AMES | Iowa State’s only returning NCAA qualifier is bumping up to heavyweight.

Marcus Harrington went form 197 pounds to weighing about 240 pounds.

“He likes to eat and he’s really good at eating, and he likes to lift weights and he’s really good at lifting weights,” coach Kevin Dresser said of Harrington’s move to heavyweight.

Harrington has already noticed an improved output in himself during practice because he feels so much better without the weight cut to deal with.

“We really like what we’ve seen out of Marcus in the last month,” Dresser said. “For Marcus, it’s just about going out and buying into scoring and beating guys up for seven whole minutes. Not just get the first takedown and maybe trying to get another takedown.”

Harrington said he’ll be able to use his quickness and explosive ability to get takedowns against some of the more traditional heavyweights.

The down positions could be a different story. Harrington said there are a few heavyweights that ride hard, but if he explodes off the whistle, he feels he should be able to get out. Riding them is a different story.

“A lot of them, even in the room, are a lot bigger than me,” Harrington said. “It’s kind of hard keeping them down but I feel like I’m wrestling a lot more active than them. If I just stay active on top and getting to my holds and turns and stuff like that I think I’ll come out alright.”

Dresser said when Harrington goes out there to score the whole time he can be a dynamic guy. He sees it most when he’s wrestling with former NCAA champion and current Cyclone Regional Training Center athlete Kyven Gadson.

“We’re both training right now to beat the same guy so our goals are pretty similar right now,” Harrington said. “We’ve definitely been pushing each other.”

That same guy is the best pound-for-pound wrestler in the world — Ohio State's Kyle Snyder.

Leading by example

Iowa State only has one senior listed in its probable line up, 184-pounder Dane Pestano. It’s not in Pestano’s personality to be a vocal leader so Iowa State has about five guys leading by example, and all of them are either redshirt freshmen or true freshmen except Pestano.

Ian Parker (133), Kanen Storr (141), Austin Gomez (133) and Marcus Coleman (174) are the four besides Pestano that stick out to associate head coach Mike Zadick.

“They come in and they mean business,” Zadick said. “And it means something to them. These guys want to be good.”

Less funk

Colston DiBlasi (157) made a name for himself last season as a pinning machine. His funky style of wrestling lent himself to either pin or be pinned.

DiBlasi let guys get in on his leg so he could get into scramble positions and out-funk his opponent. However, the NCAA implemented a new rule in the off season that if a wrestler is wrestling from his back for more than three seconds it’s an automatic takedown, even if the other wrestler doesn’t have control.

“I’m really trying to become more fundamentally sound,” DiBlasi said. “I’m starting to get a shot to both legs and just work on my own offense as opposed to scrambling.”

How is DiBlasi developing his shots? Repetition.

“The dummy in the corner is missing an entire leg of fabric because I’ve shot so many times on it now,” DiBlasi said.