Penn State is off now until the beginning of the new year.
This is an important time of the year for the Nittany Lions as they can use it to rest up any bumps or bruises they may have suffered before going into the busiest time of their schedule.
Fans can see that the team is solid from 133 to 285 pounds, so the questions continue to roll in about 125 pounds. It has been the biggest question mark for Penn State since Nick Suriano transferred to Rutgers.
Let’s take a look at what we have in this week’s mailbag:
When will we see Brody Teske wrestle? At Open this weekend?
If I were to know the exact answer to this question, I’d be sure to play the lottery because I’d know the winning numbers, too. All kidding aside, it’s really a guessing game as to when Teske will actually hit the mat competitively. Nittany Lions coach Cael Sanderson said it was possible that he could have wrestled this past weekend in an open tournament. However, the weekend came and went, and no signs of Teske competing were there.
Sanderson also mentioned that Teske did suffer a minor injury that kept him from competing. Maybe, he’s had a setback in recovery and still isn’t healthy enough to wrestle yet. He’s been practicing, according to Sanderson and teammates. One thing is for sure, we as the media will know at the same time as fans when Teske does take part in an event.
There is only one more chance for Teske to compete before Christmas and that’s in this weekend’s Reno Tournament of Champions. The Nittany Lions were supposed to go that tournament a couple of years ago but Mother Nature had other plans. The only other tournament that Teske could compete in before the new year would be the Midlands, which Penn State commit Aaron Brooks is set to compete in.
It’s also a possibility that Teske could compete in the Southern Scuffle. He wouldn’t be representing Penn State if the plan is for him redshirt but maybe that’s what Sanderson and Co. are looking to do. Let him continue to recover from the minor injury and then see how he does against the Scuffle field.
Do you foresee any obstacles or challenges this season that will prevent Bo Nickal from becoming a three-time national champ?
The answer to this one is yes and no.
Yes, of course with any sport, an unforeseen injury could prevent that from happening. The likelihood of Nickal getting hurt are rather slim though because he doesn’t really put himself in too weird of positions for that to occur. Of course, too, he doesn’t wrestle long enough to get himself injured; just look at last Friday’s 35-second pin. If an injury were to occur, it would have to be some sort of freak accident or an outside of the sport injury.
The No part of this answer would be simple. There are no other wrestlers out there who can beat him. He’s proven that the new weight is nothing to worry about as he’s controlled all of his matches. The 197-pound weight class isn’t the deepest, either. The only person who could give Nickal a run for his money will be Ohio State’s Kollin Moore. I don’t even see that being close after watching Anthony Cassar control Moore last season. Look for Nickal and Jason Nolf to become the Nittany Lions’ third and fourth three-time NCAA champs joining Ed Ruth and Zain Retherford.
What are the chances we’ll see Gavin Teasdale at the (Southern) Scuffle? Is it realistic that he’d be back in wrestling condition by then?
I believe it is quite possible that Teasdale could be at the Scuffle. I mean, what better way to see if he can compete on the college stage than with that tournament.
Sanderson is known for saying how much the Scuffle is like the NCAA Championships. He even hinted at the possibility of Teasdale being in the event. In Teasdale’s situation, if he does come back to the program, he’s probably not going to have the redshirt anymore. If that is the case, there really is no reason why Teasdale couldn’t plug up that glaring hole at 125. He would give the Nittany Lions a real shot of 10 guys at the NCAA Championships in Pittsburgh come March.
To answer the second part of this question, he’ll be in wrestling shape. He was seen rolling around with Brady Berge during a Nittany Lion Wrestling Club practice last Tuesday. There is a big weight disparity there, of course, with Berge, who wrestles at 149 pounds. Teasdale is wrestling in the greatest room in the country. Not only is he facing off against current teammates in Roman Bravo-Young, who has shown how quick he is, but former guys like Jordan Conaway.
Do you know who the last few PSU wrestling recruit commits were? I know Robbie (Howard) was one and (Marco) Vespa but I feel like there was one other one.
Howard was the most recent big name recruit to verbally commit to Penn State. Sometimes though, it isn’t always about the big-name recruits committing. Sanderson and Co. plucked Bo Pipher from Colorado and he wasn’t a big-time recruit but he was a three-time state champ and was in the finals all four years of high school.
The others who committed were Cedar Cliff’s Donovan Ball and Centre County’s own Baylor Shunk, who competes for Penns Valley. Ball, Shunk and Vespa will all come in together next year. Howard won’t join the team until the 2020-2021 season.