The young Michigan Wrestling lineup faces a pair of duals in Big Ten conference action this weekend, hosting Maryland on Friday night before heading out to Nebraska on Sunday.
Maryland is not exactly off to a strong start this season. It's actually been a bit of cruel fate that Maryland has not had the talent (Asper and Sheptock in particular) they had in the years before joining the Big Ten. The Terrapins boast one ranked wrestler, Bannister at 149. Zac Hall should be competitive in this match. The Wolverines have had trouble getting any production at 184 & 285 to fill in for Abounader & Coon. Outside of these three matches, Michigan should roll pretty comfortably.
This weekend would be an interesting opportunity for the return of Davonte Mahomes, who most ranked in the 10-15 range pre-season at 174. Could he give Amine a breather, or could we possibly see him at 184?
#6 Nebraska will pose a much larger challenge as the maize and blue have to fly out to Lincoln. The Huskers are coming off a tough match themselves, falling to Penn State this past weekend.
Penn State 27, Nebraska 14
125: Nick Suriano PSU dec. Tim Lambert NEB, 3-2
133: Eric Montoya tech fall George Carpenter PSU, 17-1
141: Colton McCrystal NEB dec. Jimmy Gulibon PSU, 12-5
149: Zain Retherford PSU maj. dec. Collin Purinton NEB, 19-6
157: Jason Nolf PSU maj. dec. Tyler Berger NEB, 15-7
165: Vincenzo Joseph PSU maj. dec. Dustin Williams NEB, 20-7
174: Geno Morelli PSU dec. Michal Barnes NEB, 2-1
184: Bo Nickal PSU dec. TJ Dudley NEB, 10-5
197: Aaron Studebaker NEB pinned Matt McCutcheon PSU, WBF (6:01)
285: Nick Nevills PSU pinned Collin Jensen NEB, WBF (6:01)
The upperweights are a big vulnerability for Michigan like they were against Iowa when Michigan gave up 14 points in the last three matches. That alone will make the dual tough to win for the Wolverines.
At 125, our pal (from Grand Rapids here) #5 Tim Lambert will be heavily favored over the freshman Assad. Don't be too surprised if Assad makes this a match though as he is very talented on his feet.
There's still some good accomplishments to have here. 133 presents a big opportunity with Micic getting an opportunity at #3 Montoya. At 157, Brian Murphy will look to get back on the winning side of high profile matches when he takes on #3 Berger. I think 141 is another swing match of unranked guys where both have shown a couple spots with potential so far this season.
Michigan should win at 149, 165, and 174. That means it's entirely possible that Michigan gets some wins to make a run at it, but it certainly will mean it includes some upsets.