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2010-2011 Pre-Season All American Predictions: 197 Pounds

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by , 10-25-2010 at 07:59 PM (916 Views)

1. Cam Simaz (Cornell)
2. Trevor Brandvold (Wisconsin)
3. Clayton Foster (Oklahoma State)
4. Sonny Yohn (Minnesota)
5. Anthony Biondo (Michigan)
6. Cayle Byers (George Mason)
7. Jerome Ward (Iowa State)
8. Michael Salopek (Virginia)
R12. Riley Orozco (Cal State Bakersfield), Matt Wilps (Pittsburgh), Logan Brown (Purdue), Micah Burak (Pennsylvania)

1. Dustin Kilgore (Kent State)
2. Cam Simaz (Cornell)
3. Trevor Brandvold (Wisconsin)
4. Clayton Foster (Oklahoma State)
5. Sonny Yohn (Minnesota)
6. Anthony Biondo (Michigan)
7. Brent Haynes (Missouri)
8. Cayle Byers (George Mason)
R12. Zack Giesen (Stanford), Zac Thomusseit (Pittsburgh), Jerome Ward (Iowa State), Michael Salopek (Virginia)

Despite the fact that news of Dustin Kilgore moving up to 197 came very close to the season starts, I don't really see him having any struggles with the size of his opponents. For one, of the eight guys that I have as All Americans at this weight class all of them except for Byers either have wrestled at 184 in official competition or been linked to wrestling 184 in the past. Secondly according to V from TOM who talked to Kent State's SID, Kilgore is walking around at 210 right now anyway. Kilgore came out last year down at 184 and had another stellar regular season, getting started early in the year with the biggest win of his young career when he beat Mike Pucillo in the Brockport finals. Other than that match he also had a pair of wins over Steve Bosak, and then other wins over Joe LeBlanc, David Erwin, Josh Ihnen, and Phil Keddy. Stylistically Kilgore is a guy who is just brutal with people. From the feet he likes a high single, he doesn't always set it up and that can come back and bite him but when he does he's very successful with it. He's brutal with his front headlock as well. He's most famous though for his cradle series that he works on top where he'll literally grab guy's faces to try and lock his cradles up.

Cam Simaz comes back this year as the highest returning placer at this weight. He spent most all of the year last year seemingly as the established #4 guy at the weight class behind Varner, Brester, and Taylor. He threw a into that assumption though when he came out and beat Taylor in an overtime match to take 3rd place at NCAA's after losing a couple of matches to him early in the year. When he recorded his first All American finish two years ago he was a smaller guy at the weight class having started the year out wrestling at 184, but he's done a nice job putting size on in the intervening time period. Other than the aforementioned win over Taylor last year he four wins over Micah Burak, two wins over Trevor Brandvold, and then other wins over Logan Brown, Chad Hanke, Matt Powless, Dennis Drury, Brent Haynes, Tyler Sorenson, and Eric Lapotsky. Stylistically he's at his best wrestling from his feet. He's a guy who is very aggressive with a great motor. Really does a good job breaking matches open in third periods with snap and go behinds.

Trevor Brandvold comes into this season after a major league breakout last year in his first year up at 197 after moving up in weight. He's probably the tallest guy on the list and he's someone who has done a very good job in adding good weight to his very large frame. He's a guy who is very similar to Brandon Precin when it comes to style of wrestling. He's basically a jack of all trades out there on the mat but he doesn't really stand out as particularly superlative in any of the three positions. Like Precin he's probably at his best on top. Last year en route to a Big 10 championship and eventual AA finish he had three wins over Big 10 runner up and fellow All American Sonny Yohn, two wins apiece over Logan Brown and Anthony Biondo, and then other wins over Chad Hanke, Matt Wilps, Hudson Taylor, Brent Jones, Brent Haynes, and Chad Beatty. Big 10 conference has some nice overall depth at this weight class overall and right now Brandvold has proven to be the class of the group.

Clayton Foster comes back up to 197 after making a one year sojourn down to 184 in order to free up space in the line up for Alan Gelogaev at 197, he comes back up now to make room for Chris Perry after recording his first All American finish of his career last year. One thing noticeable last year after he moved down is that he seemed much more smooth and fluid on his feet wrestling against the smaller guys. In the past he'd been successful up at 197 but he didn't score as many points as he did last year. I will note though that he was the only guy other than Jake Varner to beat Craig Brester over the last two years as he squeezed out a close victory in a dual meet two years ago. Last year he had two wins over Jerome Ward, and then other wins over Chris Perry, Sonny Yohn, Joe LeBlanc, Josh Ihnen, Max Askren, David Craig, Mike Pucillo, and Phil Keddy. Should be part of a great group of formidable upper weights for the Cowboys this year. He's a guy that has been banged up some over the course of his career so his biggest obstacle will probably be just staying healthy. Like Brandvold he's a guy who should be heavily tested by conference opponents.

Sonny Yohn is a guy who really broke out last year after moving up to this weight class after starting the year at 184. After his freshman year the biggest thing for him to improve on was going to be his gas tank and he did a good job coming into the year in better shape last year. He's a guy who can be a little slow footed on the feet, but the move up helped that. Has an odd style from the feet where he's got absolutely fantastic body fakes, but he likes to use the body fakes to try and slip around behind guys with upper body offense rather than looking to his leg attacks. He's at his best wrestling from top where he's arguably the best guy in the country when it comes to riding legs. He'll occasionally try and force the legs in and that can bite him but once they're in he's excellent both as a rider and as a turner. Last year he had two wins over Brent Jones, and then other wins over Grant Gambrall, Josh Ihnen, Logan Brown, Chad Beatty, Dennis Drury, and Alan Gelogaev. After the season ended he came out and had an excellent freestyle season, qualifying for the University World team with wins over Matt Wilps, Chad Hanke, Jared Platt, Brent Jones again, and Micah Burak. Given that freestyle for the most part takes away his ability to ride legs the fact that he was so successful this spring is very encouraging coming into this year.

Biondo comes in this year and for the first time in his entire career he'll be at the same weight he was during the season prior and you have to imagine that at the very least that will be a relief to him. Stylistically he's a guy kind of like Yohn who can be a little iffy when it comes to wrestling on the feet. He's a guy who is really solid as a defensive scrambler but he can be kind of back and forth when it comes to scoring with stuff he initiates. When he has his own offense going he's recorded big wins through out his career, when he doesn't have it going he can take some strange losses. He's another guy who is at his best wrestling from top, and his best skill on the top is his ability to ride with his legs in. Last year he actually had two wins over both Brent Jones and Sonny Yohn, he also had wins over Cam Simaz, AJ Kissel, Micah Burak, Logan Brown, Dennis Drury, and Jesse Strawn. He's underneath Yohn for now despite his success against him last year because Yohn was able to get himself up on the podium.

Haynes comes in this year with the somewhat dubious distinction as the only Big 12 197 pounder who was not an All American last year. To his credit though he made the Round of 12 and wound up getting sent home by Eric Lapotsky who was of course another Big 12 197. I know I'm starting to sound like a broken record but he's yet another guy at this weight class who can be a little iffy when it comes to initiating his own attacks from the feet although how much of that may have been attributable to him just being a freshman last year will be determined this year. Like Biondo he's a guy who is solid defensively from the feet. Like both Yohn and Biondo he's at his best on top when he's riding legs. Last year he had a couple of wins over Alan Gelogaev including a match in their dual meet where he went down early and stormed back late in the match to win by one. He also had wins last year over Logan Brown and Matt Wilps.

Despite the fact that he comes into the year with a pretty high ranking the fact that Cayle Byers redshirted last year and wrestles for a non-major school in George Mason may lead to him hanging around under the radar for a while. He was Round of 12 two years ago as a sophomore putting up a very solid year recording a notable win over Clayton Foster in the second round at NCAA's en route to making the quarterfinals where he'd fall to Craig Brester. Stylistically he's a guy that likes to roll around and he's probably the best big move guy at this weight class. He had a couple of pins two years ago over Hudson Taylor as they went back and forth through out the year.