Perry wrestling makes more history with 1,000th dual victory

Jason Elmquist/Stillwater News Press

Perry High’s Ryan Smith pins Guthrie’s Grant White at 113 pounds during a home dual last season. Smith is one of three returning medalists for the Maroons who will likely be coached by Perry wrestling alumnus Ladd Rupp, according to reports. Rupp had been the coach at Cushing High, leading the Tigers to several state runner-up finishes in Class 4A.

One of the most decorated wrestlers from the legendary Perry wrestling program is expected to return home to fill the vacancy at head coach.

According to reports on Twitter – including from Ben Johnson of Skordle.com – and confirmed by a News Press source that former four-time Oklahoma high school state champion Ladd Rupp is slated to become the next head coach of the Maroons after the departure of Ronnie Delk for an assistant coaching position in Arkansas.

Rupp has been the head man at Cushing High for the past several years and coached that program into one of the top in Class 4A – unable to track down powerhouse Tuttle, which has won 10 consecutive state titles. The Tigers finished second last season with five wrestlers reaching the state finals, with two returning to Cushing as state champions.

The cupboard won’t be completely bare for Rupp in his return to his alma mater.

The Maroons are expected to return three seniors-to-be who were state medalists a year ago, including Ryan Smith and Dylan Avery, who were state champions at 113 and 132 pounds, respectively. Also in that class is Gabe Valencia, who finished third at 106 pounds last season.

There could be two other wrestlers return from last year’s state championship team that qualified for state in Logan Smith (120 pounds) and Brody Harbour (160).

Rupp completed his wrestling career at Perry as one of the top 10 wrestlers in most categories in the historic program.

He was the state tournament outstanding wrestler in 2007 as a sophomore, and had a 163-13 overall record for a .926 winning percentage – which ranks seventh in the record books – with the 163 overall wins ranking third. His 46 wins his senior season in 2009 ties for sixth all-time in a single season, while his 106 career falls ranks first in the program’s history – with 66 of those being first-period pins.

Following his time at PHS, Rupp went on to compete in college for John Smith at Oklahoma State.

The school board for Perry Public Schools is scheduled to vote on the hiring of its new head wrestling coach Monday, according to the meeting agenda on the district’s website.

An attempt to reach Rupp was unsuccessful prior to Saturday’s deadline.