NORFOLK, Va. -- Old Dominion University wrestling signed five student-athletes to National Letters of Intent Wednesday, head coach Steve Martin announced.
Jack Dechow, Kevin Beazley, Micah Barnes, Lenny Richardson and Joe Jessen will join the Monarchs in the fall of 2012.
"The first thing we look at is if they're a good fit in the system, and good not just on the mat, but off the mat as well, and these guys fit that," Martin said. " They're all hard workers and love to wrestle. I think overall the class is outstanding, upper weights are difficult to recruit but we're very satisfied with the class."
Jack DeChow (184, Richmond, Illinois)
Martin on Dechow
"Jack fulfilled a big need at the upper weights for us, he's a big guy. He is very athletic but also a good football player. We're very excited to get him, he's a true athlete, if you're an athlete at those upper weights you can do very well."
• Two-time Illinois State runner-up
• Career record of 108-10
• Ranked No. 49 in TheOpenMat top-100 rankings and No. 80 by InterMat
• Ranked No. 6 in weight clas by InterMat and No. 8 by WIN-Magazine
• Took third place at the 2010 Cadet Freestyle National Championships
• Earned a sixth place finish at the 2011 Junior Freestyle Championships
Kevin Beazley (174, Novi, Michigan)
Martin on Beazley
"For this recruiting class, we needed guys at 197 and 285, and that's what he can give us. He proved himself on the national level, once he grows into his body I think he's going to be scary."
• Career high school record of 142-21
• Sits at No. 71 in TheOpenMat.com rankings
• Ranked in the top-10 by both TheOpenMat.com (No. 7) and W.I.N. Magazine (No. 8)
• Two-time Flo National All-American, earning a fifth place in 2010 and second in 2011
• Three-time state qualifier, state runner-up as a junior
• Finished seventh at the 2011 Super 32 Challenge
Micah Barnes (165, Simely, Minnesota)
Martin on Barnes
"He is a tenacious worker, great athlete. On the mat he's physical, a nasty wrestler. We're very excited about his ability."
• Two-time Minnesota state runner-up
• Ranked No. 93 by TheOpenMat.com and No. 9 at his weight class by WIN-Magazine
• Career record of 95-18
• Two-time section champion and three-time All-Conference honoree
• Earned All-American honors with a seventh place finish at Junior Freestyle Championships
Lenny Richardson (149, West Orange, N.J./St. Peter's Prep) Martin on Richardson
"He's more of a folkstyle wrestler. He is an unbelievable athlete and another kid that will be scary in college. We feel very good about him."
• Ranked No. 4 at 145 pound weight class by InterMat
• Won the 2011 NHSCA Junior National Championship
• Three-time New Jersey state qualifier
• Finished second at the 2011 Super 32 Challenge
Joe Jessen (197, Winchester, Virginia) Martin on Jessen
"Joe's a kid we've had on our radar for a couple of years. He is a very hard worker, a fighter in the match. He'll probably be around 197 for us."
• Two-time Virginia state qualifier, taking second as a sophomore and first as a junior
• Currently ranked No. 16 by TheOpenMat and No. 14 by USA Wrestling Magazine
• Took fifth at the 2011 Super 32 Challenge
• Took fourth at the NHSCA Junior Nationals and fifth at the Super 32 last year