It’s been about a month since Nationals and I had bit of free time so I figured I’d do a post mortem. I broke down nationals in a number of ways and a few things jump out: 4 PA preps were champs and created the point separation among the states. All four of these wrestlers will return. Illinois had the second most point scorers but they didn’t produce points like PA, Ohio, Iowa or even Minnesota and Michigan. Pennsylvania is the only state that had 2 colleges with national champs (PSU & Lehigh). Ohio had the most AA’s nipping PA by 1. After looking at returning points the field must be at least a little daunted by Penn State. I wonder what perennial powerhouses like Iowa, Mizzou and VT will be able to reload with? I tend to think that there will be more rebuilding than reloading. 40 states and the country of Finland had scorers at nationals. That is a pretty broad base of talent that seems to be moving south – it’s unfortunate that the NCAA and all of its short sightedness couldn’t put a championship below the Mason Dixon.
On another note, Kyle Crutchmer was the lone wrestler to lose in the first round and AA. It seems to me this path is trending down. Is it a coincidence or a reflection on the resilience, or lack there of, of generation Z? We’ll see if the trend continues next March. Mizzou had a small but potent group of scorers. Can they grow numbers to help Tiger Style maintain and grow?
I thought that MSG last season was entertaining but this year seemed to be even better. I know I’m a PA wrestling fan but there were more guys than ever laying it out there, in some cases way out there, during the tournament. I haven’t talked with a person that watched this year’s NCAA Championships, yes even non Penn State fans, that didn’t find them exciting to watch. Even non-fans have made comments to me about the semis and finals being compelling.
A final thought. Is the Cael Sanderson affect starting to show up in PA high school products? It’s hard for many to believe but a decade ago many PA wrestlers’ top goal was to be a state champ. Over the last 8 years many Pennsylvania boys have shifted their sights to being a national or world champ. PA wrestling participation hasn’t been in the top 5 nationally in several years yet (typically around 6-8 while it was consistently #1 when I was a pup) it still is a bully among the other states. I’ve long thought that the lower rate of participation might lead to a loss in national dominance but it hasn’t been so. Former PA high school wresters had 6 of the top 15 individual point scoring performances at nationals. That is just crazy. The last three years PA had just 3, 2, and 2 of the top 15. It’s not just Penn State’s PA wrestlers that are scoring big on a national stage. PA preps at Iowa, Minnesota and Lehigh were on this list. Ohio was second with 3 of the top 15 individual point scoring performances. In case you are wondering Ohio prep David Taylor scored 30.5 points at the 2012 NCAA Championship (4 falls and a TF in the finals). I think this is the highest individual point total since the change to tournament point scoring in 2001. I’m not a historian so correct me if I’m wrong.
There are lots of ways to look at home state. I chose to use high school as my guide, so my info will look different than say Flo’s.
State Points # of scorers
PA-218—39 Banner year in terms of points scored
OH-180—23 Held serve versus all others. They doubled Illinois in points with less scorers
Iowa-92—14 Scored more with less
Illinois– 91—24 Lots of scorers not a ton of points
Minn-91—12 UM needs to keep the talent home
Mich-85—12 Like PA most wrestlers come from outside the urban areas.
CA– 68.5—13 A little down this year
Mizzou-53—5 They averaged over ten points per scorer. Best ratio this year.
NY-52—8 Down year?
NC-10.5—2 NC has the 2nd most D1 programs but it hasn’t caught up in high school performance.
Finland-1—1 Only country outside America represented at NCAA’s
National Champions By State– Banner year for PA and returns its four champs.
PA – Cruz Jr., Retherford Jr., Nolf So., Joseph RFr.
IA – Clark Sr.
MD – Snyder Jr.
MN – Hall TFr.
MO – Cox Sr.
OH – Heil Jr.
TX – Nickal So.
Team Points Returning in 2018
Penn State – 142 look out 2017/8
Ohio State – 110
Oklahoma State – 84
Missouri – 46.5
Iowa – 37.5
Virginia Tech – 27.5
National Champions By Seed
5-#1 Heil, Zain, Nolf, Cox, Snyder
1-#2 – Nickal
1-#3 – Joseph
1-#4 – Cruz, Clark
1-#5 – Hall
All Americans By State
Jr. Nathan Tomasello (Ohio State)
Jr. Dean Heil (Oklahoma State)
Sr. George DiCamillo (Virginia)
So. Micah Jordan (Ohio State)
Sr. Isaac Jordan (Wisconsin)
Jr. Bo Jordan (Ohio State)
RFr. Kollin Moore (Ohio State)
Jr. Jacob Kasper (Duke)
Sr. Ty Walz (Virginia Tech)
Jr. Darian Cruz (Lehigh)
So. Ethan Lizak (Minnesota)
So. Scott Parker (Lehigh)
Jr. Zain Retherford (Penn State)
So. Solomon Chishko (Virginia Tech)
So. Jason Nolf (Penn State)
RFr. Michael Kemerer (Iowa)
RFr. Vincenzo Joseph (Penn State)
New Jersey (6)
Jr. Anthony Ashnault (Rutgers)
RFr. Matt Kolodzik (Princeton)
Sr. Ken Theobold (Rutgers)
Sr. Sal Mastriani (Virginia Tech)
Jr. Chad Walsh (Rider)
So. Myles Martin (Ohio State)
Sr. Zane Richards (Illinois)
Sr. Lavion Mayes (Missouri)
Sr. Jake Residori (SIU-Edwardsville)
Sr. Sam Brooks (Iowa)
Sr. Nate Jackson (Indiana)
Sr. Thomas Gilman (Iowa)
Sr. Cory Clark (Iowa)
Jr. Brandon Sorensen (Iowa)
RFr. Max Thomsen (Northern Iowa)
So. Drew Foster (Northern Iowa)
So. Seth Gross (South Dakota State)
Fr. Mark Hall (Penn State)
So. Tommy Thorn (Minnesota)
Sr. Brett Pfarr (Minnesota)
Sr. Michael Kroells (Minnesota)
RFr. Logan Massa (Michigan)
RFr. Myles Amine (Michigan)
Sr. Gabe Dean(Cornell)
Jr. Kevin Beazley (Old Dominion)
Jr. Isaiah Martinez (Illinois)
So. Paul Fox (Stanford)
RFr. Zahid Valencia (Arizona State)
So. Nick Nevills (Penn State)
RFr. Kaid Brock (Oklahoma State)
So. Joseph Smith (Oklahoma State)
Sr. Kyle Crutchmer (Oklahoma State)
Sr. Nolan Boyd (Oklahoma State)
RFr. Jaydin Eierman (Missouri)
So. Daniel Lewis (Missouri)
Sr. J’Den Cox (Missouri)
New York (3)
RFr. Nick Piccininni (Oklahoma State)
Sr. Dylan Palacio (Cornell)
Sr. Brian Realbuto (Cornell)
Sr. Nathan Kraisser (Campbell)
Jr. Kyle Snyder (Ohio State)
So. Tyler Berger (Nebraska)
Sr. Zac Brunson (Illinois)
Fr. Jack Mueller (Virginia)
So. Bo Nickal (Penn State)
So. Brandon Womack (Cornell)
Sr. Connor Medbery (Wisconsin)
Jr. Kevin Jack (NC State)
Sr. Ryan Wolfe (Rider)
So. Sean Russell (Edinboro)
So. Tanner Hall (Arizona State)
RFr. Stevan Micic (Michigan)
So. Preston Weigel (Oklahoma State)
Sr. Aaron Studebaker (Nebraska)
Jr. Joey Lavallee (Missouri)
New Mexico (1)
Sr. Eric Montoya (Nebraska)
North Carolina (1)
Sr. Denzel Dejournette (Appalachian State)
South Carolina (1)
Sr. TJ Dudley (Nebraska)
South Dakota (1)
Sr. Alex Kocer (South Dakota State)
Sr. Joey Dance (Virginia Tech)
So. Chandler Rogers (Oklahoma State)
West Virginia (1)
Jr. Jared Haught (Virginia Tech)
Jr. Bryce Meredith (Wyoming)
All Americans By Conference
Big Ten – 36
Big 12 – 11
ACC – 9
MAC – 8
EIWA – 7
Pac 12 – 3
EWL – 3
SoCon – 3
Best come back- Lost 1st round and wrestled back AA
174: Kyle Crutchmer, OK State (7th)
Crutchmer is the lone wrestler- this category is way down in numbers this year.