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Akron 2019

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Since the Cadet and U23 FS and Greco WTT start in 2 days I figure the conversation/predictions should begin.

As for U23s it sucks the world championships interfere with the folkstyle season and that coaches are even worried about it. Sure it sucks that it takes away from college matches they could be wrestling and helping the team but once they're done with competition they'll be ready to jump back into folk season full swing. They're still in wrestling shape, just give them a week break to catch up in class work and a rest from traveling around the globe and they're good. I get the POV of the coach here but the athlete is not only representing Team USA, but the school or club they train with also. I don't see it as a bad thing at all. As an example, Cassioppi won the Junior Open and deferred out of the finals so he wouldn't make the team which he probably would've. Now he's entered here just to wrestle? I don't like it, if you want to compete in a team trial you have to be willing to suit up for Team USA which clearly isn't his MO. I don't think he will win this tournament anyways but say he makes the finals and then forfeits out. You're not allowing the third best guy, who maybe was on his side of the bracket, try and knock off the first or second best guy in the finals and you're not giving your finals opponent a match. I don't like any of it, athletes should wrestle FS no matter what and should want to represent the USA.

Cadets look stacked as always and will be a great watch, I hope some rising stars show out and some unproven studs do the same. Cadets have the exact opposite problem as U23s and that's too many good guys at each weight which is a treat for us watching there and at home. On to predictions


57kg: Aaron Cashman - I was silently hoping we'd see Spencer here but alas we don't have him but another Hawkeye trained grappler is here in his place and Iowa always shows out at U23s

61kg: Jaime Hernandez - Made Junior WTT finals and beat RBY on his way. Look out for Greco stud Taylor Lamont and one of Yianni's training partners in Chaz Tucker (insane shot defense)

65kg: Jaydin Eierman - Absolutely LOADED weight class. Eierman, Demas, Josh Saunders, Luke Pletcher, Mitch McKee, and Kanen Storr. This will be a treat

70kg: Alec Pantaleo - Another good one here, Pantaleo, Gfeller, and Kolodzik.

74kg: Logan Massa - Having Pantaleo as a partner will help him get an edge on this massive field.

79kg: Kimball Bastian - A lot of solid guys here and maybe a few surprises as no one really has a ton of FS experience

86kg: Max Dean - This is a fun weight, a lot of untested FS guys but all are the same level in folk. Max is not untested here and that gives him the slightest edge although this spot is very up in the air.

92kg: Christian Brunner - Kind of a boring weight. Finals here will probably be Brunner vs Woodley

97kg: Ben Honis - He's tested and seasoned and a man among boys here. I think he's huge for the weight and the next best guy, Imonode, he beat at Senior Trials.

125kg:  Youssif Hemida - I think him making the finals is almost guaranteed with Orndorff, Wood, or Cassioppi challenging 


45kg: Marc-Anthony McGowan

48kg: Stevo Poulin

51kg: Richard Figueroa

55kg: Nic Bouzakis

60kg: Ryan Sokol

65kg: Joey Zargo

71kg: Alex Facundo

80kg: Clay Ulrey

92kg: Noah Pettigrew

110kg: Hunter Catka

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Looking through the entries I think we'll see the folks who have kept their weight down/ideal will succeed a bit more than the others.

Examples I can think of that would be contenders next weight down:

-Pletcher registered at 65kg. Would be a favorite at 61, much like Pitt's Phillipe is.

-Skatzka is registered at 86kg, when he would be a contender at 79(174lbs-his college weight).

All this being said I believe your 65, 70, and 74 picks are easily the favorites. I think 86 has a lot of super strong college guys, but as you said they are untested, at least in a while at freestyle.

I have Kerkvliet at HWT.

There are a slew of those athletic heavyweights that made the drop to 97kg. Singletary comes to mind. He is my pick here.

92 as Brunner is a good pick.

57 is a crapshoot and I can't see anyone better than Bastion at 79kg.

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i'm gonna go all greco because it is better than all the other styles and no one gives it any love in this country...

admittedly, you get into full sized men and i start to lose any real context, but, whatever...


45- kaden ramos: assuming he makes weight... he will be huge and actaully knows some greco

48- jonathan gurule: originally thought sefton douglas, but, it was brought up to me how good sized gurule will be and older... throw in a match i just watched from vegas and i am waffling on sefton

51- max black: strickenberger, mobley, and seymour will be players... seymour will be very good sized

55- hunter garvin: rundell a player

60- cody chittum: will be huge... already signed up for 65 in free... drury a player

65- dean hamiti just on being a bad dude forever... wiley a live underdog coming from a judo heavy background

71- niko katsuyoshi: he won flo nats... i really don't have a clue

80- tate picklo

92- samuel fisher: again, won flo nats... no clue

110- braxton mikesell


i really don't care, but, will be watching lamont, roberts, demas (everyone should watch demas), artalona, rodgers, hancock


Edited by LJB
i watched a match from western... have changed my mind

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i did just read 5 points breakdown of the cadet greco brackets... i'm not sure i could disagree much more with basically everything in that article...

i can't decide if i'm the foolish one or it's tim... 

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Cassioppi at U23 trials is interesting. Solid hvwt field there. Kerklevit and Hemida are both very interesting matchups. Both are also freestyle specialists so Cassioppi will have his work cut it for him. 

I doubt Iowa allows him to got U23 worlds if he wins. It is during the season this year. 

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just because i know you guys love to be kept abreast of greco news...

"The Complete Cadet Greco-Roman World Team Trials Breakdown!!!!"

that i took some umbrage with last night is now being presented as a means of merely opening up "discourse"... at least i am being told that is the crawdaddy that is happening on the twitterwebs right now...

and i am waffling on my 55 pick as well, but, will go with with my own personal rooting interest...

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couple of quick things...

i slept on knopick in a big way at 55...

black and strickenberger in the semis at 51 is without a doubt the true finals...

if picklo had a legitimate greco coach he would be a murderer...


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15 hours ago, treep2000 said:

I'm intrigued by a potential Kerkvliet / Cassioppi matchup

Me too. I wish one was the 4 rather than 2/3. Wood, Hemida, Orndorff all on the same side.js annoilying too.

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47 minutes ago, TBar1977 said:

Brady Berge with the 51 second TF. TD and a lot of laces. Same as prior round. 

He looks good. Not sucked out.

Would have been nice to see him up against Massa.

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