Division I programs using MatBoss well represented in InterMat’s preseason rankings
Posted by theMatBoss on Tuesday, October 25, 2016 2:13 PM UTC


Twenty NCAA Division I wrestling programs are using MatBoss, wrestling’s premier VideoStats app, including five of the nation’s top 10 programs in InterMat’s preseason rankings

Below is a season outlook for each of the 20 NCAA Division I wrestling programs currently using MatBoss.


Tournament Ranking: No. 2
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 2

Outlook: Expectations are high in Iowa City for a Hawkeye team that returns five All-Americans. The Hawkeyes finished fifth at the NCAAs last March, and lose only two wrestlers from that team. Iowa, ranked No. 2 in both the tournament rankings and dual meet rankings, has two wrestlers ranked No. 1, Thomas Gilman (125) and Cory Clark (133), and seven wrestlers ranked in the eight in their respective weight classes. Two-time All-American Brandon Sorensen (149) begins the season ranked No. 2 at 149 pounds. Other returning All-Americans for the Hawkeyes include Alex Meyer (174) and Sammy Brooks (184). Redshirt freshman Michael Kemerer (157) will look to make an immediate impact in the Hawkeye lineup after compiling a 24-2 record as a redshirt. One of the nation’s top recruits from the Class of 2016, Alex Marinelli (165), would potentially start for the Hawkeyes.


Ohio State

Tournament Ranking: No. 3
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 5

Outlook: Kyle Snyder returns for his junior season at Ohio State after capturing an Olympic gold medal this past summer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Snyder accomplished the feat at the age of 20, becoming America’s youngest Olympic champion in wrestling ever. Snyder is one of two returning NCAA champions for the Buckeyes, along with Myles Martin (184), who claimed the NCAA title as a true freshman at 174 pounds. Martin, along with Nathan Tomasello, Micah Jordan and Bo Jordan are all moving up a weight class this season. Tomasello, an NCAA champion as a freshman in 2015 and All-American last season, will compete at 133 pounds. NCAA qualifier Micah Jordan is shifting up to 149 pounds. Two-time All-American Bo Jordan is slated to wrestle at 174 pounds, where he begins the season ranked No. 1.



Tournament Ranking: No. 5
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 3

Outlook: Missouri returns all four of its All-Americans from a team that finished sixth at the NCAAs in 2016. Olympic bronze medalist J’den Cox returns for his senior season looking to claim his third NCAA title. Last season he became just the second Mizzou wrestler ever to win two NCAA championship, joining Ben Askren. The other three returning All-Americans for the Tigers include Lavion Mayes (149), Daniel Lewis (165) and Willie Miklus (184). Barlow McGhee (125) and Matt Manley (141) are returning NCAA qualifiers, and both begin the season ranked in the top eight. Missouri’s lineup is also expected to include three redshirt freshmen: Jaydin Eierman (133), Dylan Wisman (174) and Austin Myers (285).


Virginia Tech

Tournament Ranking: No. 6
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 7

Outlook: Last season Virginia Tech’s wrestling program reached new heights with a program-best fourth-place finish at the NCAAs. Additionally, six Hokies earned All-American honors, which set a program record. Virginia Tech returns a strong team that includes five wrestlers who have been All-Americans. Three of those wrestlers, Joey Dance (125), Jared Haught (197) and Ty Walz (285), are ranked in the top three in their respective weight classes. Solomon Chishko (149) moves up a weight class after earning All-American honors as a freshman at 141 pounds. Zack Zavatsky (184) is a returning ACC champion who begins the season ranked No. 10. The Hokie lineup has some question marks at 133 pounds and 165 pounds with Dennis Gustafson moving up a weight class to 141 pounds and 165-pound All-American David McFadden expected to redshirt.



Tournament Ranking: No. 10
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 9

Outlook: It’s a new era for Minnesota wrestling as Brandon Eggum takes over as head wrestling coach, replacing legendary coach J Robinson, who was fired in September. The Gophers will look to improve upon their 17th-place finish at the NCAAs in 2016. Two senior upperweight All-Americans, Brett Pfarr (197) and Michael Kroells (285), will lead a Gopher team that has a mix of experience and youth. In addition to Pfarr and Kroells, four other Gopher wrestlers have NCAA tournament experience, Ethan Lizak (125), Tommy Thorn (141), Jake Short (157) and Nick Wanzek (174). Lizak and Thorn are suspended for the first semester for breaking team rules. Fredy Stroker (149) and Bobby Steveson (184), both past Fargo champions, are expected to step into Minnesota’s lineup after strong redshirt seasons.


North Carolina State

Tournament Ranking: No. 17
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 12

Outlook: Last season Pat Popolizio guided NC State to one of its most successful seasons in program history. The Wolfpack finished the regular season with a 23-1 dual meet record and No. 2 ranking in InterMat’s final dual meet rankings. NC State finished 11th at the NCAAs, which was the best finish since a program-best seventh-place finish in 1993. The Wolfpack have big shoes to fill with the graduation Nick Gwiazdowski (285), a two-time NCAA champion and three-time NCAA finalist, and All-American Thomas Gantt (157). Additionally, All-American Pete Renda (184) is expected to redshirt this season. Kevin Jack (141) was an All-American two seasons ago and begins the season ranked No. 6. Sean Fausz (125), Jamal Morris (133), Sam Speno (149), Max Rohskopf (157) and Michael Boykin (285) all have NCAA tournament experience. Two freshmen, Daniel Bullard (165) and Nick Reenan (174), are expected to start for NC State.

Oregon State

Tournament Ranking: No. 15
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 14

Outlook: Oregon State has been the dominant program in the Pac-12 in recent seasons. Last season the Beavers won their fifth straight conference title, and placed 21st at the NCAAs, their best finish since 2013. Oregon State’s lone returning All-American is Amarveer Dhesi (285), who begins the season ranked No. 4. Four other Oregon State wrestlers begin the season ranked by InterMat: No. 5 Ronnie Bresser (125), No. 12 Joey Palmer (133), No. 14 Corey Griego (184) and No. 18 Cody Crawford (197).


Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: No. 23

Outlook: Last season Chattanooga posted a 12-4 dual meet record and shared the SoCon regular season title with Appalachian State. The Mocs finished the regular season ranked No. 23 in InterMat’s dual meet rankings. Coach Heath Eslinger returns all but one starter from that team. Four Chattanooga wrestlers begin the season ranked by InterMat: No. 17 Mike Pongracz (149), No. 17 Kamaal Shakur (157), No. 10 Scottie Boykin (197) and No. 12 Jared Johnson.


Appalachian State

Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Coach JohnMark Bentley will look to build on a strong season that included a SoCon Championship, a SoCon Wrestler of the Year award for Denzel Dejournette, a SoCon Coach of the Year award for Bentley and a top 25 national ranking. Three of Appalachian State’s four NCAA qualifiers from last season return: Dejournette (285), Forrest Przybysz (165) and Nick Kee (174). All three are ranked by InterMat.


South Dakota State

Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Coach Chris Bono has South Dakota State on the rise. Last season the Jackrabbits posted a 14-6 dual meet mark and qualified five wrestlers for the NCAAs. The Jackrabbits will be led this season by NCAA qualifier and Junior World Team member Seth Gross (133), who is moving down a weight class. Gross, who reached the round of 12 last season, begins this season ranked No. 7. Four of SDSU’s five NCAA qualifiers from last season return: Gross, Alex Kocer (149), David Kocer (174) and Nathan Rotert (197). Rotert is ranked No. 11.



Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Drexel is coming off a season in which they went 10-6 in dual meets and finished eighth at the EIWA Championships. The Dragons lineup is expected to include five wrestlers with NCAA tournament experience. That group is led by Matt Cimato (149), who begins the season ranked No. 9. Zach Fuentes (125) and Joey Goodhart (285) were NCAA qualifiers last season, while Kevin Devoy (133) and David Pearce (141) are past NCAA qualifiers. Penn State transfer Garett Hammond (157) begins the season ranked No. 18.


Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: The future looks bright for Purdue’s wrestling program after landing the nation’s No. 7 recruiting class in 2016. The class included three InterMat top 100 recruits. The Boilermakers lose returning NCAA qualifiers Danny Sabatello (133) and Chad Welch (165) to graduation, but return NCAA qualifier Alex Griffin (157). Tony Ersland’s coaching staff underwent some changes in the offseason with Zach Tanelli leaving the staff to become Columbia’s head wrestling coach. New additions to the coaching staff include Kendric Maple and Jake Sueflohn.


North Dakota State

Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: North Dakota State returns two of its three NCAA qualifiers from last season — Josh Rodriguez (125) and Clay Ream (149) — but loses a key contributor in Hayden Zillmer (184), a 2015 All-American. Mitch Bengtson (141), a four-time state champion from Minnesota, qualified for the NCAAs in 2015 after winning the West Region/Western Wrestling Conference title. Minnesota state champions Cameron Sykora (133), Kyle Gliva (149), Andrew Fogarty (165) and Carter Nielsen (174) are also expected to be key contributors for the Bison.


Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Duke lost arguably its top wrestler in program history, Conner Hartmann (197), a three-time All-American, to graduation. In addition, Mitch Finesilver (149), who reached the round of 12 last season, is expected to redshirt. Still, despite these key losses, the Blue Devils have several capable wrestlers returning. NCAA qualifiers Zach Finesilver (141) and Jake Faust (165) return, and expectations are high for Jacob Kasper (285), who redshirted and qualified for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials.


Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Navy returns three NCAA qualifiers, Jadaen Bernstein (174), Zack Davis (133) and Nicholas Gil (141), from a team that finished fifth at the EIWA Championships and 22nd at the NCAAs. Bernstein, a two-time NCAA qualifier, begins the season ranked No. 10, while Davis comes in at No. 16. Jared Prince (141) is a coming off a successful redshirt season in which he placed fourth at the Southern Scuffle where he picked up a win over 2016 NCAA finalist Bryce Meredith of Wyoming. Prince enters the season ranked No. 16.

Michigan State

Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Roger Chandler, a longtime assistant coach, takes the reins as head coach for the Michigan State wrestling program after the retirement of Tom Minkel. The Spartans will be led by NCAA qualifiers Javier Gasca (141) and Austin Eicher (133). Eicher is a transfer from Northern Illinois who won a MAC title last season. Michigan State returns 11 letterwinners.

Air Force

Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Coach Sam Barber has the Air Force program trending upward. Last season the program finished 10-6 in dual meets, and in 2016 landed arguably its best recruiting class ever. Drew Romero (125) is a returning NCAA qualifier for Air Force, and Dylan Hyder (133) is a past NCAA qualifier. Parker Hines (197) begins the season ranked No. 20 after notching wins over multiple NCAA qualifiers.


Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Hofstra’s top returner from last season, Mike Hughes (285), an NCAA qualifier who won over 40 matches last season, is expected to redshirt this season. Five other starters return for Dennis Papadatos’ squad. Leading the group of returners are three juniors, Bryan Damon (125), Kyle Krasavage (149), Cory Damiana (184), and two sophomores, Bobby Fehr (165) and Omar Haddad (285). Hofstra has a large class of incoming freshman class, so virtually half the team is brand new.


Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Binghamton won 11 dual meets last season, which was the most in head coach Matt Dernlan’s tenure. Last year’s lineup was young, and included seven freshmen and sophomores, along with just one senior. The Bearcats top returner this season is junior Steve Schneider (184), a returning NCAA qualifier.

Cal Poly

Tournament Ranking: NR
Dual Meet Ranking: NR

Outlook: Jon Sioredas, head wrestling coach at Grand Canyon the last two seasons before the school dropped its program in March replaces Brendan Buckley, who resigned after last season. A couple Pac-12 fourth-place finishers, Colt Shorts (157) and J.T. Goodwin (197), will lead the Mustangs, who return 16 letterwinners, including nine who wrestled in at least four dual meets last season. 


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