March 5, 2010
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The final piece of the wrestling puzzle was revealed today when University of Iowa head coach Tom Brands named junior Jake Kerr his representative at 157 pounds for the Big Ten championships tomorrow and Sunday inside Crisler Arena.
Kerr is 9-7 overall with wins in three of his last four matches.
"It was just a feeling and away we go," Brands said at a pre-tournament media conference Friday at the Junge Center. "It looks like he has Ohio State (No. 5-seeded Sean Nemec) first round and we have to get ready for that match. Then we go forward from there."
Kerr is the fourth seed. He did not wrestle Nemec during the regular season; UI junior Aaron Janssen defeated Nemec, 5-2, on Feb. 19 in Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
"It was pretty-much business as usual for one guy (Kerr) and one guy is pretty disappointed I'm sure," Brands said. "I told them this morning. There wasn't a lot of drama."
Janssen is 12-4 this season with an unblemished 6-0 mark against Big Ten Conference opponents.
The Hawkeyes are attempting to win their 34th conference championship when action begins at 10 a.m. (Iowa time) Saturday. Five Iowa wrestlers -- Matt McDonough (125), Montell Marion (141), Ryan Morningstar (165), Jay Borschel (174) and Dan Erekson (285) -- have pig-tail matches.
"That's good. That's an extra match," Brands said. "We have to get ready for tomorrow morning."
Brands, Michigan head coach Joe McFarland, Ohio State coach Tom Ryan and Penn State coach Cael Sanderson met the media Friday afternoon to discuss the league tournament.
"We like where we're at," Brands said. "We have a bunch of guys getting ready to win individual titles and the team title will take care of itself. I feel good about where we're at, but that doesn't mean that there's not work to do."
First-Round Matches for the Hawkeyes
125 -- McDonough vs. Brenan Lyon (Michigan State).
133 -- Daniel Dennis vs. the winner of Ian Paddock (Ohio State)/Daryl Thomas (Illinois)
141 -- Marion vs. Mark Weber (Michigan)
149 -- Brent Metcalf vs. the winner of Nicholas Bertucci (Purdue)/Mark Boyer (Michigan)
157 -- Kerr vs. Nemec
165 -- Morningstar vs. Jason Martin (Purdue)
174 -- Jay Borschel vs. Nick Avery (Indiana)
184 -- Phil Keddy vs. the winner of Eric Cameron (Indiana)/Kaleb Young (Minnesota)
197 -- Chad Beatty vs. Cody Magrum (Ohio State)
285 -- Erekson vs. David Pisarcik (Purdue)
Brands addressed the fact that the Hawkeyes will field a lineup consisting of seven seniors.
"They're hard-working and loyal with great attitudes," Brands said. "They're good people. They know what they want and they go after it pretty hard. It's a tribute to them what they've accomplished as a team. For the most part I'd say they've risen to the challenge time after time. Those are pretty good trademarks when you're talking about a person going out in the real world."