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Domination: An Inside Look at Iowa Wrestling

Michigan preview

The #1 ranked Iowa Hawkeyes hit the road for a Big Ten dual meet at Michigan on Saturday at 7 PM CST. The meet will be on BTN.  Michigan is ranked #17 by TrackWrestling and #19 by InterMat.  There will be some very good matches in this dual meet. The featured match will be at Hwt where #3 ranked Tony Cassioppi will face #2 ranked Mason Parris. This one match alone is worth your time to watch this dual meet. This will be a great match.

At 149, #4/2 Pat Lugo will face #11/9 Kanen Storr who started his career at Iowa State before transferring to Michigan.  We will also see a good matchup at 157 where #4/5 Kaleb Young will face #8/9 Will Lewan. Lewan is a redshirt freshman that won a 2017 Cadet Freestyle World title.

It looks as though there is a good chance that Max Murin will return to the lineup at 141 for the first time since the Nebraska dual meet on January 18. Iowa has Murin and Carter Happel listed on the lineup.  Iowa also has Abe Assad and Cash Wilcke listed at 184. We will see Paul Glynn in the lineup at 133 in place of Austin DeSanto.

Michigan has three highly ranked wrestlers taking an Olympic redshirt this season in Stevan Micic (133), Logan Massa (165), and Myles Amine (174).  Next year I look for Michigan to be ranked in the preseason top 4.  

Every match in the Big Ten is a big deal for seeds at the Big Tens and Nationals.

 

#1 Iowa at #17/19 Michigan – 7 PM CST on Saturday, February 8, 2020

TV: BTN with Tim Johnson and Jim Gibbons

Online: Hawkeye All-Access

Radio: AM 800 KXIC on iHeartRadio.com with Steven Grace and Mark Ironside.

 

125 1/1 Spencer Lee (Jr) vs. 16/19 Jack Medley (So)

133 Paul Glynn (Sr) vs. Austin Assad (Sr) or Joey Silva (Fr)

141 8/9 Max Murin (So) or Carter Happel (Jr) vs. 29/- Cole Mattin (Fr)

149 4/2 Pat Lugo (Sr) vs. 11/9 Kanen Storr (Jr)

157 4/5 Kaleb Young (Jr) vs. 8/9 Will Lewan (Fr)

165 2/2 Alex Marinelli vs. Tyler Meisinger (Jr) or Reece Hughes (Jr)

174 1/1 Michael Kemerer vs. Max Maylor (Fr)

184 8/9 Abe Assad or Cash Wilcke (Sr) vs. 21/20 Jelani Embree (So)

197 5/6 Jacob Warner vs. 29- Jackson Striggow (Sr)

Hwt 3/3 Tony Cassioppi vs. 2/2 Mason Parris (So)

*Rankings: TrackWrestling/InterMat

 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!

New facility is approved by Board of Regents

GREAT news for Iowa Wrestling.  It was announced today that the Board of Regents approved the building of a new Iowa Wrestling training facility.  What I labeled as: “The greatest wrestling training facility…in the world.” The new facility will be a stand alone building in between Carver-Hawkeye Arena and Hawkins Drive. The new facility will be connected to Carver-Hawkeye Arena with a tunnel.

The University announced last Tuesday, January 28 that the necessary initial funding had been raised of $9 million from boosters and the proposal for the new facility was sent to the Board of Regents for approval at today’s meeting.  The total cost of the facility is estimated at $20 million.

The next step will be moving forward on the architect selection and budget development.  I interviewed Kevin Collins of the University of Iowa Foundation for my Iowa Wrestling Fan Podcast on April 5, 2019 about the new facility.  From my understanding, now the University of Iowa Foundation will move forward to raise the needed $11 million as they also move forward with construction of the new facility.  

This project has required a lot of work, planning, and persistence to get to this point.  A huge thank you to the boosters that donated the $9 million. 

It is really challenging to describe how big this is for Iowa Wrestling. As I have mentioned in blogs before, there is an Arms Race going on in college wrestling with new facilities that are either already built or in the works.  Iowa needed this new facility to not only keep up, but surpass their competitors and for years to come.

I was at the first sporting event in Carver-Hawkeye Arena on January 3, 1983 when Iowa defeated Oklahoma in wrestling.  The new Iowa Wrestling room in Carver-Hawkeye was a huge advantage over the rest of the country for decades. When you look at how college sports and facilities have changed over that time period, it is easy to see that a new facility was needed.

I will keep you up to date on the timeline for this project.

Congratulations to Iowa Wrestling.  This is great news during what has been a great season so far. Thank you again to all of those that have made this happen. 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!

#3 Cassioppi vs. #1 and #2

Tony Cassioppi is having a great year at Hwt for the top ranked Iowa Hawkeyes.  Cassioppi is 15-0 with five pins and two major decisions. At the time of the matches, Cassioppi has defeated the #16, #2, #15, #8, #15, #24, and #15 ranked wrestlers in the country.  Cassioppi is a redshirt freshman from Roscoe, Illinois (Hononegah HS) and is currently ranked #3 in the country.

The Big Ten has been a dominating factor at Hwt nationally for years.  This year the Big Ten is not only loaded with high ranked wrestlers at Hwt, but they are young.  We as fans are in for some great entertainment at Hwt for years to come.

In the new ratings by TrackWrestling at Hwt wrestlers from the Big Ten are ranked #1, #2, #3, and #7 in the country.  Cassioppi defeated #7 ranked Trent Hillger of Wisconsin. In the next two dual meets, Cassioppi will face true sophomore and #2 ranked Mason Parris of Michigan this Saturday, February 8. The following Saturday, February 15, Cassioppi will face true sophomore and #1 ranked Gable Steveson of Minnesota. 

Parris was an NCAA Qualifier last year at Hwt and won a Junior Freestyle World title last summer.  Steveson placed third at Hwt last season and is a two-time Cadet World champion and a Junior World champion. Cassioppi defeated Parris to win a Junior freestyle national title in Fargo in 2018 and lost to Steveson in Freestyle two years ago.  

It is amazing to have three such talented Hwts in the Big Ten and they are all from the Recruiting Class of 2018 and from the Midwest with Steveson from Minnesota, Paris from Indiana, and Cassioppi from Illinois.  

Results from upcoming dual meets will set the seeds for the Big Ten Tournament. The good news is that after competing in the Big Ten at Hwt, there will not be any tougher competition at the NCAA National Tournament.

 

Saturday, February 8

#3 Tony Cassioppi vs. #2 Mason Parris (Michigan)

 

Saturday, February 15

#3 Tony Cassioppi vs. #1 Gable Steveson (Minnesota)

 

Hwt: #3 Tony Cassioppi  Record: 15-0

Grayson Walthall (Chattanooga) Pin 1:45 

#16 Gannon Gremmel (Iowa State) W-D 6-0

 #2 Trent Hillger (Wisconsin) W-D 3-2

 Aiden Conner (Princeton) W-MD 10-2

Midlands Championships – 1st Place

   Niko Camacho (American) W-Pin 3:43

   Thomas Penola (Purdue) W-Pin 1:31

   Zach Elam (Missouri) W-D 6-0

   #15 Carter Isley (Northern Iowa) W-D 11-5

   #8 Matt Stencel (Central Michigan) W-D 5-1 

Rudy Streck (Indiana) W-Pin 0:20

Thomas Penola (Purdue) W-Pin 2:00

#15 Christian Lance (Nebraska) W-D 6-1 

#24 Gary Traub (Ohio State) W-D 9-3

 #15 Seth Nevills (Penn State) W-D 7-0  

Christian Rebottaro (Michigan State) W-MD 9-0 

 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!

 

Kemerer named Wrestler of the Week

Michael Kemerer has been named as the Iowa Wrestling Fan Blog & Podcast Wrestler of the Week.  Kemerer defeated two ranked wrestlers in Big Ten action over the weekend. On Friday, Kemerer defeated Mark Hall of Penn State, who was ranked number one in the country at the time by an 11-6 decision.  On Sunday Kemerer defeated #23 ranked Layne Malczewsji of Michigan State by a major decision, 13-3

Kemerer, a redshirt senior from Murrysville, Pennsylvania, is 10-0 on the season with one pin, two tech falls, and two major decisions.  In his ten wins this season, Kemerer has defeated the #16, #4, #6, #8, #1, and #23 ranked wrestlers in the country.

Kemerer placed third in 2017 and sixth in 2018 at 157 lbs. After sitting out all of last season with an injury, Kemerer will have the option to apply for a medical hardship for an additional year of eligibility at the end of the season.

With the win over Hall, Kemerer is now ranked #1 at 174.

#2 Michael Kemerer over #1 Mark Hall (Penn State) Dec 11-6

#2 Michael Kemerer over #23 Layne Malczewsji (Mich St) Maj Dec 13-3

The criteria for Iowa Wrestling Fan Blog & Podcast Wrestler of the Week is an Iowa wrestler that performs at an elite level that best represents Iowa Wrestling in the form of a dominating performance, a come from behind victory, or defeating a higher ranked opponent.

 

Iowa Wrestling Fan Blog & Podcast Wrestler of the Week

November 19 – Nelson Brands and Zach Glazier

November 25 – Nelson Brands and Zach Glazier

December 2 – Tony Cassioppi.

December 9 – Jacob Warner

January 2 – Pat Lugo

January 14 – Alex Marinelli

January 21 – Abe Assad

January 28 – Austin DeSanto

February 4 – Michael Kemerer

 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!

Iowa in the new Track, InterMat, and WIN Rankings

TrackWrestling, Intermat, and WIN Magazine all released new rankings for college wrestling.  With all of the big dual meets in the Big Ten, rankings will change from week to week. Iowa remains a strong #1 in the team race by all three rankings.  We do see the gap close between #2 Penn State and #3 Ohio State by Track and InterMat.

Michael Kemerer is now #1 across the board at 174 after his 11-6 win over previously #1 ranked Mark Hall of Penn State. Most of the Hawkeyes are pretty close to what they had been ranked.  The biggest range of rankings for an Iowa wrestler is Pat Lugo at 149. Lugo is ranked fourth by TrackWrestling, second by Intermat, and number one by WIN.. Abe Assad at 184 is ranked 8/9/11 at a very open weight.  The rankings and NCAA seeds at 149 and 184 will play out at Big Tens.

Rankings are put out for fans like us and I love it.  These rankings are a great way for wrestling fans like me that are locked into the Big Ten to take a look at what is out there in other conferences. The names will be more familiar when a Hawkeye faces a wrestler that we have not seen before this year at the NCAA’s.  

With all ten Iowa wrestlers ranked in the top eight in at least one of the rankings, you have to feel good about where the Iowa Wrestling team is right now.

The last six weeks of the 2020 college wrestling season should be very, very entertaining.

 

TrackWrestling: February 3, 2020

  1. Iowa – 130 
  2. Penn State – 85.5
  3. Ohio State – 75.5
  4. Arizona State – 52.5

 

InterMat: February 4, 2020

  1. Iowa – 145.5 
  2. Penn State – 93.5
  3. Ohio State – 82.5
  4. Wisconsin – 64.5

 

WIN Magazine: February 3, 2020

  1. Iowa – 133
  2. Penn State – 81
  3. Ohio State – 54.5
  4. Wisconsin – 54.5

 

Rankings by TrackWrestling/InterMat/WIN Magazine

125 Spencer Lee – 1/1/1

133 Austin DeSanto – 3/3/3

141 Max Murin – 7/9/8

149 Pat Lugo – 4/2/1

157 Kaleb Young – 4/5/4

165 Alex Marinelli – 2/2/2

174 Michael Kemerer – 1/1/1

184 Abe Assad – 8/9/11

197 Jacob Warner – 5/6/5

Hwt Tony Cassioppi – 3/3/3

 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!

A HUGE week for Iowa Wrestling

How huge was last week for Iowa Wrestling? When news of the new training facility is just a blip on the screen, then you know it was a huge week. And for good reason.  I have never seen such a build up of a dual meet as the Iowa-Penn State dual meet on Friday. As much as that dual was promoted and hyped, the meet itself was even more than advertised.

I have never been in a better atmosphere for college wrestling.  Only Friday night in Vets (Veterans Auditorium) for the 3A-1A-2A Semifinals for the Iowa High School State Wrestling Tournament back in the day could match that atmosphere, energy, and passion that was in Carver-Hawkeye Arena for the Iowa-Penn State dual meet. It was amazing.

Before I go any further, thank you to the Iowa Wrestling program for the outstanding entertainment.  I feel lucky as a fan to have been apart of that dual meet. I have also never seen this much follow up to dual meet in my life.  The response on Facebook and Twitter was the most I have seen from anything relating to Iowa Wrestling in the Social Media era.  The excitement and response from fans and the media was impressive. The Iowa 19-17 win over Penn State will go down as one of the best of all time.  One more time, thank you Iowa Wrestling.

A few thoughts:

Iowa hit a road trip right after the big meet to Michigan State for a dual meet that they won 32-3.  I was especially impressed with Iowa’s backups stepping into competition and representing so well. Paul Glynn at 133 hit a six-point move in the closing seconds to win his match, 9-4.  Carter Happel controlled the entire match for a 4-1 win at 141. Jeremiah Moody looked good in a 9-5 win at 165. It was great to see wrestlers that work so hard for years in the Iowa Wrestling program come through when they get their chance to represent the Iowa Wrestling program. That speaks very well for all of those involved in Iowa Wrestling.

The University of Iowa Athletic department had a press release on Tuesday that the University plans to build a new stand alone wrestling training facility.  What I labeled in my blog two years ago as: “The greatest wrestling training facility…in the world.” The proposal was sent to the Board of Regents for their February meeting.

From the press release:

To date, the project has received over $9 million in gift commitments which in part funded a preliminary needs assessment and design plan. Upon approval by the Board of Regents, formal planning will begin with budget development and architect selection.

Normally that would be the huge news story of any week.  Even with as much as I want that new facility to happen, I have to admit that I was pretty focused on the Penn State dual meet all of last week.

I will follow up with more information on the new facility in the future.  Right now I kind of have my tunnel vision on Iowa Wrestling in competition.  Speaking of which, Iowa will be at Michigan on Saturday at 8 PM on BTN. There will be some very good matches in this dual meet.

The excitement surrounding Iowa Wrestling will continue to grow as the season moves along.  It would be neat to know how many more Iowa Wrestling fans will be in U.S. Bank Stadium for Nationals because of what happened Friday night.  

If you are not on board yet for a ride on the Iowa Wrestling train, you better get on.  The next six weeks are going to be a blast that you do not want to miss.

March 19, 20, and 21 for the 2020 NCAA National Wrestling Championships cannot get here soon enough.

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!

 

Iowa recruits in action Jan 31-Feb 1: RESULTS

Incoming Iowa Wrestling recruits had another successful weekend of competition.  Patrick Kennedy won two matches in a dual meet triangular and Wyatt Henson won a big match in the WPIAL Duals finals. Gabe Christenson and Caleb Rathjen cruised to titles at the CIML Conference Tournament. Cam Lucero was 5-0 with five pins to win the Butch Melton Invite. 

Bretli Reyna competed at Tri County but I do not have results at this time.  Jesse Ybarra, Cullan and Colby Schriever, and Leif Schroeder did not compete this weekend.

The quest for our incoming recruits to be a state champion begins next week when the tournament season begins.

 

Recruiting Class of 2020

Patrick Kennedy – Kasson-Mantorville, MN 182 lbs.

At Owatonna and STMA Triangular – Feb 1

Patrick Kennedy (KAMA) over Ethan Stockwell (Owat) Fall 0:37

Patrick Kennedy (KAMA) over Wyatt Lidberg (STMA) Maj Dec 16-6

 

Cullan Schriever – Mason City, Iowa 126 lbs.

Did not compete this weekend.

 

Colby Schriever – Mason City, Iowa 145 lbs.

Did not compete this weekend.

 

Jesse Ybarra – Tucson, AZ (Sunnyside HS) 126 lbs.

No competition scheduled.

 

Gabe Christenson – Runnells, Iowa (Southeast Polk HS) 195 lbs.

CIML Conference Tournament (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) – Jan 31

On TrackWrestling.

Champ. Round 1 – Gabe Christenson (Southeast Polk) won by fall over Colton Teem (Urbandale) (Fall 1:07)

Quarterfinal – Gabe Christenson (Southeast Polk) won by fall over Brody Slack (Ottumwa) (Fall 1:18)

Semifinal – Gabe Christenson (Southeast Polk) won by fall over Tanner Rowland (Johnston) (Fall 2:00)

1st Place Match – Gabe Christenson (Southeast Polk) won by tech fall over Michael Witt (Ankeny Centennial) (TF-1.5 2:09 (16-1))

 

Leif Schroeder – Bozeman, Montana  138 lbs.

No competition scheduled.

 

Bretli Reyna – Homestead, Florida (South Dade HS)  145 lbs.

At Tri County – Jan 31-Feb 1

No results available.

 

Recruiting Class of 2021

Wyatt Henson –  Waynesburg, Pennsylvania 138 lbs.

WPIAL Duals – Jan 31

145 – Wyatt Henson (Waynesburg) over Nathan Lukez (Pine-Richland) Dec 7-5

 

Cam Lucero – Pagosa Springs, Colorado  152 lbs.

At Butch Melton Invite – Feb 1

On TrackWrestling.

Round 1 – Cameron Lucero (Pagosa Springs H.S.) won by fall over Kasen LeBleu (Rangely) 

Round 2 – Cameron Lucero (Pagosa Springs H.S.) won by fall over Jayden Vagneur (Bayfield) 

Round 3 – Cameron Lucero (Pagosa Springs H.S.) won by fall over Jory Hoerr (Cedaredge) 

Championship Bracket – Cameron Lucero (Pagosa Springs H.S.) won by fall over Ethan Root (Montezuma-Cortez) 

1st Place Match – Cameron Lucero (Pagosa Springs H.S.) won by fall over Zane Chapman (Aztec) (Fall 1:54)

 

Caleb Rathjen – Ankeny, Iowa  138 lbs.

At CIML Conference Tournament (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) – Jan 31

On TrackWrestling.

Champ. Round 1 – Caleb Rathjen (Ankeny) won by fall over Nick Reinhardt (Dowling Catholic) (Fall 0:50)

Quarterfinal – Caleb Rathjen (Ankeny) won by tech fall over Zachariah Shoemaker (Ottumwa) (TF-1.5 3:05 (26-9))

Semifinal – Caleb Rathjen (Ankeny) won by tech fall over Carter Martinson (Southeast Polk) (TF-1.5 3:31 (20-5))

1st Place Match – Caleb Rathjen (Ankeny) won by decision over Dreyzon Phillips (Fort Dodge) (Dec 10-4)

 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks! 

Michigan State preview

The Iowa Hawkeyes are back in action today at Noon CST on the road against Michigan State.  You can watch the meet online on FloWrestling and BTN Plus on their premium service. Iowa will be without Austin DeSanto and Max Murin in the lineup.  Paul Glynn will go at 133 and Carter Happel at 141.

For rankings, the biggest matchups of the day will be:

157 – #4 Kaleb Young vs. #15 Jake Tucker  

184 – #6 Abe Assad vs. #15 Cam Caffey

Michigan State is an improved program under head coach Roger Chandler. I was impressed with their staff in their last visit to Carver-Hawkeye.  The Spartans are also doing better in recruiting.  

Iowa will be a strong favorite to win the dual meet by a large margin, but there will be some good matches and I expect Michigan State to compete hard.  This is the Big Ten.

 

#1 Iowa at Michigan State – 12 PM CST on Sunday, February 2, 2020

Online: FloWrestling and BTN Plus.

Radio: AM 800 KXIC on iHeartRadio.com with Steven Grace and Mark Ironside.

 

125 1/1 Spencer Lee (Jr) vs. Logan Griffin (Sr) or Ethan Curtin (Jr)

133 Paul Glynn (Sr) vs. Garrett Pepple (Sr)

141 Carter Happel (Jr) vs. Matt Santos (Jr)

149 Pat Lugo (Sr) vs. Alex Hrisopoulos (Jr)

157 4/6 Kaleb Young (Jr) vs. 19/15 Jake Tucker (Jr)

165 2/2 Alex Marinelli vs. Drew Hughes (Jr) or Austin Hiles (Jr)

174 2/2 Michael Kemerer vs. 23 Layne Malczewsji

184 6/7 Abe Assad vs. 15/15 Cam Caffey (So)

197 5/6Jacob Warner vs. Nick May (Jr) or Danny Kruse (Jr)

Hwt 3/3 Tony Cassioppi vs. Christain Rebottaro (Jr)

TrackWrestling Rankiings/Intermat Rankings

 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!

 

Iowa recruits in action: Jan 31-Feb 1

Incoming Iowa Wrestling recruits will be in action this weekend as the regular season winds down.  Cullan and Colby Schriever, Gabe Christenson, and Caleb Rathjen will be at the always tough CIML Conference Tournament today, January 31. The CIML will be at Southeast Polk High School (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) starting at 4 PM CST and covered by TrackWrestling.

Bretli Reyna is at Tri County on Friday and Saturday and Cam Lucero is at the Butch Melon Invite on Saturday.  Patrick Kennedy and Leif Schroeder have double duals on Saturday.

Jesse Ybarra and Wyatt Henson do not have competition scheduled this weekend.  The tournament season begins next week.

On the list below, I have stated if the tournaments are covered by TrackWrestling.

I will keep results posted on HawkeyeReport.com and have a follow-up blog with results.

 

Recruiting Class of 2020

Patrick Kennedy – Kasson-Mantorville, MN 182 lbs.

At Owatonna and STMA Triangular – Feb 1

 

Cullan Schriever – Mason City, Iowa 126 lbs.

At CIML Conference Tournament (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) – Jan 31

On TrackWrestling.

 

Colby Schriever – Mason City, Iowa 145 lbs.

At CIML Conference Tournament (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) – Jan 31

On TrackWrestling.

 

Jesse Ybarra – Tucson, AZ (Sunnyside HS) 126 lbs.

No competition scheduled.

 

Gabe Christenson – Runnells, Iowa (Southeast Polk HS) 195 lbs.

CIML Conference Tournament (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) – Jan 31

On TrackWrestling.

 

Leif Schroeder – Bozeman, Montana  138 lbs.

At Billings/Sydney – Feb 1

 

Bretli Reyna – Homestead, Florida (South Dade HS)  145 lbs.

At Tri County – Jan 31-Feb 1

 

Recruiting Class of 2021

Wyatt Henson –  Waynesburg, Pennsylvania 138 lbs.

No competition scheduled.

 

Cam Lucero – Pagosa Springs, Colorado  152 lbs.

At Butch Melton Invite – Feb 1

On TrackWrestling.

 

Caleb Rathjen – Ankeny, Iowa  138 lbs.

At CIML Conference Tournament (Pleasant Hill, Iowa) – Jan 31

On TrackWrestling.

 

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks! 

 

HAWK Klub Party after Penn St meet

There will be a HAWK Klub party after the Iowa-Penn State dual meet Friday, January 31 at the Radisson Hotel in Coralville.  Chuck Yagla and Mike Allen are the special guests. Yagla was a two-time NCAA champion for the Hawks and a 1980 Olympian. 

The Radisson is at 1220 1st Ave. in Coralville just North of I-80 by Exit 242.

HAWK Klub (Hawkeye Area Wrestling Klub) was formed in 1978 and is the oldest college wrestling fan support organization. Going to a HAWK Party is part of your fan experience of attending a big Iowa Wrestling meet. I wrote about HAWK parties in my book: Domination: An Inside look at Iowa Wrestling. I highly recommend all of their socials, especially the one Friday night, for all Iowa Wrestling fans.

For membership information about HAWK Klub: http://hawkklub.com/

It is great to be an Iowa Wrestling fan.

Go Hawks!