Recruiting class rankings released, Iowa No. 1

In the current landscape, success in college wrestling is defined by success at the NCAA tournament, which is an individual bracket event. One half of this season's All-Americans (40 out of 80) were ranked within the top 30 of their high school graduating class, which is a pretty exclusive subset of all participants within Division I collegiate wrestling.

Looking more narrowly, 19 out of 80 (almost one-quarter) were within the top 10 of their respective graduating class; while more broadly, three quarters of the All-Americans (60) were ranked within the top 100. Of the remaining 20, seven were weight class ranked, while the others were not ranked at all.

With that premise laid out there, one can see the importance for programs to land elite talent in recruiting, while it goes without saying that recognizing which have the true goods in all aspects to perform in college as well as developing said talent once on campus is also vital. The importance of elite talent is made abundantly clear when looking at the lineups that Penn State and Ohio State put on the mat during this past season.

All five of Penn State's NCAA champions were can't-miss recruits coming out of high school, the lowest ranking for any in their graduating class was a pair in the No. 7 position, Jason Nolf and Vincenzo Joseph. When looking at Penn State's nine national qualifiers, all were top 100 recruits, while injury to a 10th top 100 recruit (Jered Cortez) left a hole in the lineup at 133 pounds (the lone weight class not to qualify for the national tournament).

From an Ohio State perspective, Olympic, World and NCAA champion Kyle Snyder was the No. 1 recruit in his graduating class. Also No. 1 in his graduating class was third-place finisher Bo Jordan, fellow third-place finishers Nathan Tomasello and Kollin Moore were ranked 15th and 32nd respectively; while additional All-Americans Micah Jordan and Myles Martin were ranked fourth and sixth. Two of Ohio State's three other qualifiers were top 100 recruits as well, Jose Rodriguez and Luke Pletcher.

Below is a listing with commentary of the top 25 recruiting class for 2017, as well as the recruits that encompass each class.

Spencer Lee is the prized recruit in Iowa's top-ranked recruiting class (Photo/Tom Elling)

1. Iowa

Top 100 recruits: No. 1 Spencer Lee (Franklin Regional, Pa.), No. 7 Jacob Warner (Washington, Ill.), No. 30 Max Murin (Central Cambria, Pa.), and No. 75 Aaron Costello (Western Dubuque, Iowa)

Other ranked recruit: Myles Wilson (Glenwood Springs, Colo.)

Additional notables: Zach Axmear (North English, Iowa)

Commentary: Since Iowa last won the national title in 2010, they have finished second just once (2015), third twice (2011/2012), fourth three times (2013/2014/2017), and outside the trophies once (fifth-2016). For almost every other program, this would be exceptional, but the standard at Iowa is different. It should be noted that the last No. 1 recruiting class for Iowa was fifth-year seniors this past season. The Hawkeyes had three recruiting classes outside the top 10 between 2012 and the fourth rated class in 2016. There is an obvious injection of impact talent in this class, most notable in the form of super-studs Lee and Warner; while Murin is a very solid talent as a lower-to-middle weight with Costello a more than solid heavyweight.

2. Cornell

Top 100 recruits: No. 2 Yianni Diakomihalis (Hilton, N.Y.), No. 3 Vitali Arujau (Syosset, N.Y.), and No. 58 Jake Brindley (Lake Highland Prep, Fla.)

Other ranked recruits: Andrew Berreyesa (Reno, Nev.), Brendan Furman (Canon-McMillan, Pa.), and Seth Janney (Malvern Prep, Pa.)

Additional notables: Sammy Cokeley (St. James Academy, Kansas), Dom LaJoie (Gaylord, Mich.), and Hunter Richard (Holland Patent, N.Y.)

Commentary: 2017 marked a 10th straight top-10 finish at the national tournament for the Big Red, while the quartet of All-Americans made it 15 consecutive seasons with three-plus on the podium. Three of those All-Americans graduate, which means it's time for kind of a reboot, and that's coming with in-state stars Diakomihalis and Arujau who were each four-time state champions; Diakomihalis was a three-time Super 32 champion and two-time Cadet World champion, while Arujau was a Cadet World silver medalist and a Super 32 champion this past fall. It's also a very deep class when looking at the plethora of proven wrestlers that have produced in national level competitions.

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2017 InterMat Recruiting Class Rankings

1. Iowa
2. Cornell
3. Michigan
4. Virginia Tech
5. Penn State
6. Oklahoma
7. Ohio State
8. Arizona State
9. Nebraska
10. North Carolina
11. Oklahoma State
12. Virginia
13. Wisconsin
14. Missouri
15. Iowa State
16. Binghamton
17. Princeton
18. Purdue
19. Brown
20. Fresno State
21. Army West Point
22. Ohio
23. West Virginia
24. Drexel
25: South Dakota State

Honorable Mention: Lehigh, Minnesota, North Dakota State, Northern Illinois, Pittsburgh


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hostcity (1) about 1 year ago
It is so sad the amount of coverage given to the Ohio State wrestling team in the Cleveland area. Number 2 in the country with such little press coverage. They would have more, but it would take up the space that is reserved on a daily basis for the Ohio State football team. This team is 2 1/2 hours from Cleveland, but the Cleveland Plain Dealer treats them like they are in Columbus and they are the only game in town. Just count the number of articles written daily on the football team from Columbus. It is a joke. This paper ignores the Ohio State wrestling team for the most part, but they cannot stop singing the praise of the Ohio State football team. This paper is the biggest Ohio State butt kissers. They remind us that when you mention Ohio State, you must use the proper title as "THE Ohio State University." It signifies their greatness and how they are superior to everybody because of the success of their football team. Who cares that Oklahoma State has 34 wrestling titles and Iowa has 23, compared to just 1 by The Ohio State wrestling team. THE Ohio State is better because their football team is better and that is the deciding factor because the Cleveland Plain Dealer's OSU butt kissing writers say so.
hostcity (1) about 1 year ago
The prior article is correct. The Cleveland Plain Dealer's sports page is the biggest Ohio State butt kissers in the world. They treat their local college athletes like dirt. How do I know? Just count the number of sports articles written on the 15 local colleges and universities with 1 hour drive of Cleveland versus the number of articles written on THE Ohio State University football team. The Ohio State and their backers own the Cleveland Plain Dealer's sports page. They have to promote THE OSU 24/7 and allow little or no competition so Cleveland's front running fans can continue to send their dollars down to Columbus so King Urban and THE OSU can get even richer. Columbus only cares about Cleveland's money. They are laughing all the way to the bank from Cleveland's front running suckers.
hostcity (1) about 1 year ago
No articles on Sunday for the Cleveland Plain Dealer about their favorite team, the team 2 1/2 hours away, THEE Ohio State University football team. Just trying to make my prior comment seem false. Believe it, it is. Just wait until June and July when THEE Ohio State wants more revenue from front running Clevelanders who buy OSU gear like it is going out of style. Just remember 125 articles last July on OSU football and 0 on their 14 local college football teams. The numbers don't lie.
hostcity (1) about 1 year ago
Typo. Believe me. It is true. I am not as perfect as OSU fan.
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