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Pennsylvania through and through, Jason Nolf dominated his way through high school and had no trouble continuing it at the NCAA level. Now he's trying to do the same on the Senior level. Get caught up on the complete Jason Nolf wrestling biography below.
High School Career
Nolf was one of the biggest pieces to Penn State's #1-ranked 2014 recruiting class. Along with Nolf, who was #1 at his weight was #1 Nick Nevills, #2 Bo Nickal, #7 Corey Rasheed, and #16 Gary Dinmore as well as Anthony Cassar, Jordan Pagano, and Kyle Baker. With seven individual titles and twelve All-American honors, it's safe to say that that class delivered on expectations.
A member of the legendary Young Guns club out of Pennsylvania, Nolf earned his #1 ranking by taking out future Stanford and Ohio State All-American Joey McKenna at the first-ever Who's #1 event.
Watch Jason Nolf wrestle Joey McKenna at 2013 Who's #1 below.
The Kittanning High School native also won three Pennsylvania high school state titles, Super 32, Who's #1, Powerade, and much much more while officially going 176-1. His lone loss came to Ryan Diehl in the state semifinals his freshman year. Nolf's senior year he pinned three of his four opponents at the state tournament in the 145-pound weight class in a combined time of 8:17.
After winning his third state title, Nolf put his #1 ranking on the line at the 2014 Dapper Dan Classic. Representing Team Pennsylvania, Nolf beat four-time Oregon state champion Tyler Burger, reversing a result from 2013 FloNationals. This would be a preview of the 2019 NCAA finals.
Watch Jason Nolf wrestle Tyler Berger at the 2014 Dapper Dan below.
Given all of the winning Nolf did in high school, the expectations were sky-high from Nittany Lion fans, and he somehow exceeded every single one. Nolf didn't just have one of the most dominant careers in Penn State history, but one of the most dominant careers in the history of all NCAA wrestling.
Nolf redshirted his true freshman year, but went 15-1 in open tournaments with five pins, three techs and a major. The lone loss came to Nebraska's James Green, 4-1, in the Southern Scuffle finals.
Nolf's freshman year was the only year he didn't win an NCAA title. It was also the only year he took a non-injury default loss. Before barely losing (3-3 criteria and 6-5 OT) to two-time NCAA champion Isaiah Martinez, Nolf handed IMar the first loss of his college career.
Watch Jason Nolf pin Isaiah Martinez below.
Outside of an injury default to John Van Brill, who Nolf tech falled twice in his career, Nolf never lost again, and he didn't just win, he dominated. Nolf's Penn State career numbers include an 85.78% bonus rate, 74.36% pin + tech rate, and a 5.07 dominance score. Those are some of the best dominance records in NCAA history.
While going on this dominant tear Nolf notched wins over Michael Kemerer three times, Hayden Hidlay twice, Tyler Berger six times, Alec Pantaleo three times, Joe Smith three times, Micah Jordan, Joey Lavalle, Chad Walsh, and many more.
At the 2018 NCAA Championships Nolf's junior year he was forced to wrestle on a highly injured right knee. However, he still managed to put up two tech falls, one over Micah Jordan, en route to his second-straight NCAA title.
Watch Jason Nolf defeat Tyler Berger for his third NCAA title below.
Senior Level Career
After Nolf's sophomore year of college, he tossed his hat in the ring at the 2017 US Open, one of the hardest domestic tournaments. He opened with three tech falls before losing to two-time World medalist James Green 9-8 in the semifinals. On the backside, he defeated Jason Chamberlain before taking fourth.
One month after winning his third NCAA title Nolf returned to freestyle action and made his Nittany Lion Wrestling Club debut at the 2019 US Open. Once again Nolf was sent to the backside by James Green in the semis. This time on a 6-6 criteria decision. This time he picked up four tech falls, a pin, and took third.
After the 2019 Open, Nolf decided to move up to 74 kg for the World Team Trials Challenge Tournament. After making it to the finals, Nolf was defeated yet again by Isaiah Martinez in a best of three series. He did manage to win the second match, however.
Watch Jason Nolf beat Isaiah Martinez in the 2019 World Team Trials Challenge Tournament below.
Since the 2019 season, Nolf has competed three times. He took silver at the Bill Farrell, losing to Martinez in the finals, gold at the Pan Am Championships, and defeated Jordan Oliver at Rumble On The Rooftop.
In addition to being an Olympic hopeful and one of the best NCAA wrestlers of all time, Jason Nolf is quite the grill master!