Cowboys relieved after Ferrari released from hospital following scary crash

It’s understandable that Oklahoma State wrestlers haven’t spoken much publicly this week. They almost lost one of their brothers.

It’s understandable that Oklahoma State wrestlers haven’t spoken much publicly this week. They almost lost one of their brothers.

Early Monday night, following a social media post by AJ Ferrari’s father, news quickly spread that the 2021 NCAA champion Oklahoma State had been involved in a serious car accident on two-lane Route 33 near Stillwater.

AJ was airlifted to OU Medical in Oklahoma City. A university community shaken by previous harrowing circumstances held its collective breath and searched for news. Oklahoma State wrestling coach John Smith is part of the same varsity family that lost 10 men’s basketball team members in 2001. This week marked the 20th anniversary of the plane crash in Colorado on January 27 that continues to bring painful memories to many in the community. A decade later, in November 2011, women’s basketball coach Kurt Budke and assistant coach Miranda Serna died in a plane crash.

On a regular Monday night, a day after a tough 26-9 win over Lehigh, Smith was briefed and rushed onto the scene like any coach would hoping for the best but fearing the worst. It was a chaotic 24 hours, wins and losses far from anyone’s agenda. All participants finally expired on Wednesday when Ferrari was discharged from hospital.

“He’s home. He’s sore, tender — what you’d expect seeing that car,” Smith said Wednesday. got hit on it and nothing else. We’ll see it in a few days and see if there’s anything more we need to do.

Ferrari attended youth wrestling practice in Cushing (30 minutes from Stillwater) and was returning to Stillwater when the accident happened. His passenger, Oklahoma State cross country runner Isai Rodriguez, was also released on Wednesday. His coach, Dave Smith, said what many coaches in any sport fear more than anything else: “I think for any coach or parent or anyone who works with people of this age, it’s It’s the thing that, for me as a coach, keeps me up every night. This call at night.

Thoughts on the upcoming duels with Iowa State and Northern Iowa were secondary this week.

“When he shared the news (of Ferrari leaving the hospital) it kind of calmed everyone down that AJ will be fine in time,” said John Smith. “I think you just spend thinking about your usual day, ‘OK, I’m going back to work. I have a practice at 3 p.m.’ The good news of what we originally thought as I went on stage – very different. Really low to very high. That’s what the experience was.

There’s no doubt Ferrari became a polarizing force last season with their bending and deadlift stats. But the wrestling community has put rivalries aside, with John Smith expressing his gratitude saying: “As competitive as we are, sometimes we don’t like each other, especially during competition… it’s good to see people reaching out to you. hand with everything we need. It’s a great community and I’ve been happy to be part of it for a long time.

Who intervenes?

Questions of who is stepping in at 197 pounds were secondary to most conversations. John Smith does not give up in double encounters. When the fourth-ranked Cowboys (10-0) host Northern Iowa (3-5) Saturday night and #8 Iowa State (9-1) Sunday afternoon, junior Gavin Stika, Dakota Geer’s backup at 184 books, will most likely make his double debut. Geer, a graduate student, played at 197 for 30 of 37 games in 2019 and 32 of 35 a season later, but is a two-time All-American at 184 pounds and is 9-1 and ranked in the top ten .

Stika (11-3) finished seventh at the Southern Scuffle and third at the Reno Tournament of Champions, but didn’t see the mat in a double encounter. The Big 12 Conference is loaded at 197 even without Ferrari. The league has four of the top 14 – Rocky Elam (Missouri), Stephen Buchanon (Wyoming), Jake Woodley (Oklahoma) and rookie Yonger Bastida (Iowa State), who is 12-2 and visits both schools in the league. ‘Oklahoma this weekend.

old enemies

Oklahoma State went undefeated with a 26-9 victory over Lehigh last Sunday. Competition continues to strengthen after some challenges since November. Old Big Eight foe Iowa State visits Stillwater on Sunday afternoon. Images from the late 1960s and Dr. Harold Nichols and Myron Roderick patrolling carpet-side immediately come to mind, as well as classic early 1980s battles between Nate Carr and Kenny Monday. A generation of Carr and Mike Sheets fans remember the good old days when David Carr (12-0), 2021 NCAA champion and son of Nate, likely takes on Wyatt Sheets, son of national champion Mike. The younger Carr earned an 8-4 decision a year ago and beat the younger Sheets, 6-4, in the 2020 Big 12 Finals a month after a major 14-6 decision.

The series dates back to 1921 with Oklahoma State holding a 62-20-3 advantage. The two have met every year since 1995. Iowa State won 4 of 5 double meetings between January 2007 and January 2010. The Cowboys have won 14 straight games since 2010, including a 16-15 victory at Ames last January with the decision Boo Lewallen’s major at 149 pounds the difference. Ferrari’s late rally against fellow freshman Bastida gave the Cowboys a 16-12 lead going into the final fight.

Remarkable

● Trevor Mastrogiovanni, 125 pounds from Oklahoma State, started with a 10-0 record. Not a bonus point machine, the Blair Academy product was steady with a quick win over Minnesota All-American Pat McKee. Mastrogiovanni has a big weekend ahead of him. He is expected to face Northern Iowa’s Brody Teske (7-2) and Iowa State’s Kysen Terukina (11-0).

● Two veterans, Kaden Gfeller (8-1) of Oklahoma State and Jarrett Degen (12-1) of Iowa State, meet on Sunday. Might be a fun game to watch.

● UNI snapped a 27-game losing streak against Oklahoma State with a 19-15 win at Cedar Falls in January 2020. Oklahoma State is 28-3 against the Panthers.

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