Fourth-ranked Ohio State is set to host Michigan tonight at 7 p.m. EST at St. John Arena in Columbus, Ohio. The dual meet will be broadcast on a same day delay at 11 p.m. EST tonight on the Big Ten Network. The Buckeyes are 14-1 in dual meets this season and a perfect 3-0 in Big Ten action. The Wolverines are 4-10 overall and 0-3 in the Big Ten. Below is a weight-by-weight breakdown of tonight's dual meet. 125: Sean Boyle (Michigan) vs. No. 20 Nikko Triggas (Ohio State) Triggas, a two-time NCAA qualifier, has been erratic this season. He started the season slowly, went through a stretch in November and December where he won nine of 10, but has struggled mightily of late. He has lost five straight matches with all of those losses coming by five or more points. Boyle, a true freshman from Blair Academy, struggled out of the gate, but seems to be coming into his own as he has won 12 of his last 18 matches. Bottom Line : It seems as though Triggas is losing confidence with every match, while Boyle is gaining confidence with every match. This would be a big win for Boyle if he can on the road and beat a two-time NCAA qualifier and nationally-ranked wrestler. The Buckeyes need Triggas to step up and show that can be key contributor in March. He has gone through a rough stretch, but will now face two freshmen this weekend and is expected to win both matches. Prediction : Triggas (Ohio State) dec. Boyle (Michigan) 133: Zac Stevens (Michigan) vs. Ian Paddock (Ohio State) Paddock has stepped into the Buckeye lineup as a true freshman and made an immediate impact. The three-time New York state champion has started the Big Ten dual season 3-0. He is 18-6 overall this season. Stevens, who is in his second season as a starter for the Wolverines, comes into tonight with an 18-12 record, but has gone 0-3 in Big Ten dual action. Bottom Line : Paddock is wrestling with a lot of confidence right now. He has not lost to an unranked opponent since early December and should defeat Stevens. Prediction : Paddock (Ohio State) dec. Stevens (Michigan) 141: Mark Weber (Michigan) vs. No. 2 Reece Humphrey (Ohio State) Humphrey, an NCAA runner-up last season at 133 pounds, was pushed last weekend by Purdue's Juan Aruchuleta, who took him into sudden victory before the Buckeye senior prevailed. Humphrey is never one to make excuses, but he was battling an injury when he suffered two losses at the NWCA/Cliff Keen National Duals. He has since reeled off straight victories. He brings a 23-2 record into tonight. Weber wrestled last season as a true freshman at 149 pounds, but moved down to 141 pounds this season due to two-time Big Ten champion Kellen Russell redshirting. He is 13-20 on the season, but 1-13 in dual meet competition. Bottom Line : Humphrey should dominate Weber and pick up bonus points for the Buckeyes. Prediction : Humphrey (Ohio State) major dec. Weber (Michigan) 149: Mark Boyer (Michigan) vs. No. 2 Lance Palmer (Ohio State) Palmer, a three-time All-American, has been on a roll. His only loss this season came to Wisconsin's Kyle Ruschell in the finals of the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational in early December. He has dominated his competition since then, picking up bonus points in all but three matches. Last weekend, Palmer registered two major decisions, with one of those being an 11-0 shutout over 2007 All-American Matt Coughlin of Indiana. Boyer, a redshirt freshman, has been struggling this season. He is 3-10 this season and has dropped his lost his last nine matches. Bottom Line : Look for Palmer to dominate and it could be a fast match. Prediction : Palmer (Ohio State) pins Boyer (Michigan) 157: Dave Johnson (Michigan) vs. Tony Jameson (Ohio State) Jameson, a four-time Ohio state champion, comes in with a 4-3 mark on the season. Last Friday, Jameson defeated two-time NCAA qualifier Colton Salazar of Purdue. Johnson has gone 2-1 in Big Ten dual action and is 16-14 overall this season. He has won seven of his last 11 matches. Bottom Line : Jameson should control Johnson and win this match. Prediction : Jameson (Ohio State) dec. Johnson (Michigan) 165: Aaron Hynes (Michigan) vs. No. 6 Colt Sponseller (Ohio State) Sponseller, who is ranked No. 6, is 20-3 this season, but his three losses have come to the top three wrestlers in the country. He is coming off a 5-1 victory over No. 12 Paul Young of Indiana. Hynes has been up and down this season. He broke into the rankings one week this season, but has not been able to get back there. He has lost four of his last five matches … with three of those losses coming to unranked opponents. Bottom Line : Sponseller is wrestling at a high level right now, while Hynes has been struggling with consistency. Prediction : Sponseller (Ohio State) major dec. Hynes (Michigan) 174: Justin Zeerip (Michigan) vs. No. 12 Dave Rella (Ohio State) Rella has been consistent all season for the Buckeyes, going 18-6 and earning a No. 12 ranking. He has not lost since the NWCA/Cliff Keen National Duals. Zeerip, an NCAA qualifier last season at 165 pounds, has been in and out of the rankings all season. He has hit a bit of a rough stretch having lost his last four matches. However, three of those four losses came to wrestlers ranked in the top eight. Bottom Line : The two met earlier this season at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational with Zeerip winning that meeting by a score of 2-1. Expect another tight match. Prediction : Zeerip (Michigan) dec. Rella (Ohio State) 184: Hunter Collins/Erich Smith (Michigan) vs. No. 7 Mike Pucillo/T.C. Pendleton (Ohio State) Pucillo stepped on the mat last weekend for the first time since the NWCA/Cliff Keen Nationals … and was firing on all cylinders, picking up a major decision and a technical fall to improve to 15-4 on the season. There is a chance the Buckeyes could give Pucillo the night off and send out Pendleton, who is 2-3 in official matches this season. The Wolverines are listing both Collins and Smith as potential starters. Collins, a redshirt freshman, is 15-10 this season, while Smith is 3-13. Bottom Line : With both teams listing two potential starters, it remains to be seen who will step on mat tonight. Prediction : Pucillo (Ohio State) major dec. Collins (Michigan) 197: No. 9 Anthony Biondo (Michigan) vs. C.J. Magrum (Ohio State) Biondo has been one of the bright spots for the Wolverines in an otherwise disappointing season. He has compiled a 26-3 record after a season in which he went 23-13. Last weekend, Biondo defeated No. 10 Sonny Yohn of Minnesota for the second time this season. Magrum is 13-10, but has been struggling lately. Bottom Line : Biondo should win this one. Bonus points aren't out of the question. Prediction : Biondo (Michigan) dec. Magrum (Ohio State) 285: Ben Apland/Eddie Phillips (Michigan) vs. Corey Morrison (Ohio State) Morrison has gone 2-2 to start the Big Ten dual season. He is coming off a close loss (2-0) to No. 2 Nathan Everhart of Indiana. Morrison, an NCAA qualifier last season, is 14-9 overall this season and has been in and out of the rankings all season. Apland, a redshirt freshman, has gone 10-12 this season, while Phillips, a junior is 7-6. Bottom Line : Morrison seems to beat the wrestlers he should and lose to the wrestlers he should. He has not lost to an unranked opponent this season. Prediction : Morrison (Ohio State) dec. Apland (Michigan) Dual Meet Prediction : Ohio State 30, Michigan 6Digg | Del.icio.us | Reddit | Newsvine | Email | Print



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