Fanco Wrestling

šŸ¦… Are the Iowa Hawkeyes a Top 3 Team in 2023?

publishedabout 2 months ago
1 min read

You asked for it. . .

In fact, I asked the Fanco Fanatics for their most requested lineups, and Iowa was #1 on the list. So, let's dive in. . .

Who's Returning & Leaving?


This one is going to hurt. Austin DeSanto (3x placer), Jaydin Eierman (4x placer), Kaleb Young (2x placer), Alex Marinelli (3x placer), and Michael Kemerer (4x placer) are all gone. There's no way to sugarcoat it; that's a big loss.

The upside is that half of the lineup is returning (glass half full), including 3x NCAA Champion Spencer Lee. On top of that, Stanford's Real Woods transferred into Iowa to fill a spot at 141 lbs. He's one of the top impact transfers, but that still leaves a few open spots. . .

New Starters, Top Recruits


133. Sophomore Cullan Schriever went 15-5 last season. That's a decent record, but he needs to find ways to beat the top-25-ranked guys in the country. Perhaps Drake Ayala even bumps up?

157. There are a few options here, all of whom are redshirt freshmen. . . 2x AZ State Champ Sebastian Robles could fit in nicely. 4x FL State Champ Bretli Reyna or 2x IA State Champ Caleb Rathjen could bump up from 149. My gut says Reyna will start.

165. Big dog Patrick Kennedy was ranked #3 on FloWrestling's class of 2020 Big Board. He's a 4x Minnesota State Champ who pushed Alex Marinelli to the brink (3-2 L) at last year's Luther Open.

Iowa snagged 3 top 50 recruits in 2021 and 2 top 50 recruits in 2022. Most notable is 2x Iowa State (171-5) Champion Aiden Riggens of Shell Rock, IA.

2023 Lineup Preview

Here's how I expect the Iowa Hawkeyes to look in 2023:

  • 125. Spencer Lee
  • 133. Cullan Schriever
  • 141. Real Woods (6th)
  • 149. Max Murin (R12)
  • 157. Bretli Reyna
  • 165. Patrick Kennedy
  • 174. Nelson Brands
  • 184. Abe Assad (NQ)
  • 197. Jacob Warner (2nd)
  • 285. Anthony Cassioppi (7th)

What to Expect


Based on FloWrestling's rankings, I project the Hawkeyes to score around 90 points at NCAAs. That puts them on par to be a top 3 team. Nearly a quarter of those points will come from Spencer Lee as he pursues his 4th title.

And can Iowa compete with Penn State? I think the dual meet could come down to the wire; however, I think PSU still takes the team title.

What do you think?

Josiah Hritsko

Wrestling Fan & Founder of Fanco Wrestling

P.S. Thanks to Diego Pons, Tanner Boes, Steven Guzzo, Rick Reichert, Jason Brantley, Kurt Stemple, and many others who requested this lineup preview.


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