Since we are in mid-May, the recruiting season for the Class of 2018 winding down to a close. However, there are still some notable recruits who have recently signed with DI schools. Verbals from the high school juniors are now starting to ramp up. Four of the top 100 wrestlers from the Class of 2019 committed to colleges within the last week. Here are seven notable wrestlers that have committed to DI schools and how they fit into their respective school’s lineups.
Dylan D’Emilio, Genoa, OH – Committed to Ohio State
The Buckeyes continue to put together a strong 2019 class consisting all of the in-state products. D’Emilio is a three-time Ohio state champion that just finished his junior campaign with a perfect 48-0 record. In the 2017-18 regular season, Dylan won a championship at the Medina Invitational defeating Ohio DI state champion Matt Fields. Before the season, he placed fifth at the Super 32. Where D’Emilio fits into the Ohio State lineup is the question. He projects to be a 141 or even 149 lber down the road. The signing Class of 2018 consists of Quinn Kinner, Alex Felix, and JD Stickley, who all are top 100 recruits that project at 141 lbs. That class also features top recruit Sammy Sasso, a 149 lber. D’Emilio is currently ranked 34th overall among the high school Class of 2019.
Sam Dover, St. Edward, OH – Committed to Oklahoma
Lou Rosselli and the Oklahoma coaching staff ventured back into Ohio and got a good one with Sam Dover’s recent commitment. Dover has placed third in Ohio’s DI state tournament in each of the past two seasons. This year his weight class was particularly brutal, as it featured four of the top 16 wrestlers in the nation. Earlier in the season, Dover picked up a couple of victories over the eventual champion, 10th ranked Victor Voinovich, the first of which was at the Ironman where he placed fifth. The Sooners had a rough 2017-18 with only four NCAA qualifiers and no All-Americans. One of the qualifiers, Davion Jeffries, is a 149lber, the weight that Dover may start competing at, but ultimately he could be a 157 lber. Jeffries will be a senior in 2018-19, so that spot will be open in the future. Another Ohio product, Dom Demas, could be waiting in the wings at 149. Dover is the first wrestler in the Class of 2019 to commit to Oklahoma and ranked 74th overall among current juniors.
Lewis Fernandes, Voorhees, NJ – Committed to Virginia Tech
Lewis Fernandes’ commitment to Virginia Tech gives the Hokies three top 100 recruits from the Class of 2019 already. Fernandes was an undefeated New Jersey state champion as a junior wrestling 285 lbs, despite weighing in at 220. In the postseason Lewis has stayed active, winning a title at FloNationals and finishing third at NHSCA Junior Nationals. Lewis will wrestle heavyweight for the Hokies, rather than trying to cut down to 197 lbs. Currently, redshirt freshman John Borst may compete at 285 pounds in the 2018-19 season, but whether or not he sticks at that weight class beyond next year is uncertain at this point. In the most recent rankings for the Class of 2019, Fernandes comes in ranked 86th.
Aden Reeves, Albia, IA – Committed to Iowa State
Last week two-time Iowa state champion Aden Reeves announced that he would be changing his college plans. Initially, he gave a verbal commitment to Campbell University, but now he intends on staying in-state and wrestling for the Cyclones of Iowa State. With Reeves’ addition, Iowa State now has two of the top 51 wrestlers from the Class of 2019 in the fold. Reeves has placed four times in Fargo, most recently fifth in Junior Freestyle last summer. Aden can’t come to Ames soon enough, as the Cyclones have an immediate need for help at 125 lbs.
Conner Graber, Northridge, IN – Committed to Indiana
Conner Graber is the first of three notable recruits from the Class of 2018 that have recently made their college commitments known. Graber was an Indiana state champion this season at 182 lbs and was the first wrestler in his high school’s history to achieve the feat. Conner is the first recruit to publicly commit to Indiana since Angel Escobedo was elevated to head coach. His commitment is essential for Escobedo, who has to improve on the retention of the Hoosier state’s top talent. All of the current 184 lber’s on Indiana’s roster are either sophomore’s or freshmen, but none of them had winning records in 2018.
Riley Gurr, Frenchtown, MT – Committed to Oregon State
Fresh off of a third-place finish at NHSCA Senior Nationals, Riley Gurr has signed with Oregon State. Gurr is a three-time state champion, winning two titles in Montana after winning one as a sophomore in Washington. In the summer of 2017, Riley was fourth in Junior Greco-Roman while competing in Fargo. Gurr could wrestle either 133 or 141 for the Beavers. 133 lbs has some talent already aboard with Kegan Calkins going into his senior season and redshirt sophomore Devan Turner and redshirt freshman Grant Willits in the mix, as well. If he were to compete at 141lbs, there appears to be more need for help right away.
Seth Brown, Coventry, RI – Committed to Sacred Heart
We don’t hear Sacred Heart’s name mentioned too often in recruiting conversations, but John Clark is looking to change that with his first full recruiting class. Full is a good word for it as he currently has 19 seniors who have signed for next season. The latest is Seth Brown, a two-time Rhode Island state champion who also was third in New England. Brown was an NHSCA All-American in 2016 after placing eighth at Sophomore Nationals. Sacred Heart has been a difficult place to recruit and win at in the past, so with Clark getting a sizeable recruiting class with talented signees like Brown; it is huge for the program.