Iowa has lost two wrestling commitments to its 2017 class, but given the circumstances – you can understand why.
Three-time California state champion Justin Mejia tweeted his de-commitment on Tuesday night, and an hour later Illinois state champion Jason Renteria followed suit.
Both are top-35 national recruits, but both are lighter weights and surely saw the writing on the wall with mega prospect Spencer Lee (the No. 1 pound-for-pound recruit in the Class of 2017, according to FloWrestling) and Gavin Teasdale (No. 2 overall in the Class of 2018) pledging to Tom Brands’ Hawkeyes in April.
FloWrestling ranks Lee No. 1 at 113 pounds, and Teasdale No. 1 in his class at 120 pounds.
Mejia, of Clovis, Calif., is ranked No. 3 at 126, and committed to Iowa in November 2014 as a high school sophomore.
Renteria, of Oak Park, Ill., is ranked No. 2 at 132. He committed in October 2014.
Neither could've foreseen the Lee-Teasdale recruiting bombshell from Pennsylvania that would come 18 months later. Plus, Iowa has highly acclaimed in-state signees Jack Wagner of Bettendorf (a three-time state champion who projects to 133 pounds in college) and Carter Happel of Lisbon (a four-timer who went 209-1 and likely fits at 141) joining the squad this fall.
You can see the logjam that was already in place under Brands at the lower weights. With Lee and Teasdale on board, he probably couldn’t offer Mejia and Renteria much in the way of out-of-state tuition with Division I wrestling teams limited to 9.9 scholarships.
Mejia tweeted (sic), “I love Iowa but sometimes things don't workout I have nothing bad to say about Iowa love everything about it sad to say it didn't workout.”
Renteria followed by tweeting (sic), “I've thought from Day 1 Iowa was a good fit for me. However, things weren't able to work out. I appreciate the opportunities they gave to me.”