2024 NCAAs Preview • 149 Pounds


Second-Round Notes

  • No. 8 seed Casey Swiderski (Iowa State) and Cornell’s No. 9 Ethan Fernandez traded takedowns and escapes in the first. Swiderski was on top to start the second. After an escape Fernandez was up by one, but Swiderski hit a barrage of shots, but Fernandez fights them off, but was warned for stalling. Swiderski got out in the third and regulation ended knotted at five. Swiderski gets the ride on the strength of a couple of mat returns. Fernandez opts for neutral before Swiderski clinched the 8-5 tiebreaker win with another takedown.
  • In a pair of workmanlike wins by the identical 4-2 scores, a couple of higher seeds move on as #4 Caleb Henson (Virginia Tech) defeated #20 Jordan Williams (Oklahoma) and #2 Kyle Parco (Arizona State) defeated #18 Cody Bond (Appalachian State).

First-Round Notes

  • Oklahoma State’s Jordan Williams was seeded No. 20 and appeared to give up a single-leg takedown to Iowa’s No. 13 Caleb Rathjun in the final 15 seconds — with the score tied 5-5 — when the Cowboy took advantage of a scramble and caught the Hawkeye in a cradle to score a takedown and four-point nearfall in the final 10 seconds.
  • Oklahoma’s Willie McDougald was seeded No. 21 when the Sooner scored a takedown with three seconds left to beat Maryland’s No. 12 seed Ethen Miller, 5-4.
  • Jaden Abas, a former All-American from Stanford, but seeded No. 26, stunned Penn State’s No. 7 Tyler Kasak, 4-2. The Cardinal scored the bout’s only takedown in the second period.
  • Wyoming’s Gabe Willochell, was seeded No. 22, but had no trouble blanking No. 11 seed Quinn Kinner of Rider, 8-0. The match was highlighted by a takedown and two-point nearfall in the first period to give the Cowboy a 5-0 lead.


The following is a look at WIN’s Top-10 rated wrestlers, plus other notable wrestlers, at 149 pounds before the conference/NCAA qualifying tournaments. Go to WIN-Magazine.com for an updated NCAA preview after the qualifiers.

1. Ridge Lovett, Nebraska, Jr., 

Post Falls, Idaho

Note: Redshirted last year after finishing second to Yianni Diakomihalis in 2022 as a No. 10 seed.

Season/Career Record: 21-1/67-16

NCAA Resume: Fourth Nationals, including cancelled NCAAs in 2020, with a combined record of 5-3. Went 1-2 one year before claiming second in 2022.

Regular-season Notes: In compiling a 21-match winning streak this season, the Husker claimed the Las Vegas Invite in December when he beat Virginia Tech’s Caleb Henson, 4-3, in the final.

2. Caleb Henson, Virginia Tech, So., Cartersville, Ga.

Note: Was named 2023 ACC Freshman of the Year one year removed from winning a third Georgia state championship.

Season/Career Record: 24-1/51-6

NCAA Resume: Second Nationals after he won 5 of 7 bouts to claim fifth in Tulsa after he lost in the second round.

Regular-season Notes: Defeated Arizona State’s Kyle Parco, 5-0, in Vegas, and ended regular season with a 4-1 win over NC State’s Jackson Arrington.

3. Kyle Parco, Arizona State, Jr., Danville, Calif.

Note: Transferred from Fresno State in 2021.

Season/Career Record: 


NCAA Resume: Fourth Nationals with a combined record of 12-8 and three AA honors: sixth (while competing for Fresno State) in 2021, eighth in 2022 and fourth last March.

Regular-season Notes: Ended the regular season on an eight-match winning streak, including a 4-3 victory over Nebraska’s Ridge Lovett.

4. Jackson Arrington, NC State, So., Sidman, Pa.

Note: A former three-time PIAA state champ from Forest Hills High.

Season/Career Record: 16-3/39-12

NCAA Resume: Second Nationals after reaching the blood round as No. 16 seed in last March, when he went 3-2 with wins over Quinn Kinner (Rider), Mitch Moore (Oklahoma) and Victor Voinovich (Oklahoma State)

Regular-season Notes: Avenged a Las Vegas loss to Ohio State’s Dylan D’Emilio two weeks later in a dual meet.

5. Austin Gomez, Michigan, Gr., 

Carol Stream, Ill.

Note: Returned to collegiate wrestling after first wrestling at Iowa State (2018-19), where he missed two years (2020 and ’21) because of injury before transferring to Wisconsin (2021-23) and now to Michigan.

Season/Career Record:  7-1/65-18

NCAA Resume: Fourth Nationals with a combined record of 10-6. That included a 5-2 mark in 2022 when he claimed fourth and 3-2 in 2019 when he reached the blood round. Last year, Gomez was 2-2 as a No. 14 seed.

Regular-season Notes: Saw action in just eight bouts after returning to action on Jan. 4. One victory was a 17-6 major against Ohio State’s Dylan D’Emilio.

6. Casey Swiderski, Iowa State, So., Dundee, Mich.

Note: Won four Michigan state high school championships for Dundee.

Season/Career Record: 


NCAA Resume: Second Nationals after he went 3-2 as a No. 24 seed at 141 pounds.

Regular-season Notes: He won 5 of 7 bouts in Las Vegas in early December, then did not return to action until Jan 26 and beat Ty Watters in overtime on Feb. 2.

7. Ty Watters, West 

Virginia, Fr., Imperial, Pa.

Note: Two-time PIAA state champ from West Allegheny High.

Season/Career Record: 17-3/17-3

NCAA Resume: First Nationals

Regular-season Notes: Defeated Illinois’ Kannon Webster and Central Michigan’s Corbyn Munson at the Midlands.

8. Kannon Webster, Illinois, Fr., 

Toulon, Ill.

Note: One year removed from winning three state titles for Washington Community High.

Season/Career Record: 13-1/13-1

NCAA Resume: First Nationals

Regular-season Notes: Defeated Iowa’s Caleb Rathjen and Ohio State’s Dylan D’Emilio after winning six of seven bouts at the Midlands.

9. Chance Lamer, Cal Poly, So., 

Corvallis, Ore.

Note: Transferred from Michigan to Cal Poly, where he is joined on team by brothers Legend and Daschle.

Season/Career Record: 15-4/30-13

NCAA Resume: Second Nationals after he reached the blood round last March, when one of his three wins was a 43-second fall against Austin Gomez.

Regular-season Notes: His first six victories were bonus-point wins, including a 15-6 major against Missouri’s Logan Gioffre.

10. Corbyn Munson, Central 

Michigan, Gr., Chelsea, Mich.

Note: Returned to 149 after qualifying for Nationals at 157 last year.

Season/Career Record: 21-4/86-47

NCAA Resume: Third Nationals after going 0-2 in both 2022 (at 149) and 2023 (157).

Regular-season Notes: Entered MAC on a 10-match winning streak and had seven pins this season.

Others to Watch

• Ohio State senior Dylan D’Emilio is looking to add on to his eighth-place national finish after qualifying for his fourth national tournament. This year, wrestling up a weight, the Buckeye was 20-8 before the Big Tens.

• Stanford junior Jaden Abas would also like to earn a second AA  honor, the first since claiming seventh as redshirt freshman in 2021. He went 2-4 in the 2022 and 2023 NCAAs and was 13-6 heading into the Pac-12s.

  • RMN Events
  • 2022 DIV II
  • Granby School of Wrestling
  • Matguard
  • Kennedy Industries
  • Cliff Keen
  • Summit Measurement
  • ASICS Wrestling
  • Rocky Mountain Wrestling Camps
  • Dollamur
  • Holiday Gift Subscription