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NCAA D1 Team Previews

By MI Grappler, 11/03/21, 1:00PM EDT

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Michigan’s three Division 1 programs will all take the mat this weekend at the MSU Open to kick-off the 2021-22 season. Wrestling will begin at 9:30am on Saturday in East Lansing at the Jenison Fieldhouse.

Last season, all three programs finished in the top-30 at the NCAA tournament, with the Wolverines leading the way at #5. Michigan will enter the season #5 in the country in tournament rankings and #6 in dual meet rankings, and Central Michigan and Michigan State are both knocking on the door of the top-25.

*All rankings are from Intermat


#5 University of Michigan

2020-21 Summary: Michigan is coming off a successful season in which they went 5-1 in duals and finished 4th in the B1G tournament. The Wolverines’ lone loss of the season was to eventual national runner-up Penn State in a dual that could have gone either way. At the NCAA tournament, Michigan fell just short of a team trophy, placing 5th as a team. Michigan had 4 All-Americans: Cam Amine (7th at 165lbs), Logan Massa (5th at 174lbs), Myles Amine (3rd at 197lbs), and Mason Parris (2nd at 285lbs). Other qualifiers for the Wolverines included Dylan Ragusin at 125lbs, Drew Mattin at 141lbs, Kanen Storr at 149lbs, and Will Lewan at 157lbs.

Incoming Freshmen: Will Tanefau (125lbs), Christian Tanefau (125lbs), Zack Mattin (125lbs), Chance Lamer (149lbs), Joaquin Conseulos (149lbs), Keegan Nugent (285lbs)
Returning Starters: Jack Medley (125/133), Dylan Ragusin (125/133), Stevan Micic (133/141), Drew Mattin (133/141), Kanen Storr (149), Will Lewan (157), Cam Amine (165), Myles Amine (184), Mason Parris (285)
Impact Newcomers: Chance Lamer (FR - 149lbs), Pat Brucki (Grad Transfer - 197lbs)
Key Losses: Logan Massa (174lbs - Graduation)

Outlook: Michigan will once again be in the hunt for a team trophy. Olympians and All-Americans Stevan Micic and Myles Amine (Olympic bronze medalist) have announced that they will exercise their extra year of eligibility and return to the lineup in 2021-22.  Michigan also added a big piece in their hunt for a national championship with All-American graduate transfer Patrick Brucki (Princeton) at 197lbs. Freshman Chance Lamer at 149lbs provides depth in the middle weights of an extremely talented Wolverine lineup. Redshirt Senior Jelani Embree will provide depth behind Amine and Brucki at 184/197. The big question remains 174lbs, where Michigan has three solid options.

Projected Lineup:
125 – #25 Jack Medley (SR) or Kurt McHenry (SO)
133 – Dylan Ragusin (FR) or #24 (@141lbs) Drew Mattin (SR)
141 – #3 (@133lbs) Stevan Micic (SR)
149 – #18 Kanen Storr (SR)
157 – #16 Will Lewan (JR)
165 – #11 Cam Amine (SO)
174 – Jaden Bullock (FR) or Joe Walker (FR) or Max Maylor (JR)
184 – #2 Myles Amine (SR)
197 – #7 Pat Brucki (SR)
285 – #2 Mason Parris (SR)

Michigan State University

2020-21 Summary: The Spartans finished last year’s shortened season with a 2-5 B1G record (all 5 losses came to top-20 teams) and an 8th place finish in the B1G. Michigan State had eight NCAA qualifiers a season ago, the most qualifiers since the 2000 season, and all but one will be returning for the 2021-22 campaign. Rayvon Foley, Jordan Hamdan, Peyton Omania, Chase Saldate, Jake Tucker, Layne Malczewski, and Cam Caffey will anchor the MSU lineup and look to build on their qualifier status from last season.

Incoming Freshmen: Brock Holek (149lbs), Luke Daly (174lbs), Jacob Lee (197lbs), Nick West (285lbs)
Returning Starters: Rayvon Foley (125/133lbs), Matt Santos (141lbs), Peyton Omania (149lbs), Chase Saldate (157lbs), Jake Tucker (165lbs), Layne Malczewski (184lbs), Cam Caffey (197lbs), Christian Rebottaro (285lbs)
Impact Newcomers: Ryan Vasbinder (Grad Transfer – 197lbs)
Key Losses: Drew Hughes (174lbs - Graduation)

Outlook: The Spartans return a great lineup for the season, with 8 returning starters and 7 returning NCAA qualifiers. Michigan State has improved their placement at the B1G tournament for three consecutive years under head coach Roger Chandler, and they will look to continue the trend upward with great group of returners. Jordan Hamdan (133/141lbs) and Jaden Enriquez (149lbs) provide depth to the lower and middle weights of the Spartan lineup, while graduate transfer and DII national champion Ryan Vasbinder could provide a spark up top.

Projected Lineup:
125 – Tristan Lujan (SO)
133 – #13 (@125lbs) Rayvon Foley (SR)
141 – Matt Santos (SR)
149 – Peyton Omania (SO)
157 – #23 Chase Saldate (SO)
165 – #21 Jake Tucker (SR) or Caleb Fish (SO)
174 – Nathan Jiminez (JR)
184 – #24 Layne Malczewski (JR)
197 – #13 Cam Caffey (SR)
285 – Christian Rebottaro (SR)

Central Michigan University

2020-21 Summary: CMU finished last season with a 5-2 dual meet record and a 2nd place finish at the MAC tournament. Central Michigan is the favorite in the MAC for the 2021-22 season, with 8 returning starters from last year’s campaign. The Chippewas return three of their four NCAA qualifiers from a season ago (Dresden Simon, Johnny Lovett, and Matt Stencel). The big loss for CMU is Drew Hildebrandt, a 2-time All American that the Chippewas lost to graduation.

Incoming Freshmen: Trey Bates (125lbs), Mason Shrader (149lbs), Trenton Wachter (157lbs), Chandler Amaker (157lbs), Cody Brenner (174lbs), Leonardo Galasso (174lbs), Spencer Steiner (184lbs), Cameron Wood (197lbs), Bryan Caves (285lbs)
Returning Starters: Drew Marten (133lbs), Dresden Simon (141lbs), Corbyn Munson (149lbs), Johnny Lovett (157lbs), Alex Cramer (165lbs), Jake Lowell (174lbs), Ben Cushman (184lbs), Matt Stencel (285lbs)
Impact Incomers: Bryan Caves (285lbs)
Key Losses: Drew Hildebrandt (125lbs), Landon Pelham (197lbs)

Outlook: With a solid returning core from last year’s campaign, the Chippewas will look to build on a top-25 finish from last season. After the departure of Missouri (who is going back to the Big 12 conference), the coaches poll has Central Michigan as the favorite to win the 2021-22 MAC championship. The Chippewas will be anchored by two-time All American Matt Stencel at heavyweight, as well as returning NCAA qualifiers Dresden Simon and Johnny Lovett. CMU also has a lot of veterans to provide depth, as well as a plethora of incoming freshmen who won state championships a season ago.

Projected Lineup:
125 – Vince Perez (SO) or Sean Spidle (SO)
133 – Drew Marten (SR)
141 – #12 Dresden Simon (SR)
149 – Corbyn Munson (JR)
157 – #18 Johnny Lovett (SO)
165 – Alex Cramer (JR)
174 – Jake Lowell (SR)
184 – Ben Cushman (JR)
197 – Aaron Bolo (SR) or Cade Dallwitz (SO)
285 – #12 Matt Stencel (SR)

 

Rosters and schedules for each team can be found here:

University of Michigan Roster / Schedule
Michigan State University Roster / Schedule
Central Michigan University Roster / Schedule