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John Smith Expects AJ Ferrari, Other Freshmen to Start this Season

John Smith says you’ll “likely” see Ferrari as the starter at 197

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One of the big topics at Thursday’s wrestling media availability was the Oklahoma State lineup and how John Smith sees everything shaking out for the Cowboys.

He opened things up fairly early with some discussion on how the freshman class was performing.

“I’m pleased with our young guys that we brought in with last year’s recruiting class,” said Smith. “A group of kids that have been real impressive from the standpoint of being excited about wrestling, have been real disciplined with their academics, and really put us in a position where we could use them all.”

He then went on to comment on how this season everyone will get their year of eligibility back.

“Just to remind everyone, as of now and I’m sure it’s going to maintain this, everybody gets the year back this year,” Smith said. “Which is a little bit surprising to me that that came out with winter sports and announced that. I’m not sure what to think about it, but everybody on my roster is eligible to wrestle and not lose a year. So it creates a whole different scenario for you.”

With the lineup scenario that Smith laid out, it looks fairly certain that at least a few freshmen will start this season.

At 125 it’s going to be between Trevor Mastrogiovanni, Jakason Burks, and Reece Witcraft for the starting spot and one from that group will move to 133 as the fill in until Daton Fix comes back in February. Meaning, it is certain that one true freshman will start at either 125 or 133.

Smith addressed the Cowboys’ 174 weight class.

“If Dustin Plott is ready to go we will start him,” said Smith. “But I do believe Anthony Montalvo could make that weight class and may choose to do that.”

So Montalvo may make a weight cut that could shake things up a bit, but there’s a strong chance Plott is the starter at 174 next season.

At 197, the Cowboys have the No. 1 overall recruit in the 2020 recruiting class from last season in AJ Ferrari. Smith stated, “At 197 you’re likely going to see Ferrari.”

Smith went on to say that they probably won’t get everything definitively hammered out until late December, but all signs point to a minimum of two — and possibly as many as five — true freshmen getting the start for the Cowboys.

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