Chapel Hill, NC – In an effort to continue to grow wrestling at the college level, Elite Level Sport Marketing (ELSM) and the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) have released the first version of the Best of Brand (BOB) Power Rankings that will take place during the 2013-14 season.
The Power Rankings are designed to highlight the programs that are most effectively building their brand via social media. Each ranking includes the “Top 10” programs and the programs just outside of this range that are considered “On the Bubble.” In addition, the early season rankings will include programs “On the Horizon” that are a threat to break into the rankings.
Following this Pre-Season version, the Power Rankings will be released the first Monday of each month until April when the Best of Brand award category finalists will be announced.
Priority for the Power Rankings will be given to programs involved in the Best of Brand awards program. To get your program involved, register for the Annual Achievement awards today at the Best of Brand registration page.
This first Power Ranking includes 10 programs that were finalists in one of the top Best of Brand categories (Gold Standard, Masterful Mission, and Top Newcomer). In addition, the top 5 all included teams that won at least one Best of Brand award for the 2012-13 season.
The top 10 in the Power Rankings are listed below with a performance justification for their current position. In addition, the “On the Bubble” and “On the Horizon” programs are listed.
|UTC returns as the prestigious Gold Standard winner in the Best of Brand awards as they were recognized as the top program in social media marketing for the 2012-13 season. They lose SMOY Assistant Coach finalist Rocco Mansueto, but still have a solid core in place to challenge for the top spot moving forward. As the defending champs, they deserve to start at the top until another program proves otherwise.|
|#2 Iowa State
|Iowa State returns an entire staff that was involved in two Best of Brand finalist appearances in the Gold Standard and Masterful Mission categories. In addition, they were the only program that had a head coach, assistant coach, and athlete named finalists in each of the Social Media of Year (SMOY) award categories. They maintained a solid off-season presence and are poised to take their “All In” mantra to a new level.|
|Over the last two years, there is no program that has had a stronger social media presence than Maryland. After winning the Gold Standard award is 2011-12, they returned this past season and were runner-up in the category and won the Highlight Reel award. In addition, they have SMOY finalist Kerry McCoy at the helm. They lose SMOY assistant coach finalist Todd Beckman, but gain a talented Tyrone Lewis to fill his spot.|
|Drexel is coming off a season where they had one of the most well rounded social media marketing efforts of any program. In addition to being a finalist in the Gold Standard category, they won the Pure Entertainment video category and Matt Azevedo was a SMOY finalist in the head coach category. Look for them to have a big year as their entire staff and student-athletes are heavily involved in marketing the program.|
|#5 South Dakota State
|South Dakota State stormed on to the social media marketing scene this year under the leadership of SMOY head coach finalist Chris Bono. With their solid video presence and involvement from entire staff, they will be a major threat this year for the Gold Standard award. Look for some new creative initiatives from their program moving forward.|
|#6 NC State
|NC State is another program that emerged and had a strong season on social media. Led by Pat Popolizio and their #PackMentality mantra, they had an outstanding well rounded approach from their entire staff on social media. In addition, they have established a strong presence on their program blog. They return SMOY winner Jamill Kelley in the assistant coach category.|
|Purdue has maintained a strong presence on social media the past two years and have continually improved the video content that they offer to their followers. On top of this, their staff is active consistently promoting the program on Twitter on a regular basis.|
|During the past year, UNC has worked hard to build their #RamTough mantra via social media marketing. In addition to being named a finalist in the Masterful Mission category, they were the only program to be a finalist in three different categories. Look for them to build on this with more activity from their entire staff this year on social media.|
|The Rutgers program is led by SMOY head coach finalist Scott Goodale. However, the entire staff is active on social media and they have done a solid job building interest surrounding the program from a marketing standpoint.|
|Wabash is a program that is on the rise in social media marketing. Following Danny Irwin’s SMOY nomination in the assistant coach category, their program differentiated themselves with a creative campaign that built interest on their campus and in the surrounding area. Look for them to step up efforts this year.|
|On the Bubble (just outside Top 10): Duke, Ithaca, Johns Hopkins, Mizzou, Minnesota, Penn State, Roger Williams|
|On the Horizon (threat to break into Top 10): Appalachian State, Briar Cliff, Grand View, Lake Erie, Ohio, Ouachita Baptist, Princeton, Rhode Island College, Stanford, Sacred Heart, Wayland, Wyoming|
About Elite Level Sports Marketing (ELSM)
Elite Level Sports Marketing is a firm that specializes in the development and implementation of innovative marketing plans for sport organizations, businesses, and programs. Functioning around five core values: innovation, integrity, connection, adding value, and making a difference, ELSM provides coaches, marketing professionals, and fans with marketing resources to help grow sport organizations.
About National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA)
The National Wrestling Coaches Association, established in 1928, is a non-profit organization for the advancement of all levels of the sport of wrestling with primary emphasis on developing coaches who work in academic environments. The membership embraces all people interested in amateur wrestling. The three core competencies of the NWCA are: coaching development, student-athlete welfare, and promotion of wrestling.