As if Lautt didn’t have enough incentive for the season with the wave of fans in disbelief about his All-American status, he enters his final season in one of the heaviest divisions in the country at 174 pounds. The returns of Carter Starocci, Mekhi Lewis, Mikey Labriola and others have Lautt burning the midnight oil for a national championship title chase.
He’s come a long way, but there’s still a steep step to take to sit on the throne.
“It’s motivating and gives me something to train with every day,” Lautt said. “When I came to college, I was getting beat up in the gym by a lot of guys, and now I’m in a position where I rarely lose in the gym. I lost a bit to these guys who are the best of the country so this is a signal to me that I need to do a bit more, I need to learn a bit more, find new ways to score and be a bit more creative and add some extra tools to the toolbox.
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He’s the son of a fighter, an All-American, and one of the most scrappy wrestlers in the game. He’s not going to put names before him on a pedestal. He faces all the big names early and often in the season and he will use every trip to the mat as more than just a game; it’s a chance to absorb information and remind everyone on the podium who they are.
“I made pretty big jumps every year,” Lautt said. “I think I still have a big leap to make. I will face number one and number two several times this year, so I will be able to see where I am before the national tournament and everything is in play. I’ve been there, but I still have a jump to make.
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