Matt Pell came to the University of Missouri as a 157lb wrestler. After his redshirt year Matt Pell was looking for a starting spot but was stuck behind all-americans at four weight classes. At 157 Kenny Burleson, 165 Tyron Woodley, 174 Ben Askren and 184 was NCAA runner-up Scott Barker. Barker left the team and Matt Pell bulked up and filled in a void for the team. His sacrifice paid off as he earned all-american honors twice during his college career at 184lbs.