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Tulsa Time: Big 12 Lightweights Preview

Diving Into 125 through 157

Syndication: The Des Moines Register Joseph Cress/Iowa City Press-Citizen / USA TODAY NETWORK

WHAT: 2022 Big 12 Championships

WHERE: BOK Center, Tulsa, Oklahoma

WHEN: Saturday at 11 AM: Prelims and Quarterfinals

Saturday at 5 PM: Semifinals and 2 Consolation Rounds

Sunday at 12 PM: Consolation Semifinals and Placing Matches

Sunday at 7 PM: Championship Matches

HOW TO WATCH: ESPN+ for first three sessions; ESPN2 for the finals

BRACKETS: Here

LIVE CHAT: WRNL Wrestling Discord — Been following all season and dying to talk about it? Join us on Discord! New fan wanting to learn more? There are no stupid questions, join us on Discord!

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The Big 12 has 78 wrestlers in one of the major rankings. 35 of those are in the first five weights. Let’s get right into this...

* denotes previous Big 12 Champion

125: Top 6 Qualify for the NCAA Tournament

Ranked Wrestlers (Big 12 Seed/FloWrestling/InterMat/Coaches’ Panel)

-Killian Cardinale, WVU (1/14/8/8)

-Taylor LaMont, UVU (2/15/16/17)

-Brody Teske*, UNI (3/16/15/16)

-Trevor Mastrogiovanni, OSU (4/13/12/12)

-Noah Surtin, MIZ (5/17/17/15)

-Kysen Terukina, ISU (6/18/21/18)

-Joey Prata, OU (7/23/31/22)

-Jace Koelzer, UNC (8/-/33/-)

  • This weight is wide open. Terukina has beaten top-seeded Cardinale, so he certainly has potential to win the title here. He’s also lost to Prata, which could mean not finishing in an NCAA qualifying spot. He’s slated to see UNI’s Teske in the quarters and will need to avenge that February loss. If he reaches the semis his likely opponent is Taylor LaMont, a returning All-American from Utah Valley who he hasn’t wrestled since losing to him in OT at the 2021 Big 12s. That is one rematch I would love to see happen.

133: Top 6 Qualify for the NCAA Tournament

Ranked Wrestlers (Big 12 Seed/FloWrestling/InterMat/Coaches’ Panel)

-Daton Fix*, OSU (1/2/2/2)

-Kyle Biscoglia, UNI (2/21/16/21)

-Gabriel Tagg, SDSU (3/HM/25/28)

-Kellyn March, NDSU (4/HM/26/24)

-Ramazan Attasauov, ISU (5/HM/27/25)

-Haiden Drury, UVU (6/14/13/13)

-Tony Madrigal, OU (7/17/28/31)

  • Daton Fix is head and shoulders above the competition in this bracket. The returning NCAA runner-up is likely to bonus his way through the tournament. I was surprised to see this weight get six allocations when 165 and 184 only got four. It works out for Attasauov though. He has a quarterfinal rematch with NDSU’s March who pinned the Cyclone in the dual. That was a bit of a freak match, ending in just over a minute. A win clinches his spot at NCAAs. A loss and his path to Detroit probably requires beating Mizzou’s Connor Brown and Wyoming’s Job Greenwood in back-to-back matches. He’s gotten those wins this season, so I feel good about his odds of qualifying.

141: Top 7 Qualify for the NCAA Tournament

Ranked Wrestlers (Big 12 Seed/FloWrestling/InterMat/Coaches’ Panel)

-Ian Parker*, ISU (1/17/4/9)

-Clay Carlson, SDSU (2/4/9/6)

-Andrew Alirez, UNC (3/6/7/7)

-Allan Hart, MIZ (4/8/11/13)

-Carter Young, OSU (5/19/20/17)

-Cael Happel, UNI (6/HM/24/23)

-Dylan Droguemueller, NDSU (8/HM/30/26)

-Ty Smith, UVU (-/HM/-/-)

  • The Big 12 very well may produce half the All-Americans at this weight. Look at the variance in rankings of those top four guys. It is WIDE OPEN. And it will go a long way towards deciding the team race. Parker should take care of business in his first two matches. To get back on top of the podium he’s set to see Mizzou’s Allan Hart in the semis. These two did not meet in the dual. These two split matches in their careers. Hart hasn’t wrestled since late January and has taken some surprising losses this season, so we will see what kind of shape he shows up in. One potential finals opponent is Andrew Alirez, who he hasn’t wrestled in college. Another is SDSU’s Clay Carlson. Parker is 3-0 against the Jackrabbit but hasn’t seen him yet this season.

149: Top 4 Qualify for the NCAA Tournament

Ranked Wrestlers (Big 12 Seed/FloWrestling/InterMat/Coaches’ Panel)

-Kaden Gfeller*, OSU (1/18/13/15)

-Willie McDougald, OU (2/20/19/22)

-Jarrett Degen, ISU (3/21/21/17)

-Josh Edmond, MIZ (4/22/22/18)

-Colin Realbuto, UNI (5/HM/-/-)

  • Only getting four allocations here makes sense. This is probably the weakest bracket in the tournament. Much like 141, though, there are major team race implications. OSU’s Gfeller has made himself the favorite. OU’s McDougald has been a pleasant surprise for them after being their third option here. And as stressful as it’s been watching Degen at times this season, he just might win the whole damn thing. His only two losses came on that road trip to Oklahoma. Both were in sudden victory. If he turns those around he sets Iowa State up nice to win a Big 12 team title in the process of earning himself an individual title.

157: Top 6 Qualify for the NCAA Tournament

Ranked Wrestlers (Big 12 Seed/FloWrestling/InterMat/Coaches’ Panel)

-David Carr*, ISU (1/1/1/1)

-Jared Franek, NDSU (2/6/5/5)

-Wyatt Sheets, OSU (3/20/20/17)

-Jarrett Jacques, MIZ (4/17/21/20)

-Jacob Wright, WYO (5/18/22/15)

-Justin Thomas, OU (6/14/14/13)

-Derek Holschlag, UNI (7/HM/-/33)

  • With the Big 12 deeper than ever, it’s surprising that David Carr is the only wrestler in the conference ranked #1 in the country. This is a solid weight, but he’s just different. I would like to see Wyoming’s Wright make it to the semis for a matchup we haven’t gotten to watch this season. I predict a top-five matchup in the finals for Carr, but Franek hasn’t wrestled the 3, 6 or 7 seeds this season, so there may be a surprise guest.