Iowa State returns to the grind of the Big 12 dual season with a trip to Brookings, South Dakota, on Friday night to face the South Dakota State Jackrabbits before making the trek back to Ames for a Sunday afternoon showdown with the Bison of North Dakota State.
Leisure remains in lineup for at least two more duals
The shoulder injury Jarrett Degen suffered during the first day of the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational in early December has reached the near end.
At his media availability Tuesday afternoon, Iowa State Head Coach Kevin Dresser said the redshirt junior will start live action this week to see how he feels.
Dresser did confirm the All-American will not wrestle this weekend.
He followed by saying it's not out of the realm of possibility that Degen will put on the singlet for the Oklahoma State dual next Sunday.
"50/50," Dresser said. "Is he going to be back by February 1st? I hope so, that's the goal."
In the meantime, redshirt sophomore Ryan Leisure will continue to occupy the 149 pound spot in the Cyclones lineup, where he has gone 3-2. He had a pin in the Utah Valley dual and went 2-1 during the Sun Devil Duals in Phoenix.
Leisure could get a potentially big test on Friday as the Jackrabbits have 11th-ranked Henry Pohlmeyer at their disposal, who is 11-3 on the year and is coming off a win against Northern Iowa's Max Thomsen.
Dresser hopes the lessons Leisure learned out West will translate to the next two conference matchups.
"He's making improvements; he's starting to push it more in the room," Dresser said.
New InterMat rankings
A lot of movement following the Sun Devil Duals was expected for Iowa State, and it still remains with seven ranked wrestlers by InterMat.
Alex Mackall (125) and Todd Small (133) each dropped one spot from last weeks rankings, now holding the 13th and 15th spot, respectively.
Ian Parker (141) and David Carr (157) — the two Cyclone wrestlers to go 4-0 over the road trip — held tight on their fifth and third spot in the rankings, while Degen rose to seventh in the rankings.
Sam Colbray will now hold the 174 spot in Iowa State's lineup, and he slides into 11th. Gannon Gremmel (heavyweight) fell five spots to the 14th slot.
Ranked matchups this weekend
There are prime chances for the seven ranked wrestlers of Iowa State to solidify their resumes for seeding not only in the Big 12 tournament in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but the NCAA Tournament in Minneapolis.
In the dual against South Dakota State, Mackall could face fellow junior Danny Vega, who entered the rankings this week at 20. That is the only potential matchup between two top-20 grapplers.
Small could get a crack at his first top-10 opponent in North Dakota State's Cam Sykora, while Gremmel could face 20th-ranked Brandon Metz on Sunday.