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Bedlam Preview: OSU goes on the Road to Wrestle the Sooners

The Cowboys return to Norman for the first time in two years.

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One of the most tradition-rich rivalries in all of college sports goes down on Sunday in Norman as Oklahoma State and Oklahoma will wrestle for the 179th time in the Bedlam series.

The Cowboys will be favored here, but nothing like we’ve seen recently. OU head coach Lou Rosselli finally has his guys in his system and, with OSU in a bit of a rebuilding year, this could be a good one.

Let’s dive in.

125: Nick Piccininni (OSU) vs. Tommy Hoskins or Christian Moody (OU)

At 125 OSU will look for bonus as Piccininni may be the most heavily favored wrestler in the entire dual. Tommy Hoskins has got the start here for the Sooners in the first few matches, but Christian Moody is a three-year starter and senior at the weight. Either way Nick comes in as a heavy favorite and the bonus here could prove crucial for the Cowboys.

133: Reece Witcraft (OSU) vs. Anthony Madrigal (OU)

I like this match a lot. On paper Madrigal will be a clear favorite over the true freshman Reece Witcraft, but I think we’ve seen clear gains and strides in Witcraft’s game that could result in a really good match. His first time out he really relied on upper body stuff, but he’s clearly gaining confidence and adding new wrinkles to his offense that could cause any athlete a lot of problems.

Witcraft slick.gif


141: Dusty Hone or Kaden Gfeller (OSU) vs. Dominick Demas (OU)

In the preseason I would’ve said to circle this date on the calendar. Kaden Gfeller and Dom Demas are two of the most exciting wrestlers out there and, if that’s the matchup we see, expect a high flyer with a lot of scoring. To this point, we haven’t seen Kaden Gfeller and really don’t know what to expect with him if we do. John Smith seemed to indicate that he may be back in the lineup when we spoke to him at the media availability earlier this week.

Though Gfeller is a possibility, Dusty Hone has been the starter to this point and also may be the one best suited to slow down Demas. Whoever the Cowboys send out will be the underdog here though as the returning All-American Demas is one of the top 141s in the country.

149: Boo Lewallen (OSU) vs. Jacob Butler (OU)

Boo Lewallen has looked very good off his injury to start this season. He’s currently the highest-ranked wrestler in the lineup and is a solid favorite here. I would say that OSU should be looking for bonus in this one.  But with Boo’s injury history, John Smith has stated on multiple occasions that they’re really trying to limit the pressure he puts on his shoulder by pushing too much in matches. So this still could end up as a pretty low scoring event, though Boo is a clear favorite.

157: Wyatt Sheets (OSU) vs. Justin Thomas (OU)

Justin Thomas is the returning Big 12 champ and an NCAA qualifier from last season. On paper you’d favor him, but the last time they met Sheets came out with the win. Sheets has run into two buzz saws this season with Josh Humphreys and Quincy Monday, but overall I think he’s improving. I see this as a really close match that could easily go either way and could have a big impact on the dual.

165: Travis Wittlake (OSU) vs. Jose Lao Cooper (OU)

This is another one where the Cowboys will be heavily favored. There’s a real shot at bonus here, but to this point Wittlake hasn’t scored a bonus point win vs. a DI opponent this season. Will he be able to breakout and do it here?

174: Andrew Shomers or Joe Smith (OSU) vs. Anthony Mantanona

Who the Cowboys send out here will have big implications on who’s favored. With Joe Smith the Cowboys will have an edge, with Andrew Shomers the Sooners will be favored. Either way this should be a fairly competitive match. It’s not out of the question for Shomers to upset Mantanona or Mantanona to upset Smith.

184: Anthony Montalvo (OSU) vs. Darrien Roberts (OU)

This is the type of match that screams NCAA tournament resume builder for each of these guys. They’re both in that area where they aren’t quite in the elites that look like sure fire All-Americans at the moment, but they are on that fringe behind it where a win is important for their seeding and qualification at the tournament. It’s about as true a toss up as it gets. A win for Montalvo could potentially put away the dual. A win for Roberts could shift things in OU’s favor going into the last two matches.

197: Dakota Geer (OSU) vs. Jake Woodley (OU)

This is the highest-ranked matchup of the dual with Flo ranking Geer at No. 6 and Woodley at No. 9. I really think this could go either way and when we get this far into the dual, both guys are going to likely have a little extra pressure on them to either keep their team in it or to close it out.

285: Austin Harris (OSU) vs. Josiah Jones (OU)

This dual definitely could come down to heavyweight. On paper you’d probably give Jones a slight edge, but either guy could win it. Harris stepped up to help save the dual vs. Princeton last week. Could he be called on to do it again here?

I really see this as a 21-15, 18-13 type dual that could go either way, but if one team gets rolling it could unravel quickly. Though it’s not the Nos. 1 vs. 2 classics we’ve seen between these programs in the past, it’s sort of refreshing for me to not go into a Bedlam dual expecting an absolute blowout.

Bedlam Viewing Info

When: DEC 15 (SUN) 2:00 PM
Where: McCasland Field House, Norman, Okla.
Watch: TV: FSOK

 

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