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Cowboy Wrestling: Oklahoma State Preparing for Fresno State

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The Cowboys are going to be pretty heavy favorites on Sunday against Fresno State.

The Bulldogs boast a young team in every aspect imaginable, the wrestlers on the team are pretty young and the program itself is in its first year back in action after being dropped eleven years ago.

Overall, OSU seems to sort of have an “in” in California recruiting and I think these duals with Fresno, who is now a Big 12 affiliate team, helps that. Anthony Montalvo, who we talked to a few days ago, is from about twenty minutes from there and I’m sure his family loves the prospect of getting to see him out there at some point. With the rise of Arizona State’s wrestling program it’s big for OSU to still have California recruiting locked down.

As a whole OSU will be favored almost all the way across the board, but there are a few key matches that I think could be interesting.

149-pounds: Boo Lewallen (OSU) vs. Khristian Olivas (Fresno State)

Khristian is the best wrestler on the Fresno team. He’s been in and out of the rankings all year and this is a big match for both these guys. They’re probably the 2-3 seeds going into the Big 12 tournament, and whoever wins here will determine who gets the 2 seed. Won’t have a big impact on the tournament, but Boo will definitely want the highest seed possible. Last weekend was the best he’s wrestled in a while. He really looked great, hopefully it continues. If it does he wins easy, if he regresses a little it could go either way.

157-pounds: Greg Gaxiola (Fresno State) vs. Tristan Moran (OSU)

Jonce Blaylock is out for this one with an injury suffered in the Bedlam dual and Tristan Moran will step in. Tristan is really a 149-pounder and could maybe make 141 if he tried, so he’s undersized here. The talent is there for him to win this though. Any one of OSU’s three guys they have at 149 would be ranked, so he’s definitely got the talent. One thing to note is next years play at 157 may be to bump up one of the 149’s to here. It’ll be interesting to see how one of them handles the jump.

Heavyweight: Derek White (OSU) vs. AJ Nevills (Fresno State)

White is ranked around No. 10 in most rankings depending where you look and Nevills is fringe top-20. Derek will definitely be the favorite here but it will be interesting to see how he does. You want to see Derek continue that dominance in a match like this. It really looks like he might be a fairly high All American the way he’s been wrestling.

Most of the other matches OSU will be heavily favored. It will be interesting to see if Jacobe Smith and Preston Weigel are healthy. OSU hasn’t released a preview, but Fresno State had one and it listed both of them as the starter. Not sure if that’s something they received from OSU but I would note that it lists Moran as the 157 starter, which is something I assume they got from OSU so hopefully those guys are back. Smith hasn’t been real clear on their status when we’ve asked, but you really want to see them here before going into postseason.

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