No. 1 Santiago signs with UNC

Sonny Santiago (Photo/Chris Mora,

North Carolina announced the signing of California state champion Sonny Santiago (St. John Bosco, Calif.), the nation's No. 1 152-pounder by InterMat, on Friday. Santiago is ranked No. 12 among all wrestlers in the Class of 2020.

He originally committed to Arizona State as a junior but reopened the recruiting process.

Santiago has been a known commodity for a long time but found a major breakthrough in winning a state title at 152 pounds last season. A key result in that tournament was a 3-2 semifinal victory over Jace Luchau, the projected champion, who happened to win a Junior National freestyle title this past summer.

In October, Santiago defeated Travis Mastrogiovanni (Blair Academy, N.J.) at Who's Number One.

Coleman Scott, head coach at UNC, believes Santiago fits into the program well.

"Sonny and his family fit Carolina really well and I knew as soon as I met him that he's the type of guy we want to see in Chapel Hill," Scott said. "His talent, hard work and determination all add up to being a Tar Heel type of wrestler. I think fans are going to be extremely excited about seeing what Sonny can bring to the table."


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