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MSU158

Ed Ruth vs. David Taylor

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Now that their careers are over, how do they rank in PSU's history? Inevitably, how do the rank in DI history? They each had 3 losses. One went 3,1,1,1 and the other went 2,1,2, 1. The amazing thing is they did it as teammates all 4 years. 2 of the best I have had the pleasure to watch. My hat goes off to both!

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As a follower of psu wrestling for 30 years i would put ruth and dt as the univ's greatest wrestlers. These guys are now the quintessential wrestlers for the school. Their style, media exposure, individual and team accomplishments will be the precedence for years to come. Before dt and ruth i considered jim martin and kerry mccoy psu's best wrestler, with an asterisk next to kolat. Mccoy and Martin were more than great wrestlers but great men, as well.

 

I'll leave it to the non-penn st fans to weigh in on their place with the all time greats.

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I think you also have to consider who Taylor's losses were too. His first loss came as a freshman in the finals to a multiple NCAA all-American and finalist. The other two came to maybe one of the three best college wrestler of all time in Kyle Dake. Putting him right next to Sanderson and Gable. So it is hard to hold last years two losses and second place finishes against him when considering just how good he was . He was one Kyle Dake away from bein a three time champ with only one loss. Both him and Ruth are great, but I would give a very small edge to Taylor

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Taylor, and I don't think it's as razor thin a margin as some make it out to be.

 

The extra NCAA title is offset by the extra finals appearance and, more importantly, the fact that Dake was on his vision quest Taylor's junior year. Ruth never had to contend with someone even close to that level of competition. Had Dake taken the normal route to an NCAA title his senior year (as opposed to the psycho route), we would not be having this conversation.

 

Also, Taylor does not get enough credit for owning Caldwell, who, had he been born four years earlier or later, would likely be an NCAA champ himself a couple of times. Even Dake had to be on his A game to win close ones against Caldwell, and Taylor dismantled the guy every time but one.

 

Gabe Dean is the human incarnation of the Marvel comic character The Thing, but there is absolutely no way Taylor loses to any freshman from any era, no matter how special, this year. And I know it was just freestyle, but Taylor teched the guy who was the consensus #1 at 174 most of the year and is personally repoonsible for a bunch of the ridicukous depth at 174 the past two years.

 

Ed Ruth is the better athlete, but in wrestling, having a mental game to match one's abilities is as important as the athleticism, and in that department, Taylor has a big edge over Ruth.

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I think you also have to consider who Taylor's losses were too. His first loss came as a freshman in the finals to a multiple NCAA all-American and finalist. The other two came to maybe one of the three best college wrestler of all time in Kyle Dake. Putting him right next to Sanderson and Gable. So it is hard to hold last years two losses and second place finishes against him when considering just how good he was . He was one Kyle Dake away from bein a three time champ with only one loss. Both him and Ruth are great, but I would give a very small edge to Taylor

 

There is an argument on the other side of that where I believe Ruth's level of competition year in and year out was considerably better than Taylor's, with the obvious exception of 1 year of Dake. As a freshman Taylor really didn't wrestle any high caliber wrestlers until the NCAA tournament. As a result he ended up with the 3 seed. As a freshman Ruth had to wrestle Lewnes and Henrich multiple times, Amuch at the NCAA tournament and had an undefeated Reader win it. As a sophomore Taylor dominated a very thin talent pool. As a sophomore Ruth destroyed a field that included Amuch and a now 2x champion Perry. He also pounded 3x AA's in Blanton, Heflin and Storley. As a junior Taylor had to deal with Dake. As a junior Ruth went undefeated beating the defending NCAA champ(Bosak), a 2 time finalist(Hamlin) by major and won a weight with a 4x AA(Bennett) and multipe AA's like Lofthouse and Sheptock. We all know how they finished as seniors.

 

Taylor was slightly more dominant but I believe his competition, again excepting Dake, was considerably less talented. Taylor's signature wins are Caldwell(4x) and Fittery. Ruth's signature wins are Lewnes(2x), Amuch, Bosak, Hamlin(2x) and Dean while finishing ahead of an eventual 2xer in Perry. I know Taylor could only wrestle who was in front of him but I think he loses out to Ruth due to level of competition.

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MSU, fair pont, but you also have to consider how both guys progressed over their college careers. To me, Taylor this year and last year was head and shoulders above Taylor his first year and to a lesser degree his second. I still remember watching Cael's younger brother completely destroying Taylor during a wrestle-off, and if they met today, Taylor would pin or tech him 10 times out of 10. I don't think 2014 Ruth is significantly better than the Ruth from two and possibly three years ago. As freshmen, there is no question that ruth faced stiffer competition and proved more, but entire careers considered, I don't think that argument holds as much water.

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Both are extremely talented. The eyeball test has me subjectively pick Taylor. His style is just pretty to watch. Ruth losing to a gray shirt freshman also factors into my opinion.

 

Many ways to argue this, but at the end of the day, does it matter?

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As individuals, both are considered elite wrestlers in the history of D1 wrestling...You put them in the same conversation as any of the other entertaining multi time NCAA champs (Askren, Metcalf, Abas, etc).

 

With that said, their place in amateur wrestling history really has to do with the building and re-emergence of the PSU program moreso than their individual accomplishment. PSU will be a contender for years to come, which is hugely important for the growth of amateur wrestling. They are the foundation for what will be Cael's legacy as a coach.

 

 

Here's the scary part: Taylor is probably only the third best guy to wrestle 157/165 over the past 5 years....Amazing the depth that the US has put out in this weight.

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Here's the scary part: Taylor is probably only the third best guy to wrestle 157/165 over the past 5 years....Amazing the depth that the US has put out in this weight.

 

As far as college wrestling is concerned, there is no way Taylor takes a back seat to anybody other than Dake. No way to argue that point credibly unless we are talking about peak level of achievement versus an entire college body of work.

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Here's the scary part: Taylor is probably only the third best guy to wrestle 157/165 over the past 5 years....Amazing the depth that the US has put out in this weight.

 

As far as college wrestling is concerned, there is no way Taylor takes a back seat to anybody other than Dake. No way to argue that point credibly unless we are talking about peak level of achievement versus an entire college body of work.

 

Yes, peak level of achievement. I'm talking about who the best wrestler at the weight is, not who had the best career statistically.

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I gotta give it to Ruth based on tougher competition, as mentioned by MSU above, and body of work. 3 titles beats two even if you have Dake at your weight. Yes Taylor was a bonus machine, but Ruth had the tougher weight class in 3 out of 4 of the years, and Ruth is not exactly lacking in the bonus point area.

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As individuals, both are considered elite wrestlers in the history of D1 wrestling...You put them in the same conversation as any of the other entertaining multi time NCAA champs (Askren, Metcalf, Abas, etc).

 

With that said, their place in amateur wrestling history really has to do with the building and re-emergence of the PSU program moreso than their individual accomplishment. PSU will be a contender for years to come, which is hugely important for the growth of amateur wrestling. They are the foundation for what will be Cael's legacy as a coach.

 

 

Here's the scary part: Taylor is probably only the third best guy to wrestle 157/165 over the past 5 years....Amazing the depth that the US has put out in this weight.

 

 

 

Dake and Askren?

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Gabe Dean is the human incarnation of the Marvel comic character The Thing, but there is absolutely no way Taylor loses to any freshman from any era, no matter how special, this year. And I know it was just freestyle, but Taylor teched the guy who was the consensus #1 at 174 most of the year and is personally repoonsible for a bunch of the ridicukous depth at 174 the past two years.

 

How is Taylor personally responsible for the depth at 174 the past two years? Is this nothing more than speculation?

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Gabe Dean is the human incarnation of the Marvel comic character The Thing, but there is absolutely no way Taylor loses to any freshman from any era, no matter how special, this year. And I know it was just freestyle, but Taylor teched the guy who was the consensus #1 at 174 most of the year and is personally repoonsible for a bunch of the ridicukous depth at 174 the past two years.

 

How is Taylor personally responsible for the depth at 174 the past two years? Is this nothing more than speculation?

 

 

You should pose your question to Kyle Dake, because on ESPN the other night in response to someone else saying how big so many 157's looked this year he said that Taylor caused a lot of guys to avoid 165.

 

Evans and Kokesh both got handled easily by Taylor at 165, so not a shock they moved to 174. You probably require a written affidavit, though.

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Those guys are big. I think they probably outgrew the weight.

 

On the other hand, did anyone cut off a leg to get to 157?

 

I think Iowa's St John stayed at 157. He lost to Taylor 2 or 3 times. And he looked to me like he was cutting too much weight.

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Gabe Dean is the human incarnation of the Marvel comic character The Thing, but there is absolutely no way Taylor loses to any freshman from any era, no matter how special, this year. And I know it was just freestyle, but Taylor teched the guy who was the consensus #1 at 174 most of the year and is personally repoonsible for a bunch of the ridicukous depth at 174 the past two years.

 

How is Taylor personally responsible for the depth at 174 the past two years? Is this nothing more than speculation?

 

 

You should pose your question to Kyle Dake, because on ESPN the other night in response to someone else saying how big so many 157's looked this year he said that Taylor caused a lot of guys to avoid 165.

 

Evans and Kokesh both got handled easily by Taylor at 165, so not a shock they moved to 174. You probably require a written affidavit, though.

 

I'd ask Kyle Dake the exact same question, but as far as I know, he doesn't post here. Was Dake even being serious, or was he kidding around?

 

If he was serious, Kyle Dake would be held to the same standard of proof as anyone else, I don't see why he wouldn't.

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Evans and Kokesh both got handled easily by Taylor at 165, so not a shock they moved to 174. You probably require a written affidavit, though.

 

And how do you know that they had anything to do with moving up? I'm not sure why so many believe that wrestlers can simply choose wherever the want to compete. I thought that was the coaches decision? Another thing to consider is that both Kokesh and Evans lost to Taylor as freshman. Is it really that hard to believe that a college freshman outgrew a weight class? Taylor outgrew 157 didn't he? Why can't a 165 pounder outgrow his weight class?

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