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Early Lineup Look: 2022-23 Missouri Tigers

The Missouri Tigers are coming off a 9th place finish at the 2022 NCAA Championships and look poised to improve on that finish in the upcoming season. Missouri is returning most of its starters since last season and will be led by defending 165-pound NCAA Champion Keegan O’Toole along with two other former All-Americans in Brock Mauller and Rocky Elam. Check out a breakdown of Missouri’s lineup for next season that will put them in contention to win a team trophy.

2022-23 Missouri Projected Starting Lineup

125: Noah Surtin

133: Connor Brown

141: Allan Hart

149: Brock Mauller

157: Jarrett Jacques

165: Keegan O’Toole

174: Peyton Mocco

184: Sean Harman/Colton Hawks

197: Rocky Elam

285: Zach Elam

125: Noah Surtin, SO

Surtin upgraded his 1-2 performance from 2021 NCAAs by going 3-2 at last year’s tournament-finishing 1 win shy of All-American honors. Surtin recorded a number of notable wins last year highlighted by victories over Dylan Shawver, Anthony Noto, Joey Prata, Kysen Terukina, Jaret Lane, Jakob Camacho, and former All-American Sam Latona. The Tigers will need Surtin to continue to improve and find the podium if they hope to finish in the top 4 of the team race at NCAAs.

133—Connor Brown, SR

Connor Brown will have one final season to realize his potential for the Missouri Tigers. Brown is entering his 6th college season and hasn’t qualified for the NCAA Tournament since his freshman year back in 2018 when he was competing for South Dakota State. Since then, Brown has battled his fair share of injuries – likely contributing to the troubles he’s experienced getting back to peak form.

When he is wrestling his best, Brown can challenge for All-American status and has some impressive wins to back that up. Among others, Connor Brown has past wins over the likes of Michael McGee and Drew Hildebrandt.

141—Allan Hart, SR

Last year, Allan Hart put together a solid regular season but fell short at NCAAs against strong competition. Though he defeated 3X All-American Stevan Micic in the opening round, Hart went on to lose consecutive overtime matches to eventual 4th place finisher Grant Willits (3-1) and round of 12 finisher Clay Carlson (7-5). Those losses show how close Allan Hart is to earning All-American honors and scoring significant points for Missouri. It’s also worth noting that the top 4 finishers from last year’s NCAAs won’t be returning this year – opening the door even more for Hart to find his way to the podium.

149: Brock Mauller, JR

Two-time All-American Brock Mauller will return to the starting lineup for the Tigers after redshirting last year. Mauller’s only competition during his redshirt season was at the Southern Scuffle where he competed up at 157 pounds. Mauller finished 5th there losing to Chase Saldate and Hunter Richard.

Despite that lack-luster performance at the Scuffle, expectations should be high for Mauller this upcoming season at 149 pounds. Mauller’s 5th (2021) and 6th (2019) place finishes at his last two NCAA tournaments prove he’ll be able to compete with anyone in the country at 149 pounds.

Highlights of Mauller’s win over Bryce Andonian at the 2021 NCAA Tournament:

157: Jarrett Jacques, SR

Jarrett Jacques is a 4-time NCAA qualifier and will be looking to punch through for All-American honors in his final year of eligibility. Though Jacques went 0-2 at last year’s NCAA tournament, his losses could not have been closer (or more heartbreaking). Jacques’ lost his opening round match in double overtime to eventual All-American Will Lewan, then lost his consolation match to Doug Zapf.

What should we expect from Jacques in the 2022-23 season? While he’s been consistent over his college career, he’s never been able to break through as a consistent top 10 wrestler. Is he capable of earning All-American honors? Absolutely. However, Jacques did not have any wins over All-Americans last year and he is rightly ranked at #18 in our early NCAA rankings.

165: Keegan O’Toole, SO

Keegan O’Toole capped off a perfect season last year by going 25-0 and winning an NCAA championships at 165 pounds. During his title run, O’Toole knocked out All-Americans Anthony Valencia, Carson Kharchla, Cam Amine, and defending national champ Shane Griffith. The most impressive part of that run? O’Toole did it all with a bum ankle. Back at 100%, O’Toole will be the prohibitive favorite at 165 pounds going into next season.

It’s worth noting there will be new challenges for O’Toole in the field – 2021 157 NCAA champ David Carr will be moving up to 165 along with last year’s 157 pound runner-up, Quincy Monday. Those two will be joining a field that’s returning 6 of 8 All-Americans from last year’s tournament making 165 pounds the deepest weight in the country.

Highlights of Keegan O’Toole’s win over Shane Griffith in the NCAA finals:

Watch Keegan O’Toole breakdown his NCAA Finals match:

174: Peyton Mocco, Jr.

Peyton Mocco finished 1 win shy of All-American honors last year when he lost in the round of 12 to Clay Lautt. Like Surtin, Hart, and Jacques, Mocco have shown great potential but have yet to turn that into All-American honors. Along with taking NCAA runner-up Mekhi Lewis to overtime, Mocco had notable wins last year over Tyler Eischens, Matt Finesilver, Anthony Mantanona, and Cade Devos. Mocco is currently ranked #7 in our early NCAA rankings and, if he wrestles to his potential, he should be able to reach the podium this year in Tulsa.

Peyton Mocco’s win over Matt Finesilver from the 2022 Southern Scuffle:

184: Sean Harman, SO/Colton Hawks, SO

Two-time NCAA qualifier Jeremiah Kent looks to have moved on leaving the 184 pound spot open for competition. In Kent’s absence, Missouri has two, quality 184 pound wrestlers in Sean Harman and Colton Hawks. Of the two, Harman had the most impressive wins last year while competing down at 174 pounds where he defeated NCAA qualifier Hayden Hastings and All-American Dustin Plott. Hawks spent limited time in competition, only wrestling at 3 opens, and didn’t have any wins over NCAA All-Americans or qualifiers.

Expect this roster battle to be extended throughout the season with both Harman and Hawks getting their opportunity to provide themselves. Because we’ve seen them in limited action against the 184 pound field, it’s difficult to project how either will finish at the NCAA tournament. It’s likely they’ll qualify for NCAAs but whether or not they can contend for All-American honors is yet to be determined.

Sean Harman’s win over Hayden Hastings:

197: Rocky Elam, SW

After Keegan O’Toole, Rocky Elam was a bright spot for the Tigers at the 2022 NCAA tournament. Elam took out 2021 NCAA runner-up Nino Bonaccorsi in the round of 12 to earn his second straight All-American honors. He then proceeded to take out Eric Schultz and Gavin Hoffman before losing to Stephen Buchanan to finish 4th. Elam will be in the hunt to contend for the NCAA title next year at 197 pounds and will be right in the mix with the likes of returning Max Dean, Jacob Warner, Stephen Buchanan, and Yonger Bastida.

Rocky Elam’s win over Gavin Hoffman in the consolation semifinals:

285: Zach Elam, Jr.

Zach Elam was the third wrestler from Missouri to finish in the round of 12 finishing 1 match short of All-American status when he lost to Anthony Cassioppi, 4-0. Despite finishing just shy of the podium, Elam had notable wins over Luke Surber, Sam Schuyler, Brandon Metz, AJ Nevlls, and Trent Hillger. We currently have Elam ranked #7 in our early NCAA rankings putting him as a favorite to earn All-American honors.

Where Will The Tigers Finish At NCAAs?

It’s clear the Missouri Tigers have the potential to win a trophy this year however they will need multiple wrestlers in their lineup to outperform past NCAA finishes. Noah Surtin, Allan Hart, Jarrett Jacques, Peyton Mocco, and Zach Elam will all likely be seeded anywhere between 5 and 16 once the NCAA tournament rolls around. Like last year, they’ll be on the verge of All-American status but will need to win multiple close matches on the biggest stage to help Missouri upgrade their 9th place finish. If everything goes right, the Tigers will bring home a trophy.

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