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No. 1 Iowa Wrestling rips No. 6 Purdue, 41-0

Over the weekend the Hawkeyes crushed the entire state of Indiana 82-0

2019 NCAA Division I Men’s Wrestling Championship Photo by Justin K. Aller/NCAA Photos via Getty Images

“Carter Happel wanted Cassioppi to get the quick pin so they could watch the Green Bay Packers game... Rock N’ Roll!”

-Tom Brands

“Tonight they came out and looked real good... These Hawkeyes right now look like they’re rolling.”

-Mark Ironside

The Hawkeyes just steamrolled the No. 6 ranked Purdue Boilermakers, 41-0. There’s no other way to put it.

This was a dual about improvement. We scorched The Hoosiers 41-0 on Friday night, but we didn’t look particularly sharp in several of the matches. Primarily, #1 Pat Lugo and #3 Michael Kemerer seemed to gas out a bit in the 2nd and 3rd periods or didn’t stay on the offense to push pace, but whatever ailments we seemed to struggle with then were nonexistent in Holloway Hall in West Lafayette in Sunday.

Iowa 41, Prudue 0

125: #1 Spencer Lee tech. fall over #7 Devin Schroeder, 15-0. Iowa 5-0

133: # 2 Austin DeSanto tech. fall over Travis Ford-Melton, 17-1. Iowa 10-0

141: #7 Max Murin dec. over Parker Filius, 6-1. Iowa 13-0

149: #7 Pat Lugo major dec. Nate Limmex, 8-0. Iowa 17-0

157: #3 Kaleb Young dec. over #7 Kendall Coleman, 4-3. Iowa 20-0

165: #2 Alex Marinelli pinned Tanner Webster, 1:51. Iowa 26-0

174: #3 Michael Kemerer dec. #4 Dylan Lydy, 8-4. Iowa 29-0

184: Abe Assad dec. over Max Lyon, 5-2. Iowa 32-0

197: #4 Jacob Warner dec. over #2 Christian Brunner, 8-2. Iowa 35-0

285: No. 4 Tony Cassioppi pinned Thomas Penola, 2:00. Iowa 41-0

The Hawks are now 6-0 on the season and this was the beat down we’ve been waiting for.

There was some hubbub from Mark Ironside on the KXIC radiobroadcast against Indiana, that we may be off our game a tad because of a heavy training phrase that was winding down. That it was entirely possibly that we were training through the Indiana dual. Push our limits, learn to battle through the fatigue and fight for the win, even against inferior competition, that sort of thing.

Ironside knows this program inside and out and I’ll jump to the conclusion that he was right. Whatever physical or mental fatigue that was on display Friday night was gone by Sunday. I suppose a good lazy Saturday can help recharge anyone’s batteries, especially if they’ve been depleted for a while now.

Whatever the case may be, the issues had disappeared over a 30+ hour off period and these guys came out razor-focused and dialed in. We won all 10 matches, including five by bonus point. Marinelli and Cassioppi with the pin, Lee and Desanto with the tech. falls, and Lugo locking up a major.

We prevailed in four toss-up matches as well. At least until Abe Assad has proven himself a bit more, we should throw him into this category against anybody, as well. Kemerer and Warner we were both facing top four opponents, and both thoroughly took it to their guys when the match was on the line and dominated the 3rd periods.

We had several matches throughout the night where we were able to keep guys down and ride them out to end the period, negating a cheap late escape, or finding a way to snag a late TD to sway the scoreboard in our favor.

We also pushed the pace early, of course Lee and DeSanto set the tone, but for all ten matches Purdue seemed to be on their heels and the refs were quick to hit them with stall warnings that eventually turned into stall points for the good guys.

There aren’t as many individual takeaways that I’d usually list as it is the team in general. These guys were pumped up, amped up, and having fun from the first whistle. Spencer Lee was rocking and feeling it from the get-go and immediately after this obliteration of #7 Schroder he ran over to DeSanto and got in his face to continue the torrent of points. From there on out, the energy didn’t let up. Even the usually calm Patrick Lugo was seen rallying the troops. These guys are having fun.

It should also be noted that there was some commotion at the end of Austin’s beatdown over the upstart freshman, Travis Ford-Melton. Shortly before Austin decided to end the match, he was looking for a big move and go for the pin. Ford-Melton felt it coming and gave up the takedown to avoid further damage, but it resulted in the 17-1 tech that obviously didn’t sit well with him. Melton gave a little push and both sides immediately starting jawing and it was clear DeSanto wanted more and would’ve happily obliged a 30-1 demolition if allowed.

But, Austin kept his cool, especially when Melton continued his extracurricular actives back to the center and handshake that continued. So, kudos to Austin for staying calm under pressure and not feeding further into the Purdue embarrassment and for what it’s worth, that ref should have ended that behavior way before it got to that point. Either way, DeSanto did nothing wrong other than hurting Ford-Melton’s delicate pride.


125: This was another day at the office for Spencer Lee. He’s 8-0 with 100% bonus rate: 5 tech falls, 2 pins, and a major decision. If he continues this trend over the next three weeks against Nebraska, Ohio State, and Penn State he may become the front runner for the Hodge Trophy (which is currently #1 Zahid Valencia from ASU).

133: DeSanto continues to wrestle like a madman from his feet. His neutral game might be the best in wrestling at the moment as very few can handle the pressure. But his takedowns are so quick and efficient, but what I love to see are the near fall points, instead of just playing the catch and release game. He’s really coming into his own and there’s something new we’re seeing every week. He’s scary good right now.

141: I love how Max Murin is wrestling with confidence and determination. Last year he seemed to be a bit passive at times and purely reactionary, but so far this year, he’s been the one pushing the pace in all of his matches. He’s still raw, but he’s 100% grit and toughness. Like DeSanto and Lugo he’s more efficient with his shots. But his biggest improvement might be his top game. He’s riding hard and not allowing cheap escape points, which is something he’ll need to continue to do as bigger competition awaits down the road.

149: Lugo may have been off Friday night, but he was certainly back on against Purdue. He didn’t knock Limmex’s socks off, but he certainly showed him who the boss at this weight class is. Of course, we’d always like to see Lugo stretch the points out a bit more because we love lopsided scores, but an 8-0 shut out with 4:00min of riding time is still damn good.

157: This is the 2nd time KY has had to face Coleman this year, but at least he didn’t need sudden victory to get it done this time. Coleman is damn good and will be scary to face in March, but right now it appears that KY is gaining some swagger and confidence back. Though, he only won 4-3, he was in control and well positioned for most of the match. Despite getting tangled in his own feet, tripping and falling, and giving up a late TD, he stayed composed and worked for the escape and the inevitable win. These are all things KY needs to do to find the podium again in March and after a rough stretch it looks like he’s back on track. And when he’s firing on all cylinders he can compete with anyone at this weight.

165: Figure-four time. Nothing else to say. This marks Marinelli’s 7th pin on the season.

174: Kemerer still doesn’t look quite right, but he’s found a way to push through and get it done this weekend. On Friday night he really struggled to finish the match, which worried much of the fan base, but despite not being in top form, he hung in there and broke Lydy in the 3rd period.

Given some more time I expect to see continued improvement from Kemerer as he works himself back into shape against the elite of this class. Btw- Lydy had only given up one takedown on the year. After running into Kemdog, he's now allowed four.

184: Assad is out there wrestling hard and learning and winning. All of this will pay off down the road as he continues to grow and mature on and off the mat.

We aren't seeing the blowout results we unfairly desire, but so far he's winning, and above all, he's not afraid to attack. Right now, with everything that's happened at this weight, that's all we can reasonably ask for. Patience is the key here, he's going to be a good one.

197: This was the confidence booster Warner needed and it couldn't come at a better time. When he's out there wrestling his game he's a hard out and has the potential to place high on the podium. But what we're learning in year two is that's he's all about momentum and this gets the ball rolling back in the right direction.

Brunner is as legit as we'll find at this weight, so it's a testament to Warner that not only that he won, but it's how he won it. Brunner was getting in deep on Warner's legs with nearly every shot, but our Hawkeye hung in there battled out of each precarious position. Then the big move hit, feet to back for a TD and 4 NF that blew the match open. Warner needs to realize he has this explosiveness in him EVERY TIME HE'S ON THE MAT. Once that occurs, well, it wouldn't surprise me seeing him atop thr podium in the future.

285: Big Cass is doing what he promised he'd do, entertain us with the pin. The 2 min pin fall of Thomas Penola marks his fifth on the season for our young redshirt freshman. He's beating returning All-Americans in decisive decisions and sticking the guys he should be sticking. At this point, he's exactly as advertsied: An Ass Kicker.

Some of these embed FloWrestling tweets aren't showing the video, but if you follow the link you should be able to view it.

This Hawkeyes squad is a breath of fresh air. From top to bottom they are complete wrestlers, solid in ever position. They're out there scrapping and wrestling mean! It's been awhile since we could say that and it feels good. These guys are for real.

Next up we welcome No. 7 Nebraska inside Carver-Hawkeye Arena on Saturday, Jan. 18 at 8PM CT.

Nebby is as high as No. 2 in a few other rankings. This will be a dog fight and we wouldn't have it any other way.