Andy Hamilton emerges as expert among journalists who made predictions prior to NCAA ChampionshipsST. LOUIS - Fourteen of the nation's top wrestling journalists took their shots at predicting the champions and runner-ups prior to the 2008 NCAA Wrestling Championships on March 20-22 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis.
The team he covered won the team title at the NCAA Championships, so it was only fitting that Andy Hamilton of the Iowa City Press-Citizen emerged as the expert this year.
Hamilton was followed in the standings by InterMat's Jason Bryant and returning champion Craig Sesker of USA Wrestling.
Hamilton correctly picked 6 of the 10 champions and 4 of the 10 wrestlers who finished second. He also had Iowa winning the team title. He was the only one to pick Ohio State's Mike Pucillo to beat Iowa State's Jake Varner in the 184-pound finals.
Hamilton also had the right winners in Indiana's Angel Escobedo at 125, Iowa's Brent Metcalf at 149, Iowa's Mark Perry at 165, Pitt's Keith Gavin at 174 and Northwestern's Dustin Fox at heavyweight.
Bryant and Sesker each picked correct champions in Oklahoma State's Coleman Scott at 133, Metcalf, Perry, Gavin and Fox. They both had Iowa winning the title.
Roger Moore of the Stillwater (Okla.) News Press actually picked the most champions with seven. But Moore had no correct second-place finishers or team finishers.
Andy Hamilton, Iowa City Press-Citizen 34
Jason Bryant, InterMat 30
Craig Sesker, USA Wrestling 26
Mike Finn, WIN Magazine 25
Jon Gremmels, Quad-City Times 25
Matt Levins, Burlington (Iowa) Hawk Eye 24
Bryan Van Kley, WIN Magazine 24
Karl Vogel, Lincoln (Neb.) Journal Star 24
Roger Moore, Stillwater (Okla.) News Press 23
J.R. Ogden, Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Gazette 23
Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling 22
Gary Blockus, Allentown (Pa.) Morning Call 17
Andrew Hipps, RevWrestling 16
Tim Tushla, WIN Magazine 16