Andy Vance's picture

Andy Vance


Columbus, Ohio (via Hillsboro, Ohio)

MEMBER SINCE   October 22, 2012

Farm kid from Southern Ohio, writing about the WrestleBucks at the best sports site on the interwebz.


  • SPORTS MOMENT: Taking my dad to The Shoe for the first time.
  • NFL TEAM: Pittsburgh Steelers
  • NHL TEAM: Columbus Blue Jackets
  • NBA TEAM: The Los Angeles Lakers of my youth
  • MLB TEAM: Cincinnati Reds, I guess...?
  • SOCCER TEAM: Columbus Crew

Recent Activity

Comment 13 hours ago

That's a fair question. Orndorff is a Top-10 guy, but you're talking about a group of pretty clear Top 5 guys. It's a good bet that Steveson (Minn.) would have won the NCAA tournament this year, Parris (Michigan) was right behind him and Cassioppi (Iowa) slotted in right behind him.

Kerkvliet at Penn State is the wild card of the bunch. He and Steveson scrapped in high school, but we don't know how he'll fare against the rest of the schedule yet - it's Penn State, so you assume he'll be a world-beater, of course.

But here's the rest of the story: it's not just about how he stacks up against those guys, but how far he can advance in the Tournament. You're going from Gas Tank Gary (my favorite guy on the roster) who was a guy "nobody wanted to face in the Bloodround," to a guy who was slated to be an All American. So when looking at the team race, that's an improvement that matters.

Comment 03 Apr 2020

Ohio State wrestling fans would be wise to get on board with financially supporting the Ohio RTC. If you look at the 990s for the Nittany Lion Wrestling Club versus the Ohio RTC, it's not hard to see why Coach Sanderson is able to get guys to come to Happy Valley (aside from his own prowess as a wrestler and coach, of course). It's something like a 4-to-1 difference in how much cash the two clubs rake in each year.

Comment 02 Apr 2020

You raise some great points, and I think that's why Coach Ryan has largely moved on to saying hey, we're not going to wrestle this tournament or grant another year of eligibility, but we can make sure they're recognized for what they did accomplish by naming the All Americans.

And he'd absolutely agree with you about the regular season - he's been beating the drum on that front for quite a few years now to make the dual meet and the regular season mean more than it does currently.

Comment 31 Mar 2020

According to FloWrestling:

[Lee's] numbers were all-time. He went 18-0 with four pins, nine techs, three majors, a seven-point decision, and a forfeit. That gives him a dominance score of 4.94 and a bonus rate of 94 percent. Note, the NCAA "most dominant award" officially has him at five because they count the forfeit.

He spent an average time of 3:42 on the mat, and all of his techs and pins ended in either the first or second period. Those techs and pins gave him a finish rate of 76.5% meaning he ended 3/4 of his matches early! He had wins over 10 different NCAA qualifiers, including the guys seeded third, fifth, and twelfth at the national tournament.

Comment 20 Mar 2020

Several good interviews this season, for sure. Pletcher and Moore are both seasoned veterans, so they're very comfortable with the press and willing to talk, so any time we had access to the captains was a good day.

The guy I most enjoyed talking to this year was Kaleb Romero. It was really fun talking with him about his development year-over-year. There were several points where we were able to talk back to how much he'd improved year-over-year, and it was apparent that he's pretty self-aware, knows his strengths and where he can improve, and it was also clear how much he was enjoying himself this season.

Jordan Decatur gets the honorable mention, for sure. Typically the younger wrestlers keep it closer to the vest, either because they're not used to the spotlight quite yet or because they're just not familiar with the usual suspects at the weekly pressers. Decatur was the exception to this rule, for sure - from the first time he stepped to the podium this season he was excellent on the microphone, even later in the season when he was losing matches against top-ranked guys and you might have expected the frustration to come through in how he handled the press. He was always professional and like Romero was pretty self-aware and open to discussing the highs and the lows.

Tom Ryan is always the O.G. He really appreciates the fans we have here in this community, and is really candid and accessible. J Jaggers is also an exceptionally good interview - particularly when it comes to breaking down matches and the technical side of wrestling. They almost never give us Tervel, so I don't have much experience with him on the mic, but the interviews he's done with Flo in the past have always been excellent.

Comment 20 Mar 2020

Snyder's biggest problem relative to the Hodge is that he didn't wrestle all that many college matches compared to the guys who won those years, and the world and Olympic medals only count as secondary criteria.

So looking at Zain Retherford in 2017 as an example, Retherford went 28-0, pinned 17 guys and hit the bonus in 25 out of 28 matches. Snyder went 17-0, pinned 4 guys, and hit the bonus 76% of the time. Retherford was one of the most prolific pinners in the sport during his career, and that's the top criteria for the award. Snyder was never really much of a pinner - he just tech'd everybody.

Comment 11 Mar 2020

Yes, we'll definitely dig into projections for next year once the tournament wraps up and we digest how that goes, particularly because NCAA performance will go a long way to answering some of the questions you posed. Couple of quick thoughts/answers:

  • 125 - Heinselman wrestled his best matches of the year last weekend. Can he ride that momentum next weekend?
  • 133 - Decatur definitely feels like he needs to move up, but as one of the guys put it to me about making weight at 133, "If Pletcher can do it, Decatur can do it." The implication being that it was a bigger cut for Pletch, in other words.
  • 141 - Decatur would probably prefer to wrestle here, but keep in mind this is where Kinner wanted to wrestled at the beginning of the season. Don't think 157 is the right spot for him, so maybe he comes back down?
  • 149 - It's Sasso's spot if he wants to stay there. He did pretty well here so far!
  • 157 - Echemendia seems like the obvious choice here BUT the staff needs to see him in the room, training and eating like a D1 guy and then see how his body responds. Keep in mind that he's basically been working out at a random Planet Fitness since November or December, so it'll be wild to see him in OSU's S&C program. Hayes is done. Kinner and Cleary could again battle for spots. Everything will be on the table.
  • 165 - I think Kharchla pushes Smith for the spot. Kharch went 17-0 in opens this year at 165, racking up 3 pins, 4 techs and 3 majors (59% bonus rate). His closest match was a 3-2 decision over Michigan's Cameron Amine at the Michigan State Open the first weekend of the season. Amine is a 3-time Michigan high school champ and six-time Fargo All American, so he's no scrub.
  • 174 - Romero should be the guy; if Kharch does take 165, Smith would challenge Romero for 174 I would think.
  • 184 - Jordan should be the guy; Hoffman was way too big to wrestle 184
  • 197 - Plan would be for Singletary to drop down to 197. Hoffman could take a shot here, too.
  • 285 - Gas Tank Gary, Hoffman could challenge here. Hard to undersell what GTG has accomplished this season, though. From walk-on to 6th at the Big Ten tourney? Not bad, right? How far he wrestles next weekend will go a long way toward answering this question, too.

Some definitely wildcards in the mix. You mentioned D'Emilio as one obvious one at 141, and who knows if there are any transfers on the market this offseason. Lots of questions to be answered in the coming weeks!