Blue White Illustrated

February 2022

Penn State Sports Magazine

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 41 of 67

4 2 F E B R U A R Y 2 0 2 2 W W W . B L U E W H I T E O N L I N E . C O M H aving already completed an All- America career, along with his work toward a finance degree, Drew Hil- debrandt had to decide whether he'd had enough of college wrestling and was ready to move on. It didn't take him too long to realize that he hadn't had enough and wasn't ready to move on just yet. When the prospective graduate transfer called the 814 area code and a coach with a few medals of his own said, "We'd love to have you," Hildebrandt packed for Penn State and was training with Cael Sand- erson's Nittany Lion Wrestling Club by mid-November. By mid-January, the former Central Michigan star was leading off a star- studded Penn State lineup as a 125-pound starter. And with the postseason fast ap- proaching, he is giving Nittany Lion fans hope that their team will finish the cam- paign with its ninth NCAA championship in the past 13 years. The feeling of burnout faded, and when October rolled around and Hildebrandt was missing the structure involved with training, he set out to pursue a "different" experience. Penn State has been inconsistent in the opening weight class since Nick Su- riano left in 2017 to continue his career at Rutgers. Suriano has since moved on to Michigan, where he is now completing his senior season. A bout between ninth-ranked Hildeb- randt and top-ranked Suriano opened the Jan. 21 match between No. 1 Penn State and No. 3 Michigan in Ann Arbor. Hildebrandt was strong defensively against the 2019 NCAA champion, not allowing a takedown but not recording one, either. Suriano's strength was his top game, and a third-period ride netted him a 2-1 victory. But it was a strong perfor- mance overall for Hildebrandt. The top-10 lightweight bounced back on Jan. 23 at Michigan State with an 8-0 victory over Tristan Lujan to up his record at Penn State to 4-1. Hildebrandt realized his love for the sport still had some fire behind it when he made his Penn State debut at Maryland on Jan. 7, followed by his first appearance WRESTLING J I M C A R L S O N | B L U E W H I T E C O N T R I BU TO R Labor Of Love Transfer 125-pounder Drew Hildebrandt rekindles his passion for wrestling and lifts the Nittany Lions' NCAA title aspirations Hildebrandt made a winning Rec Hall debut, defeat- ing Indiana's Jacob Moran, 6-2, on Jan. 9 in his first home match with the Nittany Lions. PHOTO BY STEVE MANUEL

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Blue White Illustrated - February 2022