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Most anticipated wrestlers

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I'm going to compile a list of wrestlers who are either returning from injury, coming off of redshirt, a true frosh, or any other reason why they were left out of the starting lineup from last year and highlight them here. With the college season rapidly approaching I have to entertain myself somehow and I thought of this as an idea. There are a lot of athletes I'm super excited to see for the first time (or again) in varsity action. Let's take it weight by weight starting at the lightest.

125 - Jakob Camacho and Eric Barnett

Jakob Camacho was a killer in high school and was also a killer his redshirt campaign. NC State is pretty deep at 125 but I don't see any of the other guys taking this spot from him and with the Olympic cycle coming this year all weights will naturally feel weaker and perhaps 125 will be affected. I could definitely see Camacho sneaking an AA finish his first year in action but if not blood round should be the minimum goal for him this year. With Barnett, I don't know the news on Connor Brown and his injury but either could start and make an impact. Barnett was solid in high school and will be in college as well. If Bono ultimately throws him in the lineup it'll be interesting to see how the true freshman will fare in the Big 10.

133 - Seth Gross, Taylor Lamont, Iowa

Taylor Lamont was a blood round guy at 125 in 2018 and won the Southern Scuffle. He is a Greco guy and is good at it. We missed him last year due to an injury and we welcome him back at a higher weight. His style is unique to the rest of the field at 133 as no one has the Greco chops he does and as a fringe AA his first year I think he could make some more noise again this year. Seth Gross is Seth Gross, an automatic title contender at any weight he chooses. He is a national champ at this weight and I think he's the best guy again. His attacks are clean and plentiful and his top game is the best in the weight class. Anything but the finals for Seth Gross would be disappointing. Shout out to Iowa for having a problem on their hands, albeit, a good one. They have too many good guys at the same weight. 125 is Spencer's obviously and I think it's safe to say that 149 is Lugo's. That leaves DeSanto, Gavin Teasdale, Jason Renteria, Max Murin, and even Vince Turk to battle it out for two spots. Hard to believe that 3 of those guys won't be starting. Good luck figuring that out Brands.

141 - Real Woods, Joey Silva, Grant Leeth

AA Grant Leeth returns after an injury sidelined him for almost the entire season last year.He AAed in 2018 at 149 and when he got injured, Brock Mauller stepped in and AAed himself. So as Mauller earned his spot, Leeth had to drop in weight to 141 which is now open due to the fact that Eierman is taking an Olympic Redshirt this year. Leeth wasn't a scoring machine but he sure is tough and if he manages his weight right he could be a high AA. Real Woods and Joey Silva walk into this weight this year at the perfect time. Yianni and Eierman, the two best returning guys, are not competing this year and they are automatically in the talks of finals appearances in my opinion. Joey Silva has breakneck pace and will leave no room for you to breathe. Woods is a beats already who only lost to Nick Lee in Scuffle finals in his redshirt campaign. Silva and Woods had an epic and controversial match in high school and I think we all would like to see them run it back.

149 - Sammy Sasso, Brayton Lee, Boo Lewallen, Mason Smith, Andrew Alirez

This weight is wide open and has a very talented group of freshmen coming in. Both national finalists graduated and now it's time for someone to take control of this weight and the person to do it could be a freshman. Before we get into them, remember Mason Smith? He won the Southern Scuffle at 141 for Central MIchigan a couple years ago, transferred to ASU, didn't wrestle for them at all, transferred to Campbell and now he's back. He took a wild ride but he's found his home in North Carolina with Kolat and company and I bet he's hungry to take the mat again. He is long and talented and I can't wait to see him compete again, fringe AA type depending on how good he's looking. Boo Lewallen is also back from injury that kept him off the mat. Will he start? I think so, John Smith said that once Lewallen returned the spot was his. Well he never did and Gfeller held the spot the whole year. Gfeller ended up not AAing so I think we see him somewhere else in the lineup or out to fit Lewallen in. Now for the freshmen, these guys are seriously good. Brayton Lee topped Sammy Sasso in the Junior WTT Finals. That was freestyle and those two are split in that I believe. Brayton Lee is just a winner, he grinds and grinds and grinds until he wins. I always think he will lose but doesn't. And Sasso is a freak. I think people overrate him a bit but the hype is not there for no reason. He's electric and can score in a handful of ways. Not to mention true freshman Andrew Alirez. He teched Nick Lee in freestyle when he was still in high school. He lost to Yahya Thomas in WTT finals which shocked me but I still think he has the talent to make the NCAA finals his first year. I think any of those 3 freshmen could and I'd be surprised if any of them didn't.

157 - David Carr, Jacori Teemer, Will Lewan

This might be one of my favorite weights this upcoming year due to these 3 guys. Will Lewan had quite the impressive redshirt year as he beat Michigan's starting man Alec Pantaleo which is insane. He took some losses but he was a freshman and there is a learning curve. In the Michigan room I'm sure they corrected those mistakes and I think he could make a run for a top 4 finish. David Carr just won a Junior World Title so if Iowa State fans weren't already excited to see him in the red and gold, which I don't see why you wouldn't be, they better be now. He could've gone last year but they had the talent in the lineup available to allow him to redshirt. He's had quite the summer and I think he's definitely in the talks of a finals run. As a New Yorker, Jacori Teemer is my most anticipated guy for this upcoming season. Is it biased? A little but the pick certainly holds weight. His shot defense is perhaps the best I've seen and his offense is not too shabby either. He can put people on their back from any position, go watch his WNO #1 match vs Mitch Moore and you'll know what I mean, his style is not like anyone else's and in a room with such talented coaches and wrestlers I can only think he got better. Can he beat Hidlay? Maybe. I think him, Carr, and Deakin have the best shot at him.

165 - Shane Griffith

Relatively a quiet weight with exciting new faces but let me explain why this one will be actually the loudest. I'm calling my shot right now, with Mekhi Lewis on Olympic Redshirt this year Shane Griffith will be the NCAA Champion at 165 pounds. I think he has all the goods to do it. He's long like Wick but his defense is better and his offense is just as good. He's young but tough and I think he can maneuver this deep field to reach the finals and win no matter who is across from him. 

174 - Michael Kemerer and Anthony Valencia

Michael Kemerer is finally back and at the perfect time. Zahid is either moving up to 184, taking an Olympic redshirt, or both. There have been talks of Mark Hall and also Myles Amine taking Olympic redshirts which would cement him as a title contender. With Zahid here, only him and Hall are title threats with Amine as a dark horse. But with Zahid gone I don't think locking Mark Hall vs Myles Amine is a done deal because Kemerer is seriously talented. He's a top 3 finisher most likely and I can't wait to see him in that Iowa lineup yet again. Speaking of Zahid, his twin brother is back from injury. Anthony Valencia was the highest rated recruit in the country I believe, before losing to Mark Hall at WNO, and he hasn't lived up to the hype yet. As a high school senior he was teching senior level guys in freestyle and he has yet to AA. The word from Tempe is that he's back to full health and after seeing him at the Open and the Trials I believe it and I'm excited yet again. I think he gets his first medal this year in the post season.

184 - Trent Hidlay, Hunter Bolen, Gavin Hoffman, Ben Darmstadt

Trent HIdlay is coming back to NC State with a Junior World Bronze and a lot of experience. Experience which he can use to his advantage this year. He's big and strong and uses his underhook super effectively to score. If his first year of varsity action is anything like his brothers we sure are in for a treat. Hunter Bolen was a NQ his true freshman season and then last year took a redshirt losing only to Shakur Rasheed in Southern Scuffle finals. I think he comes back into the lineup and makes it to the blood round this year. I watched Gavin Hoffman wrestle off Myles Martin at the beginning of the year last year and he got smoked. Fair enough, but then his redshirt year he went off and I think he can step into Myles Martin's place and fit nicely there. I'm not saying he's going to be a 4 time AA with a Title too but he will do just fine for himself and the Buckeyes. Apparently Darmstadt had some weight he could lose on his 6'3" frame. Enough weight to cut down from 197 to 184. That blows my mind. Depending on what Zahid does with himself, I could see Darmstadt assassinating his way to an NCAA title at 184. I think he's a finalist threat at 184 or 197 so we'll see if he can hold the weight.

197 - Tanner Sloan, Michael Beard or Kyle Conel

Tanner Sloan has the perfect situation for himself. He just got perhaps the best 197lb coach in the country in Damion Hahn and he just got valuable experience at Junior Worlds. I know you all remember him beating Jacob Warner at Midlands pretty bad but he also beat AA Josh Hokit at the same tournament. The kid is already good and looks to be getting better. I hope he can help Hahn build something special at SDSU. Kyle Conel was America's sweetheart for the 2018 NCAA tournament when he pinned #1 seed Kollin Moore from a pigtail spot. He then did it again in the 3rd place match by decision so it was no fluke. He has a special tournament and then he missed the 2018-19 season with injury and was finished with wrestling altogether... Until he transferred to Penn State and hopes to compete again and perhaps get to the finals that eluded him during his special run. If not, the Nittany Lions will still be well represented as they have Michael Beard there to take over if Mr. Conel cannot compete.

285 - Anthony Cassioppi, Tanner Hall, Jere Heino

Jere Heino is Campbell's heavy but he is also Finland's representative for their MFS team. I can't find information leading me to believe he will be competing in worlds but I don't see why he wouldn't. Should he do that he'll come into the season with veteran like experience and will be in top shape so look for him to make an impressive run come postseason. Tanner Hall is entering in his 23rd NCAA season. I'm obviously joking but he has been around the block, a lot. He's placed as high as 3rd but also he has not placed at all so you never know what you'll get from Tanner Hall but in the Pac-12 I think I can confidently say that he will represent ASU well there and perhaps give them another AA finish to end his career. Cassioppi is the next big bad Iowa heavyweight and he looks good. He could probably step in and be the 3rd or 4th best guy in the country as a redshirt freshman. I don't think he can beat Gable or Cassar but I think he can beat Jordan Wood or anyone else right away. I think he is an AA threat right now.

So this is my list of guys who I am excited to see again/for the first time in varsity action. Let me know if I missed anyone. I tried to keep the list short and only guys who are 90% likely to start. I just started typing and it got to be pretty long so if you read all of that thanks. Let me know what you think, Flo hire me :)

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Very nice list.

Couple of notes:

-I wouldn't be surprised to see Silva down to 133 for UofM. Micic may Oly-Shirt

-Amine looks to be going the Zahid route. Oly-Shirt and/or bump to 184.

-Anthony Valencia is older than Zahid. He was held back a year in like 3rd grade.

-141... with 143 being the Olympic weight I wouldn't be surprised to see Gross up at 141. Also with the two clear favorites redshirting, expect a 133 or 149 or two to switch weights(Desanto? Smith?).

-David Carr... I want this kid to Oly-shirt and give 74kg a proper go for 2020. Let him grow into the weight.

184-I am very excited about this weight because of all four guys mentioned. Add in the possibility of Amine or Valencia? YES!

285-I am most anticipating 2020-21 for heavy. Such drool.

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12 minutes ago, nhs67 said:

Very nice list.

Couple of notes:

-I wouldn't be surprised to see Silva down to 133 for UofM. Micic may Oly-Shirt

-Amine looks to be going the Zahid route. Oly-Shirt and/or bump to 184.

-Anthony Valencia is older than Zahid. He was held back a year in like 3rd grade.

-141... with 143 being the Olympic weight I wouldn't be surprised to see Gross up at 141. Also with the two clear favorites redshirting, expect a 133 or 149 or two to switch weights(Desanto? Smith?).

-David Carr... I want this kid to Oly-shirt and give 74kg a proper go for 2020. Let him grow into the weight.

184-I am very excited about this weight because of all four guys mentioned. Add in the possibility of Amine or Valencia? YES!

285-I am most anticipating 2020-21 for heavy. Such drool.

I like Silva's chances of AAing at 141 better than 133 but you might be right. I had no idea Anthony was older than Zahid so thanks for that. I figure 133, 141, 149, and even 157 will shift weights most likely due to team needs and depth of the weights postseason but I just put guys where I think they're projected. I'd like to see Carr wrestle his years of college now because he won't win the spot but once he's graduated he will be in great shape to make Olympic team then. If Amine and/or Valencia move up we could see one of the deepest weights in the country. I couldn't agree more on the heavyweight situation especially if Cassar, which I don't think he will, takes more than 1 year of eligibility he has available to him will make it THE deepest weight class. We're talking Cassar(possibly), Gable, Cassioppi, Kerkvliet, Schultz, Wood, Parris, Singleterry, Jensen, Hillger, and more

Edited by Ragu

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@Ragu

-re: Silva/Michigan-Assad(Mattin if he can make it-rumor is he can't)-Silva-Freeman/Storr-Storr/Freeman looks better than Assad-Mattin-Silva/Freeman-Storr/Freeman. Lamantia may have something to say about that too. Michigan as a whole has a lot of different ways their lineup could look and it could look very different from the beginning to the end. I could see any of these guys being the starters at some point in the year, pending Oly-Shirts as well as injuries, for those that are prone to them...(in order of what I think most likely-this doesn't mean I think this is the best possible route for a lineup either)

125-Assad, Mattin, Medley

133-Micic(OS), Mattin, Silva, Freeman(Nick), Suitor

141-Storr, Silva, Freeman(Ben), Lamantia

149-Storr, Freeman(Ben), Lamantia, Lombard

157-Lewan, Lamantia, Vananrooy, Amine

165-Massa, Hughes, Vananrooy, Amine, Lewan

174-Amine(OS), Hughes, Massa, Maylor, Vananrooy, Embree

184-Amine(OS), Embree, Maylor

197-Davison, Striggow(either of them), Embree, Ready

285-Parris(OS), Ready, Nemec

That is a lot of variety there and for some of them the coaching staff will need to already have decent or bulk plans in action to be possible.

-Re: Carr-I say if he wants to be a great, give him the chance to start now. He would have been very competitive at Seniors 74kg this year. Add another year to him to mature AND another year for many of the good guard to grow older... I don't think he beats Burroughs, Dake, IMar, Lewis, or anything... but he could give them good matches and possibly create an upset or two to ruin hypothetical matches. Chaos us fun to witness.

-Re: 184-Yes. Very deep. Much deeper than either weights on either side. We could see some folks go up or down, but 184 is like 141... closest to the next Oly-weight.

-Re: 285-Singletary will likely drop to 197 yes? Even if Cassar doesn't go his 'Senior' season, they'll have Seth Nevills there. Add him. A lot of folks who would have gotten high AA honors multiple times may be lucky to get AA more than two times. We'll see. I think the new guard pushes Wood out and I wouldn't be surprised to see Tanner Hall not place this year, with the wrong draw.

Edited by nhs67
I have fat fingers and need to spellcheck.

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30 minutes ago, HokieHWT said:

Bolen makes the finals.

With Darmstadt, Hidlay, Hoffman, Rasheed, Deprez, Bonaccorsi, and Venz in the way? I'm not saying he's worse than all of those guys I'm just saying that's tough. Depending on seeds he'd probably have to beat two of those guys in a row to just make the finals. And that's if Amine and Zahid aren't there

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4 minutes ago, Ragu said:

With Darmstadt, Hidlay, Hoffman, Rasheed, Deprez, Bonaccorsi, and Venz in the way? I'm not saying he's worse than all of those guys I'm just saying that's tough. Depending on seeds he'd probably have to beat two of those guys in a row to just make the finals. And that's if Amine and Zahid aren't there

I’ll take him over all of them to be honest and that’s not a homer pick. He would have AA’d his Freshman year but had a bad tournament.

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I agree with all prior posted wish lists.  But somebody's gonna do this so I may as well be  first.  My wish list is completely Mizzou focused.

141 - Agree with the excitement around Grant Leeth.  Hope he can maintain the weight without killing himself (or someone on the  Mizzou team).

149 - Brock Mauller did an amazing job with his true freshman AA effort.  Can't wait to see his sophomore jump.

HWT - Zach Elam looked  like another true freshman all star at the beginning and end of last season.  Don't know whether it  was injury or burnout that caused his mid-season slump.  I'm guessing a good  off season of rest and weight lifting will reward Zach and his Tiger team mates with a fabulous sophomore season.

As always, I'm also excited to see  the entire Mizzou team both returners and new faces to the  starting  line-up.  Gonna be an exciting year and already have tickets for my son  and  I to cheer on Mizzou in Minnesota.

Go MIZZOU!

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Ragu said:

 

165 - Shane Griffith

Relatively a quiet weight with exciting new faces but let me explain why this one will be actually the loudest. I'm calling my shot right now, with Mekhi Lewis on Olympic Redshirt this year Shane Griffith will be the NCAA Champion at 165 pounds. I think he has all the goods to do it. He's long like Wick but his defense is better and his offense is just as good. He's young but tough and I think he can maneuver this deep field to reach the finals and win no matter who is across from him. 

 

 

Oh, I like this!

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3 hours ago, HokieHWT said:

I’ll take him over all of them to be honest and that’s not a homer pick. He would have AA’d his Freshman year but had a bad tournament.

You know he lost to Rasheed while on redshirt and Rasheed wasn't even at 100% that whole season?

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9 hours ago, hammerlockthree said:

so you are saying rasheed isn't good? Your prejudice is too clumsy to gauge.

I think all he is saying is he would need a large jump, which I agree.  I don't think he wins it, either.  I favor at least 4 of those listed above over Bolen, but I do believe he has what it takes to make the finals, on the right day. Honestly if Amine and Zahid are there he doesn't stand a fart's chance in a $HlT storm.

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11 hours ago, hammerlockthree said:

so you are saying rasheed isn't good? Your prejudice is too clumsy to gauge.

I'm saying he lost to a very good wrestler who wasn't even at his best at the time. Bolen is right with a lot of those guys listed but he'll need a big jump and a great tournament to make the finals

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Watch out for VT’s 133, Colin Gerardi. Dude is tough! He took 7th at the scuffle as a true freshman at took RBY to sudden victory. 

With Brewer now in the room, I suspect by season’s end he’ll almost definitely make a lot noise. 

Rumor has it that his development may have forced Myers to drop to 125. Since Myers has been a 133 for quite awhile I’m somewhat inclined to believe that rumor. 

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On 8/15/2019 at 2:56 PM, Ragu said:

 

133 - Seth Gross, Taylor Lamont, Iowa

Taylor Lamont was a blood round guy at 125 in 2018 and won the Southern Scuffle. He is a Greco guy and is good at it. We missed him last year due to an injury and we welcome him back at a higher weight. His style is unique to the rest of the field at 133 as no one has the Greco chops he does and as a fringe AA his first year I think he could make some more noise again this year. Seth Gross is Seth Gross, an automatic title contender at any weight he chooses. He is a national champ at this weight and I think he's the best guy again. His attacks are clean and plentiful and his top game is the best in the weight class. Anything but the finals for Seth Gross would be disappointing. Shout out to Iowa for having a problem on their hands, albeit, a good one. They have too many good guys at the same weight. 125 is Spencer's obviously and I think it's safe to say that 149 is Lugo's. That leaves DeSanto, Gavin Teasdale, Jason Renteria, Max Murin, and even Vince Turk to battle it out for two spots. Hard to believe that 3 of those guys won't be starting. Good luck figuring that out Brands.

Lamont was r12 with a torn acl. We are looking at a Lamont vs Gross showdown November 23rd. Both were injured last season so we will see who happens. Lamont will be a dark horse vs Gross and I wouldn't be surprised if Lamont won. Gross will never be the same after his injury

 

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Ragu: Great list, very interesting concept. A couple of minor observations:

As a tOSU fan, I pay closer attention to them off-season. Gavin Hoffman is indeed a beast at 184 and a future AA, but he's going to have his hands full with the latest Jordan, Rocky. Going to be a hell of a wrestle-off. Don't think he can cut to 174, and he's sure not going up to 197 to challenge Moore.

nhs67: Tom Ryan has all but confirmed that Kerkvliet will redshirt at heavy. That leaves Singletary as the starter, not that he was going to successfully take the 197 spot from Moore.

My totally-insane-admitted-homer prediction: Sasso wins it all at 149!

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3 hours ago, fightingsioux said:

Ragu: Great list, very interesting concept. A couple of minor observations:

As a tOSU fan, I pay closer attention to them off-season. Gavin Hoffman is indeed a beast at 184 and a future AA, but he's going to have his hands full with the latest Jordan, Rocky. Going to be a hell of a wrestle-off. Don't think he can cut to 174, and he's sure not going up to 197 to challenge Moore.

nhs67: Tom Ryan has all but confirmed that Kerkvliet will redshirt at heavy. That leaves Singletary as the starter, not that he was going to successfully take the 197 spot from Moore.

My totally-insane-admitted-homer prediction: Sasso wins it all at 149!

Singletary dropping isn't next season. It's the following, for sure. That is what was meant I believe. 2020-2021 has me frothing at Heavyweight.

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10 hours ago, nhs67 said:

Singletary dropping isn't next season. It's the following, for sure. That is what was meant I believe. 2020-2021 has me frothing at Heavyweight.

Yes, for 2020-2021 Singletary will go to 197, with Kerkvliet at heavy. However, if tOSU can land Braxton Amos, and if he doesn't shirt (a lot of ifs, I know!) 197 might also be crowded.

I'm old. Very old :-). Back in the stone age when I wrestled in HS & college, the heavyweight match was usually a boring, almost laughable pushing and shoving contest between two unskilled, out-of-shape, grossly obese guys. Very common to see knowledgeable fans just filing out of the gym beforehand. Yes, there were exceptions, but I'm talking for the most part. So glad that's over and done. Some of these new heavies wrestle like 125 pounders! I agree with you, 2020-2021 should be awesome.

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14 hours ago, fightingsioux said:

As a tOSU fan, I pay closer attention to them off-season. Gavin Hoffman is indeed a beast at 184 and a future AA, but he's going to have his hands full with the latest Jordan, Rocky. going to be a hell of a wrestle-off. Don't think he can cut to 174, and he's sure not going up to 197 to challenge Moore.

 

Was Rocky hurt during his redshirt year?  Don't recall him wrestling a single match. 

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On 8/17/2019 at 12:34 AM, dmm53 said:

You missed two words of the most important words in your write-up:

Aaron Brooks

Not guaranteed to start and if you're asking me I don't think he does right away and I tried keeping the list to starters

 

On 8/17/2019 at 9:27 PM, WillieBoy said:

The whole Penn State lineup?

But yeah the entire lineup is very interesting and something everyone should keep an eye on if you don't already

Edited by Ragu

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