Penn State wrestling’s 125-pound weight class has been an interesting situation, to say the least, during the last three years. It got a bit more complicated on Thursday afternoon when Matt Parker announced he was transferring to Penn State from Lehigh.
After entering college as a top-100 recruit Parker, a three-time PIAA medalist at Pennridge High School, deferred his eligibility last season and did not compete at all this year for the Mountain Hawks. While wrestling in open tournaments last year, Parker was 13-2 and won the Wilkes, Princeton, and East Stroudsburg Opens. He’s the younger brother of two-time All-American Scott Parker, also a former Lehigh wrestler.
With a small but impressive sample size, Parker will enter a crowded race for the starting job at 125 lbs. Two-year starter Devin Schnupp, sophomore Justin Lopez, and redshirt freshmen Brody Teske, Jack Davis, and Brandon Meredith are all already vying for the spot in the lineup. 125 has been a recurring struggle for the Nittany Lions since now-national champion Nick Suriano transferred to Rutgers following the 2017 season. They’ve gone 16-43 at the weight during the last two seasons.
Parker’s in-state transfer seems to be the latest move by Cael Sanderson to amend his team’s lower-weight struggles. Last season, he recruited mid-season graduate transfer Carson Kuhn to fill in for Schnupp.