I kept all the Intermat rankings from the 2014-15 NCAA season in a spreadsheet and finally got around to sifting through the data. I separated the data by weight class and tried tracking the rankings of the NCAA all american throughout the year. I also left in guys that didn’t AA but were ranked in the top 8 for at least 2 consecutive months. The graphs came out a little messy so I also included the tables.
I only used data from the 1st ranking of each month because I was lazy and it was less work then combining every single week into the master spreadsheet. The progressions are a little choppier but I think this still gets the job done.
The points are assigned by the inverse of the rank, so 20 for 1st, 19 for 2nd etc. The 3/1/15 ranking actually came out before that date but I wanted to keep the intervals uniform and that was the last ranking released before the tournament. And the 4/1/15 data is from the actual finishes at the NCAA tournament, not from any ranking.
Let’s start with 285 and work our way down to 125, because that’s the way they pictures showed up in WordPress and I don’t want to do anymore editing than I have to.
Gwiz went undefeated as the defending champ and ruled the weight class all year, so I’m not sure why his rankings dipped to 3rd in January. A very stable weight class all around. The only reason Lawson wasn’t ranked in the top 8 for the first two months is because his team mate, Jon Gingrich was holding down the spot. Mardsen lost to Walz in the bloodround, which is not really that much of got upset, which kept him off the podium and Kroells snuck in to the 8th spot. Otherwise not much in the way of surprises here.
Gwiz will likely rule the weight class again. 3 AAs graduate and Medbery is taking an Olympic redshirt, so we’ll definitely see some new faces earning trophies this year.
Another very stable weight class. Intermat very nearly nails the final placement of the top eight guys, they just have them all just slightly out of order. Cox came into the tournament as the #1 seed but lost consecutive matches to World Gold Medalists Kyle Snyder in the semis and PSU’s McIntosh in the consi semis. Still an impressive season from the true Sophomore and returning champion.
This weight class should open up a bit in ’15-16 as Snyder is taking an Oly RS and champion Gadson and 4th place Schiller graduate. I’m also unsure of Cox is going to move up to 285 or stay at 197. I say move up to heavy and start preparing 97 kilograms because cutting weight is stupid. But that’s just me.
Dean goes wire to wire, but that’s because I left out the rankings after his losses at the CKLV. Those were early in the year and it’s possible Dean’s weight cutting had an effect on his performance. That’s just me speculating, but in any event, Dean recovered and smashed his way to a national championship in March. Lehigh’s Brown also stayed consistently at the top of the rankings, and AZ State’s Stauffer steadily climbed up to a 4th place finish. The rest of the weight class went kablooey at the tournament, with 4 top 8 guys not placing and 4 not-top 8 guys grabbing places on the podium, including an impressive 3rd place finish from Edinboro’s beastly Vic Avery.
Most of the weight class comes back this year, and Dean dangled the possibility of an Olympic redshirt in front of all of our faces before retracting the notion with a Nelson Muntz laugh. Dean will look to mercilessly pummel his way to a 2nd consecutive championship.
5 seniors dominated this weight class all year long, and those 5 seniors all finished on the podium, and wouldv’e had the top 5 places if Okie State’s Kyle Crutchmer hadn’t spoiled the part by beating Mike Evans in tie breakers for 5th.
Crutchmer and VTech’s Epperly return this along with non placer Blaise Butler, who wisely turned down the chance to go to UVA’s business grad school, because that place is full of dorks, and will wrestle one last season for Missouri as a post grad.
All sorts of craziness occurred in this weight class, formerly the domain of supreme champion Jordan Burroughs and also 2 other pretty good wrestler David Taylor and Kyle Dake, except at the top where Alex Dieringer owned everyone he wrestled. The Big 10 had slew of talented senior 165 pounders but only New Jersey’s Taylor Walsh and Illinois’ Jackson Morse made the podium.
New Jersey’s Ethan Ramos, tOSU’s BoJo, Wisky’s EyeJo and Stanford’s Jim Wilson all return for the pleasure of being owned by Dieringer in 2016.
Dylan Ness and James Green started the season as co-favorities at 157, both having thrice earned AA honors in their first three season. But they were undone by RS Superfrosh i-Martinez, who erupted on the scene with a perfect undefeated championship season.
Every other placer except Ness and New Jersey’s world bronze medalists James Greezy returns for another season so expect a year long dog fight at one hundred and fifty-seven pounds.
149 was an unpredictable weight, as the top dogs jostled about the top spots all year long. The NCAA tournament saw some unexpected All Americans come from outside the top 8, such as New Jersey’s BJ Clagon and New Jersey’s Lenny Richardson. New Jersey’s Chris Villalonga also finally broke through to the podium after 3 previous fruitless trips to the NCAAs.
Mizzou’s champ, Drake Houdashelt, and Slovenia’s runner up, David Habat, both graduate, leaving 2014 champ Jason Tisrtsis and RS Sophomore from the state directly west of New Jersey, Zain Retherford, as the favorites for 2016.
2015 Hodge Winner Logan “Bear” Stieber obliterated the competition, never threatened on his way to a 4th national championship. 2nd and 3rd place were locked in all year as well. Though Hokie senior Devin Carter suffered an upset form Connecticut’s Kevin Jack in the semi’s, he was able to battle back for 3rd, while Fighting Scot Mitch Port was felled by his all too familiar foe in the finals. Beyond those 3, chaos reigned, as year long 4th seed Nick Dardanes battled valiantly but missed the podium, as did fellow senior Josh Jeva.
Heil, Mecate, Mayes, the aforementioned Jack and New Jersey’s Anthony Ashnault will look to repeat their all-american performances in 2016. UNC’s Evan Henderson and Lock Haven’s Dan Neff move down from 149 and PSU’s Jimmy Gulibon moves up from 133 to add even more depth to one of the more intriguing weights of the year.
A weight class that failed to congeal until Oklahoma’s Cody Brewer punished his way to a championship, leaving piles of broken and defeated opponents in his wake. A jumble of talent bounced around the rankings over the course of the year, but in the end, Brewer blitzed through them all in impressive fashion.
Brewer will be the favorite to continue administering punishment with extreme prejudice in 2016. His challengers will include fellow All Americans, Bruin, Taylor, Beckman, Clark, South Florida’s Earl Hall, and PSU’s Jordan Conaway, moving up from 125 to make way for his teammate and 3X AA Nico Megaludis, who returns from Cael Sanderson’s year of the red shirt.
Another weight class that went blooey at the tournament. A big part of that involved a withdrawal due to injury of Jesse Delgado, who wrestled most of the year with his injured arm in a protective sleeve like some sort of partly formed Voltron. Unranked true frosh phenom Zeke Moisey blasted his way to the finals, only to be bested by redshirt frosh phenom and 7th ranked (though 4th seeded) Nathan Tomasello. Preseason favorite Nahshon Garrett faded as the year went on, possibly due to a tough weight cut, and will move up and add to the intrigue of the 133 lb weight class.
3rd place senior Alan Waters graduates but most everyone else returns, as the weight class is typically the domain of underclassmen, who somehow weigh less than 125 as full grown adults. A new crop of tiny, muscular athletes will no doubt look to earn a spot on the podium in 2016.
That’s about all the reviewing and previewing words I have in me today. Apologies if I failed to mention anyone’s favorite wrestler, I do not mean to slight any of the studs I forgot about. It is just that I am lazy and I have finished typing about college wrestling for now.
Also apologies for the typos, of which I am sure there are legion. Proofreading was never my thing. Hey, it’s a free blog, you get what you pay for.