Pitt wrestling picked up another big transfer on Wednesday. Cole Nye, a two-time Pennsylvania state champ is transferring from Michigan State. Nye, who will wrestle 197 is immediately eligible, and will look to supplant returning starter Kellan Stout.
This is the second major transfer Keith Gavin and staff have landed this summer with the first being heavyweight Demetrius Thomas from Williams Baptist (NAIA). This development falls in to an ever growing chain of positive steps for the Panthers, with the most recent being Nico Megaludis deciding to train at the Pittsburgh RTC.
In an interview with PAPowerWrestling, the premier news site for Pennsylvania high school wrestling and the outlet that broke the story, Nye praised the coaching staff at Pitt and the direction of the program.
“With Coach Gavin taking over the program last year, they’re definitely moving in the right direction,” Nye said. “I think it’s going in a good direction. They have a great staff, and they’re committed to try to make the program a powerhouse. That’s something I want to be involved in. That’s the culture I want to be a part of. It’s exciting to know that there are people that have high goals and everyone can reach them together.”
In addition to the wrestling aspect, the geographical distance from Nye’s home (Harrisburg) is significantly less to Oakland than East Lansing. Nye expanded on this while speaking to PennLive.
“I didn’t really like being so far away,” Nye said. “That was one of the big things. I didn’t get to come home, and my family never really got to see me wrestle. That’s something really important to me, my family support system.”
Nye had an extraordinary high school career. Compiling a 160-28 record, Nye achieved success in both prep and public school competition. After competing for hometown Bishop McDevitt as a freshman, Nye transferred to Wyoming Seminary for a year where he placed 6th nationally at the prep tournament. After coming back home, Nye finished his last two seasons going 83-8 and winning two PA state titles. Nye was also a two-time Fargo All American and placed at Super 32 and the Journeymen Classic.
Likewise with Mickey Phillippi moving from Virginia to Pitt, two ACC schools, Michigan State restricted Nye from going to another Big Ten program less he would lose a year of eligibility. Wanting to return to his home state, Pitt just made sense. “I talked a lot with coach Headlee through the process of my transfer and he told me the goals they’re shooting for, and the program is definitely moving in the right direction… I’m excited to be a part of it.” Because he moved between conferences, Nye has all four years remaining, a cherry on top for Pitt fans.
As mentioned, Nye will wrestle 197 next year. Before he gets in the starting lineup however, he will have to go through Kellan Stout. After struggling last year, Stout is looking to rebound, and with the increased internal competition, it should be interesting to see who comes out on top. While Nye’s record of 9-7 last season wasn’t earth shattering, he did have a torn meniscus that required surgery and suffered through mononucleosis. Being 100% healthy going into next year will give Pitt two solid options at 197.
Getting ready for next season, Nye will be taking courses at Harrisburg Area Community College as he hopes to gain admission to Pitt’s business school. “Academics is going to be a top priority.”