The Associated Wrestling Press (AWP) has released grade rankings for next year’s Seniors, Juniors, and Sophomores. Iowa’s top prep in the 2016 class is none other than two-time Cadet National champion Carter Happel of Libson, who comes in at #33 on the rankings.
Happel is a three-time state champion on a quest to become the 25th four-time state champion in Iowa’s rich history of high school wrestling. As a freshman, Happel won the Fargo Cadet freestyle national title, and then last year he won Cadet nationals in Akron, Ohio. The second national title earned Happel an opportunity to wrestle on the Cadet World Team, where he competed in the Czech Republic. After winning a state title at 138 this past season, Happel projects as a 141 or 149 pound wrestler in college, and per our interview is currently considering Iowa, UNI, ISU, Minnesota, and PSU.
Coming in second for Iowans is Southeast Polks #45 ranked Ethan Andersen at 220. Like Happel, Andersen won a Cadet National title last summer in Akron, which led to him wrestling on the Greco team in Czech Republic. Already committed to the University of Missouri, Andersen projects as a heavyweight once he gets to Columbia.
Gannon Gremmel is the first Iowan outside the top 50 at #53. The only wrestler that stood in Gremmel’s this way of a state title this season was the aforementioned Andersen, who beat Gremmel 9-3 in the 3A 220 finals. Gremmel is projected to bump to heavyweight next year, and will also wrestle there in college.
The final 2016 senior is #73 Carter Isley of Albia. Isley won a 2A state title at 220 this past season and will also project as a heavyweight.
The Hawkeyes have a pair of recruits in the 2016 with Alex Marinelli of Ohio being ranked the #4 wrestler in his class and Kaleb Young ranking #50. Marinelli feels like a good bet to wrestle 165 in college, while Young projects as a 157 or 165 pound wrestler.
Two Iowans made the 2017 list and leading them was #36 Bryce West of Highland Riverside. West was a double Fargo All-American this past summer for Team Iowa and also won his first state title this past season at 120 pounds. West came in second in IAWrestle’s pound-for-pound rankings for his grade.
The one wrestler ahead of him was Creston’s Chase Shiltz. Ranked #47 on the list Schiltz captured the 2A 160 pound title after dealing with an injury early on in the season.
Iowa did not have a wrestler ranked in the 2018 class.