116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY — Max Murin sounds more like a boomer than a college student.
Given the fact that some of the current freshmen were in junior high when he stepped on the University of Iowa campus, the 149-pound sixth-year senior may feel like it as well.
Murin shined some light on the circumstances with his style of humor.
“It’s my ‘grandpa year’ so I’m making a lot of adjustments, having a lot of fun,” Murin said. “I like to get mad at the young guys for playing their music too loud in the locker room.
“I’ve been making a lot of adjustments to where every time I tell a story or start a conversation I like to start it with ‘Back in my day …’ I’ll be talking to a freshman and I go, ‘Back in my day, we didn’t do that. I used to walk uphill both ways to practice’ and stuff like that.”
The seasoned, 23-year-old Hawkeye has been dominant to start his final campaign. Murin owns a 4-0 record, entering No. 2 Iowa’s dual against University of Pennsylvania Saturday at Carver-Hawkeye Arena, beginning at 2 p.m.
“It’s my last year,” Murin said. “I don’t want to leave anything off the mat. So, just scoring as many points as I can every single match and that is going to be my mentality all year.
“Moving forward that’s what I want to keep on doing — score as many points as I can from start to finish.”
Spencer Lee, Jacob Warner and Murin were all highly-rated wrestlers in the Class of 2017 and share the distinction as the longest-tenured of current Hawkeyes. Murin is the youngest of the trio but is still assuming the role previously held by graduated teammate Michael Kemerer.
“I’m really embracing my age,” Murin said. “Kemerer helped me out a lot. He gave me a lot of tips of how to really embrace my age. He let me use his walker and rocking chair.”
Murin has posted four bonus-point decisions to begin this season. He tallied two major decisions and two technical falls, outscoring his opponents by a total of 75-24. Murin has scored 15 points or more in each bout.
Extensive experience allows Murin to be a resource for his teammates. He follows in the footsteps of coaches and the former Hawkeye teammates. Murin has tried to talk to younger wrestlers, lead them in the right direction and assure them struggles are common and temporary.
“I feel there’s a lot I can do,” Murin said. “The coaches are amazing examples of just servant leadership where they don’t do anything they don’t ask of others. I try to do that and try to lead by example in the wrestling room and then on the mat. Just helping out in any way that I can.
“I’ve had so many good leaders and role models since I’ve been here, who have helped me along the way. I just try to do that.”
Iowa’s Cullan Schriever filled in at 133 last season, spelling All-American Austin DeSanto for part of the season. Schriever is competing for the 133-pound spot. Brody Teske won the season-opener and has been out since the California Baptist meet.
Schriever is 7-0, winning an elite-division title at the Luther Open and adding three dual wins. He has scored 43 points in the last two bouts against Sacred Heart and Buffalo.
“I feel good about it,” Schriever said. “I feel better every time out. That’s how I’ve felt. I’m excited for another opportunity Saturday and I feel better every day, every time out, so I’m excited.”
Penn’s Michael Colaiocco is the expected opponent. Colaiocco is ranked as high as 10th nationally. The matchup will serve as a measuring stick, as Schriever continues to vie for the spot with Teske and Jesse Ybarra.
“He’s getting better every time out and that’s the important thing,” Iowa Coach Tom Brands said. “He’s missed some time earlier. When you miss time, your timing isn’t going to be there. Holds may not be as crisp. Things are harder, but he’s better every time out and he’s going to have a good test on Saturday.
“Excited for that test. It’s going to be fun. It’s going to be fun for the fans, but another good barometer for Cullan.”
Iowa has shuffled in new faces into its early-season lineups. Murin, Drew Bennett (141), Abe Assad (184) and heavyweight Tony Cassioppi are the only Hawkeyes to wrestle all four duals. Bennett is wrestling for expected starter Real Woods, who is a transfer from Stanford.
The Hawkeyes have trounced each foe, despite the various starters. A sign of strong depth.
“The culture in our room is that you be ready for anything, anytime, anywhere because we need you, we’re calling on you,” Brands said. “It’s not like we’re throwing you out there to throw you out there. We throw you out there, we need you. You’re our best option for that time for that situation. You should love that situation. You should love it, embrace it and then go make the most of it.”