By: August Vullo
Recently, three CSU wrestlers – Marcus Robinson, DeAndre Nassar and Ben Smith- all received bids to go to the NCAA Wrestling Championships. This is the first time any CSU wrestlers have received a tournament invite of this level.
Marcus Robinson went 8-4 during the regular season and during the MAC championship he won three matches earning him 13 in the NCAA championship.
DeAndre Nassar had a record of 9-3 during the regular season and went 4-1 during the MAC championship. He was awarded the 26 seed in the NCAA championship and 33 in the NCAA coaches rankings.
Ben Smith during the regular season went 5-4 and during the MAC championship he went 2-1. He received the 24 seed in the NCAA championship.
“The Cauldron” was able to interview Deandre Nassar about his upcoming matchup and how he was handling all of the excitement. When asked about his ranking by the NCAA coaches Nassar said, “I know I’m better than what they ranked me.”
This shows the confidence that oozes from Nassar knowing he can be better than what his ranking says. He was asked if there were any feelings of nervousness going into his first NCAA Tournament. He stated, “I’ve been there before.” Referencing when he qualified for states in high school. He has been on the big stage before, so he has the experience to help him out.
Nassar said, “it will be to [his] advantage” to have his teammates there to help him. He talked about how he went to states by himself in high school, so this time around it was good having people in his corner to help him out. Unfortunately, Nassar and Robinson lost in the first round and Smith ended up falling in the second as well. Despite this all three wrestlers had notable seasons and look forward to collecting more wins next season.