Who: #2 Iowa vs. South Dakota State
Date: Friday, December 2nd, 2016
Time: 7:30 PM (CT)
Location: Brookings, South Dakota
Online: Flowrestling ($)

Iowa 149-pounder Brandon Sorensen wrestles South Dakota State's Alex Kocer during their dual meet on Friday, December 4, 2015 in Carver-Hawkeye Arena. (Photo by Rachel Jessen)
(Photo by Rachel Jessen)

The Iowa Hawkeyes will head back on the road this Friday to Brookings, South Dakota where they will square off with a tough South Dakota State program led by Chris Bono and Jon Reader. The Hawks are coming fresh off of a 34-3 beat down of Purdue, where they put up bonus wins in five of their nine victories including two technical falls. When Iowa and SDSU met last year it was the Hawkeyes who came out on top  28-15.

This week’s dual presents three head-to-head ranked meetings, with none bigger than the 133 battle between #1 Cory Clark and #6 Seth Gross. Not only is this a top ten dual matchup, but fans will remember that Gross spent his true freshman season on the Hawkeye roster before transferring to SDSU. Both Gross and Clark are off to hot starts to their 2016 seasons with each wrestler already racking up five bonus point victories. Both of these wrestlers are strongest in the top position, which could make for some interesting decisions about either guy not wanting to take bottom against the other.

The other two ranked head-to-heads occur at 157 and 174 where freshman Michael Kemerer and senior Alex Meyer look to be favored for the Hawkeyes. Kemerer will face his first ever ranked opponent at 157 pounds when he takes on #20 Colin Holler. Kemerer did pick up a couple wins over ranked opponents during his redshirt season at 149. The question with Meyer is whether or not he will be able to match his 25-10 technical fall performance against Purdue.

For the most part the rest of the dual will likely favor the Hawkeyes where Wrestle Stat is going so far as projecting that Iowa will win nine of ten matches, including five of those by bonus. The one match currently favoring SDSU is at 197 where the Jackrabbits feature #5 ranked Nate Rotert who will be up against Cash Wilcke.

At 141 we could see a battle of Iowa natives with Davenport Assumption prep Topher Carton taking on Johnston prep Henry Pohlmeyer. Depending on whether or not Sam Stoll is back for this dual, the same could be said for heavyweight as SDSU’s Alex Macki was a Ballard prep. If Stoll were to miss this dual that would mean Mediapolis prep Steven Holloway would set up the Iowa native battle at this weight.

Wrestle Stat Prediction
  Iowa   SDSU WS Predcition
125 #1 Thomas Gilman (MD) vs Ben Gillette 4-0 Iowa
133 #1 Cory Clark (MD) vs #6 Seth Gross 8-0 Iowa
141 Topher Carton (MD) vs Henry Pohlmeyer 12-0 Iowa
149 #2 Brandon Sorensen (DEC) vs Alex Kocer 15-0 Iowa
157 #6 Michael Kemerer (TF) vs #20 Colin Holler 20-0 Iowa
165 Joey Gunther (DEC) vs Luke Zilverberg 23-0 Iowa
174 #6 Alex Meyer (DEC) vs #18 David Kocer 26-0 Iowa
184 #7 Sammy Brooks (MD) vs Martin Mueller 30-0 Iowa
197 Cash Wilcke vs #5 Nate Rotert (DEC) 30-3 Iowa
285 Steven Holloway (DEC) vs Alex Macki 33-3 Iowa

Looking over the predictions the computer agrees that overall this should be a dual that should be controlled by the Hawkeyes. The bigger discrepancies are at 133 and 157 where Wrestle Stats is projecting bonus for the Hawkeyes in what could be two highly contested matches. While many expect Kemerer will come out on top at 157, Gross will have plenty of potential to give Clark all he wants and more at 133.

Additionally, last year Thomas Gilman was able to defeat Ben Gillette by fall and Brandon Sorensen won by major decision over Alex Kocer in the 2015 dual.

By Ross Bartachek (@rossbchek)

Lead Editor of IA Wrestle