LINCOLN — The Nebraska wrestling team added several newcomers to its 2020-21 roster as Landon Brown, Nic Stoltenberg, Zak Taylor, Brock Hardy and Brandyn Van Tassell have officially joined the program.
Brown joins the Huskers from Western Wyoming Community College (WWCC), where he wrestled the last three seasons, including a redshirt year. The Layton, Utah, native joined the Mustangs in September of 2017 after serving a two-year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Guatemala. After initially competing at 184 pounds, Brown moved up two weight classes and competed as a heavyweight. He enjoyed great success at WWCC, qualifying for both the 2018 and 2019 NJCAA Wrestling Championships and placing third in the latter tournament. Brown had his sights set on an individual title in 2020 before the NJCAA championships were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nic Stoltenburg recently completed a decorated career at nearby Omaha Skutt Catholic High School. Stoltenburg won three state titles in three different weight classes as a prep, first at 126 pounds in 2018, then at 138 pounds in 2019 and most recently at 152 pounds in February. Stoltenburg went 39-4 as a senior and finished his high school wrestling career with over 140 victories to his credit. Stoltenburg projects at 149 pounds for the Huskers.
Also entering the program is Zak Taylor. The Lakewood, Ohio, native most recently wrestled at St. Edward High School, where he won 47 matches throughout his career. Taylor finished strong with 18 victories (including nine by fall) during his senior season and was crowned a sectional champion in addition to being a state qualifier. Taylor is slated to compete at heavyweight for the Big Red.
Both Brock Hardy and Brandyn Van Tassell initially signed letters of intent in 2018 before serving serving a two-year missions for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Hardy, whose mission took him to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, was a four-time state champion at Box Elder High School in Brigham City, Utah. Prior to departing for Brazil, Hardy was ranked as high as No. 2 in the country at 145 pounds by various recruiting services. The five-time USA Folkstyle Nationals champions projects at 149 pounds for NU.
Van Tassell, who served his mission in Chicago, Ill., wrestled at Maple Mountain High School in Mapleton, Utah. There, he won state titles in 2017 (one year removed from tearing both his ACL and LCL in his knee) and 2018. Van Tassell is likely to compete at 184 pounds in a Husker singlet.