Wrestling: No. 1 Recruit Jesse Mendez Commits to Ohio State, Gives Buckeyes Three Top-Ranked Recruits in the Class of 2022

By Andy Vance on November 3, 2021 at 10:23 am
Jesse Mendez
Robert Scheer/Indianapolis Star via Imagn Content Services, LLC


When your recruiting class includes one of the top-three recruits in the country, you probably have a very good class. When it includes two of the top-three recruits in the country, you probably have an excellent class.

When it includes all three of the top-three recruits in the country? Well friends, that's a horse of a different color.

Top-ranked prospect Jesse Mendez, a 138-pound prospect from Crown Point, Ind., announced Wednesday that he will wrestle for the Buckeyes during an appearance on FloWrestling Radio Live.

He chose Tom Ryan's program over a bevy of blue-chip Big Ten programs including Iowa, Penn State, Indiana, and Michigan.

"They're building something special and they're building a dynasty," Mendez told Flo when explaining his decision. "It was a close decision but it was Ohio State for the most part. I sat down with my family three nights ago and hashed it out. This might be the best recruiting class ever and I wanted to be a part of it."

Calling it the best recruiting class ever isn't entirely hyperbole. In addition to Mendez, the class includes Nic Bouzakis, the No. 2 recruit in the class according to FloWrestling, Nick Feldman, the No. 3 recruit in the class, and Seth Shumate, an in-state standout currently ranked No. 19 in the class.

Like many recent Ohio State commitments, Mendez has serious freestyle credentials with a 2019 Cadet World and 2021 Junior World appearance under his belt, along with a 2021 U23 World Team Trials finals berth. He is also a three-time Indiana high school champion aiming to be just the 10th wrestler in state history to win four titles.

With the addition of Bouzakis and Mendez, Ryan and recruiting consigliere Anthony Ralph appear to have shored up their lighter weights for the foreseeable future, while Feldman and Shumate should have the upperweights well anchored.

Looking back to the summer of 2020 and Ohio State's recruiting priorities, the Buckeye staff clearly hit their targets and secured the pledges of their priority commitments in a big way.

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