High visibility cuts aside, 2016-17 was a reasonably good year for adding college wrestling programs. According to the Department of Education, there were 365 programs in 2016-17 versus 299 in 2003-04. Notably, wrestling added a net total of 15 programs in 2016-17, the highest number of annual additions in the database.
NCAA remains the dominant sanctioning body, outpacing the NAIA by a factor of 4 in supported programs.
The NCAA and NAIA each added a net of six programs in 2016-17.
Since 2003-04, a total of 66 programs have been added (net of drops) to the college wrestling landscape. Over the period, the NAIA is adding programs at roughly twice the rate of the NCAA.
In all, not bad or as an old business partner liked to say "it isn't entirely horrible" (highest praise from that one). Really, a good year for adding roster slots overall and making next level wrestling available to more graduating high school athletes. In light of Boise and EMU, a nice little ray of sunshine in these numbers.