AMES, Iowa - Iowa State redshirt junior wrestler Kyle Simonson, has a lot on his plate this season, at the dinner table and on the mat.* The heavyweight wrestler is 19-4 despite a 220-pound frame that puts him at a weight disadvantage against opponents who weigh up to 285 pounds.

Simonson is inspired.* He competes with Matt Gibson for the heavyweight weight class starting spot every week.* This constant motivation makes both wrestlers ready for their individual matches.* Both work in the wrestling room with 2010 NCAA heavyweight champion Dave Zabriskie, who demonstrated last season that a 220-pound heavyweight can win it all in collegiate wrestling.

?I look at it like I need to work hard every day, not only to win the spot but to make myself better to compete in the Big 12 and with all of the upcoming competition,? Simonson said.

Simonson?s weight is an advantage and a disadvantage against the biggest men in collegiate wrestling.* Simonson knows he has trained with the best coaches, and he has confidence in himself no matter who he wrestles, no matter their size.

*?I do think Simonson uses his size, his length, and his weight as an advantage, and he does win the majority of his matches,? Iowa State head coach Kevin Jackson said.* ?He?s performed at a very high level.* He?s also watched David Zabriskie become a national champion in the very same weight class and about the same weight going into a match.* Simonson understands he can get it done no matter what he weighs.?

Simonson had a big win against No. 2 Ryan Flores of American, helping the Cyclones score a victory against the seventh-rated Eagles in the National Duals on Saturday in Cedar Falls, Iowa.* Simonson and Flores were in the same brackets at Midlands on Dec. 29, so he knew of Flores? abilities.

*?I just knew it was another opportunity for me to go out there and show what I have been working on, and that I can compete with some of the best kids in the nation,? Simonson said.

Simonson demonstrated his potential against Flores, building a big lead before Flores injury defaulted the battle.* The Algona native has a great mindset when he heads to the mat.* Because heavyweight matches are usually low scoring, he does his best to get significant riding time, guaranteeing one more point for his match.

?I just tell myself I have to get the first takedown, and then get away quickly when I go down,? Simonson said.

Simonson has a lot to look forward to in the next few weeks.* Sitting at 19-4, the horizon holds unlimited competitive possibilities over the next two months.* Simonson may well reach his goals of being an All-American and national champion. But his coaches, teammates and fans know they will always get his best effort.