It is that magical time for wrestling fans. Time to roll out the mats and bust out the headgear, or in my athletically challenged case, pull out the computer. For Michigan State wrestling fans, the season is rapidly approaching. Head coach and parrot aficionado Tom Minkel recently released the MSU grappling schedule.
It will not be an easy season this year, as the Spartans take on eight of the top 25 teams from last year, including a home dual against four-time reigning NCAA Champion, Penn State. In total, Michigan State will take on six ranked teams at home in the Jenison Field House.
The Spartans kick off the season with the annual Michigan State Open right here in East Lansing on Nov. 2. After a quick home stand, Ypsilanti and the Eastern Michigan duals on Nov. 15. The competition will include West Virginia, Kent State, and Tennessee-Chattanooga.
Michigan State begins head-to-head competition on Nov. 21 by traveling to the frozen tundra, that is Minnesota. The Gophers were the runner-ups to Penn State for the championship last year. The last match of the month is on Nov. 23 – a dual against Iowa State at home.
December includes trips to Northern Illinois (Dec. 5) and Iowa (Dec. 6), to go up against the Huskies and the Hawkeyes. Iowa is always a tough opponent when it comes to wrestling good match up to keep an eye on for the Spartan fans.
2015 has the Spartans hosting four duals in January. Bucknell is the first of these on the Jan. 4, followed by Michigan on the Jan. 11, Ohio State on the Jan. 16 and then Wisconsin on the Jan. 26.
February is the end of Big Ten duals, with MSU hosting the defending Champions on Feb. 1 and Nebraska a week later on the Feb. 8. MSU travels to Indiana on the Feb. 13 and then has a short turnaround for Purdue on the Feb. 15. The two final home duals will be against Duke on the Feb. 20 and CMU on the Feb. 21.
It’s always tough sledding in the Big Ten for a wrestling team, but head coach Minkel and his wrestlers look to have a strong showing this year after a difficult season last year. Stay tuned for further Pinned Down coverage as the season draws closer, and stay hydrated my friends.
Nick Carver is a Multimedia Journalist for MSU Impact Sports and host of Pinned Down
Photo Credit: Jon Yales/Impact Sports