The University of Iowa Hawkeyes have come under fire over the last few years for their early-season schedule. The main attack has come from those questioning the difficulty of the competition they host in Carver-Hawkeye Arena in early November, the Iowa City Duals. Traditionally, it had become Iowa versus local junior colleges, DII, or DIII competition. Detractors have pointed at the final results and accused Iowa of a weak schedule. It seems like Iowa is going to step it up this year as they invited in two DI programs to the friendly confines.
Iowa Central Community College has been here before. The NJCAA powerhouse has wrestled against Iowa many times in their lopsided rivalry. ICCC has won matches over the years but has never really challenged in a dual. The Tritons are piloted by Hawkeye alum Luke Moffitt and come into Iowa City a top-four program in the NJCAA. They will be joined by two DI programs who are looking to take down Iowa at home, no easy task for even the top of the college wrestling ranks. The University of Buffalo and North Dakota State University are headed to Iowa with one thing on their minds, respect. Take down a perennial powerhouse like the University of Iowa and the wrestling world takes notice. Look no further than the NDSU upset of Iowa State last season that was the beginning of the end for the Cyclones' former head coach Kevin Jackson. If there has ever been a year to push Iowa early in the season, this is it. The number 10 Hawkeyes have a lineup in transition and will be without two of their All-American hopefuls.
We will look at who could challenge the Hawkeyes and where they can take advantage of vulnerabilities. First up will be the NJCAA fourth-ranked Iowa Central Community College Tritons.
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