The 165-pound weight class is loaded with talented wrestlers, but a showdown between cousins Bo and Isaac Jordan is the matchup that most fans are clamoring for.
|1||2||Bo Jordan||Ohio State||RSFR||14-0||9-0||8-0||100%||NR|
|6||19||Garett Hammond||Penn State||RSFR||20-10||6-4||5-4||67%||15|
|13||NR||Roger Wildmo||Michigan State||JR||12-13||1-8||0-6||48%||NR|
Bo Jordan, Ohio State. The 165 pound weight class is a strange one in that of the top five wrestlers, only two are in the Big Ten and those two have yet to face one another in a match. Those two are cousins Bo and Isaac Jordan of Ohio State and Wisconsin respectively. Bo Is a freshman with a 14-0 record and Isaac is a sophomore who stands at 18-2. The two have six common opponents and there’s almost nothing that can be gleaned from them. What that means is that finding separation between the two is difficult. Isaac has probably faced a slightly tougher schedule (he was recently pinned by #3 Michael Moreno of Iowa State who is better than anyone Bo has faced), but he hasn’t gone unblemished. There was the aforementioned loss by fall to Moreno and an early season 2-0 setback to #19 Jesse Stafford of Air Force. Bo, on the other hand, has only let two opponents finish the match within two points of him. Bo had a slow middle of the season after an injury forced him out for several months, but he has been peaking as of late. Since defeating #6 Taylor Walsh of Indiana 6-4 in overtime, Bo has teched or pinned everyone he has faced. That combined with the "0" at the end of his record was enough for me to give him the slight edge over his cousin.
While the Jordans represent the top end of 165, there is definitely some solid depth at the weight. Garrett Hammond of Penn State and Nick Moore of Iowa are both incredibly talented wrestlers, but probably sit just outside of the "contenders" category. Taylor Walsh of Indiana and Pierce Harger of Northwestern are the clear #3 and #4 in this weight and they’ve also had one of the strangest series of matches that I’ve ever seen. They’ve wrestled three times this season and Walsh has won twice. The first encounter ended with Walsh pinning Harger in 1:28. He did it again a few weeks later only this time it took 4:05. Of course, as you would expect, the third time that they wrestled, Harger absolutely destroyed Walsh winning via 15-0 tech fall. Here’s to hoping we see round four in the 3rd/4th place match this weekend. Finally, I don’t want to leave out Jackson Morse of Illinois who is another tough wrestler who could probably be considered a contender. I’d slot him ahead of Moore and probably Hammond too, but his 0-3 record against Walsh and Harger keeps him from climbing any higher up the list.
THE DARK HORSE
Garrett Hammond is a tough wrestler who was right there with Bo Jordan and Walsh earlier in the season. Aside from a win over Nick Moore, he hasn’t yet broken through against top competition, but it wouldn’t shock me to see it happen this weekend. Also, he’s not really a dark horse, but Walsh is a pinning machine who has a knack for putting better wrestlers on their backs. It wouldn’t shock me if he somehow did it to one or both of the Jordans this weekend.
This is the first time in a long time that there is intrigue at 165 pounds. From 2011-2014 Penn State’s David Taylor dominated the Big Ten tournament going a combined 13-0.
Projecting the bracket I think the most likely "major" upset could be Hammond over Walsh in the quarterfinals or the minor upset that would be Walsh over Isaac Jordan in the finals.