Kittanning standout wrestler Nolf selects Penn State
As the list of Division I colleges that offered him scholarship money expanded to almost a dozen, Kittanning wrestler Jason Nolf continued to consider all options.
He refused to rush to a decision. He met coaches at his house, at camps, at wrestling club practices. Last weekend, he flew to the west coast to see Stanford in person.
And after much thought, he chose the NCAA's current go-to destination for elite grapplers.
Nolf, a rising senior, verbally committed to three-time defending NCAA team champion Penn State Friday evening. A two-time PIAA Class AA champion with a career record of 132-1, he accepted a scholarship offer from the Nittany Lions over those made by Stanford, Iowa, Northwestern, Wisconsin, Lehigh, Cornell and others.
“It's close to home,” Nolf said, “it's where I have the best chance of becoming a four-time national champion, it's a nice campus, and I have a lot of friends there.”
Nolf won his second PIAA title and third WPIAL championship competing in the 132-pound weight class this past season. The only loss of his high school career came during his sophomore season, when he dropped a 6-4 decision to Ryan Diehl, a Maryland recruit, in the PIAA semifinals.
At the Disney Duals earlier this month, Nolf avenged his loss to Diehl as a member of the Young Guns Wrestling Club. The 10-3 win was a part of a dominant tournament performance that earned Nolf the Outstanding Wrestler award and further bolstered his resume.
Nolf's father, Mike, encouraged the standout to start cutting down his list of choices just after the tournament. They needed to start turning coaches away, otherwise the flood of phone calls would continue. They also planned to visit several campuses to trim the list — Stanford was the first stop on the tour.
Earlier this week, Nolf indicated he likely needed weeks if not months to make his decision.
“I'll commit when I find the right place and I'm ready,” he said.
But that time came Friday, as Nolf considered the bevy of talented training partners, including former Young Guns club members, on the team's roster. He tabbed former WPIAL standouts Nico Megaludis (Franklin Regional), Jimmy Gulibon (Derry) and Matt McCutcheon (Kiski Area) as close friends with which he wished to remain connected.
Nolf also emphasized the important of attending a school that would allow family and friends to see him in person.
“My parents can come and watch me there,” he said.
Nolf adds another gem to Penn State's list of incoming recruits. Kennard-Dale rising senior Chance Marsteller, an unbeaten three-time PIAA Class AAA champion who is considered the top wrestler in the country, committed to the Nittany Lions on July 4.
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.