2010 Weight Class Preview: 197

Qualifiers at 197
Returning qualifiers in italics, All-Americans in bold, any year:
Brian Broll (Buena Vista)
Michael Burke (Wabash)
Troy Carlson (Chicago)
Rob Kramer (Coe)
Adam Latella (UW-Whitewater)
Ryan Malo (Williams)
Jared Massey (Augsburg)

Connor McNamara (Ursinus)
Bill Meaney (Elizabethtown)
Andy Moore (UW-La Crosse)
Zach Pizarro (Wilkes)
Martin Porter (Delaware Valley)
Bill Schindel (Mount Union)
Martino Sottile (Cortland)
Byron Tate (Wartburg)

The top two return from last year as the top two seeds.  Jared Massey of Augsburg dominated the field, including an 11-2 major decision over Ryan Malo of Williams in the 2009 final.  Malo looks to have a tough road ahead, but he has stepped up his game this year, and he comes into the NCAA tournament with 38 falls and an undefeated DIII record.  Massey is undefeated, the returning champ, and he owns a win over the top ranked wrestler in Division II as well as 197 qualifiers Carlson, Tate, Kramer, Latella, and Moore.  These two appear to be well ahead of the rest of the field.  Looking to play the spoiler are a solid mix of new and returning wrestlers.  Moore of La Crosse was 4th here, while Kramer of Coe was 4th.

It is a strong weight featuring numerous wrestlers with minimal losses at this level.  Schindel was an All-American last year and is the fifth returning placewinner at this weight.  Both of his losses in DIII are to Pizarro of Wilkes, while Schindel has a win over Carlson.  Carlson of Chicago gave Massey a close match at the Great Lakes Region and has defeated IIAC champ Tate.  Tate has only that loss to Carlson to go along with two to Massey and should figure strongly in the placement rounds.  Someone may give the top two seeds a run for their money, but it would be an upset.  Each of them is a Division I transfer with championship level experience, and neither has bowed to any challenger in Division III yet.  Malo, for one, scored bonus points in every match against a DIII opponent this year, though his schedule is not quite as tough as Massey’s.  Fans will be watching to see if it will be a finals matchup and if Malo can turn the tables on Massey from last year.

1. Massey
2. Malo
3. Moore
4. Carlson
5. Tate
6. Schindel
7. Kramer
8. Sottile