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Austin Cooley Chooses Pitt, Gavin Adds Another Ranked Wrestler to Class of 2019



Courtesy of Pitt Athletics

The great news keeps on coming for Pitt Wrestling. After a slew of positive developments including Micky Phillippi getting a sixth year of eligibility, Ryan Sullivan and Brendon Fenton committing, Demetrius Thomas transferring, and Nico Megaludis changing his training location from the Nittany Lion Wrestling Club to the Pittsburgh Regional Training Center, the train didn’t stop there.

“I’m excited for what the future holds at Pitt.”

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Pittsburgh Wrestling Club

Austin Cooley, the 5th best 195 pounder in the country announced his intentions to compete for the University of Pittsburgh late Tuesday evening. Cooley, a Massachusetts native transferred to prep powerhouse Wyoming Seminary after his sophomore season. The following year he placed 3rd at the Prep National Championships. Cooley has also placed at the prestigious Ironman, Powerade, and Fargo tournaments and has won Eastern States. He projects to 197 in college.

“I chose Pitt because the coaching staff there is amazing and I’m a big fan of Keith Gavin.” Cooley also noted Gavin competed at a relatively similar weight as him, making his coaching skills even more applicable. “The coaching staff believes in me and I believe in them. They have a vision of this program doing big things and I share that.” Cooley, a motivated young man mentioned he doesn’t just want to be “good.” “I’m trying to be better than great and I believe Gavin and the coaching staff can get me there.”

This pickup is crucially important as Pitt will need upper-weights after Kellan Stout and Demetrius Thomas (both juniors) graduate in 2020.

The lightweight situation is set. Fenton, Louis Newell, Phillippi, Cole Matthews, and Luke Kemerer all have four years of eligibility remaining (with Sullivan still to come). The middle of the lineup is fairly solid as well. Jake Wentzel and Gregg Harvey both have three full seasons left while David Crawford and Nino Bonaccorsi both have all four.

Cooley will slot in nicely after Stout. In 2019 Stout will be a junior and Cooley a senior in high school. In 2020 Stout will be a senior and Cooley can redshirt. Perfect. This situation also seems likely to play out with LJ Bentley and Matthews at 141 and Robert Lee and Kemerer at 149. Now Pitt just needs a heavyweight recruit and the long term picture is starting to look very promising.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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