The wrestling team is losing its best player:
Sophomore Darrion Caldwell, an NCAA All-American wrestler who asked for his release from North Carolina State University, has been granted permission to speak with three schools, including Rutgers, where he would like to continue to wrestle and possibly try to resume his football career.
It remains to be seen, however, whether or not N.C. State officials will release Caldwell from his wrestling scholarship commitment. If they don't, Caldwell's father, Kevin, said his son will still transfer.
Caldwell is N.C. State's first All-American since 1996. A two-time NCAA qualifier and owner of a 62-9 career record, Caldwell won his second straight Atlantic Coast Conference championship this season. He also placed fifth in the NCAA Tournament at 149 pounds. As a 141-pounder, Caldwell was named the ACC's 2006-07 Wrestler of the Year. He is the jewel of N.C. State's program.
In an e-mail Jordan sent to Kevin Caldwell on April 3, the coach wrote in part: "I am extremely frustrated that every time a smaller program like ours begins to make a move nationally, the big boys swoop down and try to steal our guys. Darrion has been bombarded with calls from other schools from the big conferences. It is illegal and immoral. I intend to fight for Darrion and my program."
Kevin Caldwell refuted that allegation, stating that Darrion has not been in contact with any other university.