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November 27, 2008

No. 7 St. John's Upsets No. 2 Augsburg

No. 7 St. John's Upsets No. 2 Augsburg
DATE: 11/26/2008 11:59:00 PM
Claiming wins in six of 10 bouts, the St.
John's University wrestling team snapped a 22-match losing streak to Augsburg College with an 18-13 dual-meet victory on Wednesday night at Augsburg's Si Melby Hall.

The Johnnies (5-0 overall), ranked No. 7 in the latest National Wrestling Coaches Association Division III national rankings, won for the first time over the No. 2-ranked Auggies (0-1 overall) since the
1985-86 season. Augsburg is 28-2 in dual meets against St. John's since 1979. The St. John's victory also broke two other Augsburg winning streaks -- a streak of 70 straight victories over Minnesota Division II or III opponents since 1996, and a streak of 92 straight victories over Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference foes stretching to the
1986-87 season.

Augsburg, winners of 10 of the last 18 Division III national titles, is now 228-20 against Divisions II and III teams since the 1989-90 season, losing just 15 matches to non-Division I opponents since the 1995-96 season. Against strictly Division III opponents, Augsburg is 235-23 since the 1979-80 season and 159-13 since the 1989-90 season.

The Johnnies built an 18-6 lead after eight bouts and withstood Augsburg wins in the final two bouts to secure the dual victory.

Meanwhile, Augsburg gained a major-decision, 14-5 victory from 197-pounder Jared Massey (JR, Circle Pines, Minn./Centennial HS) over the Johnnies' Tony Willaert (SO, North Mankato, Minn./Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial HS), ranked No. 3 nationally in the weight class. Massey, now 5-0 on the season, claimed six takedowns and built
1:46 of riding time in the win.

Two of Augsburg's three nationally-ranked wrestlers in action on Wednesday claimed victories, as top-ranked Travis Lang (SR, Bismarck,
N.D.) built a 5-0 first-period lead and held off a rally by the Johnnies' Mogi Baatar (JR, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia/St. Benedict's Prep HS) in a 9-8 victory. No. 5-ranked Andy Witzel (JR, Fulda, Minn.) scored a
6-3 victory at heavyweight over the Johnnies' Cody Socher (FY, Delano, Minn.).

The Johnnies claimed three wins on riding-time bonus points -- a 4-3 win by Chad Henle (FY, Spicer, Minn./New London-Spicer HS) over Augsburg's Josh Roberts (FY, Grand Forks, N.D./Central HS) at 125; a 3-2 win by Matt Baarson (SO, Brooklyn Park, Minn./Champlin Park HS) over Augsburg's No. 3-ranked Jason Adams (JR, Coon Rapids, Minn.) at 157; and a 4-3 win by Matt Schrupp (SR, Watertown, Minn./Watertown-Mayer HS) over Augsburg's Brandon Klukow (SR, Albert Lea, Minn.) at 165.

Augsburg's Lucas Murray (SO, Anoka, Minn.) used a takedown and three-point near-fall midway through the third period to claim an 11-8 win over No. 3-ranked Minga Batsukh (SO, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia/St.
Benedict's Prep HS) at 141.

Dustin Baxter (SO, Fairbanks, Alaska/West Valley HS) of St. John's used a takedown with 14 seconds left to score a 12-10 win over Augsburg's Garrett Long (JR, Cedar, Minn./St. Francis HS) at 184. John Vaith (SO, Hastings, Minn.) used a reversal and three-point near-fall in the third period to rally for an 8-6 win over Augsburg's Tony Valek (FY, Belle Plaine, Minn./Scott West) at 149, and Grant Eustice (SR, Shoreview, Minn./Mounds View HS) scored a 6-3 win over Augsburg's Brandon Bahr (FY, Bemidji, Minn.) at 174.

Augsburg's White Team (junior varsity) won six of nine bouts to score a
25-6 win over the St. John's junior varsity in the preliminary match on Wednesday.

Augsburg returns to action after the Thanksgiving break on Saturday, Dec. 6 at 9 a.m., competing at the Minnesota State Moorhead Dragon Open.
St. John's competes at the Wisconsin-La Crosse Duals on Dec. 6.

College Wrestling -- No. 7 St. John's 18, No. 2 Augsburg 13 Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2008, Si Melby Hall, Minneapolis, Minn.
Time of match: 1:38. Attendance: 367.
Action begins at 125 pounds.
Officials: Brad Hanson, Kurt Nathe.
125 -- Chad Henle (St. John’s, 7-2) dec. Josh Roberts (Augsburg, 2-2)
4-3 (St. John’s 3-0).
133 -- No. 1 Travis Lang (Augsburg, 5-0) dec. Mogi Baatar (St.
John’s, 5-4) 9-8 (TIED 3-3).
141 -- Lucas Murray (Augsburg, 4-0) dec. No. 3 Minga Batsukh (St.
John’s, 4-1) 11-8 (Augsburg 6-3).
149 -- John Vaith (St. John’s, 5-2) dec. Tony Valek (Augsburg, 2-1)
8-6 (TIED 6-6).
157 -- Matt Baarson (St. John’s, 6-2) dec. No. 3 Jason Adams (Augsburg, 4-1) 3-2 (St. John’s 9-6).
165 -- Matt Schrupp (St. John’s, 3-1) dec. Brandon Klukow (Augsburg,
4-1) 4-3 (St. John’s 12-6).
174 -- Grant Eustice (St. John’s, 7-1) dec. Brandon Bahr (Augsburg,
2-2) 6-3 (St. John’s 15-6).
184 -- Dustin Baxter (St. John’s, 1-0) dec. Garrett Long (Augsburg,
0-3) 12-10 (St. John’s 18-6).
197 -- Jared Massey (Augsburg, 5-0) maj. dec. No. 3 Tony Willaert (St.
John’s, 6-3) 14-5 (St. John’s 18-10).
HWT -- No. 5 Andy Witzel (Augsburg, 5-0) dec. Cody Socher (St.
John’s, 5-2) 6-3 (St. John’s 18-13).

College Wrestling -- Augsburg JV 25, St. John's JV 6 Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2008, Si Melby Hall, Minneapolis, Minn.
Time of match: 1:25. Action begins at 125 pounds.
Official: Kurt Nathe.
125 -- Freddy Vigil (Augsburg, 3-1) dec. Matt Laine (St. John’s, 0-3) 4-0 (Augsburg 3-0).
133 -- Alex Johnson (Augsburg, 4-1) dec. Scott Padrnos (St. John’s,
3-4) 6-4 (Augsburg 6-0).
141 -- Nathan Lexvold (Augsburg, 3-0) wins by forfeit (Augsburg 12-0).
149 -- Torey Stewart (Augsburg, 3-1) maj. dec. Jon Shellenberger (St.
John’s, 3-3) 11-3 (Augsburg 16-0).
157 -- Beau Hansen (Augsburg, 2-2) dec. Zach Anderson (St. John’s,
2-4) 6-2 (Augsburg 19-0).
165 -- Double Forfeit.
174 -- Dustin Raygor (St. John’s, 5-1) dec. Spencer Flodeen (Augsburg, 2-3) 5-4 (Augsburg 19-3).
184 -- Matt Pfarr (St. John’s, 5-0) dec. Trenton Larrieu (Augsburg,
0-1) 4-3 (Augsburg 19-6).
197 -- Andy Peterson (Augsburg, 4-1) dec. No. 7 (at 184) Kyle Schumm (St. John’s, 4-3) 10-9 (Augsburg 22-6).
HWT -- Nick Creamier (Augsburg, 4-0) dec. Jacob Evenson (St. John’s,
3-4) 11-8 (Augsburg 25-6).

WRESTLING INSIDER NEWSMAGAZINE (WIN) 2008-09 NCAA DIV. I DUAL TEAM RANKINGS

Date Ranked:11/25/2008

Ranked By



WRESTLING INSIDER NEWSMAGAZINE (WIN)

2008-09 NCAA DIV. I DUAL TEAM RANKINGS

(Previous Rankings from Nov. 18, 2008)



Rk. Team (Previous)

1. Iowa (1st)

2. Ohio State (2nd)

3. Iowa State (3rd)

4. Cornell (4th)

5. Missouri (5th)

6. Oklahoma State (6th)

7. Nebraska (8th)

8. Illinois (7th)

9. Minnesota (10th)

10. Boise State (13th)

11. Central Michigan (14th)

12. Lehigh (19th)

13. Michigan (9th)

14. Penn State (11th)

15. Wisconsin (15th)

16. Indiana (16th)

17. Hofstra (17th)

18. Edinboro (18th)

19. Northwestern (12th)

20. Oklahoma (21st)

21. Kent State (24th)

22. West Virginia (20th)

23. Penn (22nd)

24. Old Dominion (23rd)

25. Navy (25th)



Individual Rankings



125 pounds

1. Angel Escobedo, Jr. Indiana (1st)

2. Charlie Falck, Sr. Iowa (2nd)

3. Troy Nickerson, Jr. Cornell (3rd)

4. Brandon Precin, Jr. Northwestern (5th)

5. James Nicholson, So. Old Dominion (6th)

6. Obe Blanc, Sr. Oklahoma State (9th)

7. Anthony Robles, So. Arizona State (7th)

8. Scott Sentes, Fr. Central Michigan (10th)

9. Rollie Peterkin, Jr. Penn (8th)

10. Marcos Orozco, Jr. UC Davis (12th)

11. Zach Sanders Fr. Minnesota (18th)

12. Tyler Clark, So. Iowa State (15th)

13. Brian Owen, Fr. Boise State (NR)

14. Brandon Zoetewey, Sr. Cal State Bakersfield (14th)

15. Steve Mytych, Sr. Drexel (NR)

16. Ian Moser, So. Bloomsburg (16th)

17. Nikko Triggas, So. Ohio State (17th)

18. Joey Fio, So. Oklahoma (20th)

19. Nic Bedelyon, So. Kent State (11th)

20. Tony Mustari, Jr. Northern Colorado (13th)



133 pounds

1. Joey Slaton, Jr. Iowa (1st)

2. Franklin Gomez, Jr. Michigan State (2nd)

3. Jimmy Kennedy, Jr. Illinois (3rd)

4. Jayson Ness, Jr. Minnesota (4th)

5. Nick Fanthorpe, Jr. Iowa State (5th)

6. Joe Baker, Sr. Navy (6th)

7. Lou Ruggirello, Jr. Hofstra (7th)

8. Reece Humphrey, Jr. Ohio State (8th)

9. Andrew Hochstrasser, So. Boise State (9th)

10. Steve Bell, Jr. Maryland (11th)

11. Dave Marble, Jr. Buckell (14th)

12. Matt Fisk, Jr. Lehigh (15th)

13. Tyler Shinn, Jr. Oklahoma State (13th)

14. Kyle Hutter, Jr. Old Dominion (12th)

15. Dan Mitcheff, Jr. Kent State (17th)

16. T.J. Dillashaw, Jr. Cal State Fullerton (19th)

17. Boris Novachkov. Jr. Cal Poly (18th)

18. Tim Haas, Sr. Penn State (NR)

19. Rick Deubel, Sr. Edinboro (16th)

20. Conor Beebe, Jr. Central Michigan (NR)



141 pounds

1. Nick Gallick, Jr. Iowa State (2nd)

2. J Jaggers, Sr. Ohio State (1st)

3. Zach Tanelli, Sr. Wisconsin (9th)

4. Brandon Rader, Sr. West Virginia (5th)

5. Alex Tsirtsis, Sr. Iowa (6th)

6. Kellen Russell, So. Michigan (4th)

7. Chris Drouin, So. Arizona State (7th)

8. Keith Sulzer, So. Northwestern (8th)

9. Mike Grey, So. Cornell (3rd)

10. Ryan Williams, Sr. Old Dominion (18th)

11. Zach Bailey, Jr. Oklahoma (10th)

12. Mike Thorn, So. Minnesota (NR)

13. Andrae Hernandez, Sr. Indiana (13th)

14. Drew Lashaway, Sr. Kent State (NR)

15. Jamal Parks, Fr. Oklahoma State (15th)

16. Joe Caramanica, Sr. NC State (14th)

17. Alex Krom, Jr. Maryland (17th)

18. Eric Kruger, Jr. Central Michigan (16th)

19. Cory Fish, Sr. Boise State (12th)

20. Cory Jantzen, So. Harvard (19th)



149 pounds

1. Brent Metcalf, Jr. Iowa (1st)

2. Bubba Jenkins, Jr. Penn State (2nd)

3. Darrion Caldwell, Jr. NC State (4th)

4. Lance Palmer, Jr. Ohio State (5th)

5. Kyle Ruschell, Jr. Wisconsin (6th)

6. Steve Brown, Jr. Central Michigan (7th)

7. Mitch Mueller, Jr. Iowa State (8th)

8. Jake Patacsil, Sr. Purdue (10th)

9. David Jauregui, Sr. West Virginia (11th)

10. Bryce Saddoris, So. Navy (12th)

11. Cesar Grajales, Jr. Penn (13th)

12. Matt Kyler, Jr. Army (9th)

13. Torsten Gillespie, So. Edinboro (14th)

14. Trevor Chinn, Sr. Lehigh (15th)

15. Jason Chamberlain, Fr. Boise State (NR)

16. Heinrich Barnes, Sr. Oregon State (16th)

17. Eric Medina, So. Maryland (17th)

18. Mike Roberts, Sr. Boston (18th)

19. Matt Cathell, So. Delaware State (19th)

20. Luke Silver, Fr. Oklahoma State (NR)



157 pounds

1. Mike Poeta, Sr. Illinois (1st)

2. Jordan Leen, Sr. Cornell (2nd)

3. J.P. O'Connor, Jr. Harvard (4th)

4. Gregor Gillespie, Sr. Edinboro (5th)

5. Jordan Burroughs, Jr. Nebraska (3rd@149)

6. Cyler Sanderson, Jr. Iowa State (6th)

7. Dan Vallimont, Jr. Penn State (3rd)

8. Michael Chandler, Sr. Missouri (7th)

9. Adam Hall, So. Boise State (9th)

10. Matt Moley, Jr. Bloomsburg (8th)

11. Newly McSpadden, Sr. Oklahoma State (10th)

12. Matt Coughlin, Jr. Indiana (11th)

13. Jason Johnstone, Sr. Ohio State (12th)

14. Shane Vernon, Jr. Oklahoma (13th)

15.Tyler Safratowich, Sr. Minnesota (14th)

16. Chase Pami, Jr. Cal Poly (16th)

17. Jason Welch, Fr. Northwestern (17th)

18. Kody Hamrah, Sr. NC State (18th)

19. Matt Dragon, Sr. Penn (19th)

20. Hadley Harrison, Jr. Clarion (NR)



165 pounds

1. Nick Marable, Jr. Missouri (2nd)

2. Mack Lewnes, So. Cornell (1st)

3. Moza Fay, Sr. Northern Iowa (3rd)

4. Jonathan Reader, So. Iowa State (4th)

5. Stephen Dwyer, Jr. Nebraska (5th)

6. Luke Manuel, So. Purdue (6th)

7. Jarrod King, Sr. Edinboro (7th)

8. Trevor Stewart, Sr. Central Michigan (8th)

9. Brandon Mason, Sr. Oklahoma State (9th)

10. Colt Sponseller, So. Ohio State (10th)

11. Zach Shanaman, Sr. Penn (12th)

12. Roger Smith-Bergsrud, Sr. Illinois (13th)

13. Chris Brown, Jr. Old Dominion (11th)

14. Andrew Flanagan, Sr. Harvard (15th)

15. Anthony Rendos, Jr. Bucknell (16th)

16. Tyler Sherfey, Sr. Boise State (14th)

17. Ryan Morningstar, Jr. Iowa (17th)

18. Keegan Mueller, Sr. North Carolina (18th)

19. Rex Kendle, Sr. Michigan State (NR)

20. Rick Schmelyn, Jr. Bloomsburg (NR)



174 pounds

1. Steve Luke, Sr. Michigan (1st)

2. Jay Borschel, Jr. Iowa (2nd)

3. Brandon Browne, Jr. Nebraska (3rd)

4. Steve Anceravage, Sr. Cornell (4th)

5. Raymond Jordan, Sr. Missouri (5th)

6. Mike Cannon, Jr. American (6th)

7. Alton Lucas, Sr. Hofstra (7th)

8. Mike Letts, Jr. Maryland (8th)

9. Chris Henrich, So. Virginia (9th)

10. Duke Burke, Jr. Iowa State (10th)

11. Mike Miller, So. Central Michigan (11th)

12. Nate Lee, Jr. Boise State (12th)

13. John Dergo, Jr. Illinois (13th)

14. Luke Feist, Sr. Stanford (14th)

15. Jeff James, So. Oklahoma (15th)

16. Quentin Wright, Fr. Penn State (16th)

17. Alex Caruso, So. Lehigh (17th)

18. Tyler Bernacchi, Sr. UC Davis (NR)

19. Phil Moricone, Sr. Edinboro (18th)

20. Austin Trotman, So. Appalachian St (NR)


184 pounds

1. Mike Pucillo, Jr. Ohio State (1st)

2. Jake Herbert, Sr. Northwestern (2nd)

3. Phil Keddy, Jr. Iowa (3rd)

4. Kirk Smith, So. Boise State (4th)

5. Louis Caputo, Jr. Harvard (5th)

6. Vince Jones, Sr. Nebraska (6th)

7. Doug Umbehauer, Sr. Rider (7th)

8. Rocco Caponi, Sr. Virginia (8th)

9. Dustin Kilgore, Fr. Kent State (9th)

10. Zack Geisen, Jr. Stanford (10th)

11. David Craig, Jr. Lehigh (12th)

12. Justin Kerber, So. Cornell (NR)

13. Chris Honeycutt, So. Edinboro (13th)

14. Kyle Bressler, Oregon State (14th)

15. A.J. Kissel, So. Purdue (16th)

16. Josh Patterson, Jr. Binghamton (17th)

17. John Barone, Jr. Duke (NR)

18. Anthony Biondo, So. Michigan (19th)

19. Phil Bomberger, Sr. Penn State (12th)

20. Jordan Blanton, Fr. Illinois (NR)



197 pounds

1. Jake Varner, Jr. Iowa State (1st)

2. Hudson Taylor, Jr. Maryland (2nd)

3. Craig Brester, Jr. Nebraska (3rd)

4. Dallas Herbst, Sr. Wisconsin (4th)

5. Max Askren, Jr. Missouri (5th)

6. Tyrel Todd, Sr. Michigan (6th)

7. Josh Arnone, Jr. Cornell (7th)

8. Eric Lapotsky, So. Oklahoma (8th)

9. Andrew Anderson, Sr. Northern Iowa (9th)

10. Cayle Byers, So. George Mason (10th)

11. Brent Chriswell, So. Boise State (11th)

12. Clayton Foster, So. Oklahoma State (12th)

13. Logan Brown, So. Purdue (13th)

14. Brent Jones, Sr. Virginia (14th)

15. Joe Fagiano, So. Hofstra (17th)

16. Cody Gardner, Fr. Ohio State (15th)

17. Chad Beatty, Jr. Iowa (19th)

18. Patrick Bond, Jr. Illinois (18th)

19. Jon Oplinger, Sr. Drexel (NR)

20. Richard Starks, Jr. Army (16th)


HWT

1. Jared Rosholt, Jr. Oklahoma State (1st)

2. Dave Zabriskie, Jr. Iowa State (2nd)

3. Kyle Massey, Sr. Wisconsin (3rd)

4. Mark Ellis, Sr. Missouri (5th)

5. Jermail Porter, Sr. Kent State (6th)

6. John Wise, Sr. Illinois (7th)

7. Zach Sheaffer, Sr. Pittsburgh (8th)

8. Scott Steele, Sr. Navy (4th)

9. Zach Hammond, Sr. Cornell (9th)

10. Joe Fendone, Sr. Edinboro (10th)

11. Rashard Goff, Sr. Cleveland State (11th)

12. Dustin Rogers, Sr. West Virginia (12th)

13. Nathan Everhart, Jr. Indiana (13th)

14. Dan Erekson, Jr. Iowa (15th)

15. Corey Morrison, Sr. Ohio State (16th)

16. Justin Dobies, Sr. North Carolina (18th)

17. Tucker Lane, Fr. Nebraska (NR)

18. Konrad Dudziak, Jr. Duke (NR)

19. Ben Berhow, So. Minnesota (19th)

20. Ryan Flores, So. Columbia (NR)



WIN TOURNAMENT POWER INDEX (TPI)



The Tournament Power Index (T.P.I.) is compiled by awarding potential NCAA tournament points to each team for the ranked wrestlers they have in WIN’s current individual rankings. Teams are awarded points based on how many potential All-Americans they could have and get advancement points for wrestlers ranked No. 9-20. The order of teams in the T.P.I. can vary greatly from our dual meet rankings, as some teams have a number of highly-ranked individuals but may have holes in their dual meet line-up.



Point totals associated with individual rankings are as followed: 1st - 20 (16 AA points + 4 advancement points); 2nd - 16 (12+4); 3rd - 13.5 (10+3.5); 4th - 12. 5 (9+3.5); 5th - 10 (7+3); 6th - 9 (6+3); 7th - 6.5 (4+2.5); 8th - 5.5 (3+2.5); 9th/12th - 2; 13th/16th - 1.5; 17th-20th - 1



Fans or coaches who have questions or input on our current rankings process can e-mail W.I.N. editor Mike Finn at MikeF@WIN-magazine.com. If you wish to be included on weekly ranking release list, e-mail W.I.N. at Info@WIN-magazine.com.



Rk. School Top 8 PTS

1. Iowa 6 99

2. Iowa State 7 97.5

3. Cornell 5 70.5

4. Ohio State 4 61.5

5. Missouri 5 58

6. Nebraska 5 57

7. Wisconsin 3 49.5

8. Illinois 3 48

9. Michigan 3 40

10. Oklahoma State 2 39

11. Northwestern 3 35

12(tie). Edinboro 2 26

12(tie). Harvard 2 26

14. Maryland 2 25.5

15(tie). Boise State 1 25

15(tie). Penn State 2 25

15(tie). Indiana 1 25

18. Central Michigan 3 24

19. Purdue 2 17.5

20(tie) Michigan State 1 17

20(tie) Minnesota 1 17

22(tie). Navy 2 16.5

22(tie). West Virginia 1 16.5

24(tie). Kent State 1 16

24(tie) NC State 1 16

26. Northern Iowa 1 15.5

27. Old Dominion 1 15

28. Hofstra 2 14.5

29. Arizona State 2 13

30. Oklahoma 1 11.5

31(tie) American 1 9

31(tie) Virginia 1 9

33. Penn 0 7

34(tie) Lehigh 0 6.5

34(tie) Pitt 1 6.5

34(tie) Rider 1 6.5

37. Bloomsburg 1 4.5

38. Stanford 0 3.5

39(tie) UC Davis 0 3

39(tie) Army 0 3

39(tie) Oregon State 0 3

42(tie) Cal Poly 0 2.5

42(tie) North Carolina 0 2.5

44(tie) Cleveland State 0 2

44(tie) George Mason 0 2

46(tie) Binghamton 0 1.5

46(tie) Bucknell 0 1.5

46(tie) Cal State Bakersfield 0 1.5

46(tie) Cal State Fullerton 0 1.5

50(tie) Appalachian State 0 1

50(tie) Boston U. 0 1

50(tie) Delaware State 0 1

50(tie) Northern Colorado 0 1

Bigger and better: Nebraska's Jordan Burroughs ready to make run at NCAA title

Bigger and better: Nebraska's Jordan Burroughs ready to make run at NCAA title
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/26/2008



There is a photo on page 2 of the Nebraska media guide that was taken just after the conclusion of the 2008 NCAA Championships in St. Louis.

In the picture, NU heavyweight Jon May is holding a trophy over his head while surrounded by happy teammates and coaches.

Among those pictured is a smiling Jordan Burroughs.

Burroughs capped a superb true sophomore season with a third-place national finish at 149 pounds. He led Nebraska to a fourth-place finish in the team race, marking the first time in 15 years the Huskers had won a trophy at the NCAA tournament.

Don’t get the idea that Burroughs was content with the way the 2007-08 season ended. But for Burroughs, who failed to place at the 2007 NCAA meet for a team that finished 16th, last season definitely was a sign of progress.

“Winning that trophy, it was very important for our program,? Burroughs said. “We were very close to second, but the way we finished still builds a lot of confidence for our team. We thought we should’ve had a couple of guys in the finals, but we continued to wrestle hard the whole tournament. We proved to everyone in the country that we’re a top program.?

Now a junior, Burroughs is looking for bigger and better things during the 2008-09 season. Burroughs, for one, is bigger and hopes to be better as he bumps up a weight class to 157 pounds.

Burroughs won the 157 title at Nebraska-Omaha’s Kaufman-Brand Open this past weekend, downing past NCAA champion Dustin Schlatter of Minnesota 6-4 in the finals. Burroughs, 0-3 in his career against Schlatter prior to that match, was named Outstanding Wrestler.

Burroughs was one of six champions for Nebraska in the event. Also winning titles for the Huskers were All-Americans Stephen Dwyer (165), Brandon Browne (174) and Craig Brester (197), NCAA qualifier Vince Jones (184) and talented freshman Tucker Lane (heavyweight).

Nebraska, which placed second at the 2008 National Duals, is ranked sixth nationally this season by InterMat.

“We know we can improve on what we did last year,? Burroughs said. “We have a number of guys in our room who are capable of winning individual national titles this year. We’re shooting for the top this year.?

Burroughs has certified at 149, but said his recent move up to 157 is permanent. He turned in a dominating performance in his first big meet at his new weight class on Saturday in Omaha.

Burroughs advanced to the finals against Schlatter, whom he lost twice to as a freshman and once as a sophomore. This match was scoreless after one period and was tied 2-2 entering the final period.

Burroughs, who is lethal on his feet and excels with a blast double-leg shot, scored two takedowns on a pair of leg attacks in the final period to beat Schlatter 6-4.

“It’s always good to beat a guy who you’ve lost to in the past,? Burroughs said. “I feel so much better and so much stronger at 157. It was a pretty big cut, going back down to 149. Moving up to 157, I’m able to eat better and that helps me stay focused and have more energy in practice. It’s made a big difference for me already.?

Burroughs, from Sicklerville, N.J., was not considered one of the nation’s elite recruits coming out of high school. He was ranked seventh nationally at 135 pounds by InterMat as a prep senior. But Burroughs finished strong, winning a New Jersey state title in 2006 before winning High School Nationals.

Nebraska coach Mark Manning didn’t have much trouble finding Burroughs’ house in New Jersey when he recruited him. Burroughs is the next-door neighbor to Jones, who arrived at Nebraska a year before Burroughs did.

Jones, a Cornhusker senior, is a two-time national qualifier. Burroughs and Jones are roommates at Nebraska.

“Vince was always the better wrestler when we were growing up,? Burroughs said. “I’ve always looked up to him and he always was someone who would teach me the ropes. I feed off his energy. He’s my best friend. He’s like my brother.?

Jones fell one win short of being an All-American last year.

“That was very disappointing, I felt so bad for him,? Burroughs said. “I’m looking forward to us being national champs together this year. Vince has been wrestling great this year. He has a chance to have a great season.?

Burroughs arrived in Lincoln, Neb., in the fall of 2006 with the idea that he would redshirt at 141 pounds that season for Nebraska.

Burroughs’ days as a 141-pound redshirt were short-lived. Burroughs quickly added bulk in the NU weight room and moved up to 149. Shortly after Christmas, Burroughs was pulled out of his redshirt and inserted into the Nebraska lineup as a true freshman.

Burroughs wrestled well at the end of the season and qualified for the 2007 NCAA tournament in Auburn Hills, Mich. Unseeded as a true freshman, Burroughs drew the top-seeded Schlatter in the first round and fell 3-2. He won his next match before falling to No. 2 seed Matt Storniolo of Oklahoma in a marathon, four-overtime battle. Burroughs finished his freshman season 16-13.

Burroughs made significant gains last season. He finished with a 34-6 record and was named Outstanding Wrestler after winning the Big 12 Championships.

Seeded fourth at the 2008 NCAA tournament, Burroughs knocked off returning NCAA runner-up Josh Churella of Michigan in the quarterfinals before dropping an 8-4 decision to eventual champion and Hodge Trophy winner Brent Metcalf of Iowa. Burroughs came back to beat Harvard’s J.P. O’Connor and then downed Churella again to place third.

“I improved a lot last year, and I feel like I’m a lot better this year,? Burroughs said. “I just want to keep improving. A lot of guys peak early. To me, you can never be too good. I am always eager to learn.?

Burroughs is in his junior season of college, but he won’t turn 21 until next July.

“Jordan is very young and he has a tremendous upside,? Manning said. “To see how much he’s developed, grown and matured from the time he came here is really impressive. He’s very disciplined, with everything he does. His effort is tremendous, and his focus and mindset have really improved. Every day in the practice room, he brings it 100 percent.?

Burroughs also has the physical skills to go with his work ethic.

“We saw that Jordan was really a special athlete when we watched him in high school,? Manning said. “To see him develop into this caliber of wrestler has been great to see. He’s very athletic, but he’s developed into a great wrestler.?

Burroughs qualified for the U.S. Junior World Team in freestyle this past summer. Among the wrestlers he worked out with at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs were Olympian Doug Schwab and past National Team member Jared Frayer.

Burroughs went 2-1 and placed 10th at July’s Junior World Championships in Turkey. He competed at 66 kg/145.5 lbs.

“I didn’t wrestle my best, but it was still a great experience and I learned a lot,? he said. “It was my first trip outside the country. I love freestyle. My ultimate goal is to make the Olympic team in 2012 and win an Olympic gold medal.?

Manning, who has coached numerous U.S. teams on the international level, said that goal is realistic.

“I think Jordan can and will be an Olympic and World champion, if he sets his mind to it,? Manning said. “He has great ability. He’s very talented and he’s only going to get better as a wrestler. The sky’s the limit. He has a very bright future in freestyle.?

Manning said there were high expectations placed on Burroughs entering the Junior Worlds after American Bubba Jenkins won a Junior World title in the same weight class in 2007.

“I think Jordan was the best guy in his weight at the Junior World Championships,? said Manning, who served as one of the coaches of that American squad. “He just wasn’t himself and probably put too much pressure on himself. But I think that experience will help him grow in the long run. I know he learned from it.?

For now, the goal for Burroughs is to ascend to the top of the medal stand at the 2009 NCAA Championships in St. Louis.

The event will be held in the same venue, the Scottrade Center, where Burroughs and his team had a breakthrough performance last season.

Burroughs hopes to be smiling again at the end of the tournament, but for different reasons.

“I’m still not satisfied,? he said. “I won’t be satisfied until I’m the national champion and our team is holding the national championship trophy.?

USAWrestling releases Future Olympian Rankings

While the system only uses USAW, age group events, its a decent effort. One glaring weakness:

http://www.usawmembership.com/WeightRanking.jsp?TIM=1227804884985&twSessionId=oudamsipqjhiurx&weightId=5601

Gary Abbott
USA Wrestling has developed an exciting new program, the U.S. Future Olympian Rankings. The program is designed to recognize the performance of America’s most talented age-group wrestlers, based upon actual results in major USA Wrestling events.

Included in the point system will be USA Wrestling events in the following age-group divisions: Intermediate, Novice, Schoolboy, Middle School, Cadet and Junior. In each of these age divisions, specific national and regional events in freestyle, Greco-Roman and folkstyle wrestling will be used to score points.

A few basics about the program:

1. The points will automatically accumulate throughout the season as USA Wrestling events are held. Wrestlers can check on their ranking by visiting TheMat.com (www.TheMat.com)

2. Wrestlers will be placed in the weight class where they competed at the last event of the year.

3. At the end of the membership year, the top three placewinners in each weight class at each age level will receive a special reward, and the top 25 in each weight class will receive a certificate.

4. The Top 10 point scorers in each age division will also be recognized at the end of the membership year.

The events which will be utilized for the U.S. Future Olympian Ranking in 2008-09 are as follows:

Intermediate (ages 9-10)
• All USA Wrestling Folkstyle Tour of America events
• ASICS Folkstyle National Championships
• Your region’s USA Wrestling Kids Regional Championship (FS and GR)
• ASICS Kids Freestyle and Greco-Roman National Championships

Novice (ages 11-12)
• All USA Wrestling Folkstyle Tour of America events
• ASICS Folkstyle National Championships
• Your region’s USA Wrestling Kids Regional Championship (FS and GR)
• ASICS Kids Freestyle and Greco-Roman National Championships

Schoolboy (ages 13-14)
• All USA Wrestling Folkstyle Tour of America events
• ASICS Folkstyle National Championships
• Your region’s USA Wrestling Kids Regional Championships (FS and GR)
• ASICS Kids Freestyle and Greco-Roman National Championships

Middle School (Grades 6-8)
• USA Wrestling Folkstyle Tour of America events
• USA Wrestling Middle School Folkstyle National Championships

Cadet (ages 15-16)
• ASICS Cadet Folkstyle National Championships
• All USA Wrestling Cadet Regional Championships (FS and GR)
• USA Wrestling FILA Cadet National Championships (FS and GR)
• Cadet National Championships (FS and GR)

Junior (Grades 9-12)
• ASICS Junior Folkstyle National Championships
• All USA Wrestling Junior Regional Championships (FS and GR)
• USA Wrestling FILA Cadet National Championships (FS and GR)
• USA Wrestling FILA Junior National Championships (FS and GR)
• ASICS/Vaughan National Championships (FS and GR)

A year-end ranking from the 2007-08 year, using this point scoring system, has been published, showing how the wrestlers were ranked last season.

To see the final 2007-2008 U.S. Future Olympian rankings, please visit the following URL address, then use the scroll bar to select the 2007-2008 rankings:
http://www.themat.com/section.php?section_id=4&page=kidrankings

USA Wrestling has also compiled season-ending national standings in each age division. Included is the First Team for the age group, which lists the point winners in each weight class. In addition, a Top 10 point scorers for each age group is also recognized.

To see the 2007-2008 U.S. Future Olympian Rankings national standings, visit:
http://www.themat.com/section.php?section_id=3&page=showarticle&ArticleID=19838

The first events that will included in this year’s rankings are the USA Wrestling Folkstyle Tour of America events. This year’s events will be:

December 5-6 - Salt Lake Slam, Salt Lake City, Utah
February 14-15 - The Georgia Grind, Atlanta, Ga.
March 21 - Dominate in the Dells, Wisconsin Dells, Wis.

For more information on the Folkstyle Tour of America, and to register for the events, visit:
www.usafolkstyle.com

From that point on, wrestling and fans can follow the 2008-09 rankings as they are updated automatically throughout the USA Wrestling season.

November 26, 2008

USA GRAPPLING ROUNDUP: OTM becomes sponsor and what is a guillotine choke

What’s new at USA Grappling?

OnTheMat (OTM) will sponsor the 2008 USA Grappling World Team going to Lucerne, Switzerland for the World Championships in less than a month. OTM will provide the U.S. World Team with competition board shorts, rashguards and kimonos that will be worn during the two-day competition. USA Grappling would like to thank OTM for their support! Visit: www.onthemat.com

Grappling Around the Globe:

The World Championships are less than a month away and teams continue to register. There are currently 30 countries represented with the largest teams coming from Brazil, Congo, Shoes, Denmark, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Nigeria, Poland, Switzerland, and the United States. 70 and 80 KG are nearing 50 competitors and will become a test of tournament endurance for the athletes in the hunt for the GOLD.

Who’s News at USA Grappling?

Chris Carlino, Grappling Director for California USA Wrestling and one of the top referees within the FILA World Grappling Committee has been named the Head Official for the upcoming Grappling World Championships. Chris has been one of the pioneers in Grappling’s development and he has worked tirelessly in his service throughout the years. Chris will belt instructions to an officials training course and will manage the officials during the competition in Switzerland on December 20-21.

What is the Guillotine Choke?

The name says it all, having borrowed the name from bags of the most gruesome killing devices of modern times. The Guillotine choke has earned its’ reputation as a fight ender. The Guillotine choke is the “headlock? of Grappling and MMA, referring to the maneuvers ability to end the match quickly and decisively, often leaving the victims saying, “I got caught,? much like getting head-locked out of your shoes in wrestling.

The Guillotine choke utilizes the arms as the proverbial “noose? around the neck or wrist, while the legs are used to secure the opponents body, which will undoubtedly move frantically in an attempt to find air or an escape.

The Guillotine choke is not to be mistaken with wrestling’s Guillotine which in Grappling is called “The Twister? and has been made popular by 10th Planet Jiu-jitsu’s Eddie Bravo.

November 25, 2008

Indiana's Kurt Kinser races to fast start on wrestling mat

Indiana's Kurt Kinser races to fast start on wrestling mat
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/20/2008



As a kid growing up, Kurt Kinser’s summer vacations were spent traveling around the country in the family motor home.

The trips weren’t all about sightseeing and relaxation.

The Kinser family business is auto racing. Kurt’s father, Steve, has made his mark while traveling all over the United States as a 20-time World of Outlaws Sprint Car national champion.

Unlike his older brother, Kraig, who races alongside his dad on the World of Outlaws circuit, Kurt never quite caught the racing bug. But early on, Kurt’s father helped him develop a passion for another sport.

Steve Kinser was a state champion wrestler in Indiana before he became a legend on America’s dirt track ovals.

“The headlock was the first move I ever learned,? Kurt said. “My dad taught it to me when I first started wrestling when I was 3 or 4 years old.?

Now more than 15 years later, Kurt Kinser is still using the first move he learned to excel on the wrestling mat as a sophomore at Indiana University.

Kinser, an NCAA qualifier last season, is off to a fast start this season for the Hoosiers at 157 pounds. He won the Michigan State Open and he is ranked No. 9 nationally by InterMat.

Kinser was named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week after winning the Michigan State Open. He downed No. 8 Matt Moley of Bloomsburg 3-2 in the semifinals before pinning Northwestern’s Jason Welch in just 56 seconds in the finals.

Kinser has started this season at 157 after competing at 149 last year. IU junior Matt Coughlin, who placed seventh at the 2007 NCAA Championships, also is at 157. Kinser has certified at 149, so there is a possibility he could drop back down and compete there. Coughlin certified at 157.

Kinser, from Bloomington, Ind., won an Indiana state championship as a senior before joining the Hoosiers wrestling program. He went 15-4 in open tournaments during his redshirt season at Indiana in 2006-07.

Kinser cracked the IU starting lineup last season as a freshman at 149 pounds. He finished 32-16 with 18 falls. He ranked in the top five in the country in falls and finished just one pin shy of the school record.

Many of the falls were the result of the headlock that he is not bashful about unleashing.

“I like to push the pace and wrestle a wide-open match,? Kinser said. “The headlock has always been my main move. I’ve added more techniques to what I do, but when the opening is there I will go for the headlock.?

Indiana coach Duane Goldman likes the way Kinser approaches a match.

“Kurt’s definitely not boring – we really enjoy watching him,? Goldman said. “He’s real aggressive. He’s extremely strong and extremely well-conditioned. His arsenal comes from upper-body moves. He’s a little bit unconventional, but he has quite a bit of technique. He’s tough to match up against because he’s so dangerous. He will pin guys in the first, second and third period. He will not let up.?

Goldman said Kinser has been a great fit for the Hoosier program.

“Kurt comes from a real good family, and he’s from right here in Bloomington,? Goldman said. “He’s a very nice kid and very humble.?

Kurt Kinser said he marvels at what his father has done in his racing career. Steve Kinser is known as “The King? for his dominance in the national sprint-car circuit. He’s 54 years old, but still going strong against some drivers who are less than half his age.

“My dad is one of the fiercest competitors I’ve ever seen,? Kurt said. “My mother (Dana) has that same competitiveness. She was a very good athlete who excelled in track.?

Steve said the door is still open if Kurt wants to try his hand at racing.

“If he ever wants to do it, I would help him,? Steve said. “I would be proud of Kurt no matter what he does. He always loved wrestling more than anything else. He’s really competitive and he has a great work ethic. It’s great to see him doing so well in wrestling.?

Kurt’s brother, Kraig, also excelled in wrestling in high school before jumping into racing full-time.

“Wrestling is a great sport,? Steve Kinser said. “The one-on-one competition – and being able to think when you’re tired and be able to put out 100 percent mentally – it’s a tough sport. Having been a wrestler has definitely helped my racing career. Those athletes are very dedicated. I know Kurt’s worked very hard. He’s had to fight for everything he’s ever accomplished in wrestling.?

And there’s still more work to be done. Kurt Kinser won three matches at the 2008 NCAA Championships in St. Louis and finished two wins short of earning All-American honors at 149 pounds.

Kinser knocked off his share of tough opponents last season. He beat past NCAA runner-up Ryan Lang of Northwestern in the Big Ten tournament. Among his wins at the NCAA tournament was a first-period fall over past All-American Don Fisch of Rider.

“It was very important for me to wrestle in the NCAA tournament – it was a great experience,? Kurt said. “That gave me a big boost going into this season.?

His father was in the stands when Kurt wrestled at the NCAA meet last March.

“My dad comes out to as many tournaments as he can,? Kurt said. “He enjoys watching me compete. He’s very supportive and that means a lot to me.?

Kurt still enjoys watching his father continue to excel in the national sprint-car circuit.

“Dad said he wants to keep racing as long as he can stay competitive,? Kurt said. “It’s very inspirational to watch him. He’s a great role model for me. He’s taught me that you can be the best if you have that desire.?

TheMat.com weighs in with its predictions for the NWCA All-Star Classic

TheMat.com weighs in with its predictions for the NWCA All-Star Classic
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/24/2008



One of the best matches that I have ever witnessed came during the college all-star dual meet.

The matchup occurred on Jan. 29, 1996 in Iowa City, when the all-star meet was held in the middle of the season. Iowa’s Mark Ironside staged a furious third-period rally to beat Lock Haven’s Cary Kolat 9-8 at 134 pounds before 8,500 screaming fans at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

I really wish I was there in Columbus, Ohio, but purely just for fun, here are my predictions for the National Wrestling Coaches Association All-Star Classic. The dual will be held tonight, Nov. 24, at Ohio State University in Columbus.

This meet really should be held in Iowa again sometime soon, especially with all these Iowa and Iowa State wrestlers competing.

Anyway, here’s how I see the all-star dual playing out:

125 – Charlie Falck (Iowa) vs. James Nicholson (Old Dominion)

Not exactly the matchup we envisioned for this event - with NCAA champion Angel Escobedo of Indiana and past NCAA runner-up Troy Nickerson of Cornell not wrestling - but it should still be an intriguing battle.

Nicholson was an All-American last year and he will have his share of motivation wrestling against an Iowa Hawkeye. Nicholson is from Des Moines.

Falck, a two-time All-American, is an experienced and savvy wrestler who can beat anybody.

Sesker’s pick: Falck

133 – Jayson Ness (Minnesota) vs. Jimmy Kennedy (Illinois)

It’s still too early to tell how Ness will do at 133 after bumping up from 125.

Kennedy is a proven commodity after placing fourth nationally at 133, but look for Ness to come out strong after dropping a match in this event last year. The long, lanky Ness is tough to match up against, especially if you haven’t wrestled him. Ness was second in the nation at 125 last year.

Too bad top-ranked Joe Slaton of Iowa wasn’t able to wrestle, but we may see plenty of him very soon.

Sesker’s pick: Ness

141 – J Jaggers (Ohio State) vs. Nick Gallick (Iowa State)

Jaggers was a huge surprise, at least in my eyes, at last year’s NCAA tournament. But the kid came to Ohio State as one of the nation’s best overall recruits. He lived up to it last year.

Expect Jaggers to put on a show for his home fans against a very tough wrestler in Gallick.

Gallick showed a lot of improvement last year and is a dangerous wrestler who is capable of turning a match around in a hurry.

Sesker’s pick: Jaggers

149 – Brent Metcalf (Iowa) vs. Darrion Caldwell (North Carolina State)

This is the matchup that everyone wants to see.

Metcalf suffered his only collegiate loss exactly one year ago to Caldwell, who caught him with a spladle. Watching the video, Metcalf does not look to be pinned. Not even close.

Metcalf, the best collegiate wrestler since Cael Sanderson, can’t wait for this match. Caldwell is very explosive and dangerous, but he also has pulled out some low-scoring matches as well.

Hopefully, both guys will open it up since it doesn’t count on their records. That could be really fun to watch.

Sesker’s pick: Metcalf

157 – Jordan Leen (Cornell) vs. Cyler Sanderson (Iowa State)

This could be another entertaining bout to watch, as both wrestlers are capable of putting on a show.

Leen has already been in some tough battles this season, including suffering an overtime loss to Harvard’s J.P. O’Connor.

Sanderson is another Iowa State wrestler who has made major improvements since coming to Ames. But Leen obviously has won when the stakes were the highest.

I wouldn’t have minded seeing another 157 match tonight with Mike Poeta of Illinois battling Gregor Gillespie of Edinboro again. Their match in Las Vegas last season was one of the best of the 2007-08 college season.

But Leen-Sanderson will be interesting to watch.

Sesker’s pick: Sanderson

165 – Nick Marable (Missouri) vs. Mack Lewnes (Cornell)

This is a rematch of the third-place match from the 2008 NCAAs, won by Marable.

Both wrestlers will contend for the NCAA title this year. Marable proved how tough he was in the postseason last year. Lewnes is just a sophomore, but he has really been impressive.

Look for a real close match here.

Sesker’s pick: Lewnes

174 – Steve Luke (Michigan) vs. Jay Borschel (Iowa)

This looks like one of the toughest bouts to call in the whole dual in a battle of Big Ten rivals.

Luke was second in the country last year and Borschel third.

Luke, in his fourth season as a starter, has an edge in experience. But Borschel performed very well last year in his first year as a starter.

Sesker’s pick: Luke

184 – Phil Keddy (Iowa) vs. Louis Caputo (Harvard)

Keddy may have been the most improved wrestler in the country last year, and reports from Iowa City indicate he may be even better this year.

Caputo is a tough competitor as well, who has excelled during the summer in freestyle.

Keddy is extremely strong, and will be tough for anyone to score on. He really bought in when Tom Brands took over the Iowa program, and it’s paying off for him now.

NCAA champions Jake Herbert of Northwestern and Mike Pucillo of Ohio State aren’t competing tonight, but we will see plenty of those two in the coming months as well.

Sesker’s pick: Keddy

197 – Jake Varner (Iowa State) vs. Hudson Taylor (Maryland)

Speaking of tough to score on, Varner may be the best in the country at keeping opponents off the scoreboard.

Taylor is a workhorse, who is going to keep wrestling hard for seven minutes. He proved that at the 2008 NCAAs.

Varner, a two-time NCAA runner-up, is capable of being a dominant force at 197 if he looks for his offense more.

Sesker’s pick: Varner

285 – Jared Rosholt (Oklahoma State) vs. Kyle Massey (Wisconsin)

Rosholt, Jake’s “little? brother, who definitely has some big shoes to fill, really came into his own last season and enters this season ranked No. 1.

This could be a low-scoring, tactical battle. That seems to be the trend these days in the heavyweight class.

This match doesn’t count, so these big boys need to open it up a little more and give the fans something to watch.

Sesker’s pick: Rosholt

TheMat.com weighs in with its predictions for the NWCA All-Star Classic

TheMat.com weighs in with its predictions for the NWCA All-Star Classic
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/24/2008



One of the best matches that I have ever witnessed came during the college all-star dual meet.

The matchup occurred on Jan. 29, 1996 in Iowa City, when the all-star meet was held in the middle of the season. Iowa’s Mark Ironside staged a furious third-period rally to beat Lock Haven’s Cary Kolat 9-8 at 134 pounds before 8,500 screaming fans at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.

I really wish I was there in Columbus, Ohio, but purely just for fun, here are my predictions for the National Wrestling Coaches Association All-Star Classic. The dual will be held tonight, Nov. 24, at Ohio State University in Columbus.

This meet really should be held in Iowa again sometime soon, especially with all these Iowa and Iowa State wrestlers competing.

Anyway, here’s how I see the all-star dual playing out:

125 – Charlie Falck (Iowa) vs. James Nicholson (Old Dominion)

Not exactly the matchup we envisioned for this event - with NCAA champion Angel Escobedo of Indiana and past NCAA runner-up Troy Nickerson of Cornell not wrestling - but it should still be an intriguing battle.

Nicholson was an All-American last year and he will have his share of motivation wrestling against an Iowa Hawkeye. Nicholson is from Des Moines.

Falck, a two-time All-American, is an experienced and savvy wrestler who can beat anybody.

Sesker’s pick: Falck

133 – Jayson Ness (Minnesota) vs. Jimmy Kennedy (Illinois)

It’s still too early to tell how Ness will do at 133 after bumping up from 125.

Kennedy is a proven commodity after placing fourth nationally at 133, but look for Ness to come out strong after dropping a match in this event last year. The long, lanky Ness is tough to match up against, especially if you haven’t wrestled him. Ness was second in the nation at 125 last year.

Too bad top-ranked Joe Slaton of Iowa wasn’t able to wrestle, but we may see plenty of him very soon.

Sesker’s pick: Ness

141 – J Jaggers (Ohio State) vs. Nick Gallick (Iowa State)

Jaggers was a huge surprise, at least in my eyes, at last year’s NCAA tournament. But the kid came to Ohio State as one of the nation’s best overall recruits. He lived up to it last year.

Expect Jaggers to put on a show for his home fans against a very tough wrestler in Gallick.

Gallick showed a lot of improvement last year and is a dangerous wrestler who is capable of turning a match around in a hurry.

Sesker’s pick: Jaggers

149 – Brent Metcalf (Iowa) vs. Darrion Caldwell (North Carolina State)

This is the matchup that everyone wants to see.

Metcalf suffered his only collegiate loss exactly one year ago to Caldwell, who caught him with a spladle. Watching the video, Metcalf does not look to be pinned. Not even close.

Metcalf, the best collegiate wrestler since Cael Sanderson, can’t wait for this match. Caldwell is very explosive and dangerous, but he also has pulled out some low-scoring matches as well.

Hopefully, both guys will open it up since it doesn’t count on their records. That could be really fun to watch.

Sesker’s pick: Metcalf

157 – Jordan Leen (Cornell) vs. Cyler Sanderson (Iowa State)

This could be another entertaining bout to watch, as both wrestlers are capable of putting on a show.

Leen has already been in some tough battles this season, including suffering an overtime loss to Harvard’s J.P. O’Connor.

Sanderson is another Iowa State wrestler who has made major improvements since coming to Ames. But Leen obviously has won when the stakes were the highest.

I wouldn’t have minded seeing another 157 match tonight with Mike Poeta of Illinois battling Gregor Gillespie of Edinboro again. Their match in Las Vegas last season was one of the best of the 2007-08 college season.

But Leen-Sanderson will be interesting to watch.

Sesker’s pick: Sanderson

165 – Nick Marable (Missouri) vs. Mack Lewnes (Cornell)

This is a rematch of the third-place match from the 2008 NCAAs, won by Marable.

Both wrestlers will contend for the NCAA title this year. Marable proved how tough he was in the postseason last year. Lewnes is just a sophomore, but he has really been impressive.

Look for a real close match here.

Sesker’s pick: Lewnes

174 – Steve Luke (Michigan) vs. Jay Borschel (Iowa)

This looks like one of the toughest bouts to call in the whole dual in a battle of Big Ten rivals.

Luke was second in the country last year and Borschel third.

Luke, in his fourth season as a starter, has an edge in experience. But Borschel performed very well last year in his first year as a starter.

Sesker’s pick: Luke

184 – Phil Keddy (Iowa) vs. Louis Caputo (Harvard)

Keddy may have been the most improved wrestler in the country last year, and reports from Iowa City indicate he may be even better this year.

Caputo is a tough competitor as well, who has excelled during the summer in freestyle.

Keddy is extremely strong, and will be tough for anyone to score on. He really bought in when Tom Brands took over the Iowa program, and it’s paying off for him now.

NCAA champions Jake Herbert of Northwestern and Mike Pucillo of Ohio State aren’t competing tonight, but we will see plenty of those two in the coming months as well.

Sesker’s pick: Keddy

197 – Jake Varner (Iowa State) vs. Hudson Taylor (Maryland)

Speaking of tough to score on, Varner may be the best in the country at keeping opponents off the scoreboard.

Taylor is a workhorse, who is going to keep wrestling hard for seven minutes. He proved that at the 2008 NCAAs.

Varner, a two-time NCAA runner-up, is capable of being a dominant force at 197 if he looks for his offense more.

Sesker’s pick: Varner

285 – Jared Rosholt (Oklahoma State) vs. Kyle Massey (Wisconsin)

Rosholt, Jake’s “little? brother, who definitely has some big shoes to fill, really came into his own last season and enters this season ranked No. 1.

This could be a low-scoring, tactical battle. That seems to be the trend these days in the heavyweight class.

This match doesn’t count, so these big boys need to open it up a little more and give the fans something to watch.

Sesker’s pick: Rosholt

November 20, 2008

NWCA All-Star Classic to feature Caldwell vs. Metcalf 2

NWCA All-Star Classic to feature Caldwell vs. Metcalf 2
Jeff Breese InterMat Wrestling
11/19/2008

By Jeff Breese, InterMat
jbreese@intermatwrestle.com

This week is packed with great wrestling action, so much so that it seems unfair to focus on just one match at one event. However, based upon fan interest, No. 1 Brent Metcalf of Iowa versus No. 4 Darrion Caldwell of North Carolina State is the premier action of this week.

Caldwell and Metcalf will meet for the second time in their college careers, this time at the NWCA All-Star Classic Presented by the United States Marine Corps. The date for this rematch is November 24 at St. John Arena in Columbus, Ohio.

November 24 is significant because it is the one year anniversary of the first meeting between Caldwell and Metcalf. Ironically, that bout also took place in Ohio, but that time at St. Edward High School near Cleveland.

For those who may not know, Caldwell, then ranked No. 6, spladled and pinned the No. 1 ranked Metcalf in 1:40. The match has since become a YouTube sensation and has been the rematch that fans have been aching to see. It nearly happened at the NCAA Championships last March, but Caldwell fell one win short of the finals, losing a close bout with Bubba Jenkins of Penn State. Metcalf then handled Jenkins in the finals to win the NCAA title and cap off an undefeated string dating back to the match with Caldwell. Caldwell finished last season by taking fifth at the NCAA Championships.

Going into the bout on Monday, Caldwell is 8-0 and has already defeated the No. 5 and No. 7 wrestlers in the country. Metcalf will be seeing his first action of the season on Friday at the Iowa City Duals.

The popular sentiment is that there is no chance of Caldwell repeating his performance of a first period fall. Many fans favor Metcalf in this battle, as he is the returning national champion. It has even been said that Metcalf will try to make an example of Caldwell, while avenging his only loss from last season.

The flip side of the argument is that Caldwell is potentially the only wrestler in the weight capable of beating Metcalf, because of his high point output and because he is dangerous from any position.

Monday night will prove one group of fans correct, at least for right now.

Caldwell versus Metcalf may be the most anticipated match Monday night, but it certainly will not be the only quality bout. The full list of participants and ticket information can be found at:
http://www.nwcaonline.com/allstarclassic.cfm

Nov. 21- No. 9 Michigan at No. 22 Lehigh
Nov. 21 – No. 14 Penn State at No. 4 Cornell
Nov. 21- No. 2 Iowa State at No. 12 Wisconsin
Nov. 22- No. 9 Michigan at No. 21 Penn
Nov. 22- No. 20 Old Dominion at No. 19 Oklahoma
Nov. 22 No. 16 Hofstra at No. 5 Missouri
Nov. 22- Body Bar Invitational
Nov. 23- Sprawl and Brawl
Nov. 23- Keystone Classic
Nov. 23- No. 20 Old Dominion at No. 7 Oklahoma State

Caldwell replaces Jenkins in NWCA All-Star Classic

Caldwell replaces Jenkins in NWCA All-Star Classic
11/18/2008
North Carolina State University Sports Information

RALEIGH, N.C. -- A year ago, Darrion Caldwell became NC State's first All-American in 12 years. Now, Caldwell has become the first Wolfpack wrestler in 16 years to earn an invitation to the National Wrestling Coaches Association All-Star Classic.

The NWCA All-Star Classic, presented by the United States Marine Corps, normally pairs the top two college wrestlers in each of the 10 weight classifications. This year's event will be hosted by Ohio State University at St. John Arena on Monday, November 24. Caldwell will face No. 1-ranked Brent Metcalf of Iowa at 149 pounds in what will be the one-year anniversary of their first meeting. Caldwell met Metcalf, then ranked No. 6, last November 24 in a dual match in Lakewood, Ohio. Caldwell stunned Metcalf by pinning him in 1:40.

Metcalf did not lose another match after his loss to Caldwell. He finished the season 35-1 and won the national championship. As of November 17, he had not seen action yet this season. Caldwell finished fifth in the nation a year ago at 149 to earn All-America honors. He is off to an 8-0 start with three falls, a technical fall, and three victories over ranked opponents. Caldwell is No. 4 in the latest NWCA rankings.

Bouts in the NWCA All-Star Classic are counted as exhibition matches only and will affect neither the national rankings or postseason seedings.

Exhibition or not, this will be Caldwell's 13th career match vs. a top 10 opponent. As a freshman 141-pounder, he went 2-2 vs. top 10 foes. Since moving up to 149 pounds last season, Caldwell has wrestled eight matches against top 10 opponents and won them all, including two this season. He defeated fifth-ranked Lance Palmer of Ohio State 2-1 at the Wolfpack Open, then took an 8-4 decision over No. 7 Kyle Ruschell of Wisconsin at the ACC/Big Ten Challenge last weekend.

Caldwell is 64-11 for his career with 36 falls. He ranks fourth in NC State history in career winning percentage (.853), third in career pins, and needs eight more victories to crack the school's top 20 for career victories.

The last NC State wrestler invited to participate in the NWCA All-Star Classic was Sylvester Terkay, who participated twice, in 1992 and 1993, and won both times.

Tickets for those fortunate enough to attend are $10 apiece. All children 6 and under are admitted free of charge. NWCA members receive a complimentary ticket when showing their NWCA membership card. Call TicketMaster at 614-431-3600 to order your tickets or visit www.ohiostatebuckeyes.com. ESPNU will air the event on tape delay. Dates and times will be announced once they become available.

November 19, 2008

Randy Couture: Will he retire or return?

Randy Couture has had his storied MMA career. No matter what happens from here on out, he is still a hall-of-famer and one of the most beloved fighters to ever step into the octagon.

This time though, his underdog status couldn’t overcome its biggest test to date. The bigger, stronger, younger fighter won and Couture will likely never wear the heavyweight belt again.

While Randy lost, he looked good against Lesnar prior to the punch that dropped him. He clinched, got Brock against the cage, and landed some clean shots. His wrestling looked sharp and he escaped Brock’s guard. Couture was crisp and game to fight. And he will fight again.

Lesnar is a different kind of animal though. Nothing fazed him en route to grounding and seriously pounding out the living legend. While everyone said Brock didn’t deserve the title shot, that is a moot point now. He now awaits the winner of Nog vs. Mir, who fight at UFC 92.

But this article isn’t about Brock Lesnar; there will be a plethora of those to come. This is about what Randy Couture will do with the rest of his MMA career. More specifically, what he should do with the two fights remaining on his UFC contract. Perhaps history will provide an answer.

The last time Couture lost a heavyweight title was March 22, 2002 at UFC 36. Couture lost his title to Josh Barnett. Barnett was later disqualified and stripped of the belt after testing positive for steroids in the post-fight test.

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November 18, 2008

UFC 92: Will Silva be added?

by Brian Oswald

How do you make Ultimate 2008 “over the top? Ultimate? Try adding Anderson Silva to the fight card. After his recent performance against Patrick Cote, at UFC 90, fans were let down to say the least.

UFC President Dana White acknowledged disappointment in the way the fight turned out, adding, "The crowd was flat at the end. ... I felt like I was in a f---ing alternate universe."

Dana White told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that Silva wanted to get right back on the horse:

"He's flipping out. He wants to fight again, like, on Nov 15. He's upset about his performance and he wants to fight again immediately."

In a previous article it was reported that Silva could fight as early as UFC 91 but that’s obviously not happening. A free fight for the fans on Spike’s “Fight for the Troops? seemed like a great idea, but with the fight card recently solidified, and the event a month out, that looks doubtful.

So what has happened to all the Anderson Silva talk? What is ironic is that even before the UFC 90 misfortune there was talk of Silva fighting at UFC 92.

"If Silva finishes Cote in the way he normally finishes opponents, he could fight again in two months," UFC president Dana White told The Sun.

Wrestling Moves section adds more information

This is the first part of the lengthy wrestling moves section from TheWrestlingTalk:

The first in a series of basic wrestling principles; principles from the feet.

* Keep shoulders, knees, and toes in line (vertically) in both a square and staggered stance
* Perfect your penetration step
* Elevation change - ducks and high crotch
* Sprawl with feet back and hips in
o Weight should be applied to your opponent with your hips
* Keep position while circling and don’t go to extremes
o Don’t over expose yourself while moving

Drills to improve these principles:

* In/Out Penetration (step in and back out without losing position)
* Circle Sprawl (constant motion sprawling while circling away from your opponent)
* Wall Sit (up against a wall, knees at right angle)
* Wall penetration (penetrate by exploding into a *padded* wall.)
* Shot/Sprawl drill (in video)

The six basic principles of the Step Back:

* Single Dumps
o Squat Back, circle.
* Stand up escapes
o Lead with back.
* Duck-unders generally require a step back to circle behind for takedown
* 2 on 1 control-circling
* Front headlock Sprawl
* Over and Under Sprawl

The five basic principles of Head Position:

* Use a solid, low stance with head pressure for set-up and defense
* Use power penetrations to the center of your opponent for doubles, singles, high-crotches, etc
* Keep tight side pressure for head outside singles
* When your head is trapped you must work to keep the hips free and moving.
o This is essential for low singles/doubles, and countering front headlocks.
* Where the head goes, the body follows.
o This is essential when dealing with sag headlocks and for maintain balance in general.

UFC 93: Better than ever?

by Brian Oswald

Is it just me or do the UFC fight cards keep getting better and better? America was built on competition and it seems that competition is forging a higher quality product for UFC.

UFC 91 was spurned by the meddling of Affliction and we now have the historic match up of Randy Couture vs. Brock Lesnar. Although many would rather see Couture fight Fedor, how can one complain about the mini-tournament we have in front of us.?

For some reason I feel the need to point out that Tim Sylvia lost to three of the four heavyweights in the current tournament. Take it for what its worth.

Also on UFC 91 we have a Silva vs. Jackson III, the first two taking fights place in Pirde and being dominated by Silva. This fight could shape up as a classic and the winner will probably fight the winner of Forrest Griffin vs. Rashad Evans, who will fight at UFC 92.

The other half of the heavyweight tournament will take place at UFC 92 as Frank Mir takes on one of the greats in Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira. You must be great with that many names!

Also at UFC 91 will be Kenny Florian vs. Joe Stevenson which will be a great lightweight war. Look for UFC to appropriately round out the fight card for UFC 92 with a good middleweight through light heavyweight battle (Lyoto Machida vs. Shogun Rua?)

So that leaves the question, “What fights will they come up with for UFC 93 to make it the greatest fight card ever?"

UFC is peaking at the right time and during Super Bowl weekend they have the opportunity to put their product on full display to the attention of not only the sports fan, but EVERYONE.

They have gotten off to a superb start with the “super fight? between Penn and St. Pierre. But they will need much more to make it a fight card for the ages.

It doesn’t look like there will be a big heavyweight war as round one of the mini tournament will be finished up and the “winner vs. winner? fight to unify the division probably wont take place until at least May or June. Also, the next lightweight title fight won't happen until around that time as the winner of Silva/Jackson vs. Griffin/Evans will need time to heal up.

Perhaps their will be a huge lightweight fight between the winner of Florian/Stevenson and Sherk/Griffin although it will probably be too soon to pit the winners against each other (2 ½ months removed from UFC 91). I like the idea of Roger Huerta fighting Nate Diaz or Frankie Edgar, but that won’t solidify epic fight card.

So the UFC will have to rely on their light heavyweight through welterweight division and some of their other superstars.

Some potential fights in the middleweight are:

1. Anderson Silva vs. Yushin Okami (If his injury is healed. A rematch with Dan Henderson would be a bigger draw but Hendo probably needs another fight).

2. Dan Henderson vs. Nate Marquardt (This may be exciting to couple these fights as we will know after that night who will be fighting next for the Middleweight title).

* Don’t be surprised if they fit Michael Bisping into the card if possible.

Some potential fights in the welterweight are:

1. Matt Hughes vs. Matt Serra (Hopefully these two wounded warriors can heal in time to be on this card. Everyone is familiar with their grudge match and it will be a furious fight).

Other then that *Diego Sanchez vs. Thiago Alves is the biggest welterweight fight (behind Penn/Pierre) and that is happening at UFC 90. The winners of those two will likely meet. Josh Koscheck looks to be fighting Dec. 10 for the troops so will probably be out. And John Fitch is still injured but could be ready to fight against a mysteriously injured Karo Parisyan.

Some potential fights in the light heavyweight are:

Since a lot of the fireworks at light heavyweight diivision will be taking place at UFC 91 and 92 UFC may have to rely on Chuck Liddell. Some potential fights for him are:

Liddell vs. Rick Franklin (A super fight of former champions and a stand up war! They both need a credible opponent so it could make sense).

Liddell vs. Shogun Rua (Depends on when he heals up. Rua could be fighting Lyoto Machida at UFC 92 or 93 if it makes more sense).

Can anyone think of any other fights that would make UFC 93 the greatest fight card ever? After looking at it I am not sure it’s possible…perhaps if all injuries are cleared up. Maybe instead of worrying about loading up UFC 93 with bloated fights they will focus on showcasing exciting fights with young up-and-comers they want to introduce to the world. Especially since people will pay to see Penn vs St. Pierre II by itself.

Olympic gold medalist Glen Brand dies at 85

Olympic gold medalist Glen Brand dies at 85
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/17/2008



It’s been more than 60 years since Glen Brand won an Olympic gold medal in freestyle wrestling, but Brand never stopped giving back to the sport he loved.

Brand, who captured the 174-pound title at the 1948 Olympics in London, England, passed away on Saturday in Omaha, Nebraska. He was 85 years old.

Brand, who grew up in Clarion, Iowa, served in World War II for the U.S. Marine Corps before enrolling at Iowa State University. He won a NCAA title for Iowa State in 1948 and followed by winning the Olympics later that year.

Brand was honored in 1978 as a Distinguished Member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.

In his professional career as a hydraulics engineer, Brand built a highly successful company in Omaha. His company, Brand Hydraulics, was founded in 1956. It continues to thrive under the direction of his son, Greg Brand.

“Glen Brand was one of the true heroes in American wrestling history,? said Mike Chapman, executive director of the Dan Gable International Wrestling Institute and Museum. “I just thought the world of Glen. He’s done it all. He was highly successful in every phase of his life. He lived a very full life right up until the end.?

Brand has been a regular during Honors Weekend at the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in Stillwater, Okla.

“Glen Brand is an American legend because of what he achieved and what he gave to his country as a wrestler, soldier, engineer, and philanthropist,? said Lee Roy Smith, executive director of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame. “On behalf of our Board of Governors and staff of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, I want to extend my deepest sympathy to the family members of this humble man who left us with so much to praise and honor him for.?

Brand was a significant contributor to the Dan Gable International Wrestling Hall of Fame in Waterloo, Iowa. A hall of fame wing there is named in his honor.

Brand also was heavily involved with the wrestling program at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. Two tournaments run by UNO – the Kaufman-Brand Open and the Glen Brand Open – are named after him.

The Kaufman-Brand Open, the largest single-day college tournament in the country, will be held this Saturday. UNO coach Mike Denney said Brand will be honored and remembered on Saturday.

“Glen just had so much fire, and he had such a passion for wrestling,? Denney said. “He loved wrestling and he gave a lot back to the sport. He’s been so good to us over the years. He’s helped us so much with both of our tournaments that are named after him. He always played in our golf tournament. He contributed a lot to our program. Every chance I could, I would have him talk to our team. He would tell the story about how he won the Olympics. Our guys loved hearing that story. It was very inspiring.?

Brand was the first of five Iowa State University wrestlers to win an Olympic gold medal. The other four are Dan Gable, Ben Peterson, Kevin Jackson and Cael Sanderson.

“Glen was a real interesting fellow,? Chapman said. “He really did care about the sport and felt very strongly that wrestling did prepare you for success in life. I think Glen was definitely proof of that.?

An excerpt from the program for his final match at Iowa State sums up Brand’s stature as a competitor: "There's more to Glen Brand than his wrestling. He's a true amateur, a gentleman who respects his opponent, but who brooks no interference with his right to rule on the mat."

Glen Brand obituary from the Omaha World-Herald

BRAND-Glen, age 85. Preceded in death by wife, Mary Lou Brand. Survived by wife, Ruth Brand; son, Greg Brand; step-children, Debra Huebscher, Pamela Graskowiak, David Rader, Duane Rader, Bryan Rader; grandchildren, Adam and Jackie Graskowiak, Andrew Rader; sister-in-law, Judy Davidson; host of friends.

Funeral Service Wed. 10 a.m., 108th Street Chapel, Omaha. Interment Evergreen Memorial Park. Visitation Tues. 6-8 p.m. at Mortuary. Memorials to National Wrestling Hall of Fame, Stillwater, OK; Roeder Mortuary, 2727 North 108th St., Omaha, NE 68164, 402-496-9000

November 17, 2008

Olympic gold medalist Brandon Slay delivers winning message to athletes at Olympic Training Center

Olympic gold medalist Brandon Slay delivers winning message to athletes at Olympic Training Center
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/14/2008



Brandon Slay delivered one of the most memorable wins in United States freestyle wrestling history when he scored a stunning 4-3 overtime win over Russia’s Bouvaisa Saitiev at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.

Slay went on to win an Olympic gold medal in Sydney before retiring from the sport.

Saitiev, who had won the 1996 Olympic Games, went on to add Olympic gold medals in 2004 and 2008. He also won six World titles and is regarded as one of the best international wrestlers of all-time in any style.

Slay, a native of Amarillo, Texas, trained at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. He returned to Colorado this week to speak with resident-athletes in various sports at the Olympic Training Center.

Slay maintains a jam-packed schedule. He still travels the country doing speaking engagements along with camps and clinics for his company, Greater Gold. He now works with his church in Dallas as a mentor for community group leaders. He also helps out at as a coach for the Dallas Dynamite Wrestling Club.

Slay sat down Friday afternoon for an interview with USA Wrestling Communications Manager Craig Sesker in the USAW offices in Colorado Springs.

How important is it for you to give back to the sport?

I think it’s ultra-important. I wouldn’t have accomplished the things I did in wrestling if people hadn’t given back to me. I had some great coaches coming up through women's, high school and college. And then moving out to the Springs and having Coach Kevin Jackson work with me, that made a huge difference for me. Kevin had a tremendous impact on my career. Now I’m taking the knowledge my coaches poured into me and doing my best to pass it on to others.

Can you tell me about your trip back to the Olympic Training Center this week?

It’s great to be back. It’s fun. This is actually the second time the United States Olympic Committee has brought me in here. I talked to all the resident-athletes who were willing to come and listen to me. I spoke to them about my experiences here. I lived out here for almost three years. I told them I understand the highs and lows they go through here as an athlete. I offered them some advice that might help them. I told them they need to make sure they go, ‘All in.’ They need to commit 100 percent to the program at the OTC. They need to trust their coaches. If you’re not going to go ‘All in’ they need to find some place else to go. You need to embrace the wisdom you have in here. You also can call your college coach or someone else you’ve worked with in the past for some advice and wisdom. Get out of here once in a while. Go train at Stanford, go train at Penn, go train at Oklahoma State. Leave here and go find a fresh environment once in a while to train in so it doesn’t become too monotonous here.

I also talked about making sure the athletes have a proper World view. You can think that life is all about the gold medal, and if you win the gold it’s everything. When you win the gold medal, it’s not going to totally fulfill you. If you think the gold medal is everything, and you don’t accomplish it, you’re going to think you’re a failure. Now you still go for the gold, but you realize there is something better which is your faith, your integrity and the way you treat people. I also want them to remember to be thankful for what they have here. I’ve been on Tours to Poland and Bulgaria and Krasnoyarsk, where the conditions maybe aren’t the best. A lot of times our athletes become spoiled and don’t realize how blessed they are to train in Colorado Springs and work with the coaches we have, train in the facilities we have and work with the video equipment we have. They need to stop and smell the roses on a frequent basis, because that helps you stay grounded.

When the 2008 Olympic Games were held this summer, did you have a chance to watch any of Saitiev’s matches?

I saw all the videos of his matches on the Internet. I was cheering for him and I wanted him to win because he’s been such a fixture in the sport. He’s one of the most successful wrestlers of all-time. I wanted him to finish strong. I was so pumped up after watching the Olympics that I went to the gym and worked out.

What was your mindset going into your match with Saitiev in the 2000 Olympics?

It was obviously a big match, but I tried to act like it was not totally different from every other match I’ve wrestled. I tried to really simplify it and said here’s what I can control. ‘I’m wearing blue because I’m blue on the bracket. I’m going to put my shoes on, go out there and shake hands, and just get it on like I always do.’ That’s the simple side of what I could control. The more technical side was I had watched hundreds of hours of video of Saitiev, and had written down notes in a notebook that I had for all the guys in my weight class. I knew the strengths and weaknesses of every guy, and I had developed a strategy and a game plan for how I was going to beat each guy I would face.

What was your game plan against Saitiev?

I knew exactly what my strategy would be against Saitiev. My strategy was to not shoot singles and fire about five doubles in the match. I thought if I shot five hard doubles and got two of them, and then was able to turn him, I would win this match. And that’s what happened. That was my strategy and I stuck with it. We went into overtime and the fifth hard shot I took was the double-leg takedown that won the match.

I went into that match believing I could do it. I was very confident. I knew anything could happen in a match like that. I knew I had the spiritual, mental and physical ability to beat him. My style matched up really well with his. His weakness was probably his ability to defend hard doubles, which happened to be my strength. It was a good matchup for me.

How did you prepare for Saitiev in practice?

A lot of people don’t know this story. But after Casey Cunningham did not make the Olympic Team in 2000, just because of his servant’s heart and willingness to keep getting better, he stayed at the Olympic Training Center and did his best to become the Russian. He studied tons of video of Saitiev. He’s built really similar to Saitiev, and he tried to become Saitiev when he wrestled me in practice. He wrestled like him and acted like him. He even wore Russian shirts when he came to practice. Casey did his best to simulate how Saitiev would wrestle me and it really paid off for me. Plus I visualized beating Saitiev hundreds of times. So when I stepped on the mat against him it wasn’t like, ‘This is crazy.’ It was more like I had been there before because I trained so hard for him.

Many wrestling observers thought you had pinned Saitiev early in the match, but it was not called. Saitiev eventually came back to tie it before you won in overtime. What was your take on that?

I’m glad the match completed the way it did. I won, so I was obviously excited about that. There were no subjective calls in the match. All the calls were very clean and clear. When I gut-wrenched him early in the match, I believe he was pinned. There are pictures that show his back flat on the mat, and it couldn’t be any more clear that I pinned him. I’m really glad that they didn’t call a fall at that moment because people would have said, ‘Well, that was just a really good gut-wrench and Slay just caught Saitiev in one moment. And that Saitiev would’ve come back from down 3-0 and just destroyed Slay.’ I’m glad they didn’t call the fall because we wrestled a whole entire match and then went into overtime. To win the way I did, I couldn’t have written it any better.

I say this humbly, but when people ask what it’s like to beat maybe the best wrestler ever, it kind of gives me goosebumps. I haven’t won three Olympic gold medals like him, and I don’t want to compare myself to Saitiev at all, but to be able to beat a guy like that when you’re in your prime and in your first Olympics is priceless.

How closely did you follow the American freestyle team at the Olympics?

I tried to watch as many of our matches as I could. We didn’t have that many, so there weren’t a lot to watch unfortunately. I did follow it closely though. I was frustrated and upset, just like a lot of people were as fans. We obviously wanted to see more Americans win like Henry Cejudo did.

I was very impressed with what Henry did. I continue to sing this from the rooftops, I believe if you move to Colorado Springs and you commit to being here and take advantage of all the opportunities here, it will pay off if you make the ‘All in’ commitment. It paid off for Henry Cejudo. I believe that was what paid off for me. Guys like Kerry McCoy, Cael Sanderson and Bill Zadick, they came out here and it paid off for them. I think it’s the best way to go. I wish more guys would get with the program, literally.

How far away is the U.S. from being an international force again in freestyle wrestling?

I think we have a lot of talented wrestlers in the U.S. We are in a big transition with all of the changes right now at USA Wrestling. We’re not clicking on all cylinders yet because the coaching staff hiring is not all completed. I believe in the next four years, if the right decisions are made on all levels by USA Wrestling, the coaches and the athletes, we can be successful.

You had a chance to sit down recently and have lunch with new U.S. National Freestyle Coach Zeke Jones. What did you guys talk about and what does Zeke have to offer for the freestyle program here?

Zeke brings a lot of passion to the program. He has an intense love for wrestling. Zeke brings the ability to begin to build bridges with a lot of different coaches from across the country. He is going around and picking a lot of different people’s brains and calling a bunch of different people to get their input. Today, he asked me probably 50 different questions and was getting my thoughts and opinions on a number of different issues. He’s working on finding a Freestyle Resident Coach, so that program is in kind of a transitional phase until that happens. He’s trying to put his plan in place so we can move forward.

The quality of wrestling has improved dramatically in your home state of Texas. Do you see that trend continuing?

I believe so. I’m extremely passionate about seeing wrestling grow in the state of Texas. Anytime I sign a poster for kids in Texas, I sign it, ‘Texans can do it. Brandon Slay.’ I do that just to get these kids to believe. I ask the kids if someone who was born and raised in Texas can become the best in the World. That’s my battle cry. Sure, it’s possible because I was able to do it.

I can’t be everywhere, but we’re doing a lot of clinics around the state of Texas and I’m helping out at the club in Dallas. It’s been fun seeing wrestling grow in Texas. Jamill Kelly, who of course won an Olympic silver medal in 2004, he’s the head coach of our club. He’s doing a great job with the kids we have. It’s great to be a part of this and see these young guys develop.

What is it like to come back and speak to the athletes here at the Olympic Training Center?

It’s been an honor to have the USOC invite me back here. I spoke to athletes in a number of different sports. We had gymnasts, cyclists, volleyball players, weightlifters and shooters who came to hear me talk. There was just a plethora of athletes who showed up. To be able to stand up in front of them, as a wrestler, and share my experiences with them was an honor. Hopefully, there were some seeds planted with them that will grow down the road.

I’m staying at the OTC this week, so I’ve had a chance to talk to some of the athletes in the cafeteria and share some more of my stories and experiences with them. I don’t leave until Sunday, so I will be around the athletes here all weekend. I look forward to talking with more of them.

November 14, 2008

Westwood High School in Iowa seeks support for wrestlers injured in terrible accident

Westwood High School in Iowa seeks support for wrestlers injured in terrible accident
Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
11/13/2008

The wrestling family from a small community in Northwest Iowa is reaching out for support and prayers, after a automobile terrible accident on Saturday, Nov. 8, which has devastated the community.

Five high school wrestlers and their coach were heading to a wrestling clinic in a vehicle, which was struck head-on by another vehicle. The driver of the other auto was killed, and the six Westwood High School passengers were injured and hospitalized.

The plight of the Westwood community was first shared with the nation, when Jason Bryant of Wrestling 411 wrote about it on his blog, as well as on the company website. To read Bryant’s appeal to the wrestling community, visit:
http://bryantwrestling.wordpress.com/2008/11/09/small-iowa-community-could-use-your-thoughts-and-prayers/

“We are a five small towns in Iowa. All of them have 1,000 people or less. We are rural Iowa,? said Kirk Ahrends, the Westwood Schools Superintendent. “We come together at the best of times and the worst of times. I can’t say how much our community is coming together and helping our boys and our coach.?

Now, days after the accident, each of those who were victims of the crash are dealing with different medical issues, all which need immediate and extensive care.

The Westwood School District has set up an account where people can make donations to support the medical care for the wrestlers and coach.

The Sloan State Bank, 302 4th Street, Sloan, Iowa 51055 has set up seven individual accounts for donations to the following victims:
Dan Thompson, Coach
Trent Baker, Student in accident
Adam Greeno, Student in accident
Blake Jorgensen, Student in accident
Jordan Mitchell, Student in accident
Sage Washburn, Student in accident
Quaid Haburn, Student whose father was killed in other vehicle

Donations can be addressed to each individual account if you like to donate to a specific person or donations addressed to the "Westwood Accident Victims" will be divided equally among the accounts. Please note these donations are not tax deductible.

“We are trying to make arrangements with a charitable organization in town that can take donations on a tax deductible basis,? said Ahrends. “It is in progress. We hope to have that set up by Friday.?

There are specific medical needs that need attention right away.

“We are progressing with one of our boys to go to the Craig Institute in Colorado. That is a program for paralyzed students. That is a long-term situation for he and his family to move out there. It may be up to 180 days,? said Ahrends.

“We have two other students who are facing operations. We don’t know what those needs are yet. There will be long term needs for them,? said Ahrends. “The good news is we had one student walk out on Monday. We hope our coach and another student may be out of the hospital by Friday.?

This tragic accident has brought the community together, both within the school district, but also around the state of Iowa. In addition, prayers and support have flowed in from the wrestling community all across the nation;

“They are 25 miles from my school shoes. The head coach there is a very good friend,? said Casey Conover, head wrestling coach for Maple-Valley/Anthon-Oto High School and one of the many people working to help the Westwood wrestlers. “It was a horrible accident. Any help they receive would be greatly appreciated.?

No women were injured in the accident.

Hodge Trophy winner Brent Metcalf sets example on and off the mat

Hodge Trophy winner Brent Metcalf sets example on and off the mat
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/13/2008



Brent Metcalf didn’t pump his fist. He didn’t jump up and down.

He didn’t leap into the arms of his coaches.

He didn’t even crack a smile.

He had just won his first NCAA championship at 149 pounds to cap a magical season where he led Iowa to its first national team title in eight years.

Metcalf simply walked off the mat after his 14-8 national finals win over Penn State’s Bubba Jenkins at the 2008 NCAA Championships in St. Louis. That reaction provided a microcosm of what makes the multi-talented Metcalf tick.

“I was happy with the win, not so much with the performance. I don’t like giving up points – that’s not how you want to wrestle,? Metcalf said. “I don’t want to give my opponent the satisfaction of watching me celebrate, which would make it look like a big deal that I beat him.?

What Metcalf did during his first official season of collegiate competition was a very big deal. Metcalf entered his sophomore season with plenty of hype and lofty expectations.

He more than lived up to them by joining past Iowa State star Cael Sanderson shoes as the only sophomore to win the Dan Hodge Trophy as the best collegiate wrestler in the United States. He also was named Outstanding Wrestler of the Big Ten and NCAA Tournaments, and honored as Big Ten Wrestler of the Year.

His biggest achievement may have come when he was named Jesse Owens Big Ten Male Athlete of the Year, beating out athletes in more high profile sports like football and basketball.

So what does Metcalf do for an encore? Now a junior, Metcalf starts this season ranked No. 1 for the top-ranked team in the country. Iowa returns five All-Americans from the national championship team from last season.

Iowa won the 2008 NCAA title by a whopping 38.5 points over runner-up Ohio State.

“We didn’t have all the success we wanted last year from an individual point of view,? Metcalf said. “Our guys are motivated to put 10 guys on the podium, 10 guys on top of the podium.?

Last season, Metcalf suffered an upset loss to North Carolina State’s Darrion Caldwell early in the year before tearing through college wrestling en route to his first national crown.

The Hodge Trophy has traditionally gone to a wrestler who makes it through the season unbeaten. And typically to an upperclassmen.

But Metcalf’s memorable season made him the logical choice for the 2008 Hodge Trophy, presented annually by Wrestling Insider Newsmagazine.

“Brent Metcalf epitomizes what it means to force action on the wrestling mat,? said Bryan Van Kley, publisher of WIN. “And that makes for a very entertaining style of wrestling when a guy is constantly looking to dominate. This was the biggest factor in him winning the Dan Hodge Trophy. He goes after the pin, and he's constantly trying to build on a lead.

?And even more importantly, he's a top-shelf person as well. I've heard Coach Tom Brands challenge his entire team by pointing at Brent and saying, 'If you want to be a champion, live your life like Brent Metcalf lives his.' Brands challenges his guys to commit to the sport in the way that Metcalf does, and commit to living their life the way he does off the mat. Everything in his life has a purpose, and he’s the type of guy who other wrestlers can look up to.?

A quick glance at Metcalf’s sophomore season provides proof of his dominance. He went 35-1 and won his last 32 matches of the season. He scored bonus points in all but 10 of his victories.

He had his opponents constantly backpedaling and trying to wrestle on the edge of the mat. His relentless style and superior conditioning had many opponents gasping for air in the third, and sometimes even second, period of a match.

“Brent has a wide-open style,? Brands said. “He goes hard and he goes smart. There is no let up at all with him in anything he does. He just works hard and he keeps getting better. He's a ferocious competitor.?

Metcalf, a sociology major, also excels in the classroom. He is an Academic All-American.

“Brent is passionate about everything he does,? Brands said. “There are no distractions off the mat with him. He’s a very good student and just a well-rounded kid.?

Metcalf lost a season of eligibility when he followed Brands from Virginia Tech to Iowa just over two years ago. Virginia Tech refused to release Metcalf from his scholarship, costing him his freshman season. Metcalf was unable to compete as an Iowa freshman after redshirting at Virginia Tech the year before.

“(Virginia Tech) has the right to do that through NCAA rules,? Metcalf said. “There is nothing we can do about it. You just have to move on.?

In addition to wrestling for Tom Brands, Metcalf also is being coached by Terry Brands this season. Terry Brands, Tom’s twin brother, joined the Hawkeye coaching staff after serving as the Freestyle Resident Coach at USA Wrestling. Terry Brands coached Henry Cejudo to an Olympic gold medal and past Hawkeye standout Bill Zadick to a World title.

“It’s great having Terry in the room now,? Metcalf said. “It’s a new voice and a new face, but it’s the same message. It’s consistent with the same standard that Tom lives by and preaches. I’ve worked with Terry at the Olympic Training Center, and he’s a great coach.?

Metcalf, 22, continues to be a top prospect internationally at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. He reached the Challenge Tournament semifinals at June’s U.S. Olympic Team Trials before falling to Zadick. Metcalf then lost his next match, in three periods to past National Team member Jared Frayer, and fell short of placing.

“I’ve gained a lot of good experience wrestling freestyle,? Metcalf said. “The guys at that level obviously are tougher. I need to wrestle smarter. I’m going to continue to go to my offense and score points. I’m at my best when I’m attacking, whether it's freestyle or folkstyle. To me, wrestling is wrestling. You approach it the same way.?

Count Dan Gable, an Olympic and World champion who coached Iowa to 15 NCAA titles, among those who see Metcalf making an impact at the international level in freestyle wrestling.

“From USA Wrestling’s point of view, he is the type of kid who can be a catalyst for them and he has the makings of someone who can go a long way internationally,? Gable said. “He has the attitude, the tenacity and the intensity that sets him apart. And he has shown big-time improvement with his technique. If he keeps getting better and keeps working, he can be very good at the next level.?

For now, Metcalf is focused on the college season.

“I just have to continue to do what I’ve done, and bring it to another level,? he said. “I need to score points, and get majors, tech falls and pins. We really want to put it on guys, we really want to dominate. There's always more to do, there's always more work to be done."

Metcalf’s life has been anything but easy. His brother, Chase, died in an automobile accident. And then he lost the year of college eligibility when he transferred to Iowa.

“Brent’s dealt with a lot of adversity in his life, and I think it’s made him a lot stronger,? Gable said. “He’s a very focused, very driven kid. He does everything the right way, on and off the mat. He’s a great example for everyone in the Iowa program. He’s just a winner, plain and simple.?

November 12, 2008

ACC/Big Ten Clash a premier tournament this weekend

ACC/Big Ten Clash a premier tournament this weekend
Jeff Breese InterMat Wrestling
11/12/2008

The third week of the season will again be a mix duals and opens, but the featured event will be the ACC/Big Ten Clash on Saturday. The third installment of the ACC/Big Ten Clash pits three ACC and three Big Ten schools against each other in round robin format.

The ranked teams involved in the event are No. 9 Illinois, No. 12 Wisconsin, and No. 21 Virginia, with Michigan State, NC State, and North Carolina completing the field.

The team aspect of the ACC taking on the Big Ten is interesting, but the truly exciting part of the event is the individual bouts that put highly ranked wrestlers up against one another early in the season. The ACC/Big Ten Clash also provides wrestlers on the fringe of the rankings a chance to put their name on the map sooner rather than later.

Some of the potential individual match-ups are:

285- No. 3 Kyle Massey (Wisconsin) vs No. 13 Justin Dobies (North Carolina)
184- No. 9 Rocco Caponi (Virginia) vs No. 10 Trevor Brandvold (Wisconsin)
149- No. 4 Darrion Caldwell (NC State) vs No. 7 Kyle Ruschell (Wisconsin)
141- No. 13 Zach Tanelli (Wisconsin) vs No. 18 Joe Caramanica (NC State)
141- No. 15 Troy Tirapelle (Illinois) vs No. 18 Joe Caramanica (NC State)
165- No. 13 Roger Smith-Bergsrud (Illinois) vs Keegan Mueller (North Carolina)
174- No. 12 John Dergo (Illinois) vs No. 15 Chris Henrich (Virginia)
285- No. 6 John Wise (Illinois) vs No. 13 Justin Dobies (North Carolina)

Additionally, five other ranked wrestlers will be in action in Chapel Hill on Saturday. NC State’s Ryan Goodman would provide another ranked wrestler and two more duals with ranked wrestlers. However, Goodman will likely be out of the line-up, due to competing on the Wolfpack football team, as well.

Outside of the ACC/Big Ten Clash, there are a few other notable duals taking place this week. No. 5 Missouri opens its season with duals against Lock Haven and Bucknell on Saturday and Sunday. No. 7 Penn State takes on Hofstra on Sunday and No. 18 Oklahoma starts its season against Division II No. 6 Central Oklahoma on Thursday. Also, in Division II, No. 15 Limestone will host No.7 Newberry and No. 13 Mercyhurst for a tri-meet.

The open tournament scene continues with tournaments throughout the country this weekend, most notably the Harold Nichols Cyclone Open. It is still early in the season, but many important matches are being wrestled, especially in Division I because of the new qualification system. Every win and every loss means a little bit more this year.

There is a lot of action going on between now and March, so make sure to get out and catch it in person at a college in your area.

November 11, 2008

USA Wrestling leader John Carlson among eight high school athletic directors honored by NFHS

USA Wrestling leader John Carlson among eight high school athletic directors honored by NFHS
Bruce Howard NFHS
11/10/2008

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (November 10, 2008) - The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) will award NFHS Citations to eight high school athletic directors December 16 in San Diego, California, at the 39th annual National Conference of High School Directors of Athletics.

NFHS Citations are presented annually to outstanding athletic directors in recognition of contributions to interscholastic athletics at the local, state and national levels. State associations nominate athletic directors for NFHS Citations, and the NFHS Board of Directors approves recipients.

This year's award winners are Jeffrey M. Benson, CMAA, athletic director, Oxford Hills Comprehensive High School, South Paris, Maine; William Bowers, CMAA, executive director of the Oregon Athletic Directors Association; John Carlson, CMAA, director of athletics, Chandler (Arizona) Unified School District; Darren Paulson, CAA, activities director, Rapid City (South Dakota) Central High School; George Phelan III, CAA, athletic director, Miami (Florida) Sunset Senior High School; Carol M. Satterwhite, CAA, former athletic director, Wilde Lake High School, Columbia, Maryland; Gary Segrest, CAA, athletic director, Mineral Springs (Arkansas) Public Schools; and Doug Smith, CMAA, athletic administrator, Naperville (Illinois) North High School.

Carlson is a NCEP gold-medal coach with USA Wrestling and has been an active leader within the organization.

Other recipients with a wrestling background include Bowers, Paulson and Phelan.

Citations will be presented at the conference banquet at 6:30
p.m. December 16.

Following are biographical sketches on this year's NFHS Citation
recipients with a wrestling background

BILL BOWERS

Bill Bowers, CMAA, devoted 31 years of stout service as an educator in Springfield (Oregon) Public Schools before becoming executive director of the Oregon Athletic Directors Association (OADA).

Bowers served as a mathematics instructor and the football, wrestling and baseball coach at Hamlin Junior High School from 1972 to 1979, a mathematics instructor, head baseball coach and assistant football coach at Springfield High School from 1979 to 2003, and was athletics and activities director at Springfield High School from 1995
to 2003.

Within the NIAAA, Bowers was state liaison to the NIAAA for six years and a state certification chair for two years, and he has presented more than 30 leadership training courses at state conferences and the national conference. At the state level, Bowers was ticket manager for the Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA) state championship events for five years, was the Class 3A state wrestling championship meet director for three years and was the Class 1A state volleyball championship meet director for three years. Bowers, who was a member of the OADA executive board for 11 years, also served as the organization's president.

Throughout his career, Bowers has received considerable recognition. He was named Midwestern League Baseball coach of the year in both 1983 and 1988, the Midwestern League athletic director of the year, the OADA AAAA athletic director of the year and the OADA state athletic director of the year. At the national level, he was an NIAAA State Award of Merit recipient in 2003 and an NIAAA Distinguished Service Award recipient in 2005. In addition, he earned the CAA designation in 1998 and in 2002, became the first athletic director in Oregon to attain the CMAA designation.

Bowers has also been a key asset to the community as he was the executive secretary and treasurer of the Oregon Junior Baseball Association, president of the Springfield Baseball Commission and president of Midwestern League Athletic Directors. Currently, he is on the Emerald Kidsports Board of Directors, is the ticket chairman for OSAA state championship events and is the scoreboard operator for the University of Oregon's football and men's basketball teams.

JOHN CARLSON

John Carlson, CMAA, has devoted 34 outstanding years to the Chandler (Arizona) Unified School District, including the past 20 as district athletic director.

Prior to assuming Chandler's director of athletics position, Carlson was a teacher and coach at Chandler High School. During that time, he taught Arizona history, world history, safety education, study skills and physical education, and was a driver's education instructor, assistant football coach and head wrestling and track coach. Carlson, who spent his entire educational and coaching career in Arizona, began at Sacaton Public Schools and Central Arizona College.

Carlson, who is a lifetime NIAAA member, has been with the Arizona Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (AIAAA) for 20 years, including 18 as an executive board member and a term as president in 2006. He also has been a member of the Arizona Coaches Association for 37 years, the Arizona Education Association for 33 years and the National Education Association for 34 years. Carlson has been involved with USA Wrestling since 1981, serving on its junior division executive board since 1998.

Carlson has received a wide range of recognitions throughout his professional career. Among those, he was Chandler Young Educator of the Year and the State of Arizona Young Educator of the Year in 1979, the 3A Wrestling Coach of the Year in 1989, and the 5A Wrestling Coach of the Year in 1990.

Carlson was inducted into the Arizona Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1990 and into the Arizona Coaches Association High School Coaches Hall of Fame in 1995. At the national level, he received the NIAAA State Award of Merit 2000 and the NIAAA Distinguished Service Award in 2004.

Carlson, who was Chandler High School head wrestling coach from 1974 to 1991, fielded a nationally ranked program from 1987 to 1990, and led the team to state championships in 1989 and 1990. He also was an 11-year head track coach at Chandler High School and is a gold level certified coach with USA Wrestling.

DARREN PAULSON

It takes a special type of person to handle the position of activities director at the largest high school in South Dakota, but Darren Paulson, CAA, has been more than up to the task. For the past five years, he has excelled in that capacity at Rapid City Central (enrollment 2,300) and has been an athletic administrator for 15 years overall.

Before assuming his position at Rapid City, Paulson was both a teacher and a coach at Mission (South Dakota) Todd County and Lead-Deadwood (South Dakota) High Schools, where he coached football, basketball, track and wrestling. He was activities director during his final 10 years at Lead-Deadwood.

Paulson's service at the local, state and national levels has been quite extensive. Nationally, he was a member of the NIAAA Membership and Service Committee from 2000 to 2001; he obtained his CAA designation in 1998 and has been an attendee of seven national conferences, serving as a delegate in 2000, 2003 and 2004.

At the state level, Paulson has been a member of the South Dakota Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association Board of Directors since 1998, serving as president, vice president and second vice president, and he currently is state assistant leadership training coordinator. Within the South Dakota High School Activities Association, Paulson has been chairman of both the ad-hoc calendar committee and the out-of-season rules committee, and he has been a member of the State Football Advisory Committee since 2002. He has been state event/tournament manager for 11 different sports, including track, boys and girls basketball, and wrestling.

Among his many recognitions, Paulson was named Regional Activities Director of the Year in 2001, South Dakota Assistant Football Coach of the Year in 2001 and South Dakota Assistant Principal of the Year in 2003.

GEORGE PHELAN III

George Phelan III, CAA, has been an outstanding athletic director at Miami (Florida) Sunset Senior High since 1984, but his exemplary service at the school actually goes back to when he was hired as a member of the original staff in 1978.

Phelan was a guidance counselor during his first five years at the school, a position he continues to hold today along with being athletic director. Prior to his time at Miami Sunset, Phelan was a teacher and coach from 1971 to 1978 at Henry H. Filer Junior High, Hialeah High School and Miami Killian High Schools in Florida. Prior to becoming an athletic director, he coached cross country, badminton and wrestling for 13 years.

An NIAAA member since 1984, Phelan has attended all but one national conference during that time, was a member of the Florida Host Committee at three national conferences, was on the Awards Committee, and has been Florida's delegate to the NIAAA Delegate Assembly on two separate occasions. In recognition of his service to the organization, he received both an NIAAA State Award of Merit in 1995 and a Distinguished Service Award in 2005.

At the state level, Phelan has been an active member of the Florida Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (FIAAA) since 1984. Among his leadership positions, he has served as FIAAA president, FIAAA Board of Directors District 16 director and FIAAA Higher Education Committee chairman. In addition, he has been an FIAAA state conference presenter, panelist, discussion leader, moderator and audio visual coordinator. He has also served the Florida High School Athletic Association as a member of the Representative Assembly, the Athletic Directors' Advisory Board and the inaugural Public Liaison Advisory Committee.

Phelan has received numerous recognitions during his tenure at Miami Sunset. Among those, he was named 1984 "Wrestling Coach of the Year" by The Miami News, was chosen Dade County Counseling Association High School Counselor of the Year in 1998 and the FIAAA State of Florida Athletic Administrator of the Year in 2007.

About the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS)

The NFHS, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is the national leadership organization for high school sports and fine arts activities. Since 1920, the NFHS has led the development of education-based interscholastic sports and fine arts activities that help students succeed in their lives. The NFHS sets direction for the future by building awareness and support, improving the participation experience, establishing consistent standards and rules for competition, and helping those who oversee high school sports and activities. The NFHS writes playing rules for 17 sports for boys and girls at the high school level.

Through its 50 member state associations and the District of Columbia, the NFHS reaches more than 18,500 high schools and 11 million participants in high school activity programs, including more than 7 million in high school sports. As the recognized national authority on interscholastic activity programs, the NFHS conducts national meetings; sanctions interstate events; produces publications for high school coaches, officials and athletic directors; sponsors professional organizations for high school coaches, officials, spirit coaches, speech and debate coaches and music adjudicators; and serves as a national information resource of interscholastic athletics and activities. For more information, visit the NFHS Web site at www.nfhs.org.

Japan to replace Russia in Greco-Roman dual in West Orange, N.J., Thursday, Nov. 20

Japan to replace Russia in Greco-Roman dual in West Orange, N.J., Thursday, Nov. 20
Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
11/10/2008



A team from Japan will replace Russia in the Greco-Roman portion of the international dual meet featuring Team USA in West Orange, N.J. on Thursday, November 20.

The U.S men’s freestyle team will still compete against the Russian national freestyle team in this popular competition. This is the second straight year that the USA has competed against top international opponents in dual meet action in New Jersey.

The match will be held at West Orange High School in West Orange, N.J., starting at 6:30 p.m. Tickets will be sold at the door, $20 for adults and $15 for kids.

The Russian Greco-Roman team notified USA Wrestling this week that it will be unable to attend the dual meet and will also not be able to enter the American Airlines New York Athletic Club International Open the following weekend.

Team Japan has agreed to participate in the dual meet, and will bring five Japanese national champions to the mat to face off with Team USA. Included in this group of athletes are two wrestlers who have placed fifth in the Asian Greco-Roman Championships, Hiroyuki Shimizu at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. and Mistuhiro Ota at 84 kg/185 lbs.

Completing the seven-athlete lineup will be two athletes from Israel, both who are veteran international competitors, Bronislav Sharovtski at 96 kg/211.5 lbs. and Vladimir Guralski at 120 kg/264.5 lbs. Both have represented Israel at the European Championships as well as the Junior World Championships. Sharovtski also wrestled for Israel in the 2007 Senior World Championships.

The format of the event will be the same as last year, with separate dual meets in freestyle and Greco-Roman. Freestyle and Greco-Roman matches will be alternated, and the final results of the dual meets will not be determined until the end of the evening.

Last year, the United States won the freestyle dual meet over Russia, 14-11, while the USA also won the Greco-Roman dual meet over Romania, 14-12.

The U.S. lineups in both styles are expected to be strong. There are five members of the 2008 U.S. Olympic team scheduled for the dual meets: Greco-Roman wrestlers Spenser Mango (St. Louis, Mo./Gator WC) at 55 kg/121 lbs. and T.C. Dantzler (Colorado Springs, Colo./Gator WC) at 84 kg/185 lbs. and freestyle wrestlers Doug Schwab (Iowa City, Iowa/Gator WC) at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. and Andy Hrovat (Ann Arbor, Mich./New York AC) at 84 kg/185 lbs. and Steve Mocco (Iowa City, Iowa/New York AC) at 120 kg/264.5 lbs.

There will be a local flavor in the dual meet, as well. Mocco, who grew up in North Bergen, N.J., will be joined by Kurt Backes (Columbia, Mo./Sunkist Kids), a native of Neshanic Station, N.J. in the lineup at 96 kg/211.5 lbs. Both won prep national titles for Blair Academy. Mocco was a NCAA champion for both the Univ. of Iowa and Oklahoma State, while Backes was a NCAA runner-up for Iowa State.

Another New Jersey legend, Matt Valenti (Newton, N.J./New York AC) may also get an exhibition match in the dual. Valenti won two NCAA titles for the Univ. of Pennsylvania. He was a two-time New Jersey state champion for Kittatiny High School.

Fans are looking forward to another USA vs. Russia freestyle showdown this year, as two of the world’s top powers will battle for bragging rights. The final Russian lineup has not yet been determined in freestyle, but there are expected to be competitors with international success in each weight class.

USA Wrestling’s National Greco-Roman Coach Steve Fraser and National Freestyle Coach Zeke Jones will be among the coaches working with Team USA wrestling gear.

The athletes in this dual meet are also expected to compete in the annual American Airlines New York Athletic Club International Championships, scheduled for November 22-23 in New York City. Outstanding international wrestling action in all three Olympic styles will be showcased at the World famous NYAC facility on Central Park South in mid-town Manhattan.

For additional information, contact Sonny Greenhalgh at 973-256-0670 or Stephan Zichella of West Orange High School at 973-476-8782.

TEAM USA VS. RUSSIA FREESTYLE WORLD DUAL MEET
At West Orange, N.J.., Thursday, November 20, 6:30 p.m.

U.S. Freestyle athletes
55 kg/121 lbs. – Nick Simmons, Corvallis, Ore. (Sunkist Kids)
60 kg/132 lbs. – Coleman Scott, Stillwater, Okla. (Gator WC) and Matt Valenti, Newton, N.J. (New York AC)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Doug Schwab, Iowa City, Iowa (Gator WC) and Josh Churella, Ann Arbor, Mich. (New York AC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Ryan Churella, Ann Arbor, Mich. (New York AC)
84 kg/185 lbs. – Andy Hrovat, Ann Arbor, Mich. (New York AC) and Bryce Hasseman, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
96 kg/211.5 lbs. – Kurt Backes, Neshanic Station, N.J. (Sunkist Kids)
120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Steve Mocco, N. Bergen, N.J. (New York AC)
Coach – National Freestyle Coach Zeke Jones (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Sean Bormet (Naperville, Ill.)

Russian Freestyle athletes
55 kg/121 lbs. – Makhmud Magomedov
60 kg/132 lbs. –Artur Akhmedov, Victor Lebedev
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Darsam Dzhaparov, Rafik Alimov
74 kg/163 lbs. – Taymuraz Friev, Magomed Zubairov, Inal Kabolov, Rashid Kurbanov
84 kg/185 lbs. – Petr Tavgazov, Soslan Ktsoev
96 kg/211.5 lbs. – Evgeny Kolomiets, Anzor Boltukaev
120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Bakhtiar Akhmedov, Soslan Gagloev, Valeriy Bedoev, Alexey Shemarov

TEAM USA VS. JAPAN GRECO-ROMAN WORLD DUAL MEET
At West Orange, N.J.., Thursday, November 20, 6:30 p.m.

U.S. Greco-Roman athletes
55 kg/121 lbs. – Spenser Mango, St. Louis, Mo. (Gator WC)
60 kg/132 lbs. – Joe Betterman, Colorado Springs, Colo. (New York AC)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Jacob Curby, LaGrange, Ill. (Gator WC)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Cheney Haight, Orem, Utah (New York AC)
84 kg/185 lbs. – T.C. Dantzler, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Gator WC) and Jake Plamann, Appleton, Wis. (New York AC)
96 kg/211.5 lbs. – R.C. Johnson, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Sunkist Kids)
120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Pete Kowalczuk, Oak Park, Ill. (Sunkist Kids)
Coaches – National Greco-Roman Coach Steve Fraser (Colorado Springs, Colo.), Assistant National Greco-Roman Coach Momir Petkovic (Colorado Springs, Colo.), USOEC Assistant Greco-Roman Coach Jim Gruenwald (Marquette, Mich.)

Japan Greco-Roman athletes
55 kg/121 lbs. – Kiyoharu Hirao (Japan)
60 kg/132 lbs. – Kosuke Hori (Japan)
66 kg/145.5 lbs. – Hiroyuki Shimizu (Japan)
74 kg/163 lbs. – Kosuke Sumi (Japan)
84 kg/185 lbs. – Mitsuhiro Ota (Japan)
96 kg/211.5 lbs. – Bronislav Sharovtsky (Israel)
120 kg/264.5 lbs. – Vladimir Guralski (Israel)

November 8, 2008

WCWA women’s college wrestling rankings released for November

WCWA women’s college wrestling rankings released for November
WCWA
11/07/2008

The November rankings from the Women’s College Wrestling Association (WCWA) have been released.

There are five new No. 1 ranked wrestlers, who have taken over the top spot since the first pre-season ranking was published in October. The new No. 1 ranked wrestlers include Joey Miller of Oklahoma City Univ. at 48 kg/105.5 lbs., Alyssa Lampe of Northern Michigan USOEC at 51 kg/112.25 lbs., Samantha Schuman of Missouri Baptist at 55 kg/121 lbs., Tatiana Padilla of Lindenwood at 59 kg/130 lbs. and Lacey Novinska of Oklahoma City Univ. at 72 kg/158.5 lbs.

Two of the top ranked athletes are freshmen, Padilla and Miller. Padilla recently won a bronze medal at the Women’s World Wrestling Championships held in Tokyo, Japan. Miller won a pair of tournaments in recent weeks, the Lady Oaks Invitational in Atherton, Calif. and the Sparta Cup in Salinas, Puerto Rico.

Lampe, who was second in last year’s WCWA Nationals, placed second in the U.S. Women’s World Team Trials in Colorado Springs, Colo. this fall.

Oklahoma City Univ. had the most wrestlers with top rankings with five: Miller, Novinska, Lene Wood at 44 kg/97 lbs., Carrie Clark at 82 kg/180.25 and Brittany Delgado at 95 kg/209 lbs. Checkout the videos on flowrestling

Six different teams boasted No. 1 wrestlers, and no team except Oklahoma City Univ. had more than one top-ranked athlete.

Other No. 1 athletes in this ranking included Karen Howe of Missouri Valley College at 63 kg/138.75 lbs. and Amberlee Ebert of Wisconsin-River Falls at 72 kg/158.5 lbs.

The rankings will be published monthly, with two rankings during January.

WCWA INDIVIDUAL RANKINGS
Released November 6, 2008

44 kg/97 lbs.
1. Lene Wood (Oklahoma City Univ.)
2. Stephanie Waters (Oklahoma City Univ.)
3. Priscilla Brownsfield (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
4. Daphne Anne Hogdson (Simon Fraser)
5. Lisa Martinez (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
6. Kiki Araki (Simon Fraser)
7. Ashley Shannon (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
8. Cynthia Zamora (Lindenwood)

48 kg/105.5 lbs.
1. Joey Miller (Oklahoma City Univ.)
2. Joleen Oshiro (Stanford)
3. Nicole Woody (Oklahoma City Univ.)
4. Ashley McKilligan (Simon Fraser)
5. Ashley Dehnz (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
6. Rachael Holthaus (Wisc.-River Falls)
7. Lauren Tallman (Menlo)
8. Christina Varland (Jamestown)

51 kg/112.25 lbs.
1. Alyssa Lampe (Northern Michigan USOEC)
2. Katherine Fulp-Allen (Menlo)
3. Jackie Stiles (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
4. Leann Barney (Oklahoma City Univ.)
5. Tiffany Sluik (Jamestown)
6. Emily Martin (Northern Michigan USOEC)
7. Erica Torres (Oklahoma City Univ.)
8. Shannon Reeves (Univ. of the Cumberlands)

55 kg/121 lbs.
1. Samantha Schuman (Missouri Baptist)
2. Michaela Hutchison (Oklahoma City Univ.)
3. Carla O’Connell (Menlo)
4. Ashley Hudson (Oklahoma City Univ.)
5. Amy Whitbeck (Northern Michigan USOEC)
6. Beth Johnson (Northern Michigan USOEC)
7. Rita Pare (Simon Fraser)
8. Tani Ader (Jamestown)

59 kg/130 lbs.
1. Tatiana Padilla (Lindenwood)
2. Samantha Fee (Missouri Valley College)
3. Nikki Darrow (Northern Michigan USOEC)
4. Breisja Macera (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
5. Jessica Kelvas (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
6. Firen Gassmen (Oklahoma City Univ.)
7. Raissa Dickinson (Simon Fraser)
8. J’aime Sage (Menlo)

63 kg/138.75 lbs.
1. Karen Howe (Missouri Valley College)
2. Samantha Phillips (Oklahoma City Univ.)
3. Schuyler Brown (Northern Michigan USOEC)
4. Jenny Germany (Missouri Valley College)
5. Monique Cabrera (Menlo)
6. Danielle Lappage (Simon Fraser)
7. Paige Rife (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
8. Tessa Plana (Oklahoma City Univ.)

67 kg/147.5 lbs.
1. Amberlee Ebert (Wisc.-River Falls)
2. Stefenie Shaw (Oklahoma City Univ.)
3. Stacie Anaka (Simon Fraser)
4. Zinna Anyanwuh (Missouri Valley College)
5. Lauren Knight (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
6. Melissa Apodaca (Northern Michigan USOEC)
7. Ashlee Evans-Smith (Menlo)
8. Ku’uipo Badayos (Jamestown)

72 kg/158.5 lbs.
1. Lacey Novinska (Oklahoma City Univ.)
2. Lindsay Brooks (Northern Michigan USOEC)
3. Erin Clodgo (Northern Michigan USOEC)
4. Erin Church (Simon Fraser)
5. Melissa Brooks (Northern Michigan USOEC)
6. Moriah Fernandez (Menlo)
7. Christen Paysse (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
8. Erin Fierro (San Jose State)

82 kg/180.25 lbs.
1. Carrie Clark (Oklahoma City Univ.)
2. Terri Milkoff (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
3. Brittany Caoile (Menlo)
4. Hillar Greening (Simon Fraser)
5. Keron Scott (Oklahoma City Univ.)
6. Des Memea (Missouri Baptist)
7. Jessica Scott (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
8. Sunya Maxwel (Jamestown)

95 kg/209 lbs.
1. Brittany Delgado (Oklahoma City Univ.)
2. Lakia Henderson (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
3. Amanda Athon (Jamestown)
4. Tasha McCuller (Missouri Baptist)
5. Laura Stewart (Menlo)
6. Amber Floyd (Univ. of the Cumberlands)
7. Cardellen Parker (San Jose State)

Sam Hazewinkel looking to ascend to top of Greco-Roman ladder

Sam Hazewinkel looking to ascend to top of Greco-Roman ladder
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/07/2008

In the photo: Sam Hazewinkel lifts Spenser Mango in the finals of the 2008 Olympic Team Trials. Photo by Tech-Fall.com

Reaching the finals hasn’t been a problem for Sam Hazewinkel at big tournaments.

Capturing a gold medal has.

Hazewinkel has been No. 2 on the U.S. ladder in Greco-Roman wrestling for three of the last four years. He was second in the U.S. World Team Trials in 2005 and 2006 before placing second behind Spenser Mango at the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

In between, Hazewinkel placed second as an Oklahoma senior at the 2007 NCAA Championships.

“I’m so tired of getting second at big tournaments,? Hazewinkel said.

Hazewinkel’s fortunes at big tournaments changed in July when he won a gold medal at the World University Championships in Greece. He won the Greco-Roman title at 55 kg/121 lbs.

“I really wanted to make that Olympic Team – it’s been my dream since I was a real little guy,? he said. “It was good to get back on the mat after the disappointment of the Trials. Winning the World University title was a real good boost for me. It’s good to go to a big tournament and be able to win. I know I’m right there with everybody else in the World.?

Hazewinkel is back for another four-year Olympic cycle. He’s been wrestling Greco-Roman full-time for about a year and a half now after completing his college career.

“I’ve improved by leaps and bounds,? Hazewinkel said. “I learned a lot when I was out in Colorado Springs.?

Hazewinkel trained at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs earlier this year. He’s now training and coaching at the brand-new Prodigy Training Center in Springboro, Ohio, located between Dayton and Cincinnati. Ryan Root, who wrestled for Penn State, runs the club.

Hazewinkel said he is training primarily with college teammate and two-time NCAA champion Teyon Ware, who is planning to switch to Greco-Roman from freestyle this season. He’s being coached by past U.S. Olympian Kevin Bracken. He also is coaching young wrestlers in the club. Past NCAA champion Matt Lackey and past World Team member Mary Kelly also are working as coaches with the Prodigy club.

“Everything is going real well – I’m enjoying it out here,? Hazewinkel said. “It’s a good environment for me. It was a great deal for me to make a little money and be able to train. It’s a chance for me to teach some young kids and give back to the sport.?

Hazewinkel started the 2007-08 season with a win over Spenser Mango in the finals of the Sunkist Kids International Open. But Mango went on to make the Olympic Team

Mango beat Hazewinkel in the semifinals of April’s U.S. Nationals. Mango then followed by sweeping Hazewinkel in the best-of-3 finals series at June’s Olympic Trials.

Hazewinkel knocked off three-time World Team member Lindsey Durlacher in the semifinals of the Olympic Trials. Durlacher placed third in the World in 2006 and fifth in 2007.

The 24-year-old Hazewinkel and the 22-year-old Mango could meet a couple of times in the next few weeks. Both are expected to compete in the New York AC International and in the Henri Deglane International in France. Mango placed eighth in the 2008 Olympic Games.

“Spenser and I go back and forth all the time,? Hazewinkel said. “He’s got me the last couple of matches. He’s a great competitor, and I always look forward to wrestling him. There is nobody in the World I don’t think I can beat, including Spenser.?

U.S. National Coach Steve Fraser worked with Hazewinkel during his time in Colorado.

“Sam Hazewinkel is one of our up-and-coming Greco stars,? Fraser said. “He is a very talented Greco-Roman wrestler, and with continued training and competition Sam will be a World contender on the Senior level, for sure. He has proved his skills by winning the World University Championships this past summer. The key for Sam will be to get in the right training atmosphere with great training partners and coaches that will push him on a daily basis. His chances to be one of the best in the country and the World are great!?

Covering everything from wrestling to the 2009 Taxes.

November 6, 2008

Northwestern's Jake Herbert ready to make run at Hodge Trophy, second NCAA title

Northwestern's Jake Herbert ready to make run at Hodge Trophy, second NCAA title
Craig Sesker USA Wrestling
11/05/2008



In the photo: Jake Herbert looks for points against Germany's Davyd Bichinashvili in the finals of the 2008 Dave Schultz Memorial International. Herbert beat Bichinashvili, who went on to place fifth in the Olympics. Photo by Tech-Fall.com.

If it seems like Jake Herbert has been at Northwestern University forever … well, he has been.

Long-time teammates like fellow national champion Dustin Fox, along with All-Americans Ryan Lang and Mike Tamillow, have completed their eligibility for the Wildcats.

Most of his classmates have graduated and moved on to the business and professional world.

So when the outgoing, fun-loving Herbert was spotted on campus this fall heading to class for the start of his sixth year at Northwestern, fellow students couldn’t resist the opportunity to give him some grief.

“They are like, ‘What are you still doing here?’? Herbert said with a laugh.

The 23-year-old Herbert has one season of eligibility left after taking an Olympic redshirt during the 2007-08 school year.

He originally redshirted at Northwestern during the 2003-04 school year. He followed by placing third, second and first at the NCAA Championships before being granted an Olympic redshirt last season.

“It’s kind of sad that this is finally my senior year,? said Herbert, who is just a handful of credits shy of earning his degree in communications studies. “They say college is the best years of your life, and I did my best to extend it to six years. I wish I could go back and be a freshman all over again. I love it here. I’ve grown so much as a wrestler and a person. It’s been great.?

To say Herbert enters the 2008-09 season with lofty goals is a huge understatement. He is ranked second nationally at 184 pounds behind returning NCAA champion Mike Pucillo of Ohio State.

“I already told (Iowa’s Brent) Metcalf I’m coming after him for the Hodge Trophy this year and he said, ‘Bring it,’? Herbert said with a laugh. “I want to dominate. I want to pin everybody I wrestle. And when the college season ends, I’m jumping into freestyle 100 percent. My plan is to win a gold medal at the 2009 World Championships.?

During his Olympic redshirt season, Herbert showed signs that his goal of winning a World freestyle title is legitimate.

He won a pair of international events – the Hargobind International in Canada and the Dave Schultz Memorial International. Herbert, who competes internationally for the New York Athletic Club, also placed second in the Sunkist Kids International Open.

Herbert knocked off Germany’s Davyd Bichinashvili in the finals of the Schultz event. Bichinashvili placed fifth at the 2008 Olympic Games. Herbert also posted two wins last season over Andy Hrovat, who went on to make the U.S. Olympic Team at 84 kg/185 lbs.

“I learned so much and gained so much experience last year,? Herbert said. “You can’t put a price on how valuable that Olympic redshirt season was for me. I know I can wrestle with, and beat, anybody in the World.?

Even with the fast start, Herbert struggled late in the season. Seeded third at the U.S. Nationals, Herbert won his first match before losing his next two. He fell short of placing in the top eight. He followed by going 1-2 and not placing at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in June.

Two of his freestyle losses last season came to wrestlers – Iowa State’s Jake Varner and Michigan’s Tyrel Todd – who competed in the 2007-08 college season.

Two weeks after the Olympic Trials, Herbert went to see the doctor.

“I was feeling really tired, and I was just dying in the third period of some of my matches,? Herbert said. “I was having trouble breathing and they diagnosed me with asthma.?

With the asthma under control, Herbert came back to win a bronze medal at the World University Championships in July. He dropped a controversial, three-period match to Turkey’s Muharrem Ersahin before coming back to take third.

“I wrestled fantastic and I felt great at University Worlds – that got me back on track,? said Herbert, who also placed third at the 2006 World University Championships. “I feel great right now, better than I’ve ever felt, going into the college season.?

Herbert, who has compiled a sparkling 101-4 record in his college career, returns to the mat this weekend when Northwestern opens its season at the Michigan State wrestling gear Open.

“Jake’s working harder than ever,? Northwestern coach Tim Cysewski said. “He’s definitely a student of the game. He’s always looking for an edge and always wanting to get better. He’s a great leader. He makes his teammates better because he’s always pushing them. He’s very involved with our team and very supportive of our wrestlers, from top to bottom. He’s like another coach.?

Herbert’s chief competition at the collegiate level this year will be Pucillo, the Ohio State junior who won the NCAA title in 2008. Herbert beat Pucillo 11-5 in their only career meeting, which came during the 2006-07 season.

“Pucillo’s a tough kid,? Herbert said. “He’s very smart and very tactical, and he keeps things close. He obviously had a great NCAA tournament last year and he had an amazing season. I look forward to wrestling him again.?

Some wrestling observers have questioned why Herbert would start the season ranked second. Herbert has not lost a collegiate match since falling to Missouri’s Ben Askren in the 2006 NCAA finals.

“I really don’t care where they put me – that’s their opinion and that’s rankings,? he said. “All I really care about is what happens at the NCAA tournament. That’s all that matters anyway.?

Herbert’s impact on the Northwestern campus in suburban Chicago has extended well beyond the wrestling mat.

“Jake’s definitely been the face of Northwestern wrestling, but he’s been a great asset to the whole athletic department,? Cysewski said. “He’s not a football player or a basketball player, but he’s the best role model for the athletic program here. He supports the other athletic programs and he’s like the Pied Piper where he gets people to follow him. Northwestern had a big soccer game against Ohio State, and Jake had all the wrestlers out there and our guys were all painted up for the game. It was fantastic. And then when we wrestled at home, a bunch of the soccer players reciprocated and came over to support Jake and the wrestling team.?

Herbert, from Wexford, Pa., is among a group of talented young freestyle wrestlers in the U.S. Many of those wrestlers will be in contention to make the 2009 U.S. World Team.

“We’re not that far away from being one of the top teams in the World again,? he said. “We’ve got some real good young wrestlers in the U.S. – guys like Brent Metcalf – who are very hungry. We have the desire to be the best in the World.?

His college coach believes Herbert can reach that level.

“Jake can definitely win a gold medal at the World and Olympic level if he stays focused, stays healthy and continues to improve. I know he can do it,? Cysewski said. “He’s one of those rare guys – he says he’s going to do something and then he goes out and does it. His potential is unbelievable. He has the right attitude and the right work ethic to win the Olympics. I have no doubt about that.?

November 5, 2008

McCoy vs. Santoro headlines Maryland-Lehigh dual

McCoy vs. Santoro headlines Maryland-Lehigh dual
Jeff Breese InterMat
11/05/2008

The second week of the college wrestling season is underway and this week there is no bigger dual meet than the Lehigh versus Maryland on Sunday. It is the most important Division I dual meet scheduled this weekend. This dual has several story lines to follow just with the competitors alone, but none of them compare to the intrigue of the coaching match-up.

It will be Kerry McCoy versus Pat Santoro or Pat Santoro versus Kerry McCoy, depending on your point of view.

The two coaches have a long history with each other and, in a sense, have followed each other from job to job. When McCoy was a student-athlete at Penn State, Santoro was part of the Nittany Lion coaching staff. Once McCoy graduated he became a member of the Nittany Lion coaching staff and Santoro became an assistant at Lehigh. After three seasons at Penn State, McCoy then joined Santoro at Lehigh as the director wrestling and head coach at the Lehigh Valley Athletic Club. Santoro and McCoy were on the same staff at Lehigh until 2004 when Santoro became the head coach at Maryland.

A year later, McCoy left Lehigh to become the head coach at Stanford. It seemed like the cycle would stop there, until this off-season. Greg Strobel stepped down as the Lehigh head coach and Santoro was awarded the position. McCoy, just as in the past, followed the Santoro trail and took the head coaching vacancy at Maryland. Now, to kick-off the 100th season of the Lehigh wrestling, the two old friends will send their best out onto the mat to do battle against each other. Santoro will be coaching against his old team, a program he built into ACC Champs last season.

The dual may not seem to be a tight match on paper, but when both teams lace up their wrestling shoes we should see well prepared athletes who should know each other inside and out. Add in the atmosphere that Lehigh fans provide at any home dual and this match could become much closer than anticipated.

The bouts at 133 and 141 should provide a lot of intrigue and have some back story of their own. Maryland’s Steve Bell and Lehigh’s Matt Fisk square off in a battle of P.I.A.A. Champions at 133. Fisk had the more storied high school career, but Bell will come into the bout ranked No. 13, seven spots higher than Fisk.

Former Easton High School teammates, Alex Krom of Maryland and Seth Ciasulli of Lehigh, will gear up head-to-head at 141. Both wrestlers had stellar high school careers for Easton. Krom set the all-time District 11 wins record and Ciasulli was a three-time Pennsylvania placer. Entering the match Sunday, Ciasulli will be ranked No. 20 and Krom is unranked coming off of a redshirt year.

The Lehigh versus Maryland on Sunday will clearly be the highlight dual, but several opens and invitationals will be going on throughout the weekend. Highlights of these tournaments include: The Oklahoma Gold Classic, the National Catholic Invitational, the Daktronics Open, and the W&J Open.

The Oklahoma Gold Classic, which is hosted by SUNY-Brockport, includes Division I teams such as Edinboro, Hofstra, Kent State, Army, and, of course, Oklahoma. The NCI showcases a mix of Division II East Region talent and throws in Divsion I Duquesne and Sacred Heart. The Daktronics Open is the best tournament to see schools from the Midwest compete and provides a first glimpse at Nebraska-Omaha, which looks to be a dominant force in Division II this season. The W&J Open is one of the tournaments that flies under the radar, but continues to become tougher each season with a good mix of Division I and II teams.

This weekend should be interesting and each week will become more exciting as rivalry matches and conference duals creep closer.

Live Election Coverage on TWT

Taking a step back from wrestling for a day, TheWrestlingTalk.com has a Live Electoral Map of the election as it happens. Join into the discussion!

November 4, 2008

College Wrestling Schedules added at Wrestling Talk

TheWrestlingTalk.com has released the 2008-2009 NCAA Wrestling Schedules for all available Division 1 NCAA Wrestling teams. Below you will find a listing of each week throughout the season:

Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4
Week 5
Week 6
Week 7
Week 8
Week 9
Week 10
Week 11
Week 12
Week 13
Week 14
Week 15
Week 16
Week 17
Week 18
Week 19
Week 20
Week 21
Week 22
Week 23
Week 24
Week 25
Week 26
Week 27
Week 28
Week 29
Week 30
Week 31
Week 32

Enjoy the awesome college wrestling coverage!

November 3, 2008

Reiter Chooses Minnesota

Bart Reiter, ranked 80 by InterMat, has given a verbal to the University of Minnesota. Reiter wom a state title for Don Bosco High School in Iowa last season.

Find out when Iowa wrestles Minnesota by viewing the wrestling schedule.