Release: November 12, 2009
VESTAL, N.Y. -- Fourth-year Binghamton wrestling coach Pat Popolizio has assembled arguably the most talented roster in Binghamton's Division I tenure. With reigning All-American and national champion hopeful Josh Patterson leading the charge, the 2009-10 Bearcats may be poised to jump into the top tier of the Colonial Athletic Association and send multiple wrestlers to the NCAA Championship.
will be our first year with experience, leadership and a lot
of young, great talent," Popolizio said. "We have
been fortunate enough to get several top notch recruits over
the last few years and are excited to see them in a Bearcat singlet."
"Josh's talent and experience have made it a realistic goal for him to become our first-ever NCAA Division I champion," Popolizio said. "He has shown the way to the younger generations of Bearcats that you can win at a very high level here at Binghamton."
But unlike previous years, Patterson is surrounded by talent up and down the lineup - albeit young talent - and if the team avoids injuries, it should be the strongest dual meet lineup BU has showcased in its nine-year Division I history.
"Jimmy has won at a very high level in high school and internationally and we expect the same results at the college level for us," Popolizio said.
In addition to Chase, freshmen James Inghram and Dan Riggi are beginning promising collegiate careers. Inghram is a three-time Ohio state placewinner who went 139-32 in four years at University High. He was state runnerup and placed third two other years. Riggi racked up 177 career wins in five stellar seasons for Scotia-Glenville High.
"Both James and Dan had outstanding high school wrestling careers and they bring many accolades with them to Binghamton," Popolizio said. "Most likely James will redshirt and continue to develop into a future leader of our team."
"Anwar has shown he can beat high-level opponents," Popolizio said. "He needs to be able to do this week-in, week-out on a consistent basis to finish his growth as a top-level competitor. He has made progress toward this over the summer and in preseason."
Sophomore Anthony Jerome and freshmen Genta Murayama and Dan Gorman should continue to develop in the practice room and sophomore transfer Eric Kleeman could also see time. Jerome captured the Alfred State Open and won 12 matches during his redshirt season last winter.
"Donnie is a phenomenal wrestler who showed great improvement throughout his redshirt year," Popolizio said. "He has set his goals very high for this year and we expect he can meet those goals at the end of the season."
Sophomore Jon Kaloust, one of the hardest workers on the team, is a solid backup.
"Both Justin and Ryan have proven they can win at this level," Popolizio said. "They will be battling it out most of the year and 157 should be one of our strongest weights. Both of them have a lot of talent and we expect them to be leaders."
"Josh has been working hard on his few weaknesses and seems to be primed and ready to have an even better season than last year," Popolizio said. "He has a new confidence in him, being a returning All-American, and he wants to cap his career with a national title."
"Nate is a very powerful and athletic wrestler who showed great improvement throughout his redshirt year," Popolizio said. "We expect big things from him this year."
The season opens with the BU Open, held in the Events Center on November 15. After the always-competitive Cornell Body Bar on November 21, BU will welcome the Journeyman Sprawl & Brawl to the West Gym. The event features 14 teams from across the country. The Bearcats will then head to Troy for the Northeast Duals, where they will face Nebraska, Northern Colorado, North Carolina and Appalachian State. Other first-semester highlights include the Penn State Open and Midlands Championship in Illinois.
Duals against longtime SUNY rival Buffalo, Penn and American plus matchups against CAA foes Hofstra, George Mason, Rider and Old Dominion will test the Bearcats. A trip out to Stillwater, Oklahoma for a February 20 encounter with the Cowboys leads into the CAA Championship, hosted by Rider on March 5-6. The NCAA Championship moves from St. Louis to Nebraska-Omaha on March 18-20.
"We have put together another tough schedule that will challenge our team all year long," Popolizio said. "Our athletes will have the opportunity to wrestle the best all season and be ready for the most important part of the year in March."
have plans to have our best dual meet record in our time here,"
Popolizio said. "We have many talented guys with experience
and they all are capable of producing seasons that get them to
the NCAA Championship. A few of these guys can also find themselves
wrestling late in that tournament and competing for All-America
honors and a national title."
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