Wrestling Preview: @MSU

Submitted by AceUofMer on February 17th, 2011 at 7:00 PM

Last dual of the season for the Wolverines against a perfect opponent for the situation.  They need to get back on track with their winning ways and after a string of  4 top 10 opponents, including 3 top 5, unranked MSU is much welcomed.  What makes this an even better matchup is that little brother has the ability to keep each wrestler on its toes, providing a nice test before Big Tens.  Even though the team standings are out of reach, there is plenty at stake for some.  This is the last chance to prove yourself for seeding in the tournament.  For Michigan, seeding in very important in hopes to gain any advantage they can.

 

 Some preview bullet points for the weekend:

·        Important for Seeding– Boyle, B. Zeerip, and J. Zeerip all take on closely ranked opponents and need to come away with wins to secure their spots in the upper half of the seeding.

  • Momentum Gainers – Grajales, Collins and Apland face some tough, but, doable test.  These would be some nice wins to carry into tournament time and add some confidence to some key parts.
  • No Letdowns – Stevens, Yates and Biondo look to be heavy favorites and need to make sure to suffer no setbacks.  Just handle business.

 

 

#11 Michigan @ Michigan State

Friday 7:00pm  (can watch online at BigTenNetwork.com)

 

Jenison Field house can be a fun environment for wrestling.  The best part would be walking out with a very convincing win.  Michigan has the ability to sweep this Spartan club.  149 is probably where MSU is the most favored.  From there, 184 and 285 could be slight MSU leans.  The rest will be mixed with clear Michigan advantages and should be wins for the Wolverines.

 

Michigan Wrestlers listed first:

 

  • 125 – Sean Boyle(So) vsEric Olanowski(Jr)  Big match for Boyle in that Olanowski will provide a challenge and Boyle needs to come away with a win to hold onto that 4thor 5thseed that’s critical for him in the tourney (will see how in my Big Ten Preview). This would put the final nail in his resume for it.  Prediction: 3 for UM
  • 133 - Zac Stevens(Jr) vs Chris Lyon(Fr)  Lyon is winless in MSU’s Big Ten duals.  Clear weak spot for them.  Stevens record doesn’t show how good he’s wrestled this year and will be a clear favorite here.  Looking for bonus points.  Prediction:  4 for UM
  • 141 - #1 Kellen Russell(Jr) vs Levi Stace(Fr)  Another big weak spot for the Spartans.  They are throwing out a warm body in hopes he makes it back.  Bonus points are coming for UM here.  Nice break from last week against #2 and #3.  Prediction:  5 for UM
  • 149 – Eric Grajales(Fr) vs #20 Dan Osterman(So)  First favored match for MSU.  Osterman has been a bright spot for them this year and the undersized Grajales will have his work cut out for him.  Prediction:  3 for MSU
  • 157 - Brandon Zeerip(Fr) vs Sean McMurray(Fr)  Key match for Zeerip.  Can’t take the hit on the resume to fall out of the top 5 in seeding.  McMurray will be a good challenge as he’s trying to jump into that top 5, but, Zeerip should win.  Prediction:  3 for UM
  • 165 - Dan Yates(Fr) vs Nick Kaczanowski(Fr)  MSU list Kaczanowski here and this would be his Big Ten dual debut.  This weight has been another weak spot for them and Yates should walk away a winner. By how much I can’t guess.  Prediction:  3 for UM
  • 174 – #20 Justin Zeerip(Jr) vs Curran Jacobs(Jr)  Another seeding matchup.  Zeerip and Jacobs are riding about 6thand 7thright now.  I think Zeerip is the better wrestler and a win here might open the door to crack the top 5.  Prediction:   3 for UM
  • 184 – Hunter Collins(So) vs Ian Hinton(Jr)  Hinton has been a strong piece for MSU this year as on the flip side, Collins has been UM’s weaker part.  Hunter could use a big win here and is capable of it.  Not expecting it though.  Prediction:  3 for MSU
  • 197 - #11 Anthony Biondo(Sr) vs Tyler Dickenson(Jr)  Dickenson is no slouch and Biondo hasn’t shown the ability to blow us away.  But, he is the favorite here.  Prediction:  3 for UM
  • 285 - #16 Ben Apland(So) vs Joe Rizqallah(So) orMike McClure(Fr)  MSU list 2 guys here, but, Rizqallah has really turned it on for them of late.  He’s the lone loss to the favorite in the Big Ten (PSU’s Wade).  He’s bigger then Apland and will slow him way down.  Apland has been on a run of disappointments as well.  He could really use this to jump start him into the post season.  Prediction:  3 for MSU

 

Final Team Score Prediction:   Michigan-24   MSU-9

 

I’ve got Michigan down for an easy win.  Like I said, I think this matchup comes at a much needed time to energize the team.  I’ve also said I think Michigan is built better for duals, but, think the individual tournaments will help out as the momentum of their last duals started showing in everyone’s wrestling.  This win would put UM at 6-3 in the Big Ten (11-5 overall).

 

Big Ten Standings

 

 

 

Conference

Overall

 

W

L

T

Pct.

W

L

T

Pct.

1. Iowa

7

0

0

1.000

14

0

1

.968

2. Minnesota

6

0

1

.929

15

3

1

.816

3. Penn State

5

1

1

.786

16

1

1

.917

4. Northwestern

5

2

0

.714

17

2

0

.895

5. Michigan

5

3

0

.625

10

5

0

.667

6. Illinois

2

4

1

.357

5

5

1

.500

7. Purdue

2

5

0

.286

7

8

1

.469

8. Wisconsin

1

4

1

.250

10

5

1

.656

9. Indiana

1

5

0

.167

11

6

0

.647

10. Michigan State

1

6

0

.143

9

7

0

.563

11. Ohio State

1

6

0

.143

2

10

0

.168

 

Michigan sits at #5 only because of wrestling more duals then Northwestern (who they have beat head to head 22-12).  After this weekend, that’s probably how the top of the conference is still going to look.  For Michigan it shows they aren’t there yet in decisive losses to the top 3.  But, they can walk away with knowing they had no letdowns with the teams they should have beat (like Wisconsin, Illinois) and are in position to be the next school battling the elite.  They still have a lot of building to do to fill that last gap, but, they are building with a great foundation. 

 

This Weekend in the Big Ten

 

Feb. 17th

Indiana @ Illinois   Prediction: IU-12  ILL-20

 

Feb. 18th

Indiana @ Purdue   Prediction:  IU-12  PUR-19

Michigan @ Michigan State   Prediction:  UM-24  MSU-9

Wisconsin @ Penn State   Prediction:  WIS-10  PSU-24

 

Feb. 19th

Northwestern @ Ohio State   Prediction:  NW-21  OSU-12

 

Feb. 20th

Wisconsin @ Michigan State   Prediction:  WIS-17  MSU-15

Iowa @ Minnesota   Prediction:  IOWA-20  MINN-13 

Comments

brendandavis22

February 17th, 2011 at 7:32 PM ^

Why do you think he is undersized?  I know the thought was he would wrestle at 133 this season but that was a total pipe dream.  I've heard Eric was 160 preseason, which would make him a perfect 149lber.  Plus watching him wrestle this year it seemed like the cut was a problem for him in the beginning of the year but he is now doing better with it.  Just curious, love the previews.

AceUofMer

February 17th, 2011 at 8:07 PM ^

It has a lot to do with the offseason strength training.  He went into the season having trained for a lighter weight.  May seem like it wouldn't factor that much, strength is strength.  But, working out with a set weight in mind plays a big factor. 

Its how you can maximize your strength to weight.  He's fighting with some bad weight right now.  You can see it when he's wrestling others.  He just doesn't look the part.  At 141 I think you would have seen a lot more.

I chatted with Kelvin Jackson (Kelvin not Kevin) who wrestled and won the title for MSU at 118 when that was the lowest weight in college.  Two months after the season he was up to 160.  These guys are fighting off a lot more weight then you think. 

tricks574

February 18th, 2011 at 11:10 AM ^

Maybe a shutout. Just going on what I remember from watching them in high school, ryzgallah and ostermaan are good, but certainly beatable. Ryzgallah never beat doughboy, and apland has, and ostermaan isn't really a whole lot better than corby, who grajales teched. Can't disagree with them losing though, grajales has been inconsistent and hwy is a toss up in most meets.

Hinton is a little of the same, fairly inconsistent wrestler. When he's on, he's probably their best wrestler, but he will lose some head scratchers.

Also, I'm willing to bet some St. Johns kids will be taking in the match today, to distract them from cutting weight for tomorrows regional tournament. Would be nice to show Massa and Wohlfort and company that Michigan is a serious contender in the near future.