Can Ohio State Crack Top 5 Again with This Star-Studded Class?

publishedover 1 year ago
1 min read

Just a few short years ago, the Ohio State Buckeyes were in the conversation to finish top 2-3 in the NCAA every season.

In 2022, they finished 13th. Yikes. . .

But is this their year to get back into the national conversation? Let's take a look. . .

Who's Returning, Who's Gone?

Good news, all four 2022 NCAA place winners are returning: Sasso (149), Kharchla (165), Romero (184), and Hoffman (197).

In fact, the entire starting lineup is returning, including their four other national qualifiers.

So with every starter returning, are there any new recruits who can break the lineup? Yes.

Top Recruiting Classes

In back-to-back years Ohio State secured the #1 recruits in the country.

Paddy Gallagher (St. Edward, 2021) was a 2X Ohio State champ at 160 lbs. Nick Feldman (Malvern Prep, 2022) was a 3X National Preps champ at 220/285 lbs. You can watch some of their matches on FloWrestling.

Their 2022 recruiting class actually includes three of the top ten recruits. This is huge!

Will any of the new recruits break the lineup, though?

Expect to see Gallagher start at 157. Then you'll likely see top-40-ranked Andre Gonzales (Poway, 2021), or National Preps champ Nic Bouzakis (Wyoming Seminary, 2022) starting at 133.

Other than that, Ohio State typically likes to redshirt true freshman.

Lineup Look

Here's how I expect the lineup to look in 2022/2023:

  • 125. Malik Heinselman (NQ)
  • 133. Andre Gonzales
  • 141. Dylan D'Emilio (NQ)
  • 149. Sammy Sasso (5th)
  • 157. Paddy Gallagher
  • 165. Carson Kharchla (7th)
  • 174. Ethan Smith (R12)
  • 184. Kaleb Romero (6th)
  • 197. Gavin Hoffman (6th)
  • 285. Tate Orndorff (R12)

What to Expect?

Based off of early ranking predictions from FloWrestling, Ohio State can definitely finish top 5 on the podium in 2023.

With the mass exodus of seniors, round of 12 finishes from Orndorff and Smith can easily become top 8 placings.

My heart of hearts still believes Heinselman has what it takes to All-American, and I'm curious to see the competitive level of the incoming freshman.

In terms of points, expect 75; this is a major improvement over last year's 44 points.

Do you believe the Buckeyes are a top 5 team in 2023?

Enjoy the weekend,

Josiah Hritsko

Wrestling Fan & Founder of Fanco Wrestling

By the way, you can check out the PSU lineup preview here.

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