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U23 - Medal Threat Discussion

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Now that the team has been set, what's everyone's take on our medal contention abilities?  Here's my two cents, and why (where applicable):


57kg - Mueller


I think he's "got a shot", but it's an uphill climb.  In looking over the bracket that he won, I just feel that he competition wasn't nearly as stiff as it could have been.  Junior 57kg may have been tougher than U23's.  But... Mueller looked very good at this weight, and seems like he has some "horsepower".  I say DNP.


61kg - Arujau


Again, I think he's "got a shot".  Arujau, when "on", can hang with the class of the rest of the Senior 61kg.  When off, he's toast.  If the version of Vito that showed up this past weekend, shows up at Worlds, then he has a chance.  I think he could get ~5th or so.


65kg - McKee


This guy's a "freestyle natural", in my humble opinion.  I feel that his skill set is perfectly suited for FS, and I feel he'll do pretty well, given the right draw.  I'm calling Bronze!


70kg - Hidlay


Oh how I want him to do well.  If Richie can do it, so can Hayden.  Calling GOLD!


74kg - Smythe

Who?  Ummm... massive kudos to you, but, who are you?  At any rate, calling a DNP.  It's not out of disrespect, I'm just unsure of the body of work.


79kg - McFadden


Another one to NOT sleep on (note to rest of world).  Calling 5th.  I feel he has the chops and the moxxie.  


86kg - Martin


I'm a homer, but also realize the world is a very big place.  Going to set sights on a Bronze.  Martin's athleticism keeps him in all the matches, so long as he keeps his own offense going.  Once he sits back, he's vulnerable to not only being taken down, but also the big move.  


92kg - Macchiavello


He's had one hell of a year.  This will be his coming out party, or a reality check.  Top end is Bronze in my opinion.


97kg - Moore


Will the "real" Kollin Moore please stand up?  I don't know what to think.  Some days, the guy looks like he can take down Godzilla.  Some days, he looks like a wet noodle.  When he's "on", he's absolutely a threat to pull Gold.  When "off", he's 0-1, and out of the tourney.  


125kg - Hemida


Had a very good tourney, and is showing that he's growing, month by month.  Still not there in my opinion.  Our Junior rep would tech him in ~ 60 seconds.  Calling a DNP, as the weight class was absent many of those that could have made their mark.


I'm probably way off, but... thoughts?

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I think you're being pretty realistic here.  The issue with prognosticating U23's (and University World's in the past) is that there's massive variance in difficulty between weight classes.  We don't know yet who's taking it seriously... you might have Tsargush in your bracket, or you might get a Richie Lewis draw.  


If last year showed us anything it's that enough countries are taking it seriously that it's generally very hard to medal here.  I predict 4 medals for the bunch (I think we had just 3 last year, right?) and that's just because I'm an optimist.  

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