“You Need People Like Me”: AJ Ferrari Vents Frustration After Being Disqualified in Highly Anticipated Comeback at Soldiers Salute

Published 12/31/2023, 5:45 AM EST

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The finals of the Solider Salute wrestling tournament on Saturday evening saw some fireworks as ex-OSU wrestler AJ Ferrari returned to the mat following a difficult 2022 when he was involved in a horrific car crash. On his return, Ferrari looked as if hadn’t lost a step and defeated Iowa’s Zach Glazier 197. But the wrestler ended empty-handed after getting disqualified for his actions after the contest. But what led to Ferrari’s disqualification?

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Shortly after the bout, Ferrari pushed down on the back of Glazier’s head. Glazier responded by grabbing and pulling on Ferrari’s upper leg. That’s when Ferrari attempted a punch at Glazier and proceeded to show the Hawkeye a middle finger. This led to Ferrari getting disqualified and gave Glazier the title. But that wasn’t all. Later responding to this, AJ Ferrari posted a movie reference, labeling himself a scapegoat.

AJ Ferrari hits back with Scarface reference after disqualification

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AJ Ferrari posted a story on Instagram and shared a clip from the 1983 Al Pacino movie, Scarface. His story carried a scene where Pacino’s character Tony Montana says, “You need people like me so you can point your fu**ing fingers and say, ‘That’s the bad guy.” Participating in the final match of the Soldier Salute event, AJ Ferrari found himself against Zach Glazier of the Iowa Hawkeyes. Both wrestlers were tied at 1-1 and as the match went into sudden victory, Ferrari ultimately prevailed over Glazier as he secured a last-minute takedown. While everything proceeded normally till that point, Ferrari’s actions in the post-match interaction changed the outcome.

AJ Ferrari and Glazier got involved in a scuffle after their heated match, which almost became a fistfight as Ferrari took a swing at Glazier. When the Iowa wrestler pointed it out, Mr. Fast Twitch gestured a middle finger to his counterpart, which prompted the referee to disqualify Ferrari. As he was walking off the arena floor he did a split and gave two middle fingers to the crowd, much to the displeasure of the Hawkeye faithful in the crowd who heavily booed him. But there can be a reason why Ferrari went off in the manner he did.

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Wrestling in the 149-pound finals against Iowa’s Caleb Rathjen, Anthony, AJ’s younger brother suffered two takedowns en route to a 7-2 loss. After the final whistle was blown, Anthony Ferrari gave a shove to the back of Rathjen. Rathjen, an Ankeny native, took exception. He looked back toward Anthony Ferrari and taunted by flexing like Anthony’s older brother AJ, who is known for flexing after wins.

This abrupt development of animosity in AJ Ferrari has surprised everyone, especially since the ex-Oklahoma State wrestler had hinted at a move to Iowa not too long ago. This also puts the future of the Ferrari brothers with Iowa in doubt.

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Will AJ Ferrari’s actions lead to his brothers moving out of Iowa?

Intending to return to the top, Iowa coaches Tom and Terry Brands made some big moves. First, they added Ferrari’s younger brother Anthony, who was also on the roster at Oklahoma State. Then they signed Ferrari’s youngest brother, Angelo, who is the top-rated recruit in the class of 2024.

AJ Ferrari, himself officially visited the University of Iowa to check out their wrestling program on December 27.  But after getting negative reactions from Hawkeye fans and sparring with members of the Hawkeye team, the future of the Ferrari brothers with Iowa is in doubt.

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AJ is not committed to Iowa and can still move anywhere. Anthony is committed, but not signed to wrestle for the Hawkeyes. The youngest brother, Angelo, signed the dotted line late this fall and would have to get a release from his letter of intent if he felt like Iowa couldn’t be home. The recent events have complicated things. Do you agree with the decision to disqualify Ferrari? What do you make of his Instagram post.

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Written by:

Ankit Singh

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Edited by:

Purva Jain

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