Cael Sanderson and the Penn State wrestling program secured one of the top recruits in the 2021 class in Shayne Van Ness. The Blair Academy (NJ) product is expected to be a 133 or 141 pounder in college. The Nittany Lions beat out Ohio State, Cornell, Rutgers, and Princeton for their first Blair recruit since Ed Ruth.
Van Ness was the No. 2 wrestler pound-for-pound per Willie Saylor's Mat Scouts rankings. He projects to wrestle at 133 or 141 pounds for the Nittany Lions, adding even more strength to a lineup that landed Beau Bartlett and Robert Howard in the 2020 class. He joins Alex Facundo in a very strong one-two punch for Cael Sanderson.
As a fit within the Penn State program, Van Ness seems like a home run. He wrestles at an intense pace and is not afraid to get himself into uncomfortable positions if it means he can score. Hes has an abundance of talent and takes the initiative in his matches. Those type of wrestlers have succeeded a lot under l Sanderson.
After the 2020 commitments from lightweight recruits Howard and Bartlett, Penn State can afford to be patient and flexible with how they insert them into the lineup. Currently, Penn State has redshirts available for Roman Bravo-Young, Beau Bartlett and Shayne Van Ness, who are all expected to compete at the 133 or 141 pound weight class.