One of Ohio State's former NCAA champions will miss a significant chunk of his senior campaign after sustaining an injury at the Under-23 World Team Trials in Rochester, Minnesota.
Nathan Tomasello, a 5th-year senior and three-time Big Ten Champion will be out nearly three months with a "lower body injury."
Tomasello told Eleven Warriors that he will be out "until the beginning of January," but "I'll be back and ready to go then."
Coach Tom Ryan told his team at their first practice of the season that Tomasello was one of the most dedicated wresters he'd ever worked with and that the senior captain would be back as soon as he was healthy. Ryan said that it was likely the team would have to burn a redshirt with Tomasello's absence from the lineup.
“Nathan Tomasello is one of the most determined young men I’ve ever met,” Ryan said in a release from the university. “There is no doubt he will do everything he can to return to the mat as soon as possible.”
While Ohio State did not confirm the specific injury, sources told Eleven Warriors that Tomasello was undergoing tests throughout the day Monday. He was slated to appear at the team's media day Tuesday, but was with medical personnel during the scheduled availability.
Tomasello spent the weekend competing for a spot on the U23 World Team at the WTT trials, coming up short in the best-of-three finals versus incoming Oklahoma State freshman phenom Daton Fix. He appears to have sustained the injury during the championship round though the relentless veteran showed no signs of injury during the match. By the time he returned to Columbus, however, it was clear something was amiss.
The former 125-pound national champion was expected to drop back to 125 after spending his junior season competing at 133. His absence during the lineup makes things interesting for Ryan and company. The staff had plans for Tomasello to anchor 125 handily during the dual season with Luke Pletcher taking the spot at 133. There are several wrestlers on the roster who will compete for the spot now, including four freshman currently listed at 125.
Eleven Warriors will have more on this story and its implications for the 125-pound division in the Big Ten and at the NCAA tournament as additional details become available.