Iowa had their annual media day yesterday and the amount of takeaways were outstanding.
Probably the biggest statement of the afternoon was made by Thomas Gilman, Iowa’s 125 pound projected starter. “I wouldn’t say that we’re (referring to Cory Clark at 133) the new Matt McDonough and Tony Ramos. I don’t think that’s a fair comparison.” the sophomore said, “I think we’re better than McDonough and Ramos, and I’m putting that out there.” That is quite the statement, even though Gilman and Clark are both off to fantastic starts to their career, Matt McDonough and Tony Ramos have combined for three national titles and two addition national finals appearances.
But Thomas Gilman is not one to back down from a challenge. During Tom Brands interview he had this to say about Gilman and Clark finally able to be at two different weights, “If Clark would have stayed at 125, I don’t think Gilman was moving up”. In other words Thomas Gilman was gunning for the 125 spot no matter who he had to go through. “It was one of those things we never really talked about,” Gilman said, “Clark had some difficulties holding down 125 so it was kind of always assumed he was going up, but we still haven’t actually talked about it.”
Tom Brands also had some high praise for Topher Carton, the 141 sophomore out of Illinois, calling him the most improved wrestler from last November. “It’s going to take me coming out and wrestling my match..if I get to my offense, I feel strong with my leg attacks and that’s what I got to get to. When I do that, I don’t think anyone can beat me.” Carton has moved up from 133 a season ago to take a charge at the veteran Josh Dziewa at 141.
Gilman wasn’t the only making bold statements, as Brandon Sorensen left his mark on media day displaying the same level of confidence. “I’m gunning for the spot (149), that’s what I plan to do.” Sorensen said. The redshirt freshman is expected to challenge veteran Brody Grothus, who holds win over the top four NCAA place finishers in this weight class, and Edwin Cooper. According to Sorensen, he feels that not only is he best suited for 149, he feels he can challenge for a national title at that weight.
When Brands was asked about Nick Moore and how he has failed to reach the podium each of the last two season Brands responded with humor, “I don’t think he needs reminded of that.” Moore who mans the 165 spot for the Hawkeyes has spent the offseason motivated by his failure to reach All-America status, “He’s training angry and alone…He’s outside running in 90 degree heat with sweats on and he’s angry.”
More Media day video to come!