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TOM’s Class of 2018 Recruiting Rankings

TOM’s Class of 2018 Recruiting Rankings have been released! We have looked at the recruiting classes for every school in the country to evaluate who did the best job of signing talent and addressing needs. Assessing recruiting classes is not an exact science and can differ based on what you value, large 15 man classes or two to three highly ranked signees. A team’s current roster and well as the impact that the recruit or recruiting class will have on the program is also considered. Below are the top 25 recruiting classes in the country and their recruits. TOM has reached out to each school to try and get the most accurate, recent list of recruits. If there is a recruit that is not listed, please let me know    esmith@theopenmat.com

25) Purdue

#10 at 170 Emil Soehnlen (Massillon Perry, OH) 174

#11 at 145 Kendall Coleman (Mt. Carmel, IL) 149

Terrin Machart (Sterling Heights, MI) 125

Zach Melloh (Cathedral, IN) 141

Thomas Penola (Zionsville, IN) 184

2017 Ranking: #22

The Boilermakers have continued their trend of solid recruiting classes under head coach Tony Ersland. The top recruit Emil Soehnlen does not project at a weight class of immediate need, so it would appear that he’ll be able to redshirt in 2018-19. Though he was not an Ohio state champ as a senior, Soehnlen finished in the top three at the Super 32, Ironman and Beast of the East.  Kendall Coleman is also a wrestler who was not a state champion (two-time finalist), but competed in a power state and had success at large tournaments, with his runner-up finish at the Ironman and third at FloNationals. Zach Melloh and Thomas Penola are nice in-state pickups that could help out at weight classes that could be considered needs.


24) Lock Haven

#6 at 285 Isaac Reid (Kiski Area, PA) 285

#16 at 195 Luke McGonigal (Clearfield, PA) 184

Caleb Clymer (Northwestern Lehigh) 165

Breylon Douglas (Austintown-Fitch, OH) 197

Imran Heard (St. Pauls, MD) 141

Parker McClellan (Altoona, PA) 197

Garrett Rigg (Bald Eagle Area, PA) 149

Dalton Rohrbaugh (Spring Grove, PA) 125

Robert Spezza (Bethlehem Catholic, PA) 184

AJ Wilson (Solanco, PA) 157

2017 Ranking: NR

Head Coach Scott Moore has helped build off of his successful postseason with this recruiting class. Isaac Reid will be able to sit behind two-time NCAA qualifier Thomas Haines for a year, before assuming the starting spot at 285 lbs. Luke McGonigal is a Pennsylvania state champ that will be able to fit in at either 184 or 197. Another state champion kept in-state is late-signee Caleb Clymer. He can redshirt and take over for All-American Chance Marsteller in 2019-20. Dalton Rohrbaugh was a third-place finisher in Pennsylvania that always seemed to get good wins at big tournaments. Multiple time National Prep place winner Imran Heard is another good, late pickup, as he originally verballed to Rutgers.


23) Rider

#3 at 145 Frankie Gissendanner (Penfield, NY) 149

#13 at 126 Chris Wright (Central Dauphin, PA) 125

Joe Casey (Bound Brook, NJ) 157

Bryan Martin (Williamstown, NJ) 197

Quentin Millken (Cumberland Valley, PA) 184

2017 Ranking: NR

Rider doesn’t have a huge class, but the signees they do have will be very beneficial to the program and soon. Frankie Gissendanner, a four-time New York state champion, was the prize of the late signing period. Gissendanner projects to be a career 149 lber, and that is a weight class that is in high demand for the Broncos. Chris Wright was a Pennsylvania state runner-up and NHSCA Junior National champion that could step in an start immediately to replace NCAA qualifier, JR Wert. Bryan Martin entered the New Jersey state tournament as the undefeated, top seed, before falling to finish third. He brings help at the, always difficult to fill, 197 lb class.


22) South Dakota State

#12 at 132 Clay Carlson (Wilmar, MN) 133

#16 at 152 Alex Lloyd (Shakopee, MN) 157

#17 at 132 Zach Price (Johnston, IA) 133

Gregory Coapstick (Centennial, TX) 125

Dalton Lackmann (Foothill, CA) 141

Kenny O’Neill (Prior Lake, MN) 165

Russell Rucklos (Foothill, CA) 174

Tanner Sloan (Alburnett, IA) 197

2017 Ranking: #25

New Head Coach Damion Hahn gets credit for keeping a very good recruiting class in-tact, for the most part, after the departure of Chris Bono. Clay Carlson is the highest-ranked recruit of the bunch, and he was brought in after the hiring of Hahn. He is a possible replacement for Seth Gross, as is Iowa’s Zach Price. Alex Lloyd is a three-time Minnesota state champion whose ability probably outweighs his current ranking. His services could be needed at either 149 or 157 immediately. Keep an eye out for Tanner Sloan. He was a state champion in Iowa’s smallest division so that he may have snuck under the radar.


21) Harvard

#8 at 182 Leonardo Tarantino (Blair Academy, NJ) 184

#12 at 160 Joshua Kim (Santiago, CA) 157

Phil Conigliaro (Belmont Hill, MA) 165

2017 Ranking: NR

This recruiting class couldn’t have come at a better time for Jay Weiss and the Harvard coaching staff. Josef Johnson, the Crimson’s only NCAA qualifier in 2018, has graduated and more talent will be needed up and down the lineup. Joshua Kim is a two-time California state finalist and 2018 champ that will be able to compete at a high level as a freshman. Leonardo Tarantino was one of the fastest risers, recruiting stock-wise, over the course of his senior season. Tarantino was an Ironman finalist and Beast of the East champion. Local product Phil Conigliaro will help in the middleweights, also. Phil was a two-time Beast finalist himself, and 2016 winner.


20) Wisconsin

#4 at 182 Jared Krattiger (Waterford, WI) 184

#7 at 138 Jeremy Schoenherr (Stratford, WI) 141

#17 at 160 Tyler Dow (Stoughton, WI) 165

–Transfer Connor Brown (South Dakota State) 125

Dom Dentino (Arrowhead, WI) 125

Joey Sanchez (Graham, OH) 157

Drew Scharenbock (Sun Prairie, WI) 149

2017 Ranking: #21

Chris Bono mostly inherited and retained a good recruiting class to build from for his first season in Madison. Three top 100 recruits from in-state is not a bad start. FloNationals champ Jared Krattiger comes in at a 184 lb weight class that need help after the graduation of four-time NCAA Qualifier Ricky Robertson. Connor Brown followed Bono from South Dakota State. He is an NCAA Qualifier at 125 lbs, which is an area where the Badgers will need help immediately. Brown will have three years of eligibility remaining for Wisconsin. Though Tyler Dow did not win a state title his senior season, he was a finalist in both Greco-Roman and Freestyle, last summer in Fargo. Jeremy Schoenherr was also a finalist in Freestyle at Fargo and will lend depth to the 141/149 area.


19) Northwestern

#5 Lucas Davison (Chesterton, IN) 197

#6 Jack Jessen (Villa Park, IL) 184

Erich Byelick (Lake Highland Prep, FL) 165

Mike DeAugustino (Flagler Palm Coast, FL) 125

Brendan Devine (Malvern Prep, PA) 197

Jack Heyob (St. Xavier, OH) 285

Matt Vinci (Central Catholic, CA) 125

2017 Ranking: NR

Northwestern used this recruiting class to strengthen their upper weights, getting three top 100 recruits, all at 165 lbs or higher. Jack Jessen is an in-state recruit that won his only state title as a senior. He was a finalist in both styles in Fargo. Jessen fills a need for the Wildcats, as they currently do not have a 184 lber on their roster. Lucas Davison comes aboard from Indiana, where has also a state champion as a senior. Davison finished as a runner-up at the preseason Super 32. Lucas will compete at 197, a weight class where Northwestern has a junior that will be returning, though he did not qualify for nationals. Erich Byelick was TOM’s 99th overall recruit in the Class of 2018 and will be helpful at either 165 or 174. He comes from a Lake Highland Prep program that was extremely battle-tested so his adjustment period to the Big Ten should be less than other Florida prep wrestlers.

18) Army West Point

#6 at 152 Markus Hartman (Barrington, IL) 157

#11 at 285 Paul Robinson (Bremen, GA) 285

#15 at 285 Max Darrah (Whitfield, MO) 285

Chase Anklam (Pen Argyl, PA) 165

Logan Brown (Allen, TX) 133

Dominic Carone (Streetsboro, OH) 125

Ryan Chauvin (Lake Highland Prep, FL) 125

Zach Glenn (Bethlehem Catholic, PA) 133

Christian Hunt (Yorktown, IN) 149

Michael McAteer (Whitfield, MO) 125

Joe Miller (McQueen, NV) 197

Zach Ortman (Parkland, PA) 141

Brandon Phillips (Maumee, OH) 285

Mark Sallot (Harbor Creek, PA) 141

Mason Smith (Walton-Verona, KY) 174

Andrew Wert (Central Dauphin, PA) 133

Cole Wyman (Brockton, MA) 141

2017 Ranking: #23

Army West Point’s class is headlined by Illinois state champ Markus Hartman, who came out on top of a talented state tournament bracket. He is another wrestler whose stock rose significantly over the course of his senior season. Overall, this strikes me as a well put together class. The Black Knights have not had an NCAA qualifier at either of the first two weight classes since 2012, so they bring in four-time Missouri state champ Michael McAteer, a Florida state champ with a boatload of national credentials Ryan Chauvin, a Texan that placed at the Ironman in Logan Brown and two state place winners from Pennsylvania’s power programs in Zach Glenn and Andrew Wert. Joe Miller and Mason Smith are both from state’s that are not considered powerhouses. However, they have picked up impressive wins at national level tournaments.


17) Rutgers

#3 at 182 Billy Janzer (Delsea, NJ) 184

#4 at 120 Nic Aguilar (Gilroy, CA) 125

#11 at 138 Jake Benner (Ocean Township, NJ) 141

JC Ciaremella (Marvin Ridge, NC) 174

Jerry Jones (Caldwell, NJ) 157

Kyle Lightner (Delaware Valley, NJ) 197

Malcolm Robinson (Blair Academy, NJ) 149

Rutgers class is heavily reliant on two top 50 recruits Nic Aguilar, a California state champion, and two-time New Jersey champion Billy Janzer. Aguilar will be needed, if and when, NCAA runner-up Nick Suriano moves up to 133 lbs. Signing such a high-level recruit from California is another mark of how far this program has come under head coach Scott Goodale. Janzer, one of the top 184 lb recruits in the nation, will be able to take over for Nick Gravina after he uses his sixth year of eligibility. Jake Benner and Malcolm Robinson will bring depth to the middleweights. Benner is two-time New Jersey finalist, and Robinson was a 2017 National Prep champion that had a bit of a down senior season, at least by his standards.

2017 Ranking: NR


16) Oklahoma State

#1 at 170 Travis Wittlake (Marshfield, OR) 174

#5 at 182 Anthony Montalvo (Buchanan, CA) 184

Colton Denney (Heritage Hall, OK) 174

Jalin Harper (Manhattan, KS) 165

2017 Ranking: #6

The Cowboys recruiting class is not very deep, but their top two recruits have the potential to develop into NCAA championship contenders. Travis Wittlake is the top 170 lber in the nation and third overall in the Class of 2018. Wittlake was a Cadet world bronze medalist before his junior season of high school. He will be a replacement for Jacobe Smith after taking a redshirt season. Anthony Montalvo comes into Stillwater as a three-time California state champion. After taking a redshirt, he’ll be able to step in and challenge incumbent Keegan Moore for the spot at 184.


15) Drexel

#5 at 170 Michael O’Malley (Hasbrouck Heights, NJ) 174

#7 at 195 Anthony Walters (Bishop McCort, PA) 197

#10 at 182 Josh Stillings (Pennridge, PA) 184

#11 at 120 Ty Smith (Virgin Valley, NV) 133

Antonio Mininno (Gateway, NJ) 125

Dante Mininno (Gateway, NJ) 125

2017 Ranking: #14

A top 15 ranking for Drexel in back-to-back season is a testament to the work that head coach Matt Azevedo and staff are doing in Philadelphia. Though the Dragons will lose Austin DeSanto, there are a few lightweights that will attempt to replace him. Fargo champ and four-time Nevada state champ Ty Smith wrestled at 120 as a senior but could grow into 133. New Jersey’s Mininno twins will also man the first two weights. Antonio was a 2017 New Jersey state champ, before dropping to fourth as a senior, the same placement as his brother. Expect one of the Mininno’s to start at 125 and the other to work his way into 133. Drexel’s highest ranked recruits come in the upper weights. Both Anthony Walters and Josh Stillings were Pennsylvania state champs as seniors. One or both of them may need to step into the lineup immediately.  New Jersey state champ Michael O’Malley is the top-ranked recruit of the bunch, coming in at 53rd overall in the Class of 2018.

14) Iowa

#4 at 285 Anthony Cassioppi (Honoegah, IL) 285

#8 at 160 Nelson Brands (Iowa City West, IA) 165

–Transfer Austin DeSanto (Drexel) 133

2017 Ranking: #2

Iowa is another class that doesn’t have a long list of names, but a few that are very talented and will be significant contributors. Anthony Cassioppi may have been overshadowed nationally by a few of the 285 lber’s ranked above him, but make no mistake, he’ll be a good one for the Hawkeyes. None of his opponents at the Illinois state tournament made it past the first period. After a redshirt season, Cassioppi will be an excellent replacement for Sam Stoll. Three-time Iowa state champion Nelson Brands has great bloodlines and could fit in as a 157 or 165 lber, based on whether or not some of the current starters move up. Iowa has three years of eligibility out of Austin DeSanto at 133 lbs. DeSanto, as a true freshman at Drexel, made it to the Round of 12 in 2018. He could be scary after spending time with the Brands and the Iowa room.


13) Penn

#5 at 152 Anthony Artalona (Tampa Prep, FL) 157

#8 at 145 Grant Aronoff (St. Thomas Aquinas, FL) 149

#8 at 220 Ben Goldin (Lake Highland Prep, FL) 285

Neil Antrassian (Temperance Bedford, MI) 157

Gregory Bensley (Pocono Mountain West, PA) 197

Carmen Ferrante (Bergen Catholic, NJ) 133

Jake Hendricks (Wyoming Seminary, PA) 165

Willy Kaiser (Blair Academy, NJ) 157

Jason Montgomery (Bethel Park, PA) 165

Blair Orr (Episcopal Academy, PA) 125

Jesse Quatse (Greensburg-Salem, PA) 174

Jeremy Ridge (Acalanes, CA) 149

Josh Swanson (Cache, OK) 157

Doug Zapf (Downington West, PA) 125

2017 Ranking; NR

Not to be outdone by the neighbors Drexel, Penn has put together an excellent class, the first full recruiting class under head coach Roger Reina. Looking at their recruits, it appears that Reina has established a nice pipeline from Florida, picking up three top 100 recruits from the Sunshine State. Anthony Artalona is a two-time Junior Freestyle national champion in Fargo. Aronoff won a pair of Florida state titles, before getting upset as a senior. Ben Goldin won a title at the Beast of the East and was a finalist at the Powerade, Walsh Ironman and NHSCA Junior Nationals. Each will be needed to start right away for the Quakers. Pursuing through the remaining recruits for Penn Doug Zapf, Carmen Ferrante, Jake Hendricks, and Jason Montgomery all look like they could be quality starters over multiple seasons.


12) Northern Iowa

#8 at 138 Michael Blockhus (New Hampton, IA) 141

#8 at 285 John McConkey (Atlantic, IA) 285

#12 at 195 Bryce Esmoil (West Liberty, IA) 197

#13 at 132 Drew Bennett (Fort Dodge, IA) 133

#19 at 120 Kyle Biscoglia (Waukee, IA) 125

Gable Fox (Don Bosco, IA) 133

Noah Glaser (New Hampton, IA) 174

Tyrell Gordon (Waterloo East, IA) 197

Cayd Lara (Fort Dodge, IA) 157

2017 Ranking: NR

Head coach Doug Schwab did an excellent job of keeping a healthy crop of Iowa high schoolers in-state with this class. Michael Blockhus, John McConkey, Bryce Esmoil, Drew Bennett, Kyle Biscoglia and Gable Fox were all Iowa state champions as seniors. The crown of the recruiting haul is three-time Iowa champion Michael Blockhus. The Panthers have a strong team coming back, through years of good recruiting, so it doesn’t appear that any of these recruits will be pressed into action in 2017-18. Schwab tries to redshirt his true freshman as often as possible.

11) Stanford

#2 at 132 Real Woods (Montini Catholic, IL) 141

#3 at 160 Shane Griffith (Bergen Catholic, NJ) 174

#14 at 195 Colbey Harlan (Oakdale, CA) 184

#17 at 152 Tyler Eischens (Anoka, MN) 165

Gabriel Dinette (Lakewood, CO) 157

Alex Escudero (Los Gatos, CA) 165

Tony Williams (Lakeshore, MI) 141

2017 Ranking: NR

The Stanford recruiting class consists of ranked wrestlers from power states. First and foremost is Real Woods, the 25th ranked recruit in the Class of 2018. In February, Woods won his third Illinois state title for Montini Catholic. Right behind Woods in the recruiting rankings is 28th ranked Shane Griffith, a three-time New Jersey state champion. Griffith’s senior season saw him win the Doc Buchanan and place third at the Beast of the East. His height and length lead you to believe that he will grow into a 174 lber. Both Woods and Griffith may be used immediately. The Cardinal also fills a need with two-time California runner-up Colbey Harlan at 184. Tyler Eischens and Gabriel Dinette will be able to sit behind All-American Paul Fox until one of them emerges as his replacement in 2019-20.


10) Iowa State

#1 at 152 David Carr (Massillon Perry, OH) 157

#1 at 182 Joel Shapiro (West Des Moines Valley, IA) 184

#9 at 220 Francis Duggan (Iowa City West, IA) 285

–Transfer Todd Small (Iowa Central CC) 133

Tyler Buesgens (Scott West, MN) 184

Hunter DeJong (Sibley-Ocheyedan, IA) 197

Andrew Sherry (Glenwood, IA) 197

Grant Stotts (West Des Moines Valley, IA) 157

Brandon Tessau (Waukee, IA) 184

2017 Ranking: #12

There has been plenty of turnover for Iowa State since Kevin Dresser was hired before the 2017-18 season. This class is highly talented and may be needed to contribute right away. David Carr was the number two overall recruit in the Class of 2018 and is college ready. The Cyclones focused on improving the upper weights, getting the top 182 lber in the nation (Joel Shapiro), as well as a top ten 220 lber (Francis Duggan) along with state finalists Hunter DeJong, Andrew Sherry and Brandon Tessau. Iowa State may not end up getting contributions from all of these recruits, due to numbers, but whoever emerges should fill the lineup nicely. Two-time NJCAA national champion Todd Small will help as a lower weight immediately.


9) North Carolina

#4 at 145 Mason Phillips (Stanwood, WA) 149

#4 at 195 Brandon Whitman (Dundee, MI) 197

#8 at 120 Joey Melendez (Montini Catholic, IL) 125

#13 at 170 Joey Mazzara (Bishop Gorman, NV) 174

#16 at 285 Keaton Kluever (Kaukauna, WI) 285

Mark Chaid (Carrboro, NC) 197

Jeremiah Derby (First Flight, NC) 133

Michael Goldfeder (Buckley, CA) 157

Joe Heilmann (South Plainfield, NJ) 133

Ryan Karoly (Malvern Prep, PA) 184

2017 Ranking: #11

The North Carolina Tar Heels continue to recruit well under the tutelage of Coleman Scott. Joey Melendez was one of the top 120 lbers in the country before an injury slowed him down in the high school postseason. He could fill in from day one at a 125 lb weight class that has been difficult for the Tar Heels to man. Brandon Whitman is one of the top 197 lb recruits in the nation and represented Team USA at the Pittsburgh Wrestling Classic. Mason Phillips opened some eyes in October when he won the Super 32 in Greensboro, North Carolina. I’m sure the UNC staff hopes that tournament is the first of many wins in North Carolina for the Washington native. Like Phillips, Joey Mazzara will travel across the country to attend school in Chapel Hill. Mazzara also placed in the Super 32 and was a Reno Tournament of Champions runner-up. A wildcard for this weight class is Ryan Karoly. He was ranked highly at the beginning of the season but was not able to compete for his high school at the end of the year. If he’s back to his standard form, he would be a massive boost for the upper weights.

8) Princeton

#2 at 126 Patrick Glory (Delbarton, NJ) 125

#9 at 138 Marshall Keller (Christiansburg, VA) 141

#11 at 170 Grant Cuomo (Brewster, NY) 174

#11 at 152 Quincy Monday (Carrboro, NC) 165

#13 at 152 Jake Marsh (Marysville, OH) 157

Josh Breeding (Elyria, OH) 141

Travis Tavoso (Delbarton, NJ) 149

2017 Ranking: #15

The obvious headliner of the class is 16th overall Patrick Glory. Along with current All-American Matt Kolodzik, he is one of the biggest recruits in program history. Glory is two-time New Jersey state champion that has the mat skills and intangibles needed to win right away at the college level. The Princeton staff did an excellent job “buying low” with this class. The bulk of these recruits committed early while they were lower or even out of the national rankings, and then proceeded to improve based on their in-season results. Monday and Cuomo seem the most likely to contribute early judging by the wrestlers returning to the Tigers lineup.


7) Nebraska

#1 at 160 Peyton Robb (Owatonna, MN) 165

#2 at 145 Brock Hardy (Box Elder, UT) 149

#7 at 126 Alex Thomsen (Underwood, IA) 133

#19 at 285 Austin Emerson (Temperance, MI) 285

–Transfer Zeke Moisey (West Virginia) 125

Anthony Gaona (St. Thomas Aquinas, KS) 197

Jordan Kelber (Valentine, NE) 133

Josh Mason (Blue Mountain, PA) 133

Jevon Parrish (Olathe North, KS) 141

Jake Silverstein (Hauppague, NY) 157

Brandyn Van Tassell (Maple Mountain, UT) 184

2017 Ranking: #7

The Cornhuskers had put together an outstanding recruiting class, however probably out of the top ten, until the spring hit. Peyton Robb, the top-ranked 160 lber in the nation, de-committed from South Dakota State after Chris Bono left and had signed with Nebraska. Austin Emerson originally signed with Eastern Michigan but needed to look elsewhere after their program was dropped. 2015 NCAA runner-up and two-time All-American Zeke Moisey transferred out of West Virginia after Sammie Henson was let go. Moisey fills a massive need at 125. A pair of four-time state champions signed with head coach Mark Manning early, they are Utah’s Brock Hardy and Iowa’s Alex Thomsen. Hardy will join the Huskers after taking a two-year mission. New York state champion Jake Silverstein should redshirt then attempt to replace All-American Tyler Berger at 157.


6) NC State

#4 at 170 Trent Hidlay (Mifflin County, PA) 174

#9 at 152 Josiah Rider (Grand Junction, CO) 157

#10 at 126 Jakob Camacho (Danbury, CT) 125

#11 at 132 Jarrett Trombley (Lake Fenton, MI) 141

#15 at 170 Tyler Barnes (Ballston Spa, NY) 184

#18 at 285 Colin Lawler (Kincaid School, TX) 285

—Transfer Justin Oliver (Central Michigan) 149

Jake Cook (Ballston Spa, NY) 197

Alex Faison (Union Pines, NC) 165

Matt Fields (Walsh Jesuit, OH) 133

Justin Grant (Lincoln, FL) 165

Matt Grippi (Fox Lane, NY) 157

Tyrie Houghton (Weddington, NC) 197

Josh Lehr (Holly Springs, NC) 133

Jarred Papcsy (Bethlehem Catholic, PA) 141

Alex Urquiza (Southwest, FL) 141

Deonte Wilson (Amityville, NY) 285

Tony Wuest (Smyrna, DE) 197

2017 Ranking: NR

NC State continues to get better every season, and with a recruiting class like this one, they have shown that they do not plan to stop any time soon. The Wolfpack will get the services of All-American 149 lber Justin Oliver for a season. Oliver will be considered one of the title contenders in a weight class left open by the departure of Zain Retherford. Trent Hidlay is a two-time Pennsylvania state champion that will follow his brother’s footsteps to Raleigh. Hayden Hidlay was an NCAA runner-up as a freshman in 2018. Connecticut’s Jakob Camacho got to the top of the podium at both the Super 32 and FloNationals in a senior season that was otherwise disrupted by injuries. Four-time Michigan state champion Jarrett Trombley could be among those who try to fill-in for the graduation of three-time All-American Kevin Jack. There will be plenty of help to try and replace 197 lb NCAA Champion Michael Macchiavello between Tony Wuest and Tyrie Houghton, both Super 32 placers.


5) Michigan

#1 at 138 Joey Silva (Lake Highland Prep, FL) 133

#1 at 220 Mason Parris (Lawrenceburg, IN) 285

#7 at 152 Will Lewan (Montini Catholic, IL) 157

–Transfer Kanen Storr (Iowa State) 141

Nick Freeman (Walled Lake Central) 141

Mike Mars (John Glenn, MI) 125

Max Maylor (Iowa-Grant, WI) 165

Sebastian Rawls (West Orange, NJ) 184

Bobby Striggow (Orono, MN) 197

2017 Ranking: #9

Michigan will build off of their NCAA team trophy season with a recruiting class that is led by a pair of number one ranked wrestlers. Mason Parris is an athletic 220 lber that chose a college wrestling career over many DI football offers. Parris has twice won FloNationals and looked untested when doing so. He may get pressed into starting duties as a true freshman, attempting to replace 3x All-American Adam Coon. Joey Silva, like Parris, is one of the top seven recruits in the Class of 2018. Over the past year, he has competed as often as any high schooler in the country, winning almost every important tournament. Will Lewan was an Illinois state champ as a junior and the won a Cadet world title. As a senior, he dropped a few matches and therefore slid in some rankings. His style translates well for college, so there shouldn’t be any worries about him. He’ll likely replace two-time All-American Alec Pantaleo after next season. Transfer Kanen Storr will be coming back to his home state. Storr had an excellent season in 2016-17 while redshirting, but a turbulent freshman year at Iowa State. A change of scenery may be what is needed, and he’ll slot in perfectly at 141 lbs for the Wolverines.  


4) Missouri

#3 Malik Johnson (Christian Brothers, MO) 125

#4 Zach Elam (Staley, MO) 285

#5 Cevion Severado (Christian Brothers, MO) 125

#6 Jeremiah Kent (Hickman, MO) 174

#10 Jarrett Jacques (Tolton Catholic, MO) 165

#13 Peyton Mocco (West Allis, WI) 165

#15 Brock Mauller (Tolton Catholic, MO) 157

#18 Cameron Fusco (Seckman, MO) 133

#20 Jack Flynn (Francis Howell, MO) 197

Weston DiBlasi (Park Hill, MO) 133

Cordel Duhart (Blue Valley Southwest, KS) 197

2017 Ranking: #16

Talk about putting up the proverbial fence around your home state. Head coach Brian Smith has signed a class with six top 100 recruits; two others ranked in the top 20 and all from Missouri. This group has a sort of “Mizzou” feel to it that we have come to expect from the Tigers. None are ranked in the top 30 from the Class of 2018 but don’t be surprised if a handful of wrestlers from this group outperforms others ranked above them. High school teammates Malik Johnson and Cevion Severado will man 125, with Johnson the more likely to move up to 133 at some point. Zach Elam fits the mold of your new school of heavyweights, athletic and probably undersized weight-wise. Brock Mauller is perhaps my favorite signee. He is ranked much lower than his ability would indicate, he was just stuck in a weight class that was very deep nationally. The Missouri staff ventured out of state to Wisconsin, as they have been known to do, and signed FloNational champion Peyton Mocco who will be useful at the middleweights.


3) Minnesota

#1 at 285 Gable Steveson (Apple Valley, MN) 285

#1 at 126 Patrick McKee (St. Michael-Albertville, MN) 125

#2 at 152 Brayton Lee (Brownsburg, IN) 157

#5 at 160 Ryan Thomas (Graham, OH) 165

#15 at 195 Garrett Joles (Boyceville, WI) 197

#18 at 145 Kasper McIntosh (Portage, IN) 145

Jake Gliva (Simley, MN) 141

Caleb Rea (Weir, WV) 133

Caden Steffan (Zumbrota-Mazeppa, MN) 184

2017 Ranking: NR

Just on signing the top wrestler in the Class of 2018, Gable Steveson, the Gophers probably deserve a top-five ranking. Steveson has sparked discussion as being one of the best recruits ever, at any weight. The three-time world champion will be needed as Minnesota did not have an NCAA qualifier at heavyweight for the first time in recent (and not so recent) memory. Gable will be expected to contend for NCAA titles immediately. As great as Steveson may end up being, this recruiting class also features a bunch of wrestlers that could have excellent careers themselves. Patrick McKee is three-time Minnesota state champ, as well as a Fargo champ. He may be needed to start from day one if the Gophers bump up their lower weights, as expected. Brayton Lee finished his season as the second-ranked 152 lber and 11th overall senior. Lee won three Indiana title with only one loss in his high school career. Though he fell in the Ohio state finals, Ryan Thomas put together a remarkable senior season with tournament titles at the Super 32, Walsh Ironman and NHSCA Senior Nationals. Garrett Joles was dominant in-state but does not have many competitions out of state in which he competed. Kasper McIntosh had a subpar state tournament but has placed at most national events.


2) Ohio State

#1 at 145 Sammy Sasso (Nazareth, PA) 149

#1 at 195 Gavin Hoffman (Montoursville, PA) 197

#3 at 120 Malik Heinselman (Castle View, CO) 125

#3 at 170 Rocky Jordan (Graham, OH) 174

#6 at 138 Quinn Kinner (Kingsway, NJ) 141

#7 at 160 Jaden Mattox (Central Crossing, OH) 157

#12 at 170 Braeden Redlin (Allen, TX) 174

#14 at 160 Josh Ramirez (Wahlert, IA) 174

#14 at 138 JD Stickley (Graham, OH) 141

#16 at 132 Alex Felix (Gilroy, CA) 141

Kevon Freeman (Lake Catholic, OH) 165

Jashon Hubbard (Steubenville, OH) 165

2017 Ranking: #4

In most other years this could have been a number one ranked recruiting class and there’s an argument to be made that the Buckeyes deserve the top spot. Ohio State gets the top-ranked 149 and 197 lbers, Sammy Sasso and Gavin Hoffman, respectively. Both are multiple-time Pennsylvania state champions that are in the top ten from the Class of 2018. The big question will be how to get four year out of both Sasso and Hoffman due to the existing talent on the roster at their projected weight; Ke-Shawn Hayes at 149 and Kollin Moore at 197 will be juniors in 2018-19. Third-ranked Malik Heinselman fills a huge need with the graduation of Nathan Tomasello. He may need to start from day one for the Buckeyes. Quinn Kinner, Jaden Mattox and some combination of Kevon Freeman, Josh Ramirez, and Jashon Hubbard could be the replacements for Joey McKenna, Micah Jordan, and TeShan Campbell. Rocky Jordan and Braeden Redlin are available at 174 if Kaleb Romero needs to move up to 184, or one of the two may move up themselves.


1) Penn State

#1 at 132 Roman Bravo-Young (Sunnyside, AZ) 133

#2 at 170 Aaron Brooks (North Hagerstown, MD) 184

#2 at 195 Michael Beard (Malvern Prep, PA) 197

#3 at 285 Seth Nevills (Clovis, CA) 285

#6 at 126 Gavin Teasdale (Jefferson-Morgan, PA) 125

#8 at 126 Brody Teske (Fort Dodge, IA) 125

Joe Lee (Evansville, IN) 165

2017 Ranking: #3

Penn State takes the recruiting crown with seven of the top 24 recruits in the country. Some combination of Gavin Teasdale, Brody Teske, and Roman Bravo-Young will shore up the 125 and 133 lb weight classes that have been troublesome for Penn State the past few seasons. Each of these wrestlers was four-time state champions in their respective home states. Cael Sanderson and staff will have to be creative when it comes to managing redshirts of the three. Cadet world champion Aaron Brooks may end up as a 184 lber, and if so, he would be an excellent successor to Bo Nickal. Michael Beard is a big man that is a high volume attacker, as many of the current Penn State wrestlers and would fill in for Shakur Rasheed after the 2018-19 season. Record-setting four-time California state champion Seth Nevills will take over for his brother at 285, after redshirting. Joe Lee, like his All-American brother Nick, did not compete in high school as a senior, so he doesn’t have a ranking among in weight class. However, he was 24th overall in the Class of 2018. If anyone is looking for a drop off at Penn State, it won’t be happening because of this recruiting class.

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