The Big Ten Conference released the long anticipated final brackets for this weekend's wrestling bonanza in Iowa City. Everything is just about what we expected - all Penn State wrestlers stayed right where they were in the pre-seeds released Monday. No changes there at all. But we also learned first round opponents. Here's the lineup:
125: Nico vs. Mitch Rogaliner (Sparty) - Nico majored Rogaliner at Rec Hall two weeks ago (17-5), as Rogaliner piled up the stall warnings. Tomasello gets Purdue's Ben Thornton. Iowa's Gilman gets a BYE.
EDGE: not Iowa
133: Jordan vs. Sam Brancale (Goldy) - these two haven't met. Iowa's Clark gets a BYE. Ohio State's DiJulius faces off against 10-seed Anthony Giraldo (BTPR).
EDGE: Penn State
141: Jimmy vs BYE - Gulibon gets a first round bye, while Iowa's entrant, Brody Grothus, gets to lead off against 1-seed Micah Jordan.
EDGE: Ohio State, actually. Grothus doesn't look like he's made for 141. But if he wants to upset Jordan in the opener, before facing Jimmy - hey, we'll take that too.
149: Zain vs. Kyle Langenderfer (ILL) - Zain pinned Langenderfer in about 2 mintues a few weeks ago. Iowa's Sorensen gets a BYE, so no easy bonus points for the Hawkeyes here. There's no Hunter Stieber, either, as the Buckeyes enter Cody Burcher.
EDGE: Penn State, big. This is like 2 free points for the blue and white.
157: Nolf vs Doug Welch (PUR) - the Werenolf tech'd Welch at the dual in 6 minutes. Iowa's Cooper gets a great draw - Northwestern's Petrone. Ohio State's Jake Ryan gets a BYE.
EDGE: Iowa, by a little
165: Geno vs. Brandon Krone (MIN) - tough luck here, as Krone isn't half bad. He's just (11-11) on the year, but he's a redshirt freshman that's been coming on lately. Iowa's Rhoads gets Indiana's Bryce Martin. Ohio State's Bo Jordan draws a BYE.
EDGE: not Ohio State.
174: Bo vs. BYE - with this weight seeded to 14, Bo was always getting BYE in the opening round. So was Iowa's Meyer. Ohio State's Martin draws Shane Shadaia (Sparty).
EDGE: Ohio State
184: Mouse vs. BYE - if there was one guy you hoped received a BYE, it was Mouse. Iowa will be able to pick up bonus here, though, as Sammy Brooks gets Indiana's Matt Irick. So will Ohio State, as Kenny Courts draws Northwestern's Regis Durbin.
EDGE: Everybody wins.
197: Morg vs. Jake Masengale (IND) - Morg pinned Masengale in the 1st period at the dual. Unfortunately, Iowa's Burak gets an even easier 1st round matchup in Wisconsin's Peissig (5-13 on the year). Ohio State's Martin gets a BYE.
EDGE: not Ohio State
285: Nick vs. Brock Horwath (WIS) - this will be their first meeting. Ohio State's Snyder gets a BYE. Iowa's Stoll gets Maryland backup Youssif Hemida, who is stepping in for Dawson Peck at the last minute. By the way - with Peck sitting out, his automatic qualifying bid leaves the tournament with him. So the 285 bar for Nick just got reduced to 6, from 7. That's a pretty tough break - but nothing Nick can't resolve.
EDGE: Iowa, assuming Stoll still has 2 knees.
Join us here tomorrow for the Open Threads. It'll be a lot of fun, because Penn State will do a lot of winning.