Aiden Noonan photo courtesy of Cam Kramer
In our September 9th recruiting update, we mentioned that NC State could be on track to secure a fifth-straight top-ten recruiting ranking if its Class of 2022 continues to develop. Well, it has, and Pat Popolizio’s team got a huge verbal, literally and figuratively, from Chase Horne (West Laurens, GA), the #19 overall wrestler in the Class of 2022. In TOM’s latest national rankings, Horne checks in at #2 at the 285 lb weight class. He is set to compete for the top spot in the country at FloWrestling’s Who’s #1 when he faces top-ranked Kyonte Hamilton (Georgetown Prep, MD), a Rutgers recruit. Chase has been on a roll over the last year and some change, taking third in both styles at the 16U age-division in Fargo, before making the finals of the Super 32, then capturing his second Georgia state title, in as many tries. Getting Horne should work out well for the Wolfpack who have national qualifier, Deonte Wilson, handling duties at 285 lbs for now. He’s going into his junior year, so even if Wilson redshirts, it would give Chase a chance to take one himself. NC State also has blue-chip, Class of 2020 signee Isaac Trumble aboard, who could move up to 285, at some point. Horne’s commitment gives Popolizio’s team two of the top 30 wrestlers in the Class of 2022 and three verbals from the current junior class.
Staying in the ACC, Virginia continued its strong run on recruiting in the last couple of months with a commitment from Marlon Yarbrough (Copley, OH). Marlon came in a #137 in TOM’s most recent Top 150 from the Class of 2021. At this point, Marlon looks like a career 125 lber for the Cavaliers, as he competed at 106 as a junior and is currently ranked #16 nationally at 113 lbs. Yarbrough’s best national-level placement came at the 2019 Walsh Ironman, where he finished fourth in a brutal weight class. He has also gotten onto the podium twice in Fargo, both in the 16U division, taking eighth in Greco-Roman last year and fifth in freestyle back in 2018. Yarbrough will join a Class of 2021 and ‘22 that includes a lot of lightweight talent with Erik Roggie (St. Christopher’s, VA), Peyton Fenton (Elyria, OH), Joe Haynes (Warren, MI), and Keyveon Roller (Lakeway Christian, TN).
When we talked with Wyoming head coach Mark Branch in mid-August, one of the topics that came up was his staff’s ability to develop “under-the-radar” type recruits. Yesterday’s verbal actually bucks that trend, as the Cowboys received a commitment from the 12th-ranked 132 lber in the nation, Aiden Noonan (Cascade, IA). Aiden made national headlines last year as he claimed his second Iowa state title and, in the process, prevented Adam Allard from winning his fourth. Noonan became the first Iowa high schooler to stop a potential four-timer in the state finals. He is currently ranked #83 overall in the Class of 2021 and projects as a 133 or 141 lber. Noonan’s commitment now gives Branch’s team four verbals from the current senior class with Analu Benabise (Kelly Walsh, WY), Paul Garcia (Scottsbluff, NE), and Dorian Walters (Lathrop, MO).
Chattanooga got on the board, recruiting-wise, in a big way as they received a verbal commitment from Indiana state champion, Blake Boarman (Mater Dei, IN). Blake has placed all three years at the single-class Indiana state tournament, each year gradually improving from third as a freshman, to a runner-up placement as a sophomore, before claiming the 138 lb title in 2020. Before the 2019-20 school year, Boarman competed at the Super 32 and was able to garner four wins before his elimination. Blake projects as a 141 lber for Kyle Ruschell’s Moc, which appears to be a future need as possible starter Mason Wallace is headed into his junior year.
The Penn Quakers continued to add to their Class of 2022 over the weekend with a pair of new verbals from Louis Colaiocco (Blair Academy, NJ) and Evan Bennett (St. Edward, OH). Adding this duo now brings head coach Roger Reina’s total number of commitments from the junior class up to a staggering five. Getting athletes from both of these traditional powers is always a positive sign. Colaiocco has yet to compete in the postseason for Blair. Bennett was third in the Perrysburg District last year for St. Ed’s, but didn’t get a chance to wrestle at his first state tournament after the event was cancelled. Bennett was an NHSCA Freshman All-American in 2019, when he took sixth at the 138 lb weight class.