Editor’s note: The Centre Daily Times will publish weekly updates based on NWCA coaches team and InterMat individual rankings to give readers a glimpse into how Penn State wrestling fits into the bigger picture.
College wrestling season officially got underway last week with limited dual and open tournament action.
Although Penn State doesn’t kick off dual action until 2 p.m. Sunday against Kent State at Rec Hall, several Nittany Lions did see action in the Clarion Open.
Sophomore Alex Nicholas led the Nittany Lion contingent, going 3-2 at 285 pounds, including a technical fall. Sophomore Brian Friery, sophomore Justin Lopez and redshirt freshman Scott Obendorfer also competed.
With the young season not quite in full swing, not much has changed since last week’s National Wrestling Coaches Association Division I team coaches poll or InterMat’s individual rankings. Penn State remains the unanimous No. 1 in the NWCA team rankings, and eight individual Nittany Lions are ranked — including three at No. 1.
This week, the biggest mover in the NWCA poll was North Dakota State, which jumped into the Top 25 with a 26-17 upset over Northwestern.
In Big Ten action, the Buckeyes kicked off their season against Navy at senior standout Myles Martin’s alma mater at McDonogh School in Baltimore County, Md.
No. 3 Micah Jordan also got off to a fast start at his new weight class of 149 pounds, posting a 16-1 tech fall in the night’s only ranked matchup against then-No. 19 Jared Price.
The Buckeyes handled Navy 28-9, but not without several close matches, including at 133, 157, 175 and 185.
Rutgers, Illinois and Wisconsin also saw action for the Big Ten last week. Of note, former Penn State 125-pounder Nick Suriano, who transferred to Rutgers in 2017, did start the season out at 133 pounds, going 3-0.
In their first match under a new coaching staff, Wisconsin wrestled another team that the Nittany Lions will face this season — Buffalo.
Although the Badgers came out on top 25-12, the scrappy Bulls team pulled off four wins, including No. 11 Bryan Lantry over No. 14, Oklahoma State transfer Tristan Moran, and No. 17 Alex Smythe over No. 18 Zander Wick.
Nittany Lions ranked by InterMat include: No. 1 Jason Nolf at 157 pounds; No. 1 Vincenzo Joseph at 165; No. 1 Bo Nickal at 197; No. 2 Mark Hall at 174; No. 2 Nick Nevills at heavyweight; No. 4 Nick Lee at 141; No. 4 Shakur Rasheed at 184; and Brady Berge No. 15 at 149.
NWCA Division I Team Coaches Poll
|1||Penn State (16)||0-0||400||1|
|19||South Dakota State||1-0||88||20|
|22||North Dakota State||1-0||65||NR|
Others Receiving Votes: Appalachian State 14, Stanford 7, Virginia 6, Pittsburgh 5, Utah Valley 5, Clarion 2, Drexel 2, Rider 2, Binghamton 1, Central Michigan 1, Maryland 1.