I recently talked with #1 high school recruit Mark Hall. He’s a thoughtful and motivated wrestler that should make a smooth transition to the college level and senior international scene. He intends to announce his future plans live on Flo next month. As of two days ago he told me that he hasn’t done an official visit to any schools.
I have no inside information other than my interviews and conversations with Mark but if I were betting I’d say that Hall is PSU’s to lose. The Penn State coaching staff seems to get most of the guys that they really want and Mark has very good relationships with many people in State College. I think that it’s a 60% chance that he goes to the OTC next year and Penn State the year after that. That gives Coach Sanderson two more years to free up money and up to 3 years to figure out the lineup if you include a redshirt year. The question is how much money do they have now with Suriano and Manville being high profile commits and still figuring heavily in the Spencer Lee recruiting race. Does a difference in scholarship money let Ohio State have a better chance? I’d put Ohio State at 30% and put the rest of the field at 10%. Hall will be Jordan Burroughs training partner at Worlds next week. Nice work if you can get it and a pretty cool recruiting tool for Coach Manning. If PSU pulls this off it will be a little demoralizing to some other top programs and put PSU in a unique recruiting situation that the college scene hasn’t experienced since Gable as far as attracting top recruits. Another seismic shift in the landscape of wrestling is that Hall has never mentioned interest in Iowa. Iowa has a solid lineup without a lot of top recruits but at some point the question becomes whether they slip into a second tier team without attracting top talent like Brent Metcalf. Getting Spencer Lee would be huge for Coach Brands.
Mark Hall Interview questions. It’s a long interview so I’m posting a few questions in case you want to skip around.
1. Have you changed since beating Valencia at Who’s #1?
2. What is your wrestling mindset?
3. What is your relationship with weight cutting?
4. What are your criteria for choosing a college? Is there a chance that you’ll just go to the OTC for a year?
5. You’re being recruited by some of the top American wrestlers. How do you deal with the blurred lines of friendship & recruiting?
6. Talk about your experience at the Jr. Worlds.
7. Criteria for choosing your future school & or OTC? Teams?
8. Freestyle vs. Folkstyle?
9. Stress of the recruiting process. Telling coaches no.
10. Do you have relationships with guys on the PSU team? Who are they? David Taylor and the coaching staff.
11. Do you have a competition schedule for the end of summer & fall?
12. Who’s idea was the live announcement on Flo?
13. Being Jordan Burroughs warm up/training partner at the World Championships.
14. Wrestling goals for the coming season.
Mark confirmed that he took an ofical visit to Penn State a few days ago. 4 more coming up.