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  • Photo: Sam Janicki

    Photo: Sam Janicki

    The Top 20 Fantasy Wrestlers of 2022 (165 lbs)

    2022 True freshman All-American Dean Hamiti (photo courtesy of Sam Janicki; SJanickiPhoto.com)

    To steal the line from last year's FCW Top-20 Articles, everyone knows 125 Pat Glory, 133 Roman Bravo-Young, 174 Carter Starocci, 184 Aaron Brooks, and 285 Gable Steveson are bonus point monsters, and this season they totaled 283 Fpts. Top names and all NCAA Champions or Finalists (Nick Suriano did not make the Top-20).

    But here's five names that totaled 328 Fpts: 125 Caleb Smith (APP), 133 Joshua Koderhandt (NAVY), 174 Logan Messer (GMU), 184 Jonathan Loew (COR), and 285 Ben Goldin (PENN). This group only has one All-American (Loew finishing 8th).

    And as I say every year, that's the beauty and frustration of Fantasy Sports. Sometimes your top performers are not "household names."

    So, with that, let's take a look at this past season's Top-20 at each weight to help give you an early start to win each week this coming year.

    To compile these lists, we used standard WrestleStat Fantasy College Wrestling Data & Scoring. Just a reminder of how points were tallied in WrestleStat leagues:

    1) The scoring used was Standard Team Scoring across all competitions (+3 for a win by decision, -4 for a loss by Major, etc)

    2) Scoring only counted against D1 competition

    3) Wins via Forfeits (FFT) would count as +6 towards a wrestler's point total

    4) Wins or Losses by Medical Forfeit (MFF) did not count as + or - towards a wrestler's point total

    5) Points were only accumulated during the regular season


    The only true freshman to place #1 in a weight for Fantasy this season lands himself at the top of this weight: Dean "Griddy" Hamiti. The true freshman went 20-1 during the regular season racking up an 86% bonus rate, which made him the #3 overall Fantasy Wrestler this season too. But what might be more impressive, is that of those 21 matches, he wrestled eight opponents that were rated in the Top-30 by WrestleStat, he went 7-1 all wins by bonus. In fact, three were by pin, one by tech, and three by major while his lone loss was by a score of 8-5 to Alex Marinelli.

    Keegan O'Toole started his 2022 campaign with a Pin of national qualifier (and previous Bloodround-er) Luke Weber, then went on to bonus his next five opponents. In the regular season, O'Toole had only three decisions of his 17 matches (none back-to-back, by the way), which comes to a bonus rate of 82.4%. Funny enough, last season (2021) he finished as the #3 Fantasy Wrestler at 165 as well.

    Speaking of repeats, Zach Hartman has finished in the Top-7 of Fantasy Points each of the last three seasons (#2 this season, #7 last season, and #3 in 2020). While the stats this season were eye-catching, with him posting the highest regular season bonus rate of his career (57.6%), he may have not garnered the national spotlight as much this season because his "best win" came in the last match of the season when he blanked Travis Wittlake, 5-0.

    Izzak Olejnik also made the Top-10 for the second year in a row, albeit a few spots lower than his 2021 placing (7th this year compared to 4th in 2021).

    Transferring over to Lock Haven in the 2021 season from Iowa Central Community College, Ashton Eyler finds himself as #8 in his first season of D1 competition. A lot of the time, it's not about the number of matches a wrestler has that lands them in the Top-20 or even Top-10, but in this instance having 38 matches behind you doesn't hurt. In fact, he had the most matches out of any wrestler in the Top-20 at any weight this season.

    Two years ago, Tanner Cook had possibly the most electric start to a season a wrestler could have: 11 of his first 15 matches were won by pin (and one win by tech). That bonus-bonanza was able to get him to #6 at 165 in 2020. This season, after a year hiatus, it was a more bumpy ride with some wins by pin here, some losses by pin there. In all, he ended just inside the ranking at #17.

    Patrick Kennedy, who is the heir-apparent to 165, now that the Bull is going out to Folkstyle pasture, was the only redshirt to make this weight's Top-20. He narrowly beat Shane Griffith who rounded out at #20, by two Fpts.

    Seven of the eight All-Americans made the 165 Top-20.

    Who Missed The Cut:

    The only All-American to miss the cut was Cam Amine who finished the year at #29 and 32 Fpts. He "only" wrestled 17 matches, which is the same as #2 Keegan O'Toole and #20 Shane Griffith (and one more than Evan Wick), but the big difference in why they made the Top-20, and Cam Amine did not, falls to the low bonus rate of 17.6% in the regular season (82.4% for O'Toole, 56.3% for Wick, and 29.4% for Griffith).

    Finishing just one point behind Shane Griffith, fellow Pac-12er Anthony Valencia (ASU) had just a slightly better PPM score of 1.9 than Drew Nicholson (CHAT) with 1.7 and Cameron Pine (CLAR) with 1.2 to be the #21 Fantasy Wrestler at 165.

    Three Bloodrounders missed the Top-20 in #25 Julian Ramierez (COR) with 34 Fpts, #28 Jake Wentzel (PITT) with 33 Fpts, and #31 Philip Conigliaro (HARV) with 30 Fpts.

    Last Season, Travis Wittlake (OKST) was the #1 Fantasy Wrestler at 165 and tied for #5 overall across all weights. This season, though, was a different story. Wittlake finished this season at #50 at 165 and the #490 wrestler overall.

    Other notables to miss the cut include Lucas Revano (PENN) at #26 with 34 Fpts, Alex Facundo (PSU) at #27 at 33 Fpts, Danny Braunagel (ILL) at #37 with Fpts, and Brian Meyer (LEH) at #55 with 15 Fpts.

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