Jake Stiles photo courtesy of IllinoisMatmen.com
Since September 1st has come and gone, the recruiting season has been heating up. On a daily basis, we more have wrestlers who have made the college choices public. Here are some of the notables that have given verbal commitments within the past two to three days.
The biggest recruiting news of the past two days was the Cadet World Champion Matt Ramos became the first wrestler from the Class of 2019 to commit to Minnesota. We have gone into detail on Ramos here….
North Dakota State had a massive couple of days getting a pair of verbal commitments. The verbal from Ryan Ripplinger and Gary Wokojance have shown that they were able to keep one of their own at home and also, venture into unchartered territory. Last night Ripplinger, a three-time North Dakota state champion from in-state Bismarck High School made public his commitment. In the summer of 2017, on the campus of North Dakota State, Ryan placed seventh at Cadet Freestyle Nationals and second in Greco. This summer he competed in the 132 lb bracket at the Junior Freestyle level and won five matches, but did not place. He also competed in Junior Duals and went 5-2 in the freestyle portion. Ryan projects to be a 133 lber for the Bison. The first wrestler this week to commit to NDSU is Gary Wokojance (Barberton, OH), an Ohio State sixth-place finisher. Currently, there are no Ohio natives on North Dakota State’s roster, which makes this verbal even more interesting and intriguing. Ohio always produces a large number of college wrestlers, so if the Bison staff can start plucking wrestlers from The Buckeye State, it should benefit them in the long run. Wokojance’s name became commonplace this spring after he captured the 182 lb title at NHSCA Junior Nationals. One of his victims at the event was Cadet Greco world teamer and Fargo double-AA Jonathan Fagen (Fruitland, ID), whom he majored 18-7. Gary is currently ranked 10th in the nation at 182 lbs.
The Oklahoma Sooners got a verbal last night from their second top-100 recruit of the year, Jake Stiles (Montini Catholic, IL). Ranked 46th overall in the Class of 2019, Stiles won his first Illinois AAA state championship in 2017-18, as well as the Cheesehead Invitational. He also went undefeated at the Clash and came in seventh at the Walsh Ironman. Currently, Jake is ranked seventh in the nation at 152 lbs. The other wrestler that has already committed to Head Coach Lou Rosselli, Sam Dover (St. Edward, OH) is ranked sixth at the same weight class. Though they both appear to be 157 lbers at the next level, plenty can change between now and then.
About a month ago, Cadet World Champion Daniel Kerkvliet decided to reopen the recruiting process which left Oklahoma State still seeking their first commitment from the Class of 2019. They have one now with the verbal from Colt Newton (Choctaw, OK). Colt will be headed into the 2018-19 season seeking his first state title, as he is a three-time runner-up. His most recent state finals appearance saw him lose to Junior National Freestyle finalist Reece Witcraft (Broken Arrow, OK), an opponent he defeated in the regular season. After his freshman season, Newton went out to Fargo and took third place at Cadet Freestyle Nationals, while wrestling 113 lbs. Colt could project as a 133 lber for John Smith’s Cowboys.
For these and all of the college commitments, check out TOM’s college commitments page.