Tuesday, March 12, 2024

In Contention for an At Large/Wildcard Bid NCAA DI = 165 lbs

 Here's where it'll be a dog fight for an at large/wildcard bid.  We only have five spots & six of the wrestlers in contention for one of these five spots are ranked.  Anyway you slice it, at 165 lbs, one worthy candidate is staying home. 

Caleb Fish
  Michigan State 

24-9 on the season, he's spent the majority of the year ranked within the top 10.  A two time NCAA DI qualifier, a match away from All American honors last season.  I'd say we're most likely looking at a 2024 NCAA DI qualifier, when we look at Caleb Fish of Michigan State. 

Bryce Hepner
Ohio State

Let's be honest with ourselves. When it comes to who gets in and who doesn't, competing within the BIG 10 has never hurt anyone.  Add in that Bryce Hepner of Ohio State was also ranked at the end of the regular season & I think that's a recipe for qualification.  

Garrett Thompson

Upset in the MAC finals, I'd be outright shocked if Garrett Thompson of Ohio doesn't get in. He more than has the credentials.  5th in at the prestigious CKLV, he has 26 wins on the season.  Among them, an 8-5 decision over Peyton Hall of West Virginia & a 2-0 decision over Maxx Mayfield of Northwestern.  He also has falls over Hunter Garvin of Stanford (5:50) & Connor Brady of Virginia Tech (2:39). 

Derek Fields
North Carolina State

You knew looking at 165 lbs going into the ACC tournament that it was going to call for at large/wildcard bids.  There was no getting around it.  There were only two automatic allocations & there were more than two worthy wrestlers going for them.  Derek Fields of North Carolina State actually defeated eventual champ Nick Hamilton of Virginia back in February by an 11-7 score. 

Holden Heller

Finishing right behind Fields in the ACC championships, Holden Heller of Pittsburgh also defeated eventual champ Hamilton earlier in the season.  A 6-1 decision, on the year he also owns a 7-1 win over Jake Logan of Lehigh & an 11-5 decision over Connor Brady of Virginia Tech. 

Noah Mulvaney

The Madison, Wisconsin native I would have to say is about the best true freshman  the Bucknell Bison have had in a long time.  As said before we only have 5 spots here, so no guarantees that Noah Mulvaney will be one of them.  It wouldn't surprise me though, if he were to get the nod over someone else.  27-7 on the year, he owns an 11-5 decision over Gunnar Filipowicz of Army.  For what it's worth, before he was injured, he also defeated Joshua Ogunsanya of Columbia 6-4. 

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