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Season prediction record : 32-8
125-This dual is going to start out with a fantastic matchup. It will be either Cork Clark or Thomas Gilman against the #9 ranked Ryan Taylor who has had a very good Freshman season, pinning #20 Nick Roberts and scoring a major over Northwestern’s White. It has to be Clark for this dual, and if you want my speculation Gilman only wrestled against Lehigh so Clark could either focus on school work, keep his weight under control, or to keep Gilman sharp as an insurance policy if something were to happen to Clark before the Conference tournament. I would lean toward the latter. (If you want to weigh in and see the comparison of the two, click here) Clark is an even more touted freshman and should be able to handle Taylor, but I am only picking a decision.
133-This will easily be the marquee matchup of the night. #3 Tony Ramos will look to close out his dual career against #5 Tyler Graff. Ramos and Graff had two matches decided by slim margins in the previous year. They didn’t meet until the Big Ten conference tournament last season in which Tony won with the only takedown 3-1. Their next meeting at nationals had a little more scoring action with Tony winning 6-4. Graff is riding a current hot streak in which he has won seven since his loss to Joe Colon, with the last three wins coming by technical fall. Tony has done a good job of controlling Graff thus far, so I see Tony pulling out a decision here too.
141-Josh Dziewa will face an unranked Jesse Thielke. Thiekle’s best wins of the season might be over Indian’s Moody, and Northwestern’s Greco, which isn’t saying a whole lot. However, he was a good prospect coming out of high school and he will probably drop down to 133 once Graff leaves, which would be closer to his natural weight. Dziewa should win easy, but unfortunately over the last two duals he hasn’t exactly done what he was supposed to do. I will take him in a decision, and he should be able to get out from bottom.
149-Brody will be taking on a TJ Ruschell who by BHGP and Twade’s opinion is the 10th best wrestler in the conference. Brody had an awesome match against Michigan’s Grajales and got a much needed break against Lehigh. I would look for Brody to get another win here.
157-Issac Jordan (who is the son of a former Wisconsin NCAA AA and Ohio Congressman Jim – fun fact) comes in with a top ten ranking (#7) and looks to be one of this weight’s future stars. That being said Derek St. John is one of the current stars at this weight and he will be motivated to not lose another Big Ten match. St. John won their last meeting in a typical fashion, a close 5-3 victory.
165-Nick Moore will face an opponent whom Twade lists as the potential 8th seed in the conference. Being as he is so low, he doesn’t bring any impressive wins on his resume. I am not sure what Nick Moore we will see, but I do think he will beat Cousins, and after almost majoring Yates, he could major here.
174-Evans will have Scott Liegel. Clearly the cream of this weight class’s crop are the top four who rank #3,4,5,6 respectively. This should be a relative easy match for Evans and I would say probable bonus. Had Wisconsin held on to NCAA favorite Andrew Howe this would be a different story.
184-Hein doesn’t have a stellar record either, and comes in with just a few conference wins. He will be wrestling for senior day, so maybe he will be a little more motivated to win. Hopefully this is Ethen Lofthouse’s permanent return to the lineup and he is 100% healthy. Iowa should win here, even if it’s Sammy Brooks, but Lofthouse being healthy for this match would ease a lot of stress I have building up.
197-Another weight were Wisconsin was probably wishing they still had their recruit had he not left after taking his Olympic Redshirt. Once Rutt and Howe left the upperweights have been pretty thin in Madison. McCall did get a win over a top ten opponent Ohio State’s Nick Heflin (who is now up to #4), so this won’t be easy for Burak. I think he can keep the sweep alive.
HWT-To close out the dual Telford will run into a very solid Conor Medbery who is ranked #10. Bobby won the meeting 5-2 last year, but Medbery did have two wins over Chalfant last season and is just a sophomore. The Big Ten hasn’t been too friendly to him to this point this season, but this could be a potential upset, and considering how tough HWT will be I really hope not.
In the end Wisconsin does have a lot of good young talent (Taylor, Jordan, Medbery, even Thielke), add in Iowa has closed up some lineup holes with Brody and Burak getting better, Wisconsin just can’t pull it off this year and Iowa pitches the shutout.
Intermat’s Rankings used.
Wrestle Stat to compare the lineup yourself! - Trust me it's a really awsome site.
Hawkeye Sports match notes