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Oklahoma State wrestling: AJ Ferrari ‘likely’ to start at 197 pounds for 2021 season

John Smith also projects freshmen Jakason Burks, Trevor Mastrogiovanni and Dustin Plott as potentially starters.

AJ Ferrari
Oklahoma State athletics

AJ Ferrari, the top overall recruit in the 2020 class, is “likely” to start at 197 pounds for Oklahoma State this coming season, coach John Smith said Thursday.

Ferrari would take over the starting spot from returning All-American Dakota Geer, who went 24-8 this past season after being at 184 pounds for the Oklahoma City Open and during the 2018-19 season.

Geer, a redshirt senior and transfer Edinboro, will likely move down to 184 where could have to wrestle-off against redshirt sophomore Anthony Montalvo, who was 25-6 last season at 184. Smith said Montalvo “may choose” to move down to 174, which is vacant after starter Joe Smith graduated this past spring. True freshman Dustin Plott of Tuttle is also an option at 174, and Smith went as far as to say if he’s “ready to go we will start him.”

Ferrari and Plott won’t be the only freshmen in OSU’s lineup. Jakason Burks and Trevor Mastrogiovanni will both compete for the spot at 125 against sophomore Reece Witcraft, who was 18-10 last season at 133 while Daton Fix took an Olympic redshirt. The winner of the three-man competition will be at 125 while the second-place guy will take the 133 spot until Fix returns from his one-year suspension by USADA for testing positive for ostraine.

Smith and coaches around the country will be more likely to start freshmen this season as the NCAA ruled every wrestler will not lose a year of eligibility because of the shortened season caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

OSU’s 2021 potential lineup

125: Burks (Fr.) OR Mastrogiovanni (Fr.) OR Witcraft (So.)

133: Burks (Fr.) OR Mastrogiovanni (Fr.) OR Witcraft (So.) Fix starting Feb. 11

141: Kaid Brock (R-Sr.)

149: Boo Lewallen (R-Sr.)

157: Wyatt Sheets (R-Jr.)

165: Travis Wittlake (R-So.)

174: Plott (Fr.) OR Montalvo (R-So.)

184: Geer (R-Sr.) OR Montalvo (R-So.)

197: Ferrari (Fr.) OR Geer (R-Sr.)

HWT: Austin Harris (R-Jr.) OR Cornelius Putnam (R-Jr.)