The Wisconsin Badgers brought in a good number of recruits this year and now that we are in the start of the second semester I feel it would be an appropriate time to take a look at how the freshmen are doing.
In the first semester all freshmen can compete, but they must do so attached to their team per new NCAA rules. Each freshman gets 5 opportunities to compete during the season in a dual meet or tournament. Once the 5 opportunities have been used they can no longer compete. HOWEVER, in second semester freshman can then compete unattached from their team and no longer need to use one of those 5 opportunities. If they have any of these opportunities remaining they could still use them in the second semester to step into the starting lineup for a dual meet or tournament.
The UW coaching staff (Bono, Reader, Gross) do a good job recruiting out of state talent. They are passionate with their team and the recruits. The coaches do a good job of explaining their vision to potential Badgers as they hope they ultimately decided to come to Madison. If you can get the commitments of just a couple top 100 big borders then you will have a solid recruiting class and that is often what the coaches do. They also then mix in some talented freshman with transfer portal wrestlers to put together a very well rounded starting lineup.
Only time will tell how well these freshmen develop in college, but as of now this is where everyone stands.
133 Dylan Coy (7-7): Coy started off his season at the Michigan State Open where he placed 4th in the freshman/sophomore division after going 3-2. His two losses came from the #4 recruit Nick Bozauks and future teammate Brock Bobzein. He went on to go 1-2 at the Cyclone Open and then he wrestled in the lineup against Princton where he lost a close match 4-6. He also then placed 7th at the Soldier Salute. He has 1 of the 5 starts remaining.
Cody Goebel (2-8): Goebel made the semis in the freshman/sophomore division at the Michigan State Open before finishing 6th place. He then hit a rough patch going 0-2 at the Cyclone Open and 0-3 at the Soldier Salute. Goebel is a kid that loves wrestling and is always on the mat and will improve. He has several more starts that could be used this year if coaches choose.
Felix Lettini (2-6): Did not see action this season until the Cyclone Open where he finished 4th. He was 1-2 and earned a 8-6 win over his teammate Jack Severin. Lettini was 1-2 at midlands. He has seen some action in the starting lineup this season as he started for the Badgers against #1 Penn State and Illinois. He has 1 more start that could be used this season before the team would have to pull his redshirt.
Nicolar Rivera (2-3): is a Wisconsin native and 3x State Champion. He was the #61 overall recruit on the top 100 big board. Riviera wrestled for the first time at 133 at the Cyclone Open. He was back again at the Midlands where he went 2-2. Rivera is redshirted so it’s likely we will not see him anymore this year, but he does have a couple more starts so it is possible!
Gannon Rosenfeld (10-3): Has put together a nice redshirt freshman season where he is currently 10-3. From Minnesota, where he was both all state in wrestling and football. Rosenfeld finished 3rd in the freshman/sophomore division at the Michigan State Open where he was 5-1. He wrestled again at the Cyclone Open where he was 2-1 and finished 2nd place to teammate Peter Christensen. He finished 4th at the Soldier Salute where he went 3-2. In front of him is multiple time AA Trent Hilger, but Hilger is in his last season with the Badgers. This means Rosenfeld could be the starter next year for UW. He is one of the promising young freshmen on this team that we hope can make a valuable impact for years to come!
James Rowley(2-5): Rowley is the highest overall recruit Coach Bono and company brought in this year. He was ranked #21 on the top 100 big board. He was a 3x State Champ, a Super 32 Runner up, and a 2-time Cadet World team member and world silver medalist. Rowley was 1-2 at the Badgers Battle in RIver City. His 1 win was a promising decision over Iowa State’s MJ Gaitan. He was 1-2 at Midlands. He made his first Big Ten start last weekend against Michigan. Rowley has competed on 4 separate occasions this year. So, I think technically if he is redshirted he has one more start left. Rowley has had moments of looking very promising and other moments that you can chalk up to being a freshman. It seems that he is in a roster battle with Josh Otto so I am not sure if he will be the Badgers starter or not come the end of the year.
Michael Talshahar (2-7): Is a State Champion at 195 in Florida and a 4x state placer. He wrestled his first match at the Michigan State Open but was 0-2 with a couple of close decision losses. Finished 6th at the Cyclone Open going 1-3. Wrestled his last matches so far this season at the Midlands where he went 1-2.
* Not included is Badger recruit #70 on the top 100 big board Brock Bobzein from California. Bobzein has taken a gap year and is training out of the Badger RTC where he is currently 5-4 at 133 pounds.