There is a lot to be thankful for with this iteration of the Pack Wrestling team. Pop has built a strong program, but this year feels like it could be particularly elite. Some really fun home matches coming in December, so read up on the latest here and go get your tickets, cause it should be a really fun rest of the season.
Team: we are, of course, undefeated, at 7-0. We have not really wrestled any strong "teams" thus far, so this is very expected. If you are looking for something to be surprised about, and I am, then it would be our team scores. We are averaging 41 points per match. If you win all 10 weights by 7 or less points, you can score 30. So averaging 41 means we are really laying points to them. We seem to be taking advantage of the 3pt takedown rule and tech falls have abounded. The team is currently ranked #2 in the nation, so definitely no lack of national respect happening with this team.
125- Camacho, now ranked third in the nation, looks really good and it is going to be fun to see just how high his ceiling is. Camacho took out #3 Ramos of Purdue. Ramos was a NCAA finalist last year and I believe was pre-season #1. Big win. Camacho is looking really healthy and is gonna be dangerous.
133- I think Orine looks great. He has gained a #6 in the nation ranking. He has not had any major tests (though he did have a match against Army go a little closer than it should have due to a high risk move). He has shared several matches with Trombley, but I think making 133 is a big effort for him, so likely just coaches feeling confident in his abilities and also wanting to respect Trombley and his huge contributions to the team with some mat time.
141- Ryan Jack is looking strong and putting up tons of points. Ryan is currently ranked #7 in the nation. Ryan has not faced any top-20 competition thus far (that I can recall), but you can expect he will be ready to compete for AA status this year.
149- Jackson Arrington is young as a true sophomore, but has come out swinging this year. In duals, Jackson has recorded 6 tech falls (winning by 15+ points) and one major decision (winning by 8-14 points). Good lord man. Jackson is currently ranked #6 in the nation.
157- Ed Scott has looked solid and in control. He is currently ranked #9 in the nation. Ed comes on as the season progresses if history holds, so look for Ed to really turn up the heat in the new year. **quick note- yes, if you face NC State in a dual and you start at 125, your must face 5 top-10 wrestlers in a row. That's tough going for most any team not named Penn State.
165- Our big question mark lies here. Currently AJ Kovacs and and Derek Fields are vying for this role. There is a good argument for both, but the down side is that neither have really separated themselves from the other. December will hopefully bring some good strides and clarity. Both are unranked.
174- Alex Faison is the definition of consistency and toughness. Currently ranked #22, Alex gonna bring it every night and from a team perspective, if Alex hits guys who are better than him, he is very unlikely to give up more than 3 team points with solid defense.
184- Dylan Fishback has spent a good amount of time this year unranked, in spite of lots of excitement about him within the program. He is currently #29, but expect that to change this week as he finally got a chance to prove himself against a top-10 guy in #9 Nolan from Binghamton. Fishback walked away with a 3-2 win, officially letting the hype train leave the station. Fishback is a redshift Freshman, so this is also a kid who is gonna improve all year long. I anticipate he will be super dangerous by NCAA tourney time.
197- There is not much more to say about Trent that has not been said. Currently ranked #5 at his new weight, Trent has made quick work of his opponents, and recently got a solid win over #6 Michael Beard of Lehigh. Even more notably, Trent is simultaneously competing in Freestyle and won a crazy-tough bracket at the Bill Farelly Invitational to earn a spot at the Olympic Team trials. Trent doesn't surprise folks often, because he is so good, but this one was a surprise. Selfishly, I really hope this translates into Folkstyle success and Trent can finally get the Natty he really deserves.
HWT- Trephan continues to perform well. He dropped one match, but otherwise has been consistent and has shown he can put up points and has some good pin moves. Trephan is currently ranked #12 in the nation.
In 2 weekends, the guys head to Vegas for Cliff Keen, which is an elite tourney year after year. This will be the first real challenge for most of the guys, so I am excited to see how hey do.
I'm definitely just an average observer, so looking forward to hear what some you other wrestling folks have noted about the team in this early part of the seaosn (or what notable matches I may have failed to mention...WrestleStat is not updated, so I was working with some clunky data)