We've had the great fun of watching them on the big stage for 3 years now. I'm going to savor the coming year.

 

We may not see their like again.

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We may not see their like again.

 

We have seen it before, we will certainly see it again.

 

If you had said "We may not see their like on the same team and at the same time again" I would agree. We may not. Forever is a real long time though.

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Brings to mind Sanderson and Heskett...

 

I love Joe Heskett, but he was not nearly as exciting as watching these two wrestle. And, that is really the difference between the best ever and everyone else. Ruth and Taylor go out and try to rack up points & pins in every match. If they have a regular decision, they get pissed off. In terms of marketing the sport, these are the kind of guys you want to feature. Casual fans will appreciate a dominating tech fall much more so than a dominating 4-0 victory with very little action

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Assuming he gets 35 or so matches in this year and with a high probability of 3 years running, undefeated- how will Ruth compare in the record books, as to other unbeaten strings and his coach's 159-0?

Unless he wrestles unattached somewhere (something Penn State starters rarely do), the best he'll be able to do is 31-0, and that's if he gets pigtails at both the Scuffle and Big Ten's.

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The Ruth we see today must be the result of great coaching applied to unbelievable talent coupled with just a ridiculous body.

 

Can we give a shout-out to his work ethic and drive, too?

 

He seldom gets credit for it, but Ruth is one of the best conditioned athletes competing today. In the relatively few matches that make it to the end, Ruth is constantly attacking. He racks up a lot of his points in the third period. Look at his matches against Lewnes and Henrich as a freshman, or breaking Hamlin in the finals this past March. That kind of conditioning doesn't happen by accident. The kid must work his rear off, and be incredibly driven to improve at the clip he has over the past few years.

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"Top 10 of All Time" list of NCAA wrestlers

 

He wouldn't be on it.

 

4 timers, 3 time undefeated wrestlers when 3 times was all they were allowed.

 

He is good but doesn't hit top 10.

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"Top 10 of All Time" list of NCAA wrestlers

 

He wouldn't be on it.

 

4 timers, 3 time undefeated wrestlers when 3 times was all they were allowed.

 

He is good but doesn't hit top 10.

 

If he dominates like he has the last 2 years I have to STRONGLY disagree. Ruth has been the MOST dominant wrestler over the past 2 years, PERIOD! He has wrestled in deep weights every year and even his freshman year looked considerably ahead of the competition. One early freshman season letdown to a seasoned veteran like Letts and the nationals injury against another in Amuchestegui are his only blemishes. He DECISIVELY avenged each loss and has blown away the field since.

 

100+ wins, 2 losses, huge percentage bonus and NCAA finishes of 3,1,1,1 could not only put him TOP 10 but in my opinion close to TOP 5. Remember, I am by no means a PSU fan so my glasses ARE NOT colored in a way to favor Ruth. I think he truly is THAT good!

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"Top 10 of All Time" list of NCAA wrestlers

 

He wouldn't be on it.

 

4 timers, 3 time undefeated wrestlers when 3 times was all they were allowed.

 

He is good but doesn't hit top 10.

 

I wouldn't be so sure.

 

I don't think the total number of 4 timers and 3-time undefeated champs (when that's all that was allowed) exceeds 10. But either way, if Ruth wins out this year in dominant fashion, that would mean he was unbeaten in his last 3 years in college -- the same as those 3-time unbeaten champs. I'm not so sure its fair to punish Ruth in that comparison simply because he wrestled the prior year, as the other 3-timers might have lost as freshmen too.

 

But what makes this exercise expecially hard is the old-timers, where the sport was much different and matches much fewer. Guys like Koll, Uetake, Reed, Hodge, (Stan) Henson... Is there any way to do that comparison and how do they stack up? I can see Ruth not making top 10 if we're really going ALL time, as there's a lot of legends of their eras that would have to make the cut lest we disrespect history.

 

But if we go past 50 years or so -- and comparing Ruth's career, if he goes unbeaten (a deceptively big if), against the other guys on that d1wrestling link -- I think Ruth's career stacks up very well with others vying for top 10, with a career comparable to that of, say, Kemp or McIlravy.

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Assuming he is unbeaten this year, I think Ruth blows away (relatively speaking) McIlravy on the all time list argument. Mac will have had one more loss, and Mac's last loss came in his junior year (granted, without a redshirt) - by Ruth's junior year nobody gave anyone else a chance against him and Ruth proved those predictions correct. And even in Mac's senior year, there was still a competitor who kept it reasonably close with him (Bono). Granted, Mac may have been in a tougher weight class, but most are not seeing anyone keeping it close with Ruth this coming season.

 

I think Ruth was so unchallenged last year (and even his sophmore year) and there were so many other really big stories/rivalries for the season (Dake/Taylor, Steiber/Ramos, could Oliver dominate/win 2 weights up, etc.), that what Ruth has been doing has gone somewhat under the radar.

 

I believe he will be in the mix for any argument on top 10 all time once his career is done.

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