This is just something I have been thinking about since I saw a post by @fancowrestling on Instagram. It essentially said that Penn State was the only team to have won a National Title at every single weight in the past decade (2012-2022). So it is only fair that I make my own all decade team.
Nico Megaludis, we all know that PSU has had somewhat of a drought at the 125 weight class after Megaludis left. Suriano was supposed to fill in and be next up at 125 when he got to Penn State but things just did not work his way so Megaludis is the only real option here.
Roman Bravo-Young, again at 133 it becomes virtually impossible to pick against RBY here with what he has done in his career winning 2 national titles and still having a year of eligibility left. He said he would most likely not be taking that extra year but at the end of the day it seems that if he does he might do down as one of the best to ever do it at the college level.
Nick Lee, another guy like RBY who just wrapped up his career this season. 2 time national champion now and there was really no doubt this season, or at least there should not have been as to who was the best guy at 141. It will be very interesting to see what the future holds for Nick Lee as he will most likely see Yianni Diakomihalis on the senior level a good bit.
Zain Retherford, for the sake of college I will go with Zain here. If we want to bring up who has done better on the senior level I would have to say Molinaro since he made the Olympic Team in 2016 running the gauntlet and came one match away from placing losing to only World Champion Frank Chamizo. Zain was dominant beyond belief in his college career and was by far one of my favorite collegiate wrestlers to watch ever. If we are speaking in terms of college accolades there is no doubt that Zain Retherford is one of the greatest to ever do it.
Jason Nolf, 3x National Champ as has had a solid run at the senior level so far in his short time. In college Nolf was known for his pace and ability to finish quick shots racking up points bullying top 10 opponents. I do not think anyone has really been able to match this on the Penn State team and definitely not his accolades being a 3x Champ and 4x Finalist. Nolf is just one of those guys that is stuck in a very hard spot right now with Jordan Burroughs and Kyle Dake holding him off of a World Team but Nolf vs anyone else there is fair game in my opinion.
David Taylor, of course here you have two 2x Champs in David Taylor and Vincenzo Joseph. People made the argument that Joseph should be ahead because he did not have the chance to go win a 3rd title in 2020 when everything got shut down. In all honesty if you do not pick DT here you are just wrong and there is nothing else to say about that. Taylor is a 4x Finalist losing as a freshman and the only other loss to Kyle Dake so in my mind this argument should not really be too close.
Carter Starocci, this man is incredible. How he wrestles being so young but still so dominant and already making a name for himself at the senior level having guys like JB say he is a guy that will be coming for my spot soon only speaks to how talented this man is. He has the potential to be a 5x Champ and the only one ever at that unless a free year gets granted in the future. The other two competitors for this spot are Mark Hall and Matt Brown. I feel that Hall makes a solid case but with Starocci’s career barely half over I think it will be a done deal in his favor soon enough.
Ed Ruth, I think I will change my mind on this in a couple years where Aaron Brooks will end up taking over this spot. For the time being Ed Ruth has the higher accolades and was in general just known as a slick, athletic, and finesse type wrestler. He made everything he does seem so easy and fluid like he almost just was not trying. Ruth was truly a one of a kind wrestler in his style and dominance and those 3 National Titles speak for themselves.
Bo Nickal, the other competitors here are Max Dean and Quentin Wright who won his first title in 2011. We will give Wright the benefit here and put him in as a 2x Champ but even then Bo Nickal is probably the dominant wrestler of 2019 in his senior season. He also had some very iconic matches throughout his career like when he pinned Myles Martin in the 2018 NCAA Finals. Sucks to see that his wrestling career is most likely over unless he makes a surprise return.
Greg Kerkvliet, this one is going to piss a lot of people off because I didn’t chose Cassar even though he has a national title. In my mind Cassar beating a true freshman Gable Steveson was a good bit less impressive than the way that Kerk has wrestled a grown Gable this year and the year prior. Kerk just finished his freshman year technically and has been injured the entire time, he has still managed to rack up 3 wins over Mason Parris this season along with a 4th place finish at the national tournament where his only losses were to Gable and to Jordan Wood (Injury Default) who he majored 12-2 last season. I feel in a year or two this argument won’t be close but now it might be a toss up.