(photo courtesy of TonyRotundo; WrestlersAreWarriors.com/Graphic by Anna-Lee Marie)
The Iowa Corn Cy-Hawk Series returns on Sunday as No. 25 Iowa State hosts rival No. 1 Iowa. The Hawkeyes lead the all-time series 66-16-2, but the Cyclones program appears to be on an upswing. Despite that progress, the Hawkeyes enter with a lineup that could feature as many as 8 ranked wrestlers and are heavy favorites. The match airs live on ESPN+ at 7:00pm ET.
125: No. 21 Kysen Terukina (Iowa State) vs. Jesse Ybarra (Iowa)
Terukina made his way to Iowa State after becoming only the sixth wrestler in history to win four Hawaii state championships. He earned the starting nod in his true freshman season last year, qualified for the NCAA tournament and finished with an 8-7 record. The results have been strong so far this year. He has won both the Daktronics and Grand View open tournaments, and last Saturday, he scored a major decision over Army's Jake Staud.
Ybarra has been filling in for No. 1 Spencer Lee so far this year. He won the Luther Open against three opponents from lower divisions. After receiving a forfeit against Princeton, he faced his first wrestler from the top division last Sunday against Army. Ybarra needed to go to sudden victory, but he ultimately scored the 3-1 decision over Ryan Chauvin. On the high school level, Ybarra was a three-time Arizona state champion and a Fargo champion.
Obviously, if Lee was in the lineup, the Hawkeyes would be expecting bonus points from this weight. However, that likely will not be the case here. Ybarra needed extra time to defeat a wrestler who is 1-4 on the season and 15-28 for his college career. Terukina's best win of the year is over No. 22 Liam Cronin (Nebraska), but he picked up valuable experience last year as a freshman. It is entirely possible that Ybarra will end up having the better career, but this bout might be too much too soon.
Prediction: Terukina decision over Ybarra
133: Ramazan Attasauov (Iowa State) vs. No. 3 Austin DeSanto (Iowa)
Thanks to a redshirt season and the dispensation given last year, Attasauov is a third-year freshman. For the first time as a Cyclone, he is expected to hold down the starting spot at 133 pounds. He is 7-1 for the season, with his only defeat coming against Drew Mattin (Michigan) at the Daktronics Open. Last weekend, he scored a major decision over Mark Montgomery (Army) and a decision over Hunter Leake (Cal Baptist). In freestyle, Attasauov won a U23 National title in 2020 with wins over Danny Vega (South Dakota State), No. 10 Rayvon Foley (Michigan State) and No. 2 (at 125) Patrick Glory (Princeton).
DeSanto is back at 133 pounds at Iowa for the fourth consecutive season. He finished fifth in 2019 and third last year to become a two-time NCAA All-American. So far this season, DeSanto has scored a technical fall against all wrestlers not wearing an Iowa singlet. His lone decision came against teammate Cullan Schriever at the Luther Open. Last weekend against Army, he scored a 21-6 technical fall over Dominic Carone.
Attasauov's freestyle success makes this an interesting contest. While DeSanto is usually dominant against this level of competition, he does the vast majority of his scoring on the feet. The likely result is that the Iowa wrestler's pace will grind on Attasauov throughout the contest. However, the Iowa State representative has some tricky throws that give him a fighting chance.
Prediction: DeSanto major decision over Attasauov
141: No. 19 Zach Redding/Ian Parker (Iowa State) vs. No. 2 Jaydin Eierman (Iowa)
Iowa State has listed Ian Parker as a potential starter at both 141 and 149 pounds. He defeated teammate Cam Robinson via a 10-3 decision in the wrestle-offs and has not returned to the mat since. Parker at 141 pounds is probably best for Iowa State as a team, but it will be interesting to see if he makes his way down.
While Parker might end up being the guy at 141, Redding has been getting the starting nod so far this year. He has won all five of his matches this season after going 10-7 and qualifying for the NCAA tournament last year at 133 pounds.
Eierman has gone fifth, fourth, third and second at the NCAA tournament. This year he has one more shot at the national title and the odd distinction of being a five-time All-American. Last year was his first season in an Iowa uniform after transferring from Missouri and sitting out the 2020 season. He went undefeated until his final match, where he fell in sudden victory against No. 1 Nick Lee (Penn State). Eierman has won all of his matches with bonus this season and is coming off a fall over No. 31 Corey Shie (Army).
In theory, one could make the case that Parker gives Iowa State the better chance to keep this dual close. However, in their only meeting, Eierman pinned Parker in the second period back in 2019. If Parker really is coming down in weight, this would be a formidable opponent to make a season debut against. Look for Redding to come out here with the goal of not giving up bonus, which is easier said than done against Eierman.
Prediction: Eierman fall over Redding
149: No. 22 Jarrett Degen/Ian Parker (Iowa State) vs. Cobe Siebrecht (Iowa)
Once again, this spot could potentially be Parker, but Degen has been the starter at the weight so far this year. Last season, he did not make his season debut until February and had only 11 matches on the year. Despite the limited number of matches, he qualified for his fourth NCAA tournament. To begin his final year, he has gone 5-1, with his only defeat coming last weekend against No. 21 PJ Ogunsanya (Army)
Most expect three-time NCAA qualifier Max Murin to eventually hold down this weight for the Hawkeyes. However, it has been Siebrecht so far this year, and Murin was not listed on the probable starters released earlier this week. Siebrecht was an Iowa state champion for Lisbon and went 12-3 in two limited seasons prior to this year. He is 5-1 on the season, with his only defeat coming against Ogunsanya. At the Luther Open, he scored a decision over Kristian Rumph and a technical fall over Brady Fritz, both of which were NCAA Division III runner-ups for Wartburg last year.
Degen is a dangerous wrestler who can score points in a variety of odd positions. Siebrecht has limited experience at the highest levels of college wrestling and might find himself in trouble early and often.
Prediction: Degen major decision over Siebrecht
157: No. 1 David Carr (Iowa State) vs. No. 8 Kaleb Young (Iowa)
Carr has lost only one match in two years as a starter for the Cyclones. Last year, he won all 20 of his matches and claimed the NCAA title at 157 pounds. His quest to get back on top of the podium this year has begun with six-straight wins. Carr has scored bonus points in all but one of his matches, and that one bout was rather interesting. He went to overtime with No. 6 Peyton Robb (Nebraska), but ultimately prevailed with the 7-5 decision in sudden victory.
Young is back for his final year at Iowa. After finishing fifth as a sophomore in 2019, he finished seventh last year to become a two-time All-American. He has started this season with a 5-1 record. Two weekends ago, he dropped a 9-5 decision against rival No. 5 Quincy Monday (Princeton). It was the third match between the two wrestlers, and Monday now holds a 2-1 edge in the series.
Young was one of Carr's first tests as a starter back in November 2019. It was only his second match of the 2019-2020 season. At the time, some thought that Carr would be susceptible to mat wrestling since he had been focusing on freestyle at the time. That turned out to not be the case as Carr took a 6-1 decision. In the match, Young's defense allowed him to scramble, but ultimately Carr eventually scored. Since that match, Carr has become a much cleaner finisher, and he should be able to take this match by a similar margin.
Prediction: Carr decision over Young
165: Isaac Judge/Austin Kraisser/Grant Stotts (Iowa State) vs. No. 1 Alex Marinelli (Iowa)
Iowa State listed three potential starts at this weight. Judge is 9-5 and got the start against Army but dropped an 11-6 decision. Kraisser transferred to Iowa State after multiple years at Campbell. He is 8-3 and defeated Josh Grant (Cal Baptist) via a 2-0 decision. Stotts is 10-2 after wrestling in the Grand View and Daktronics opens. He defeated Kraisser in sudden victory, and he also bested Jagger Condomitti (Nebraska), who was a top-20 recruit in the 2021 class.
Marinelli was the favorite heading into the last NCAA tournament. However, he suffered an overtime upset against Shane Griffith (Stanford) and then bowed out of the tournament with an injury. The two-time NCAA All-American is back to make one final run at the title in a weight that suddenly looks much deeper than it appeared last year. Marinelli has won all six of his matches this year and ascended to the number-one spot after Griffith dropped a controversial match against No. 17 Julian Ramirez (Cornell).
Regardless of who Iowa State sends out against Marinelli, there is a solid chance the Hawkeye picks up the fall. Marinelli has a strong top game, but it is quite methodical. At times, his approach on top chews away at the clock, and he is forced to settle for lesser types of victory. It remains to be seen how this match will play out.
Prediction: Marinelli major decision over Judge
174: No. 33 Joel Devine (Iowa State) vs. No. 2 Michael Kemerer/Nelson Brands (Iowa)
Devine, formerly known as Shapiro, took his lumps up at 197 pounds in 2020. He went 11-16 overall and went 0-2 at the Big 12 tournament. For this season, he has made his way down to 174 pounds and started out with a 4-1 record. His only loss on the season was a tight 3-2 decision against No. 3 Mikey Labriola (Nebraska). He got the start against both Army and Cal Baptist and won both bouts by a combined 24-1 score.
Returning NCAA runner-up and three-time All-American Kemerer is listed as a potential starter, but he has not wrestled a match yet this season. Brands represented the squad against both Princeton and Army, and he scored major decisions in both bouts. Last season, up at 184 pounds, he qualified for the NCAA tournament after a strong Big Ten tournament where he defeated No. 13 Zac Braunagel (Illinois), No. 19 Rocky Jordan (Ohio State) and No. 22 Chris Weiler (Wisconsin).
It seems likely that Brands will get the nod here. Devine has mostly kept it close when competing against wrestlers on this level. Brands also likes to slow down the pace of the match and make it a hand fight. This could be a tight one, with a third-period takedown becoming the deciding factor.
Prediction: Brands decision over Devine
184: No. 14 Marcus Coleman (Iowa State) vs. No. 17 Abe Assad/Myles Wilson (Iowa)
Coleman has bounced up and down the lineup during his time at Iowa State and has actually qualified for the NCAA tournament at three different weights. He is back down at 184 pounds this season after qualifying at 197 last year. Coleman dropped a match against No. 4 Parker Keckeisen (Northern Iowa) at the Daktronics Open, but he also scored a decision over No. 15 Taylor Venz (Nebraska) in the same tournament.
Iowa has listed both Assad and Wilson as potential starters for this dual. Assad was expected to be the starter but suffered an upset against current high school competitor Clayton Whiting at the Luther Open. Since then, his only match was a fall over Forest Belli (Princeton) in an extra match. Wilson got the start against Princeton and also scored a victory over Belli (23-8 technical fall). He returned to the lineup for the dual against Army and took a 4-1 decision over Brad Laughlin. Wilson also recently represented the U.S. at the U23 World Championships.
Wilson and Coleman wrestled in this dual during the 2019 season. Wilson held a 4-3 victory after the first period thanks to two takedowns. However, he was then unable to finish the match due to injury, and said injury eventually ended his season. In that bout, Wilson was able to continually get to legs and score. Assad is not as aggressive, but he should be able to have the advantage over Coleman on the feet as well.
Prediction: Assad decision over Coleman
197: No. 24 Yonger Bastida (Iowa State) vs. No. 3 Jacob Warner/Zach Glazier (Iowa)
In 2019 Bastida won a bronze medal at the U23 World Championships while representing Cuba, and he also holds freestyle victories over Kyven Gadson and Hayden Zillmer. He made the transition to folkstyle last season and went 4-4, but all four of his wins came over wrestlers from lower divisions. He gave up a fall against Silas Allred (Nebraska) at the Daktronics Open after holding a lead, but he bounced back to defeat No. 25 Jack Brown (Army) last weekend for the first ranked win of his college career.
Warner finished fourth at the last NCAA tournament, with his only losses coming against Olympic bronze medalist No. 2 (at 184) Myles Amine (Michigan) and eventual champion No. 1 AJ Ferrari (Oklahoma State). He won three matches at the Luther Open, but Glazier has been starting ever since. Glazier dropped both of his matches against Army and Princeton via decision. This past April, he made the finals of the Junior Freestyle Nationals but ultimately came up short against No. 5 Rocky Elam (Missouri).
It would be hard to imagine Bastida pulling out a victory over Warner due to the Iowa wrestler's ability to ride and turn from the top. However, a match against Glazier would give Iowa State a chance. If Warner is healthy, he will likely get the opportunity and use his more advanced folkstyle acumen.
Prediction: Warner major decision over Bastida
285: No. 29 Sam Schuyler (Iowa State) vs. No. 7 Anthony Cassioppi (Iowa)
Schuyler transferred to Iowa State after multiple seasons at Buffalo. He moved up to heavyweight last year and qualified for the NCAA tournament for the first time. Schuyler has gone 3-1 to start his first year with the Cyclones. His only defeat came via a 9-5 decision against No. 13 Christian Lance (Nebraska).
Cassioppi finished third at the last NCAA tournament, with his only loss coming against eventual champion and Olympic gold medalist No. 1 Gable Steveson (Minnesota). The last month has been a wild one for Cassioppi. He won a gold medal at the U23 World Championships with a fall in the finals over Azamat Khosnov of Greece. The Hawkeye then returned to the college mat and suffered an upset fall against Jack DelGarbino (Princeton). Cassioppi got back on track last weekend with a second-period fall over Brandon Phillips (Army).
Despite the odd loss in his season debut, Cassioppi appears ready to take a step forward in the loaded heavyweight division. He may still struggle against the top wrestlers at this weight, but he should have more than enough in the tank to give his squad bonus points here.
Prediction: Cassioppi fall over Schuyler
Dual Prediction: Iowa 30-10 over Iowa State