Pictured: Nick Suriano (Rutgers) after winning the 2019 133-pound NCAA title in Pittsburgh, Pa. Photo courtesy of Rutgers Athletics.
As the Thanksgiving holiday came to a close Sunday evening, so too did one of the most drawn-out transfer decisions in NCAA Division I wrestling history. With that, Nick Suriano, a 2019 133-pound NCAA champion and the first-ever for Rutgers University, will wrestle for the Michigan Wolverines in 2022.
The announcement came via Suriano’s Instagram on Sunday.
“It is my honor to announce that I will represent The University of Michigan for my final NCAA season. This opportunity presents me with the final conquest to another National Championship victory. Nevertheless, I will hone the honor of assisting this team in the pursuit to our first team National Championship. Let’s make history…Again. 〽️”
Suriano, who likely cuts to 125 for his final NCAA season, has seen success all around the Big Ten throughout his career, dating back to his 2016-17 season at Penn State.
As a true freshman for the Lions, the four-time undefeated New Jersey high school state champ took a 16-1 record into a postseason that never got off the ground. While competing in the 2017 National Duals Championship finals in Stillwater on February 19, Suriano suffered what would eventually become a season-ending injury.
Excluding that injury default to Oklahoma State’s Nick Piccininni in the finals and other defaults related to that same injury, the only actual loss of his freshman campaign came in a dual against Iowa’s Thomas Gilman by the narrowest of margins, 3-2.
Suriano spent his sophomore (2018) and junior (2019) seasons in his native New Jersey at Rutgers. In Piscataway, Suriano was a two-time NCAA finalist and two-time All-American. During his final season with the Scarlet Knights in 2019, he brought home a Big Ten title and an NCAA title, both up at 133 pounds.
Suriano hasn’t wrestled a college match since winning it all for Rutgers in Pittsburgh at the 2019 NCAA Championships. He was 54-4 of his two seasons in a Rutgers singlet.
Suriano brings a 70-7 overall record, a 2019 NCAA title, a 2019 Big Ten title, and two All-American honors (2018, 2019) with him to the University of Michigan, his third Big Ten School. Assuming Suriano goes 125, we may see a rematch of the 2018 NCAA Championships between Suriano and reigning three-time 125-pound NCAA champ (2018, 2019, 2021) Spencer Lee of Iowa.
The Maize and Blue have assembled a title-contending starting 10 in Ann Arbor. Coach Sean Bormet and company would like nothing more than to bring home the school’s first team title in March 2022 in Detroit. Well, with Suriano, that scenario is a real possibility.
If so, Suriano would be helping make school history once again, this time though, at the University of Michigan.