116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
IOWA CITY — Patrick Kennedy has been spending quite a bit of time in the Iowa wrestling room lately.
“He’s in there every day,” teammate Abe Assad said. “I’m not even joking. I haven't seen a day when I haven't seen Patrick Kennedy in the room at least once.”
Kennedy has even been there more than Assad “for sure,” Assad said.
That has left Kennedy “ready” for a bigger role in the 2022-23 season, starting with the U23 Junior World Team Trials this weekend in Geneva, Ohio.
“I just want to prove that I’m a force to be reckoned with in the future,” Kennedy said, “and just ready to go, ready to wrestle and just have fun and go out there and score a bunch of points.”
It comes after what head coach Tom Brands described as “two redshirt years basically.”
With 165-pounder Alex Marinelli and 174-pounder Michael Kemerer ahead of him, he had limited opportunities in his first two years in Iowa City.
Kennedy had just three duals as a freshman. Then Marinelli used his extra COVID-19 year of eligibility and beat out the second-year wrestler.
“The thing about Kennedy that impresses me is that he stayed ready,” Brands said.
Now with Marinelli and Kemerer gone, Kennedy has high expectations.
“Next year, we're going to be dependent on Patrick Kennedy and a lot of our other younger guys,” Brands said.
Brands has seen him “continue to get better.”
“He's proven himself (in) international style,” Brands said. “He's proven himself (in) collegiate style. He's a handful for his opponents.”
Kennedy has been rolling with a variety of fellow Hawkeyes, ranging from 133-pound Austin DeSanto to 184-pound Assad.
“We hammer,” the heftier Kennedy said of his battles with DeSanto. “We go.”
Iowa wrestlers competing this weekend
Six Iowa wrestlers will be competing in the upcoming U23 trials:
- Drew Bennett (65 kg)
- Cobe Siebrecht (70 kg)
- Patrick Kennedy (74 kg)
- Brennan Swafford (79 kg)
- Abe Assad (86 kg)
- Tony Cassioppi (125 kg)
Caleb Rathjen, at 70 kg, will be competing at the U20 level along with Aiden Riggins (74 kg) and Kolby Franklin (92 kg).
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