Three-time NCAA champion and Missouri graduate J’den Cox remains among the world’s best wrestlers.
He claimed a bronze medal Friday during the United World Wrestling Senior World Championships in Paris in the 86-kilogram freestyle weight class.
That matches Cox’s bronze medal from the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, which he won almost exactly one year ago.
Cox — who claimed 197-pound NCAA national titles in 2014, 2016 and 2017 for the Tigers — reached the semifinals at the world championships, representing Team USA.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Kansas City Star
When he returns stateside, he’ll serve as a volunteer assistant coach for Mizzou wrestling.
He graduated from MU in May with a bachelor’s degree in psychology.
Cox, who is ranked fifth in the world, received a first-round bye before dispatching Germany’s Ahmed Rusi Dudarov (6-1) and Finland’s Ville Tapa Heino (10-1) to reach the quarterfinals.
With a semifinal spot up for grabs, Cox outlasted Poland’s Zbigniew Baranowski 3-2 before dropping a 9-6 decision against eventual runner-up Boris Makoev of Slovakia with a championship berth at stake.
Cox crushed Bulgaria’s Mihail Pet Ganev 8-0 in his only consolation match, adding yet another international medal to his career résumé.
In Mizzou annals, Cox is the second four-time All-American and first three-time national champion. He went 136-5 overall, racking up the second-most wins in program history and the best win percentage among Tigers with at least 100 victories.
Cox also is second in technical falls (20), third in major decisions (31) and eighth in pins (27).
He won the U.S. Olympic Team Trials as the No. 9 seed two weeks after wrapping up his junior season at Mizzou with a national title at Madison Square Garden.
Cox then dominated an Olympic qualifying tournament in Mongolia before traveling the country and world in the run up to Rio, where he became the seven Tigers athlete to claim an Olympic medal.