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Old 02-03-2020
ChiefIllini1 ChiefIllini1 is offline
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The Mighty ILLINI #10 (RU, Mary)


WHAT: Dual with Rutgers
WHERE: Piscataway (I'm not making that up), New Jersey
WHY: The Chicago Outfit has to Go East to Crack a Few Heads is what I'm sayin', what I'm sayin'
WHEN: Friday, February 7, at 6pm (Central)
TV: BTN+ and Flo
SWAG: Free Bronzer and a fake gold chain for the first 250 La Cosa Nostra, the rest get their pockets picked, if you know what I mean, what I mean.

WHY WE HATE RUTGERS: What? You talkin' to me? Everybody hates Rutgers. Even Rutgers hates Rutgers. Also, too, their NY/NJ mob was like an old man's bridge club. They talk a good game and whack one guy in a barber's chair, and we get 50 movies and a TV series. Al Capone whacks seven guys in one afternoon, and we get one movie with freakin' Kevin Costner.

THE LAST TIME OUT: The ILLINI squeaked past Stupid Northwestern thanks to the heroics of freshmen Justin Cardani, Luke Luffman, and Zac Braunagel. Veterans Travis Piotrowski and Dylan Duncan pitched in. That makes the Orange and Blue 7-3 on the season, 4-2 in the Big Ten and 5-0 in historic Huff Hall. On top of that, the ILLINI left the Midlands with a third-place trophy.

The Scarlet Knights are 8-5 overall, 3-4 in conference, 5-2 at home. They've beaten LIU (43-3), Pitt-Johnstown (22-9) and Centenary (38-6). Then, Fresno State (23-3), CSU-Bakersfield (24-12) and Maryland (28-11). Next, they wrestled the varsity portion of their schedule, losing to Ohio State (13-22), Cornell (16-18), Penn State (6-38), Purdue (18-20) and Michigan (16-21). They did beat Indiana (29-7) and Michigan State (25-12) in there as well. Since their last dual was against Michigan, we'll highlight that one:

Quote:
No. 25 Michigan (6-3, 5-1) 21, No. 23 Rutgers (8-5, 3-4) 16
Match Start: 125 Pounds

125: NR/NR/23 Jack Medley (UM) over 18/16/14 Nicolas Aguilar (RU) by decision, 2-1; UM leads 3-0
133: 9/10/9 Sammy Alvarez (RU) over Austin Assad (UM) by decision, 4-3; Score is tied 3-3
141: NR/NR/31 Cole Mattin (UM) over Zach Firestone (RU) by major decision, 11-3; UM leads 7-3
149: 9/11/8 Kanen Storr (UM) over Gerard Angelo (RU) by tech. fall, 17-1 (5:34); UM leads 12-3
157: 9/8/14 Will Lewan (UM) over Michael VanBrill (RU) by decision, 5-3; UM leads 15-3
165: Brett Donner (RU) over Tyler Meisinger (UM) by decision, 7-3; UM leads 15-6
174: Willie Scott (RU) over Max Maylor (UM) by major decision, 13-2; UM leads 15-10
184: 20/23/25 Billy Janzer (RU) over Jelani Embree (UM) by decision, 3-1 (TB2); UM leads 15-13
197: 19/19/20 Jordan Pagano (RU) over Jackson Striggow by decision, 6-5; RU leads 16-15
285: 2/2/2 Mason Parris (UM) over Alex Esposito (RU) by fall, 1:16; UM wins 21-16


THE LINEUPS: In his post-match presser after the Michigan dual on February 1, Coach Goodale indicated that Joe Grello "would be back soon" at 174. He also said that JoJo Aragona missed that match because of illness, but he would return. In the last five seasons, ILLINOIS is 2-1 against Rutgers. Wrestlestat.com is predicting a 21-14 win for the good guys. Here's what we can expect:

125. Justin Cardani vs. Nick Aguilar. The Scarlet Knight has a very nice 18-7 record. He's won the Navy Classic and finished second in the Princeton Open. Coach Goodale is worried about him as he has now lost three in a row to Michigan's Jack Medley, Purdue's Devin Schroder and Indiana's Liam Cronin. Cardani is 7-5 against common opponents, while the Rutgers kid is 5-5. Wrestlestat.com is saying this'll be a one-point win for the ILLINI. He's a pretty tough kid. I could see that.

133. Travis Piotrowski vs. Sammy Alvarez. This is your main event for the evening, my friends! The 19-2 Great Indestructible Pio versus the 20-6 Alvarez. The pair have identical 5-1 records against the same opponents, except that Alvarez beat Micky Phillippi and lost to Garrett Pepple; whereas, Pio lost to Phillippi and beat Pepple.

Alvarez made his bones by winning the Southern Scuffle, and he only took one loss at both the Navy and Journeyman Classics. He's had a couple of freshman blips during the season, but right now he's on a three-match winning streak. Pio's on a six-match winning streak. The ILLINI's longest win streak this year has been ten matches, the Scarlet Knight's been nine.

So, of course, wrestlestat.com believes this is gonna be a major decision for the kid from Rutgers. Get bent! Dolce Madre Maria!

141. Dylan Duncan vs. JoJo Aragona or Zach Firestone. Duncan has a sweet 14-6 record and a national ranking that could be moving up from #12. Aragona is 10-7, 3-6 in his last nine, and he's coming back from illness. He should be recovered from that. Their common opponents tell us nothing because it's all Nick Lee and Luke Pletcher. Wrestlestat.com is calling for a major decision for Duncan. He'll need to get on his offense to get there. Duncan and Firestone would be like the Hulk versus Loki. Very CGI.

149. Mousa Jodeh vs. Gerard Angelo. The great ciphering machine is calling this a 10-3 win for Angelo, but scoring that many points on a game Jodeh will be tough for him. The 12-10 kid from Rutgers will be favored, though.

157. Eric Barone vs. Mike VanBrill. Last year, I tweeted to John Van Brill that he was spelling his last name wrong. His brother Mike is also spelling his own name wrong. And they are spelling it differently from each other! This is really starting to piss me off. I may have to take legal action.

Mike VanBrill (sic) is favored by a point, 6-5, over Barone, but this is a match that Eric really needs to get on track. They have similar records against common opponents, but the Scarlet Knight has the better overall record at 16-12. He wrestled his first three years at 141 and made the jump to 157 this year. I think Barone over-powers him and wins, and it's not just because of the name thing, but yeah, it's because of the name thing.

***


INTERMISSION



Last year's Rutgers lineup

165. Danny Braunagel vs. Brett Donner. Brawny2 is the clear favorite here with a 17-6 record versus his opponent's 15-11. Brawlnagel is also 6-3 versus the same guys who have beaten Donner at a 6-2 clip. The Rutgers kid won six matches at the Southern Scuffle, but he immediately went on a five-match losing streak after that. Wrestlestat.com calls this a major decision for the ILLINI, and that could very well happen here.

174. Joey "Guns" Gunther vs. Willie Scott or Joseph Grello. Like Brawny2, Guns will need a win here to get back on track. He's favored in both matchups, by major over Scott, by one point over Grello. Gunther has beaten Scott by major (10-0) in the past, so another major is certainly possible. Gunther also beat Grello before, and that one was by one point. The ILLINI has the much better record against common opponents. Grello needed to come back from injury this past week and wrestle a couple of fish from Michigan and Indiana. Instead, if he comes back this Friday, he might be walking into a sore neck against Guns.

184. Zac Braunagel vs. Billy Janzer. Janzer is another one of the young 184-pounders in the Big Ten who will make this weight one of the best in the conference for years to come. He's a redshirt freshman with a 17-5 record. The two have similar records against common opponents. Wrestlestat.com has Janzer ranked slightly higher (#31 to #35), but picks Brawny1 to get a one-point victory. I hate to keep putting the pressure on this fine young man, but here's your co-main event, folks!

197. Matt Wroblewski vs. Jordan Pagano. Pagano is a legitimate favorite here and sports a shiny 19-6 record. He's in his sixth year at Rutgers, taking the Bluto Butarsky route through college. He started out at 165 as a freshman and has worked his way up to 197. Wrestlestat claims this will be a major decision, but we may need Wroblewski to do better than that. Go Wrobo-cop!

285. Luke Luffman vs. Alex Esposito or Matt Correnti. Esposito, a member of the Gambino Crime Family, is currently on parole from Sing Sing. That's not true. He's a redshirt sophomore with a pretty decent 15-11 record, but Luffman is favored to beat him by three. Matt Correnti, who has wrestled duals for Rutgers this year has a slightly better 11-6 record and would be favored by two over Luffman. I don't know about that. Correnti is certainly tough, but his advantage over other heavyweights--his quickness--is much less of an advantage over Luuuuuuuuuke.

CONCLUSION: Rutgers has to face Rider on Sunday on the road. The ILLINI have to roll into Maryland to rough up the Terrapins on Sunday. As you can see, both teams will be concentrating on this Friday night match. Nobody will be looking ahead. Depending on whom they wrestle at heavyweight, there is two pretty solid favorites for both teams and a bunch of close matchups. I think the ILLINI are just a little more solid up and down the lineup though, so I'm picking the Orange and Blue, the Orange and Blue.

Last edited by ChiefIllini1; 02-03-2020 at 04:48 AM.
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  #2  
Old 02-06-2020
ChiefIllini1 ChiefIllini1 is offline
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LINEUPS: As you can see below, there are a few "OR's" in the lineup for Rutgers:

Quote:
#21 Justin Cardani 12-6 125 lbs. #17 Nicolas Aguilar 18-7
#7 Travis Piotrowski 19-2 133 lbs. #9 Sammy Alvarez 20-6
#11 Dylan Duncan 15-6 141 lbs. JoJo Aragona -OR- Zach Firestone 10-7; 5-7
Mousa Jodeh 2-12 149 lbs. Gerard Angelo -OR- Nick Santos 12-10; 6-2
Eric Barone 8-11 157 lbs. Michael Van Brill 16-12
#13 Danny Braunagel 17-6 165 lbs. Brett Donner 15-11
#14 Joey Gunther 13-5 174 lbs. Willie Scott -OR- Anthony Olivieri 7-5; 5-1
#14 Zac Braunagel 15-7 184 lbs. #12 Billy Janzer 17-5
#30 Matt Wroblewski 8-11 197 lbs. #19 Jordan Pagano 19-16
#25 Luke Luffman 13-6 285 lbs. Alex Esposito 15-11
This is from FightingILLINI.com, and they use the "Van Brill" spelling of the name. Note that on the Rutgers website, it is spelled "VanBrill," which is just extraordinary. I cannot explain this phenomenon. Duncan would have a much easier time with Firestone, and it looks like Matt Correnti is not an option at heavyweight for Rutgers. Here is the lineup for Sunday's dual against Maryland:

Quote:
#21 Justin Cardani 12-6 125 lbs. Brandon Cray 4-14
#7 Travis Piotrowski 19-2 133 lbs. King Sandoval 10-12
#11 Dylan Duncan 15-6 141 lbs. Hunter Baxter 6-16
Mousa Jodeh 2-12 149 lbs. Ryan Garlitz -OR- Garrett Burnham 3-6; 3-4
Eric Barone 8-11 157 lbs. Jahi Jones -OR- Lucas Cordio 11-5; 13-10
#13 Danny Braunagel 17-6 165 lbs. Kyle Cochran 11-7
#14 Joey Gunther 13-5 174 lbs. #25 Phil Spadafora 14-11
#14 Zac Braunagel 15-7 184 lbs. Kyle Jasenski 9-13
#30 Matt Wroblewski 8-11 197 lbs. Jaron Smith -OR- Niko Cappello 8-7; 4-11
#25 Luke Luffman 13-6 285 lbs. Parker Robinson 1-18
OTHER SPORTS: The ILLINI basketball team has a game with Maryland an hour after the dual with Rutgers starts. That game will be for sole possession of first place in the Big Ten. Rutgers basketball does not play on Friday.
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  #3  
Old 02-07-2020
Crystal Clearly Crystal Clearly is offline
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RUTGERS

Assuming they start at 125

* If they start at 125 UI will need to get some momentum, this is a tough stretch.
125 - L dec RU 3-0 - toss-up home win (Chief is gonna disagree...)
133 - W dec tied 3-3 - toss-up home win? (* could flip 125/133 outcomes) (RU 6-0)
141 - W major UI 7-3 (RU 6-4)
149 - L dec UI 7-6 (RU 9-4)
157 - L dec RU 9-7 toss-up home win (literally a toss-up, gave RU win because they're at home) (RU 12-4)
* if UI gets through this stretch 2-3 with the bonus at 141, they should win. If not.....
165 - W major/fall? UI 11-9 (fall call may be a stretch.....) (RU 12-8)
174 - W major (Scott) dec (Grello) UI 14-9 (gave pts. for dec) (RU 12-11)
184 - W dec UI 17-9 toss-up momentum win (maybe SV?) (RU 15-11)
197 - L dec UI 17-12 (Wrobo keeps it a dec?) (RU 18-11)
285 - W dec UI 20-12 (Whichever guy RU sends out) (RU 18-14)
* This dual could very well come down to the last match. Puts a lot of pressure on Luff.

Same as MSU, if all of the toss-ups go Rutgers' way, it's an L for the Illini.

Rutgers at home makes this a scarier scenario than (maybe) it should be.
These toss-ups worry me more than against MSU, mostly because of the RAC crowd.
Should be another exciting time. (I won't be in Piscataway - that is funny to say out loud )
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Old 02-07-2020
Crystal Clearly Crystal Clearly is offline
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MARYLAND

Assuming they start at 125:
125 - W major UI 4-0
133 - W dec UI 7-0
141 - W major UI 11-0
149 - L dec toss-up home win UI 11-3
157 - L dec toss-up home win UI 11-6
165 - W dec UI 14-6
174 - W dec UI 17-6 UMs lone ranked wrestler (shouldn't Spadafora be on Rutgers? OR Sopranos? )
184 - W dec UI 20-6
197 - W dec UI 23-6 toss-up momentum win (20-9)
285 - W major/fall UI 27-6 (24-9) (unlike Rutgers, fall call is not that much of a stretch)

Maryland is bad.
Put simply, this will be a yawner....

Illinois could potentially win every match, unlikely, but possible.

There is also the possibility/probability that UI puts some backups in to get some experience in a B1G dual.
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  #5  
Old 02-07-2020
ChiefIllini1 ChiefIllini1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crystal Clearly View Post
RUTGERS

Assuming they start at 125

* If they start at 125 UI will need to get some momentum, this is a tough stretch.
125 - L dec RU 3-0 - toss-up home win (Chief is gonna disagree...)
133 - W dec tied 3-3 - toss-up home win? (* could flip 125/133 outcomes) (RU 6-0)
141 - W major UI 7-3 (RU 6-4)
149 - L dec UI 7-6 (RU 9-4)
157 - L dec RU 9-7 toss-up home win (literally a toss-up, gave RU win because they're at home) (RU 12-4)
* if UI gets through this stretch 2-3 with the bonus at 141, they should win. If not.....
165 - W major/fall? UI 11-9 (fall call may be a stretch.....) (RU 12-8)
174 - W major (Scott) dec (Grello) UI 14-9 (gave pts. for dec) (RU 12-11)
184 - W dec UI 17-9 toss-up momentum win (maybe SV?) (RU 15-11)
197 - L dec UI 17-12 (Wrobo keeps it a dec?) (RU 18-11)
285 - W dec UI 20-12 (Whichever guy RU sends out) (RU 18-14)
* This dual could very well come down to the last match. Puts a lot of pressure on Luff.

Same as MSU, if all of the toss-ups go Rutgers' way, it's an L for the Illini.

Rutgers at home makes this a scarier scenario than (maybe) it should be.
These toss-ups worry me more than against MSU, mostly because of the RAC crowd.
Should be another exciting time. (I won't be in Piscataway - that is funny to say out loud )

Home crowd helps out, but I've got the ILLINI winning the first three starting at 125. Would love for Barone to get a win here. He's due. I think that and 184 are going to be interesting matches. The van Brills are sneaky pinners.

I'm hoping that Rutgers has fattened up on bad small conference wrestlers. Their dual on Sunday with Rider is an exception. Rider has a good team this year, and there are matchups in that dual that might cause a couple of Scarlet Knight wrestlers to look a little past their ILLINI opponents.

The ILLINI are playing for first place in basketball tonight, and all I want is a dual win in Piscataway. By the way, "Piscataway" is fun to say out loud! And one's mouth has to make quick, funny shapes in saying it.

Hope they have a total La Cosa Nostra announcer.



WARILLINI!!!
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Old 02-07-2020
ChiefIllini1 ChiefIllini1 is offline
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I expected that score against Maryland. It's Christmas in February! Wow.

WARILLINI!!!
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Old 02-07-2020
jay31 jay31 is offline
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Great dual for Illini. 125 and 133 looked awesome and took the home crowd out of it. Quite a few guys on Rutgers do the whole bump into you thing after the whistle on the way back to center mat, they must teach that as an intimidation technique but it didnt work. Good to see Mike Carr made the trip with the team.
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Old 02-07-2020
dadudaman4 dadudaman4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jay31 View Post
Great dual for Illini. 125 and 133 looked awesome and took the home crowd out of it. Quite a few guys on Rutgers do the whole bump into you thing after the whistle on the way back to center mat, they must teach that as an intimidation technique but it didnt work. Good to see Mike Carr made the trip with the team.
Agreed. Cardani is one tough kid. Pio pin was a great lift for the team. Overall a very solid win. Still lots of room for improvement on this team.
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Old 02-07-2020
Crystal Clearly Crystal Clearly is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChiefIllini1 View Post
Home crowd helps out, but I've got the ILLINI winning the first three starting at 125. Would love for Barone to get a win here. He's due. I think that and 184 are going to be interesting matches. The van Brills are sneaky pinners.

I'm hoping that Rutgers has fattened up on bad small conference wrestlers. Their dual on Sunday with Rider is an exception. Rider has a good team this year, and there are matchups in that dual that might cause a couple of Scarlet Knight wrestlers to look a little past their ILLINI opponents.

The ILLINI are playing for first place in basketball tonight, and all I want is a dual win in Piscataway. By the way, "Piscataway" is fun to say out loud! And one's mouth has to make quick, funny shapes in saying it.

Hope they have a total La Cosa Nostra announcer.



WARILLINI!!!
Great call on winning the first 3 bouts Chief.

I will forever be happy when I'm wrong like that, including the toss-up call at 157.
I guess my fall crystal ball at 165 was mistaken for 133....

Gotta love Luff with the major. Good stuff
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Old 02-07-2020
ChiefIllini1 ChiefIllini1 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jay31 View Post
Great dual for Illini. 125 and 133 looked awesome and took the home crowd out of it. Quite a few guys on Rutgers do the whole bump into you thing after the whistle on the way back to center mat, they must teach that as an intimidation technique but it didnt work. Good to see Mike Carr made the trip with the team.
I was actually looking to see who made the trip, and I thought I saw We Rachal, but that was about it. Interesting about Mike Carr. Even if this is gonna be a complete injury redshirt year, it is good for him to show support for the team, and he might be able to sneak home for some of Ma's cooking for the weekend.

"Cardani and the First Period Takedown" is the title of my new Children's book, which you can find on Amazon and Kindle. Justin has the gumption and slickness to work that single for a takedown, even when you think it is 50/50. I was hoping for a full-on La Cosa Nostra announcer team from Rutgers, and I was a little disappointed, but the way they pronounced Cardani's name was something out of Goodfellas.

The announcers were good, and the ref was solid. He called double boots in the right way.

The Great Indestructible Pio had locked up a cradle before the announcing team had finished extolling all the virtues of Sammy Alvarez. Pio is on a mission. He has a ton of weapons, from his long arms to his Greco to his sweet singles and tough riding. Really happy to see him able to add a little muscle to the frame and have a fantastic Senior season.

I expect a wrestler named JoJo Aragona to do better than that. Duncan put the hammer on him. The RAC got super quiet for this match. Mousa Jodeh is a warrior! He had to fight off his back, and I think it was the other guy who was gassing at the end of the match.

The van Brills are great pinners and sneaky good. This was an important win for Barone. He should pick up another on Sunday, then he'll have two tough matches against Purdue and Fresno State. (I think that Barone and Zac Braunagel have had a tough strength of schedule this year, and especially during dual season).

Brawny2 had lost his last one (and seemed to be recovering from the flu or something), but here he was on. That was a big, strong kid that he beat down. Guns has the most exciting 1-0 matches ever. I'm very serious about that. He is a master of holds and hand-fighting.

Brawny1, wow, what a great match! He beat another top-notch kid. Janzer is part of this incredible, young, studly group of 184-pounders in the Big Ten who will be the talk of wrestling the next couple of years.

If Wrobo-cop tries that somersault again, I'm going to run down from the stands and knock him over! That looked scary on the knee. It was interesting to watch, though. Luffman had a big, tough guy, but he wore him down. Luke has a gas tank. People are not going to want to wrestle him.

Quote:
Full Results

125: No. 21 Justin Cardani (ILL) dec. No. 17 Nicolas Aguilar, 3-2 | ILL 3, RU 0
133: No. 7 Travis Piotrowski (ILL) Fall No. 9 Sammy Alvarez (RU), 2:43 | ILL 9, RU 0
141: No. 11 Dylan Duncan (ILL) major dec. JoJo Aragona (RU), 8-0 | ILL 13, RU 0
149: Nick Santos (RU) dec. Mousa Jodeh (ILL), 8-2 | ILL 13, RU 3
157: Eric Barone (ILL) dec. Michael Van Brill (RU), 2-1 | ILL 16, RU 3
165: No. 13 Danny Braunagel (ILL) dec. Brett Donner (RU), 4-3 | ILL 19, RU 3
174: No. 14 Joey Gunther (ILL) dec. Willie Scott (RU), 1-0 | ILL 22, RU 3
184: No. 14 Zac Braunagel (ILL) TB-1 No. 12 Billy Janzer (RU), | ILL 25, RU 3
197: No. 19 Jordan Pagano (RU) dec. No. 30 Matt Wroblewski (ILL), 5-0 | ILL 25, RU 6
285: No. 25 Luke Luffman (ILL) major dec. Alex Esposito (RU), 11-3 | ILL 29, RU 6
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