Being a top five, top three seed at nationals obviously improves his chances greatly. To date, Devin has been as upset-immune as they come. That said, anyone who watched Cater's match against Duke's Gambucci saw how close he was to being pinned. Carter, generally starts a bit slow and gives up a takedown early, then slowly turns up the intensity. By the middle of the second period he is completely dominating lesser opponents. Look for guys in the tourney try to pin him early.
The next question is where will he seed? Tomorrow's rankings will be key. With Logan Steiber beating Ramos last weekend, it's possible that Devin will get leapfrogged by Steiber, who beat him earlier in the year. He could get tested next weekend by #11 Jordan Keller, but he pinned Keller last year. It's also possible that he could face Ramos again in the National Duals.
There are four guys that could give Devin fits in the NCAA tourney. First, there is Steiber from Ohio State, who has beat Devin several times in high school and beat him 6-1 earlier in the season. Steiber looked very much in control of that match, so beating him is a tall order. Next, there's Jordan Oliver, who crushed Devin 10-2 last year. While Devin has improved greatly, there's a huge gap to close. Next, is Iowa's Ramos, whom Carter beat 6-4 in overtime earlier this year. Ramos and Carter are very evenly matched...if they wrestled 10 matches, each would get 5 wins. Lastly, there's BJ Futrell that beat Carter twice last year. The first meeting was a 12-11 nailbiter and the NCAA meeting he lost 10-3 to Futrell (injury was a factor). Given the evolution of Devin's defense this year, I'd like to think he'll close the gap.
Outside of those guys, Devin has dominated. So, the trick will be facing as few of the above guys as possible. Winning those matches, will make him #1.
Just how dominating has Carter been this year? Consider this.....of his 27 matches...he's won 26, and gone into bonus in 20 of them. Here's how he fared against the top 20:
Devin Carter Fall #14 Joe Soto (Chattanooga) 6:53
#4 Logan Stieber (Ohio State) Dec Devin Carter 6-1
Devin Carter Dec #8 Ryan Mango (Stanford) 11-5
Devin Carter Maj #6 Aaron Schopp (Edinboro) 17-7
Devin Carter Dec #2 Tony Ramos (Iowa) 6-4SV
If Seedings came out today, I'd say Carter would be #3 in the bracket with Steiber getting the #1 seed. Probably
2. Oliver (hasn't wrestled Oliver and then has to avenge his loss to Steiber to win the title; gets the nod from previous results)
3. Carter (hasn't wrestled Oliver and then has to avenge his loss to Steiber to win the title)
4. Ramos (has to avenge losses to Steiber and Carter in order to win the title)