SEASON 5 COLUMN 8: TRIUMPH & TEARS IN TOKYO; WHOS FACIN WHO, WHERE & WITH WHAT; SO COOL, SO HOT, SOCON; & RANDOM RAMB-LINGS

It was, by most measureable standards, a great showing by the United States combined wrestling squads these past few weeks. The Olympics can and often do bring heartbreak to American sports fans. This time, MORE than a bit better than that. Understanding that at least a few of you had things such as spouses, partners, children, jobs and other such distractions, this modest look back at the marvelous men and women who did us proud at THE GAMES OF THE XXXII OLYMPIAD.

MENS GRECO ROMAN WRESTLING

The G.R. in Greco Roman for the U.S. needs to be G.oing R.ogue because these results are G.etting R.idiculous. The reps for the Red, White & Blue pretty much followed recent form. None of our four men made a medal match or had a winning record. That will be addressed in the summary. Heres the black and white.

60KG Ildar Hafizov 0-2 DNM

Hafizov, the most experienced US Greco Roman rep in Tokyo, had little hope of advancing and his competitions unfortunately went according to form. A shut out 1st round loss was followed by a matchup with 4X European and World Medalist Sergey Emelin, whos now an Olympic medalist. A 7-1 loss followed and Ildar was done. Hafizov was a 2008 Olympian for Uzbekistan who brought his love for America to the mat, to citizenship, and to the US Armys World Class Athlete Program. The Army needs him. Americas happy to have him. Hope hes got enough to go till 2024. It might become time for Taylor Lamont, Utah Valley Wolverine All American, before then though.

67KG Alejandro Sancho 0-1 DNM

Sancho, whos roots run back to the concrete jungles of Floridas East Coast, was a judoka. He found his star wrestling for the storied and sadly missed South Miami Cobras program. Hes qualified for various US National teams every year but one since 2012. That one of our very best for damn near a decade couldnt sniff a 2nd round match speaks to the gap in this sport between America and “those guys.” Those guys being the countries where Greco Roman is a cradle to grave obsession. Whats next, at 27, for Sancho? Hopefully 2 more quads, but Paris at least.

87KG John Stefanowicz 0-1, DNM

This hurt. EVERYBODY and their Aunt Petunia had been writing/talking/pumping up Stefanowicz, our first Marine Olympian in 30 years. Not to be as Stefanowicz fell 5-3 in the 1st round and his opponent failed to make the finals. Stefanowicz is no Spring chicken and his duties in Military Intelligence may utimately call him back to the keyboard rather than the mat. We’re well served, either way.

97KG G’Angelo Hancock 1-1 DNM

Heres the half-full look: Hancocks dominant win in the opening round cemented his status as Americas next International Greco Roman star and only a questionable defeat kept him from a semi finals spot and a guaranteed medal status match. Here’s the half-empty analysis: Absolutely a missed opportunity as the showdown with the only semi finalist who Hancock HADN’T beaten.. yet…was done in by his poor second round showing. Of course the truth lies somewhere in between. Currently both the short term success and long term planning for America’s Greco Roman team lie somewhere “in between” as well. Between what? Please inform the Scribe as this column just doesn’t know. This IS known, however. After years of angry denial and denigration towards U.S. Greco in this blog the hope for success has changed for the positive. Sadly, the results have not. We CAN produce World and, occasionally, even Olympic medalists. We haven’t been doing that for a while. Our current men are very good. Somehow, someway, someBODY or BODIES from someWHERE need to clear our path from very good to GREAT.

US FREESTYLE WRESTLING, W/M

Our Freestyle teams showed up and showed OUT in a big way. A lot was expected from our men and womens Freestyle squads, too much perhaps. Too bad for the rest of the Wrestling World the USA damn near lived up to its own grand expectations. Ladies first:

76KG Adeline Gray 3-1, Silver

2X defending World Champ (5 overall) Gray had a couple close matches on her way to her Finals match against long time friend/rival/wedding invitee Arline Rotter-Focken of Germany. Fokken won but Grays no loser. She started a beautiful stream of post championship observations that warmed hearts and moistened eyes. She also stated a planned attack on a title at Octobers World Championships. After that its hard to say but don’t be suprised by a team tour, a prominent public speaking position and a baby bump.

68KG Tamyra Mensah-Stock 4-0, Gold

If Gray got USA fans warmed up, defending World Champ Tamyra Mensah-Stock lit the afterburners. The TX. native mercilessly dispatched her first 3 opponents and outclassed Nigerias Blessing Oborududu in the finals. Afterwards it was the 24 hour sneak preview of “Tamyra takes Tinseltown”. The bespectacled beauty riffed for Media segment after segment on marriage, faith, her sublime Network Anchor and Karaoke skills, and, oh yeah, that wrestling thing she does. Whats next? Don’t ask, just enjoy. You will.

62KG Kayla Miracle 0-1, DNM

What a difference a point AND Olympic/World Championships experience makes. @miraculousKC was the smallest of margins away from having enough of either to advance. A 4-3 first round defeat and her opponents subsequent loss ended things early for Miracle, the youngest American Female Freestyle star on the team. NOT an excuse, just a fact. Like this one: she’ll be back, she’ll be better, and that will be bad for anyone else at her weight.

57KG Helen Maroulis 3-1, Bronze

The 2016 Olympic Champion made a fulfilling and perhaps final statement in Tokyo. She powered to the semis, dropped a difficult 2-1 match to the eventual champion, then rebounded with a devastating 11-0 tech fall Bronze Medal match victory over Mongolias Khongorzul Boldsaikhan. Maroulis is a comic book heroine come to life, with a real life story thats too impossible to be real. It just is. An ethereal beauty from an American immigrant family. A scrappy youngster who became a burgeoning superstar, a World champ, and Americas first Female Olympic Wrestling Gold Medalist. Dethroning an unbeatable thirteen time World and Olympic champ to do so. Then injuries both diagnosed and missed ruined her health and nearly ended her career. Finally, five long years later, a return to the Worlds biggest wrestling stage with a medal worthy performance. Thought here is Helen moves on to something equally spectacular…for her. If it’s not for all of us, this fan is MORE than ok with that. You should be too.

53KG Jacarra Winchester 2-2, DNM

Hopes were high in this column and many other places for Winchesters medal chances. JDub Ent. “because I put on a show”, won by decision in Round one but was soundly defeated in the quarter finals. Her Chinese foe then upset a weight class favorite, keeping Winchesters medal hopes alive. Repechage round one against a Cuban went Winchesters way. The Bronze Medal match, not so much. Repeated watchings of Winchesters loss by pin to Belarusian Vanesa Kaladzinskaya show that even at the highest of levels you can get caught. Winchester got caught and it cost her a Bronze. Next? Shes 28 and cut her already superslim frame down by nearly 5lbs just to make the Olympic weight. A return to 55KG for the Worlds in October would seem both healthy and logical. There’ll be a tournament to make the team at either weight anyway. Get you some yums for the tums @jacarra016 and then fill up that trophy case some more!

50KG Sarah Hildebrandt 3-1, Bronze

A lady who made a serious weight, attitude and lifestyle change, Hildebrandt stormed to the semis with 11-0 and 12-2 tech fall wins. She finished both foes in less time combined than the 6 minutes it normally takes to complete 1 contest. Against China, though, after pushing to a 6 point lead Hildebrandt gave up 7 points in the last 40 seconds. 4 of those came in the last few seconds when she was thrown to her back, a devastating way to lose anywhere let alone at the Olympics. Denied the opportunity at the ultimate prize Hildebrandt did the next best thing. Which became a no good, very bad thing for the Ukraines Oksana Livach. 12-1, tech fall win for Hildebrandt, her 3rd obliteration of an opponent in Tokyo. With that exclamation point victory the American women nearly equaled their medal haul from every previous Olympics. Some will continue competing though it’s quite likely this year is it for a couple of our women. There is no thank you effusive enough, no amount of hand-clapping or cheering loud enough to show our appreciation. If you watched them in action just be grateful for what you witnessed.

On to the gentlemen:

Thomas Gilman 57KG, 3-1, Bronze

There must be something in the water in Iowa City. The gnarly lightweights who don Iowa Hawkeyes Black & Gold just don’t seem as slowed by injury as regular mortals. Case in point, one Mr. Gilman by name, who after his spectacular two day run to the Bronze medal revealed he’d been wrestling with a lis franc injury to his foot. That means serious ligament and/or bone damage involving fractures, sprains or dislocations, regularly requiring surgery and three to six months to heal. Cue the Guess Who because there was NO TIME to do anything except perform. Gilman had to do it the hard way, too, after losing his first match by one point in the final 15 seconds. It turned out to be the real Gold Medal match as Gilmans opponent went on to win the weight class decisively. Brought back in to the medal chase by Repechage (STILL sounds like a Monty Python French Knights insult) Gilman embarrased two foes, finishing with a big 9-1 win over Irans Reza Atrinagharchi. Gilman made an eye opening move to the Nittany Lion Wrestling Club for his final Olympic preparations. Paid off. He’s now a multiple World/Olympic medalist, married, and maybe as happy and fulfilled as he’s ever been.

86KG David Taylor 4-0, Gold

25 years of directional certainty came down to 20 some seconds of gotta have it and Taylor went and got it. Going for Gold and facing the face of Iranian wrestling royalty, World and Olympic Champ Hassan Yazdanicharati, Taylor lived up to his own nickname. With a last ditch effort the Magic Man scored the winning points, casting a spell of defeat upon his amazing opponent for the third straight time in their multi-year rivalry. Taylors decisive takedown brought a sad mat slap of resignation from Yazdanicharati and a fall to his knees “Thank you, Lord” moment from the newly, FINALLY crowned American Olympic champion. Taylor outscored his first 3 foes by a combined 33-2 score and his 4-3 Finals win put a Kong sized cherry on top of a magnificent wrestling career. However, the World Championships ARE in October. Will we see both 86KG Titans there? One? None? Thought here is that there’s at least one last spell in the Magic Mans hat. But, If his greatest foe is a no show, why go?

74KG Kyle Dake 3-1, Bronze

Dake, already a 2X World Champ at the non-Olympic weight of 79KG, was not seeded in the 16 man field. Fears were that he would face one of the multiple, multiple World and Olympic medalists in the early rounds. That turned out to not be the issue, though. After a 4-0 1st round win, Dake himself stunningly suffered an 11-0 technical fall shut out loss. That broke a multi-year near 50 match win streak and left Dakes medal hopes in the hands of Belarusian Mahamedkhabib Kadzimagamedau. Fortunately BMK then beat #1seed Frank Chamizo of Italy in the semi finals. BMKs making the finals brought Dake back into the tournament via (God, here is THAT word again) Repechage. About 3 minutes and 10 points later Dake had earned a Bronze Medal match against Chamizo, who Kyle then shut out 5-0. Next? The 30 year old Dake, who insists that through his unique training, diet, and mental preparations he is becoming physically younger day by day, may just test his theories right through Paris 2024. Why not? He’ll only be 27 then.

125KG Gable Steveson 4-0, Gold

10-0 first round technical superiority win. 8-0 second round win over defending Olympic champion Taha Akgul of Turkey. 5-0 semi final win over a Mongolian mountain. Then, the Olympic finals. Against 3X defending World Champion Geno Petriashvili of Georgia. You probably saw the paragraph headline. You KNOW how this ended. It looked good early, dark late, and “I can’t believe what I just saw” at the very end as Steveson picked up 5 points in the last 9 seconds to win 10-8. What happened was what happened because Gable Dan Steveson made the damn thing happen. You say bad reffing? You say improper this and that? Tell it to the refs. Tell it to the Georgians, the Mongolians, the Turks and the Kyrgyzstanis. Tell it to EVERYBODY. If YOU don’t, Gables success, savvy and oh so eager marketing partners will. The 3X World and now Olympic champion will be writing his own checks for a VERY long time. And he’ll be signing the FRONT, not the back. Just sayin.

97KG. Kyle Snyder 3-1, Bronze

Nothing less than a Gold Medal showdown on the last day of full Olympic competition against uber-rival, Olympic and 4X World Champ Abdulrashid Sadulaev would be acceptable for Snyders script. Get Captain America that Oscar because Snyder did his part, mowing through three foes to face the pound for pound greatest wrestler currently above ground. There’s simply no other way to describe Sadulaev. Even his nickname, “The Russian Tank”, seems weak in comparison to the man himself, whos international record was a modest 138-2 before the big showdown. Snyder and Sadulaev had given up just 5 point in their 6 combined wins heading into the Gold Medal showdown. Score the Gold Medal match 6-3 for the Tank as Sadulaev, again, confirmed his status as the Worlds greatest wrestler. There is no shame in losing to the greatest, and Snyders still our best bet for defeating the Tank down the road. For now. Subject to change. All in all, an amazing show by the Red, White and Blue. What else can you say? Well, there’s always…….USA!USA!USA!

LINEUPS, THROWDOWNS, AND WHERE TO WATCH EM

Column favorite George Mason University has set its lineup. The Patriots, an early announced team for the Southern Scuffle, are 32 strong for the upcoming season. Theres a small but intriguing four man grad student and senior class. Its headlined by Alex Madrigal, whos pursuing a Masters in Psychology, an All American honor, and one injury free season in this, his 7th as a college student athlete. Madrigal qualified twice for Nationals while wrestling for the butchered Old Dominion program, then transfered and qualified for Nationals as a GMU Patriot. A lost to injury year followed and after that, Covid hit. Madrigal opted out last season, and hes baaaack, to the delight of Coach Frank Beasley and the dismay of other 141lbers and Insurance Actuarial table composers (1). There’s also a SHOUT-OUT, fellow Grad transfer 165lb Lawrence Kosoy, Boca Raton, FL Olympic Heights Community HS, (2) coming over from Columbia University. 197lb Sam Stith, a transfer from Socon school Presbyterian, tops a five man junior class. The fifteen man sophomore group gets a SHOUT OUT, 149lb Kalob Jewett, El Paso, TX, Franklin HS, and finally, eight freshmen round out the twelve state strong roster.

Iowa State gave up the good stuff also letting its alumni and fans know who the Cyclones will host at Hilton Coliseum this season. TBD on exact dates and times but heres the list of potential victims: Air Force, Army West Point, Iowa, Cal Poly, West Virginia, North Dakota State, Cal Baptist, Utah Valley, and Purdue. Well, with Purdue, it’s sort of a home match. MAJOR marketing move by both Kevin Dressers ISU squad and Tony Erslands Boilermakers as the match between the Cyclones and Purdue will be contested at Humboldt High School, the alma mater of both coaches. Unfortunately, that Ultimate Cage Lumberjack match between Coach Dresser, AKA #DaRealKD, and Coach Ersland, #TheTErslanator, will probably be reset for a later date. Plan on putting down LOTS of cashmoney to see that one, folks.

Its a long drive from almost anywhere to Laramie, and you’ll never spend gas money better. The home of the Wyoming Cowboys has great food, better people and, at 7220 feet up, a VERY elevated view on what it takes to win at the highest levels of D1 wrestling. The 21-22 edition of Coach Mark Branchs Big 12 powerhouse seems aligned to land near the conferences top again. Despite the return of mighty Missouri and most every teams full lineup from last year this column says look out for the Brown and Gold. From A (Anderson, Kevin, Freshman, one of sixteen in his eligibility class) to Z (Zollman, Chase, Poway, CA, one of sixteen STATES sons proudly wearing the Cowboys colors) this roster is wide, deep, and ready. The rest of the 34 strong group has a Grad student, five seniors, five juniors, and seven sophomores with each class having a firm anchor point, or two. For the seniors it’s the big man straight outta Grapevine, TX, 3X NCAA Qualifier, 2x BIG 12 finalist and 2020 Conference champ Brian Andrews at 285. Or, it could be @mr_sicknasty himself, 174lb Hayden Hastings, whos averaged 22 wins a season and is himself a 3x NCAA qualifier. Junior Cowboys stars include 184lb Tate Samuelson, another 3X NCAA Qualifier in three years as a starter. Samuelsons 23-9 record and Big 12 Conference finals appearance sent him to the Championships last year as the #10 seed. And oh, can you say 20+ match winner, NCAA qualifier and conference finalist again? Sure, we knew you could. You say it like this: junior 165lb Cole Moody. By now, those in the know are beginning to wonder IF and when we will get around to writing about last years most accomplished Cowboys mat star. Well, he’s a sophomore (due to the caused by Covid extra year of eligibility)(3) so now that we’re talking sophomores, we can. 197lb Stephen Buchanan, come on down! Last year Buchanan became an All American with his 8th place finish at Nationals. He went 3-3 there to close a 17-6 season. Two of his three pins came at the NCAAs. One of them there was earned against former #1 ranked Noah Adams of West Virginia, whom Buchanan beat four times last year. So that’s an early look at Wyoming, folks, and remember, ANY look at Wyoming is a good look. Especially from your cabin window.

Funny that they value wolves SO much more in North Carolina than in the state that holds Yellowstone (4). That’s especially true in Raleigh where the WolfPack of NC State have laid claim to perennial Top Ten status and regular assaults on the NCAA Championships podium. Pack news includes the new status for former NC State star and volunteer staffer Timmy McCall. It’s now Assistant Coach Timmy McCall, thank you. This edition of the Pack has emerged from its den as a 34 strong crew with quite a few roster twists. Fully 20 are listed as Freshmen or RS Freshmen, including last years 149lb starter Ed Scott, up at 157 this season. Seven sophomores, just three juniors (including two year 285lb starter Deionte Wilson, last seasons #10 seed at Nationals) and a very special bunch of 4 fifth year seniors. Tariq Wilson, Thomas Bullard, Hayden Hidlay, and Nick Reenan enter their final campaigns with a staggering 21 years combined in the den, 13 qualifying spots at Nationals, and eight All American awards earned between them. Even more intriguing, three of the four are listed at new weight classes. Reenan (SHOUT OUT, Dallas, TX, Highland Park HS by way of Pennsylvania prep school Wyoming Seminary) is showing 174/184 as his competitive spots. Outside looking in more likely is he battles it out with last yrs. 197lb starter Isaac Trumble. Reenans six year, three weight class, multi-injury career has played out more like a Hee-Haw song tagline (5) than what was expected of the Nations top recruit from 2016. 2X AA Tariq “the Freak” Wilson is bumping up to 149 and is a definitive National title threat. This season should bring a 4th earned NCAA Championships appearance and 3rd AA award won by Wilson over three different weight classes. YO. Then there’s the case of the younger and, now, not much smaller of the Hidlay (HIDE-lay, por favor) brothers on the Pack roster. Hayden Hidlays 4X AA status has come with a serious wt. cut burden. No mas as Hayden is bumping up two weight classes, sliding in next to sophomore and returning National 184lb finalist, brother Trent Hidlay. And there’s so much young talent from 125 to 141lbs that the Pack could field two Top 25 lineups down low and have a star or two to back up the back ups. Theres 125lb Jakob Camacho, two time ACC finalist and a match away from AA last year. Theres 133lb Jarret Trombley, sophomore two year starter and NCAA qualifier. Kai Orine, 3X st. champ at three different weights who lost one match by one point last yr., 1st yr, still looking for a full time roster spot. Alex Urquiza (SHOUT OUT, Miami, FL South Dade HS) 43-17 including his redshirt year but not yet a fulltime starter either. Stud recruits like Luke Ahrberg, 3X finalist, 2X Oklahoma champ. Skylar Smith (SHOUT OUT, Ft. Worth, TX Liberty Christian) 4X TX state champ, four different weight classes. Stevo Poulin, 3X NY State champ and USA Cadet team World member. It’s like THAT in Raleigh where Popolizio and company are building a colossus. So, when you hear them on the wind, just know it’s already too late. They’re coming, and not just for for you. For EVERYBODY.

“Beware a team IN season, that had fun OFF season” said somebody somewhere about this years Oregon State Beavers. OSU took second at the 2021 PAC 12 Tournament in Coach Chris Pendletons first year in Corvallis. That illustrious accomplishment is SO last season for the Beavers who head into the 21-22 campaign thirty two strong and off an Instagrammable Summer. Two grad transfers, three seniors, six juniors, seven sophomores and a fourteen deep freshman class compose this rough n ready rodents crew. The youngest group includes Matthew Olguin from the murdered Freso State program. The grad transfers finishing up advanced education are 184lb Tanner Harvey, former American University NCAA qualifier, JUCO National champ, and Oregon homeboy. There’s also ex-Sun Devil Cory Crooks, who did the 149lb thing for four years at conference rival Arizona State. THAT kind of switcheroo always makes for a tasty matchup come dual meet time. There’s big winners all through the Beavers lineup, starting down low with 3X NCAA Qualifier, 2X PAC 12 champ 133lb Devan Turner. The Beavers middle is ably manned by the Willits brothers, 141lb Grant and 157lb Hunter. Straight outta Pueblo, Colorado, the brethren have six PAC 12 Finals appearances & six NCAA championship qualifying seasons between them. Little bro Grant has the two PAC 12 title bragging rights, though, as Hunters been a three time 2nd place finisher. As the only D1 wrestling school in the three state Pacific Northwest (Stanford, a 600+ mile ten hour road trip, is the not so close closest competitor) Oregon States in a very sweet recruiting spot. There’s ten athletes from either Oregon, Washington or Idaho already in the room and four more in this years recruiting class, five if you count Harvey. SHOUT OUT, 174lb Brad Kata, sr, Orlando, FL, Bishop Moore.(6) Que lastima, no word yet on the Beavers schedule but rest assured, just like every college season since 1903 there will be NO matchups in ANY sport with South Carolina.(7)

One of last columns featured teams, the Buffalo Bulls, released their home schedule. Two Top 10 squads swing by in November, the Pitt Panthers on the 12th and national contender the Michigan Wolverines on the 21st. Cover your ears on Dec. 11th as the Bulls have inked a head on collision with the Bison of NDSU. Two days before Christmas its Clarion coming to town. Come the new year it’s SIUE in on January 9th with NIU visiting Feb. 5th. Great dates all, but to get the full feel of Coach John Stutzmans team make sure you’re in Chattanooga Jan. 1st and 2nd. The Bulls will be shaking off the snow, soaking in some Southern hospitality AND making a hard run towards the Top Ten at the Southern Scuffle.

SO COOL, SO HOT, SOCON

Its not confirmed BUT looks like the Southern Scuffle will set up shop this season at the 100 thousand square foot Chattanooga Convention Center. That would make for the type of facility upgrade the best in season tournament in the country deserves.

Six outstanding student athletes from three different states with seven state titles between them. That’s the impressive haul headed to Charleston for The Citadel and head Coach Ryan LeBlanc and crew. Still no word on that new graduate assistant or this seasons schedule but the Bulldogs roster just received a nice beefing up for the next four years.

THIS, THAT, & SOME OTHER THINGS

A showcase for everything that’s good about wrestling, the National Duals will be contested Dec. 20-21 in beautiful Ft. Walton Beach, Florida. While the three day NCAA tournament at seasons end is still the pot of gold for every team the Duals will offer a different look and a different title. Sometimes it’s easier for a sports fan to follow a team v. team round robin over a few hours versus a 33 man bracketed tournament spread from morning till night over three days. The National Duals will have four groups of three teams who will wrestle each other. The four winners advance to the semis, winners there to the finals, winner THERE- the Champion! Easy squeezee lemon cheesy. Nice touch: teams in the same Conference will be separated in group competition. The list of participants starts at the top of the current wrestling heap. Defending National champions the Iowa Hawkeyes will be one of the Big 10 reps, joined by the Michigan Wolverines. NC State and Virginia Tech from the ACC will be there. From the Big 12 its Northern Iowa and Missouri. The PAC 12 is ably represented by Arizona State, 4th at last years NCAAs, and Oregon State. Perennial powers Cornell and Lehigh along with Hofstra (previewed in last weeks column) will fly the E.I.W.A. flag. From the MAC its Tom “Terrific” Borellis Central Michigan Chippewas. WOWSERS. Folks, some of wrestlings very best teams, coaches, and individuals in a fan friendly format on the gorgeous Gulf coast of sunny Florida? In December? If you go, buy some gear, down a Hurricane and a grouper sandwich, and if you see event uber-organizer Frank Popolizio, tell him thank you. And get that man a cigar.

Army Head Coach Kevin Ward filled a coaching slot left open when former Black Knights Assistant Ned Shuck became current Bellarmine Knights Head Coach Ned Shuck. Taking over for Shuck, Scott Green. Green leaves the top spot at famed Pennsylvania prep school Wyoming Seminary to help Ward reset Armys wrestling present and future. That makes SIGNIFICANT changes to the wrestling staffs at all three major service academies in the past three years. Hmmm.

Let the debate begin! WrestleStat takes the early lead with this seasons first set of rankings. Their #1 guys going into 2021-2022: 125, Spencer Lee, Iowa; 133, Stefan Micic, Michigan; 141, Jaydin Eierman, Iowa; 149, Yianni Diakomihalis, Cornell: 157, Austin O’Connor, North Carolina; 165, Alex Marinelli, Iowa; 174, Michael Kemmerer, Iowa; 184, Myles Amine, Michigan; 197, A.J. Ferrari, OK. St.; 285, Gable Steveson, Minnesota. Just a BIT of a Black and Gold flavor but, for what they’re worth, there they are.

See you sometime soon!

Ted Carreras

USA!USA!USA!

(1) Much like the titular characters house in The World According to Garp, hit by an airplane just as it is being purchased, Madrigals career, health and life are GOOD TO GO. They’ve been pre-disastered!

(2) One of Floridas most beautiful areas, in the Scribes day there was just Boca Raton HS, home of the Bobcats. Also home to Slippery Rock 2X AA Anthony (Tony) Calderaio, touted in Sports Illustrated Faces in the Crowd, and 3X HS finalist, state champ Joe Bonnie, now the proud multi-generational owner of Joe Bonnie & Sons Moving.

(3) ALL the Cowboys eligibility status reflect this one yr. of Covid competition forgiveness.

(4) Wyoming, for all its amazing beauty, has a dark and ugly side: its treatment of our canine companions progenitors. Pretty much anywhere outside of the parks, its “Triple S.” Shoot, Shovel, Shut up. Sad.

(5) “Gloom, despair, and agony on me, Deep dark depression, excessive misery…” It gets worse. Much like Nicks injury list. Fortunately his determination is the equal of his pain threshold. TEXAS.

(6) The Scribe watched Katas Coach, Joe McKenna, hustle and muscle his way through an incredible 3 Florida State titles at Bishop Moore. That Joe McKenna (NOT the current US Freestyle star of the same name) then won 3 ACC titles and earned AA honors his senior season at Clemson. The Scribe is OLD.

(7) That year the school in Columbia, SC, first took on the nickname Gamecocks.