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Iowa Wrestling: No 2. Iowa Hawkeyes vs California Baptist - Preview, How to Watch & Match Thread

The Hawkeyes open up the 2022-2023 season in Carver-Hawkeye Arena

Big Ten Championship
The Hawks are back on the mat!
Photo by Hunter Martin/Getty Images

After extreme turnover and the graduation of a handful of fan favorites, Tom Brands and company are toeing the line with a new (and significantly) younger look. Perhaps, for the first time in five years, we can finally say we’re in “rebuilding” or at least “restocking” mode. Upwards of four fresh faces will crack the starting lineup on any given weekend, but that doesn’t mean we’re going to sit idle and wait for development! Oh no, our Hawkeyes, despite the youth movement, debut at No. 2 in the Intermat rankings!

After a 3rd place finish in last year’s NCAA’s, we say goodbye to Austin DeSanto, Jaydin Eierman, Alex Marinelli, and Michael Kemerer. All but Kemerer have stuck around the Hawkeye Wrestling Club to compete and roll around with the next batch of talent.

That’s a large point total we’re missing, but thanks to the transfer portal and the time to heal, we recoup some much needed points to jump back up those aforementioned rankings.

Our 3x NCAA Champ, Spencer Lee, is returning for one more ride and with him he brings in a

monster transfer at 141lbs, Real Woods, who checks in at No. 2. Woods transferred from Stanford in the offseason and was an All-American last year, placing sixth.

With him is ex-UNI Panther and 2x NCAA qualifier, Brody Teske, at 133lbs. Teske has bowed out in the R12 and R16 the past two years, respectively, but is eager for redemption and is eyeing a podium spot with the Black & Gold.

We also welcome back Max Murin, Nelson Brands (who is currently injured), Abe Assad, Tony Cassioppi, and last year’s finalist Jacob Warner. Without doubt, this is a tremendous mixture of talent to lead and mentor the next great lineup.

Since the dual is happening soon I’ll keep this preview short and sweet and expand on our new look as things progress.

Cal Baptist (1-2)

Cal Baptist enters with a 1-2 record. They opened up the season with a 38-9 loss to Cal Poly, followed by a 32-6 drumming over Vanguard University. Last night they ended up losing to No. 10 Iowa State, 38-9.

They don’t have anyone sitting inside the top 25, but we should keep an eye on their guys competing out our unproven weights: 125, 141, 149, 157, and 174 because Spencer Lee, Real Woods, and Nelson Brands aren’t expected to go. They did take the first two bouts against ISU at 125 and a pin at 133.

Should they pull a couple upsets early on, this could apply a bit of pressure to the back end of the lineup. It’s not uncommon for veterans to shuffle their feet and look stale, especially in the early duals of a long season, and that is exactly what CBU is aiming to do.

#2 Iowa (0-0)

If you’re looking to see the future and/ or some guys get spot starts, then this is the dual for you.

I, for one, am excited to see some early season rewards, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a bittersweet start to the year. But if we’re being honest with ourselves, we shouldn’t need our big guns to push us to our first dual win of the season.

We all knew Spencer Lee would be used sparingly in an attempt to keep him healthy for March. Afterall, he is eyeing his 4th title, which would make him the fifth 4x champ in NCAA history. Caution is very much advised.

Additionally, Drake Ayala is redshirting this season, so we won’t see him.

But even without Lee in the lineup on a consistent basis we do have those veterans sprinkled throughout. We have proven commodities with Woods, Warner and Big Cass, but this could be the year we see Mad Max, Nelson Brands (when healthy) and Abe Assad make that jump onto the podium.


133: Brody Teske // #13 Cullan Schriever vs Hunter Leake

As of this writing, Cullan Schriever is currently competing and winning at the Luther Open, which indicates he likely won’t be wrestling in this dual. He also appears to have some sort of wrap on his right arm. It’s entirely possible he’s a bit banged up in the early going and some lighter work at the Luther Open is exactly what he needs to get back on track.

Teske is good, real good, and from what I’ve gathered they’re pretty even in the room. I wouldn’t read too much into who is wrestling and where at, for this weekend.

149: #7 Max Murin vs Chaz Hallmark // Marcus Peterson

Murin was slightly delayed in his announcement to return for one more season. After a couple heartbreaking tournies it’s understandable. An early mauling could go a long way to boosting his confidence and if there’s one thing we have noticed throughout Max’s career, it’s that when his confidence is elevated he can scrap with anyone. So let’s get him going early and often!

157:Caleb Rathjen // Cobe Siebrecht vs Joey Mora

This will be another open battle all season between Rathjen and Siebrecht, with the possibility of seeing Bretli Reyna get the odd start as well. Rathjen was a big name coming out of the state of Iowa, but Siebrecht has been the slow burn in the room over the past few years that has progressed nicely into a sneaky weapon. At the moment I think Siebrecht holds the slight edge with experience on his side, and he’s a monster on top. But the question is whether he’s progressed his bottom game.

165: #14 Patrick Kennedy vs Frank Almaguer // Mitchell Mesenbrink

After Alex Marinelli’s successful career, we finally get to see Kennedy get his time in the spotlight. He has some big shoes to fill, but I fully expect him to fill them in nicely. He’s fresh off a U23 Freesytle National Title this summer, but this will be his first match knowing he’s The Guy.

This will be a beatdown of a match, but one we should eye performance wise.

174: Drake Rhodes vs Louis Rojas

With Nelson Brands and Brennan Swafford both hampered by ailments, Mr. Rhodes gets the nod for this bout. Rhodes is a true freshman and 3x state champ from Montana. In all likelihood we’ll see him for four or five starts before Swafford or Brands are set to return. This is significant because we will be relying on him for the first month. His points and growth will be tested in this early portion of his career.

Probable Lineups

125: Aidan Harris vs Elijah Griffin

133: Brody Teske // #13 Cullan Schriever vs Hunter Leake

141: Drew Bennett vs Christian Nunez

149: #7 Max Murin vs Chaz Hallmark // Marcus Peterson

157: Caleb Rathjen // Cobe Siebrecht vs Joey Mora

165: #14 Patrick Kennedy vs Frank Almaguer // Mitchell Mesenbrink

174: Drake Rhodes vs Louis Rojas

184: #10 Abe Assad vs Caden Gerlach

197: #2 Jacob Warner vs Elijah Sobas

285: #4 Tony Cassioppi vs Christopher Island

Broadcast Info

Opponent: California Baptist

Dual time: 1:00PM GT (Central) // Sunday, Nov. 13 2022

Location: Carver-Hawkeye Arena // Iowa City, IA

TV/ Online: BTN+