My Picks At Each Weight For The NCAA D1 Wrestling Championship
NCAA's are right around the corner so here are my picks.
125: Spencer Lee, Iowa: Look, unless Lee has a seizure in the middle of his finals match, no one is going to touch him. He is way stronger than everyone in his weight class and talent wise, is just a step ahead. Lee really is a generational talent.
In the off chance that someone else beats Lee, my pick for that would be Camacho out of NC State. Maybe it’s my Connecticut bias but, Camacho is tough and could make a run at Lee.
133: Daton Fix, Oklahoma State: Fix is an absolute HAMMER. I am praying for a Fix vs. RBY final at this weight because that would lead to a boatload of fireworks. Fix is great from his feet but, he really dominates on top. If he is able to get that first takedown, he’ll absolutely lock up the riding time point.
141: Jaydin Eierman, Iowa: This weight will be insane but, I think Eierman wins just because of how funky his style is. He has the ability to scramble with the best and can get out of any awkward situation with ease.
While I do think Eierman wins, keep an eye out for Nick Lee out of Penn State, Sea Bass from Rutgers, and Tariq Wilson out of NC State. This weight, I think will be the most exciting and you could even see a dark horse that is seeded out of the top eight be in the finals this year.
149: Austin O’Connor, North Carolina: 149 is shaping up to give the fans an O’Connor vs Sasso finals and I couldn’t be more happy. While I think Sasso is better than O’Connor, I just have a gut feeling that is telling me Sasso loses.
Another guy that could make a run at a National Title is Ridge Lovett from Nebraska. A baby faced assassin that wrestled Sasso very tough in the Big Ten finals. He is solid from his feet and has a funky style that will be difficult for older wrestlers to defend.
157: Ryan Deakin, Northwestern: HAMMER! Rumor has it that Deakin is still riding Kaleb Young out from their Big Ten match. I didn’t even have to look at the bracket to see the other wrestlers because Deakin is one of my three locks. Lee, Deakin, and Gable are all locks to win at their weights.
165: Shane Griffith, Stanford: Dark horse pick right here. I like Griffith as a wrestler and if he wins a National Title, it just feels right. Stanford is getting rid of their program after this year and if they get a National Champion now, it will feel like a movie.
Griffith will have a tough time though when he encounters a guy like Alex Marinelli out of Iowa who is the favorite. Other guys that will be dangerous are Valencia from Arizona State and Lewis from Virginia Tech.
174: Demetrius Romero, Utah Valley University: Another underdog here. While he maybe the two seed, Romero comes from a small Big 12 school but, he is super funky and works great from his feet. This is the seniors last chance to get it done and I like his odds.
Another guy I can see taking the title home is Carter Starocci out of Penn State. A freshman phenom that wrestles with a tremendous amount of energy.
184: Aaron Brooks, Penn State: If my predictions are correct, then this would the Nittany Lions first champ. That would be crazy. Brooks is the top seed and I think his biggest match could come when he wrestles Venz from Nebraska who handed Brooks his only career loss last year.
I, like many fans, hopes for a Brooks vs Hidlay match in the finals. Two bulls that will wrestle for a strong seven minutes.
197: AJ Ferrari, Oklahoma State: Yup, I like the freshman for the win. Ferrari has so much energy when he wrestles and his best attribute is the way in which he can thrive off of a hostile crowd. Ferrari brings the theatrics to every match. He is super strong and quick for a 197, it’ll be extremely hard for other wrestlers to plan for him.
The only other guy I like at 197 is Myles Amine, who is on the same side of the bracket as Ferrari. Mark my words, the champion at 197 will come out of that 1 vs 4 matchup.
285: Gable Steveson, Minnesota: Lock. That’s about all I have to say here. Gable Steveson will roll through the 285 weight class with ease.
My picks are locked and loaded and I am so fired up for Nationals this year since we weren’t able to see them last year due to Covid-19.