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  • Photo: Sam Janicki

    Photo: Sam Janicki

    Beyond the Rankings (6/23/2022)

    Minnesota All-American Brayton Lee (photo courtesy of Sam Janicki; SJanickiPhoto.com)


    Summer rankings have dropped! As you may expect, with it being over four months away from the beginning of the 2022-23 season, plenty can change between now and then. We have done the best research possible to get information that is accurate (as you can get in June), in terms of weight changes and such.

    In compiling these rankings, we've also obtained information that doesn't quite fit into a table. That's what we have this article for. Below you'll find notes about each of the ten weight classes and the wrestler in each weight. After that, there are more tidbits of information that don't necessarily fit within the weight classes.

    Remember!! No true freshmen have been included in the rankings.

    125

    Notes:


    #1 Spencer Lee (Iowa): The three-time NCAA champion is expected back to shoot for four titles.

    #13 Matt Ramos (Purdue): A 2022 NCAA Round of 12 finisher at 133 lbs who has dropped down with the graduation of Devin Schroder.

    #18 Robbie Howard (Penn State): He's here for now, though he may have been injured competing in freestyle.

    #19 Jack Medley (Michigan): The veteran is back to finish his career after Nick Suriano took the weight last season.

    #22 Liam Cronin (Nebraska): An injury disrupted Cronin's 2021-22 season and he's back for a final run.

    #23 Jaret Lane (Lehigh): Lane was having a promising 2021-22 campaign before he was injured.

    #28 Stevo Poulin (Northern Colorado): Poulin was potentially blocked at 125 lbs by #10 Jakob Camacho at NC State. He'll have a chance to shine in Greeley this year.

    #30 Eddie Ventresca (Virginia Tech): One of the best weight battles to monitor is between the Hokies lightweights, Ventresca and Cooper Flynn. The two met twice in open competition last year with Ventresca getting two 2-1 wins. I'd expect both to get opportunities in the early going.


    133

    Notes:


    #10 Jaime Hernandez (North Carolina): Suffered through an injury-plagued 2021-22 season, but is now the guy for UNC.

    #12 Taylor LaMont (Wisconsin): The 2021 All-American transferred from Utah Valley and is expected to move up a weight for the Badgers.

    #13 Sam Latona (Virginia Tech): One of the biggest 125 lbers in the country finally moves up to 133 after Korbin Myers finished up.

    #17 Joe Heilmann (Rutgers): Heilmann transferred back home to New Jersey after qualifying for UNC last season.

    #21 Tony Madrigal (Oklahoma): The veteran is back, but will have to fend off a challenge from redshirt freshman Wyatt Henson.

    #24 Boo Dryden (Nebraska): The former national qualifier for Minnesota will attempt to solidify this weight for the Huskers in 2022-23.

    #25 Aaron Nagao (Minnesota): We gave the early edge to Nagao in the Gopher battle between him and Kyle Gliva.

    #27 Connor Brown (Missouri): Competition should be heavy in the Mizzou room, but for now we're taking the veteran Brown.

    #33 Jace Koelzer (Northern Colorado): With Stevo Poulin in the fold, Koelzer is expected to move up in 2022-23.


    141

    Notes:


    #2 Real Woods (Iowa): In one of the biggest moves of the offseason, the Hawkeyes picked up 2022 All-American Real Woods from Stanford.

    #9 Drew Mattin (Michigan): After Stevan Micic has finished his eligibility, the Wolverines can turn to three-time NCAA qualifier Drew Mattin, who picked up wins over five NCAA qualifiers in spot-starting duties last year.

    #16 Sammy Alvarez (Rutgers): Finally, we should get a chance to see what Sammy Alvarez can do at his more ideal weight.

    #17 Beau Bartlett (Penn State): Ditto for Bartlett, who moves down with the graduation of Nick Lee.

    #18 Jesse Vasquez (Arizona State): An injury cut short a promising first year for Vasquez in a Sun Devil singlet.

    #21 Lachlan McNeil (North Carolina): The Canadian Senior world team member finally gets a shot to compete for UNC.

    #26 Mosha Schwartz (Oklahoma): Schwartz is the first of a handful of talented transfers taking the mat for the Sooners.

    #29 Brock Hardy (Nebraska): The highly regarded Hardy is finally getting the opportunity to start for the Huskers.

    149

    Notes:


    #5 Brock Mauller (Missouri): The two-time NCAA All-American is back and down at 149 lbs and will be an immediate title threat.

    #13 Dom Demas (Cal Poly): The former All-American for Nebraska will use his final year of eligibility out west and moves up to 149. It's been a while since we've seen him compete for an extended period, so he could be underranked.

    #17 Quinn Kinner (Rider): 2021 NCAA Qualifier McKenzie Bell comes off redshirt for Rider and takes 141 lbs, moving Quinn Kinner up to 149.

    #19 Manzona Bryant (Lehigh): Off-the-mat issues ended Bryant's 2021-22 season prematurely, but he was headed for an NCAA berth beforehand.

    #28 Ryan Anderson (Binghamton): Anderson moves up a weight, but likely won't be available until the second semester.

    #31 Sam Hillegas (West Virginia): After transferring from Virginia Tech, Hillegas is expected to move up a weight for his Mountaineer debut.



    157

    Notes:


    #1 Brayton Lee (Minnesota): This one may spark some debate. The top-three finishers at 157 lbs are not expected back at the weight in 2022-23. Ryan Deakin (Northwestern) has graduated, while runner-up Quincy Monday and 2021 champ David Carr are expected to move up to 165 lbs. Lee has never lost an attached match to any of the three wrestlers that slot in behind him (he did lose in his redshirt season to Jacori Teemer). Lee missed the end of the 2021-22 season with an ugly elbow injury.

    #5 Bryce Andonian (Virginia Tech): The explosive All-American from Virginia Tech moves up to join a meatgrinder of an ACC weight class. He, Ed Scott and Austin O'Connor were all in the same 149 lb bracket in 2021. While O'Connor reigned supreme over the group. Even so, we're starting off of last year's results where Scott downed a noticeably hobbled O'Connor.

    #11 Dazjon Casto (Pittsburgh): One of the stories from day one at the 2022 NCAA Championships was Casto defeating NCAA champion O'Connor. The two may meet multiple times this year as Casto is in the ACC.

    #14 Wyatt Sheets (Oklahoma State): We've received word recently that Wyatt Sheets intends on using his final year of eligibility for the Cowboys.

    #21 Justin Ruffin (SIU Edwardsville): An injury knocked three-time NCAA qualifier Justin Ruffin out for the entire 2021-22 season.

    #25 Colton Yapoujian (Cornell): Yapoujian showed some promise last season before suffering an injury.

    #27 Luka Wick (Cal Poly): The talented redshirt freshman will be at 157 lbs with Demas in the mix.

    #28 Isaiah Crosby (Oregon State): Neither of the All-American Willits twins are expected back at Oregon State, so two-time NJCAA national champion Crosby steps in.

    #30 Munkhtulga Zuunbayan (Northern Illinois): Keep an eye on the positional battle between Zuunbayan and Anthony Gibson. Both are worthy of a spot in the top 33.

    #33 Bretli Reyna (Iowa): As of now, Reyna may be the guy for the Hawkeyes, but don't count out Caleb Rathjen.


    165

    Notes:


    #3 David Carr (Iowa State): The 2021 NCAA Champion moves up to a weight that already includes two past champions!

    #4 Quincy Monday (Princeton): This one isn't totally settled just yet, but if nothing else, expect Monday to start the year at 165.

    #17 Patrick Kennedy (Iowa): A huge recruit for Iowa finally gets in the lineup regularly. I'd be shocked if he finishes this low.

    #18 Gerrit Nijenhuis (Oklahoma): Not only did Nijenhuis move on from Purdue, but he's also expected to drop down to 165 lbs for the Sooners.

    #19 Holden Heller (Pittsburgh): The 2021 EIWA champion had wins over five NCAA qualifiers while redshirting for Hofstra in 2021-22.

    #22 Mikey Caliendo (North Dakota State): Had an overlooked, but excellent redshirt campaign for the Bison in 2021-22.

    #24 Alex Facundo (Penn State): I'll echo my sentiments for Patrick Kennedy here. Facundo should make a huge jump between years one and two in the PSU room.

    #28 Legend Lamer (Cal Poly): The addition of Demas sparks a chain of "bump-ups" for the Mustangs.

    #33 Drew Nicholson (Virginia Tech): The Hokies added an NCAA qualifier from Chattanooga last season.


    174

    Notes:


    #7 Demetrius Romero (Utah Valley): Romero is back for the Wolverines after missing 2021-22 due to injury. We're probably conservative with his rankings. If healthy, he can challenge for a place in the top three.

    #9 Phil Conigliaro (Harvard): The 2022 EIWA champion should move up from a brutal 165 lb weight class.

    #12 Matt Finesilver (Michigan): These Wolverines have a new face at 174. The veteran has been in the mix at this weight for awhile, maybe a change of scenery will help Finesilver get over the hump and onto the NCAA podium.

    #17 Edmond Ruth (Illinois): We only got a few glimpses of Ruth wrestling unattached last year. He was excellent in those small doses and could finish higher than this.

    #18 Rocky Jordan (Chattanooga): The former NCAA Round of 12 finisher for Ohio State is expected to finish his career at a more manageable weight. He competed as high as 197 for the Buckeyes.

    #24 Jackson Turley (Rutgers): The 2021 All-American had a rough, injury-filled November in 2021 and couldn't finish the year for Rutgers. He'll be back here in the fall.

    #27 Jay Nivison (Buffalo): Nivison is expected to miss the first semester for Buffalo.

    #33 Jake Null (Purdue): Null competed at two weights for NC State, while redshirting in 2021-22. His best work came at 174 lbs.


    184

    Notes:


    #15 Tate Samuelson (Lehigh): The addition of Samuelson from Wyoming really solidifies Lehigh's dual lineup.

    #17 Sean Harman (Missouri): Two-time conference runner-up Jeremiah Kent is now expected to return for Missouri leaving Sean Harman and Colton Hawks to fight for the slot at 184. Harman had some huge flashes at 174 last season.

    #18 Anthony Montalvo (Arizona State): It's been a while since we've seen Montalvo on the mat. He was excellent for Oklahoma State in 2019-20 and could be worthy of a higher ranking. He'll fill a possible hole for ASU here.

    #19 Adam Kemp (Cal Poly): More movement from Cal Poly!

    #23 Will Feldkamp (Clarion): The 2022 NCAA qualifier at 197 lbs is expected to drop for Clarion in 2022-23.

    #25 Jacob Nolan (Binghamton): After making the big dance twice at 174 lbs, Jacob Nolan will move up to 184 this year.

    #26 Neil Antrassian (Virginia): A recent graduate transfer announcement for UVA.

    #28 Matthew Waddell (Chattanooga): After winning the SoCon at 197 lbs last year, Waddell plan to move back to 184 for his final year.

    #29 Reece Heller (Pittsburgh): A strong showing at the MatMen Open was front and center for Heller as he redshirted for Hofstra and went 12-4 in 2021-22.

    #33 Jacob Ferreira (Hofstra): The Pride lost Heller, but have added a strong replacement with the NC State transfer Ferreira.


    197

    Notes:


    #2 AJ Ferrari (Oklahoma State): The 2021 NCAA champion is back, right?

    #6 Bernie Truax (Cal Poly): Could the Cal Poly star AA at three different weights, in three consecutive years?

    #9 Michael Beard (Lehigh): Expect Beard to finish closer to the #1 spot than #10 when it's all said and done. Some expected him to come out of Penn State's positional battle with Max Dean last year.

    #14 Ethan Laird (Rider): In 2021, Laird finished in the NCAA Round of 12 at 285 lbs. Last year, he redshirted and went 11-1 with a finals appearance at the MatMen Open.

    #31 Michael Battista (Virginia): Battista moves up and hopes to parlay success in the freestyle ranks into his last year of collegiate competition.


    285

    Notes:


    #5 Yaraslau Slavikouski (Harvard): At one point, Slavikouski was not expected back at Harvard, but he'll suit up for the Crimson again in 2022-23. He gets such an impressive ranking after wins over AA's Lucas Davison and Tate Orndorff at the 2021 Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational.

    #29 Jaron Smith (Maryland): The Terps attempt to maximize their strengths in the upperweights as Junior World Team member Jaxon Smith is at 197, with 2022 national qualifier Jaron Smith moving up to 285 for his final go-round.


    Miscellaneous Notes:

    The following notable wrestlers have eligibility for the 2021-22 season, but are not expected to use it (at this time). Their potential replacements are listed next to them:

    Gable Steveson (Minnesota) - Keaton Kluever/Bennett Tabor
    Jake Woodley (Oklahoma) - ?
    Kordell Norfleet (Arizona State) - Jonathon Fagen
    Matt Schmitt (Missouri) - Connor Brown/Trey Crawford
    Jeremiah Kent (Missouri) - Sean Harman/Colton Hawks
    Joe Doyle (Binghamton) - Cory Day
    Colin McCracken (Kent State) - Tyler Bates
    Brit Wilson (Northern Illinois) - Matt Zuber
    Mason Kauffman (Northern Illinois) - Hayden Pummel
    Alex Carida (Bloomsburg) - Will Morrow
    Brian Courtney (Virginia) - Erik Roggie/Garrett Grice
    Quinn Miller (Virginia) - Gabe Christensen
    Grant Willits (Oregon State) - Cleveland Belton
    Hunter Willits (Oregon State) - Isaiah Crosby
    Josh Finesilver (Duke) - ?


    Other notable weight changes (not mentioned in rankings)

    133 - Beau Bayless (Harvard)
    141 - Zach Price (Gardner-Webb)
    149 - Kellyn March (North Dakota State)
    157 - Andy Clark (Rutgers)
    157 - Luke Kemerer (Edinboro)
    157 - Colt Yinger (Ohio)
    165 - Jordan Slivka (Ohio)
    165 - Connor O'Neill (Rutgers)
    165 - Josh Kim (Harvard)
    165 - Enrique Mungaia (Kent State)
    174 - Sammy DePrez (Binghamton)
    174 - Darrien Roberts (Oklahoma)
    197 - Tyler Bagoly (Clarion)
    285 - Logan Andrew (Chattanooga)

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