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How To: Indiana as a top 5 wrestling state


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As a graduated Mater Dei wrestler and current Indiana wrestling fan, nothing frustrates me more than when a wrestler with a slight lead near the end of the match shuts down and simply tries not to get beat. I also become frustrated when referee's refuse to call stalling early in the match. Right now you are probably asking, "Concussed?! What does your ranting have to do with Indiana wrestling becoming great?" Well, I am getting there

Why do wrestlers shut down and stall during a match? In my experience I have discovered that this occurs primarily due to tiredness or trying to minimize a loss. So what could prevent wrestlers from becoming tired? Better conditioning. What could encourage wrestlers to push the pace against a superior athlete and not try to win in the third? Being able to get away with stalling.

So what strategy can be taken to reduce these negative effects of stalling? If Indiana referees were set the goal to be the most aggressive referees in the nation about enforcing stalling calls, athletes would be more inclined to arrive to the match with better conditioning so as to not give up points to the referee late in the match, and prepared to use pace and tempo in order to defeat athletes better than themselves. One example of an athlete that took this approach two years ago is EMD's Bennet Kempf. As a three year JV wrestler, Bennet had never been exposed to supremely skilled athletes; therefore, he was able to succeed with average technique. However, varsity level competition served as a wake up call for Bennet whose only tool was his superior conditioning. Through this conditioning, he eventually defeated Lydy in the ticket round and went on to place at state.

So how is this relevant? Through the effects of aggressive refereeing, Indiana wrestlers would be more inclined to condition and be aggressive on the mat which, in turn, would increase the overall level of competition throughout the state. This increase in the level of competition would then force good wrestlers to become better wrestlers and better wrestlers to become great wrestlers. This would then allow a higher percentage of Indiana wrestlers to compete at a higher level on a national scale do to the forced increase in their abilities by the increased level of competition.

That's my thesis and I am sticking to it.

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Kempf won by DQ.  As I recall, he was wrestling a great match and had Lydy frustrated to the point that Lydy got DQ'd for something (biting maybe?  Can't remember exactly).  Not sure superior conditioning had anything to do with it.

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I've seen great wrestlers, average wrestlers and bad wrestlers stall out in the final seconds. There is no since risking a loss to keep being overly aggressive until the whistle.

That being said - I watched the Lee/Red match yesterday that someone has posted (I was there, but didn't notice this as bad as the video), but fans were screaming for stalling calls as early as the first five seconds of the match. The guy I could hear on the video was relentless in screaming for the stalling. From the very beginning of the match until the very end.

Wrestlers have to have a mix - a good engine, good takedown offense, defense, be good from the top and the bottom and be smart. Sometimes, being smart is not doing anything.

My son was up on a guy once by two points in the closing seconds of a match. He didn't have any stalling calls against him (he has never been called for a stalling). Upon a restart he took a shot and ended up getting put in the spladle and losing. I asked him afterward why he took that shot, and he thought he could take a shot...even a bad shot, and not be in any harms way. I was fine that he actually tried to think of a strategy in the match, albeit probably the wrong one. But If he would have just backed away he would have won.

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Good post. As long as it was consistently applied (1st, 2nd & 3rd periods) I think it could be great thing.

 

Often times the refs will ignore inaction on the part of one or both wrestling periods 1 & 2 and then suddenly gets compelled to make 2 calls in a matter of seconds in the closing seconds of the match. If it's stalling in the last 30 seconds of the match, it needs to be called in the 1st and 2nd the same way.

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Worst things happening in Indiana wrestling right now are

 

A) Refs scared to call early stalling calls... The typical IN ref only calls stalling in the 3rd period usually in the last few seconds of the match when it absolutely does not matter. Stalling is called much different in other states.

 

B Wrestling on a knee/both knees from open tie... Indiana's newest wrestling fad as soon as you drop to a knee you should be instantly hit with stalling.

Edited by whambam130
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If we give refs the authority to throw stalling calls around like coupons then we are going to see a lot more wrestlers underhooking and simply pushing the other opponent out of bounds just so they can possibly get a stalling call. In my mind this is by no means an agressive technique to taking down an opponent. Yet over again I see stalling calls hit on the other wrestler, who may even be trying to circle in bounds or shrug out, stil get hit with stalling all because one wrestler is a better "pusher". Also wrestling has evolved and wrestling from a knee is a tactic to gain lower and better position, if it was stalling then why does Jordan Burroughs do it directly before he blast doubles someone to the mat? Nearly every wrestler you see in the state finals now from 145 and lower are accustomed to wrestling from a knee agressively.


At the same note though I do believe there are cases where stalling needs to be called more habitually. I am mainly stating that I don't like wrestling when they simply fish for a stalling call rather than earning one.

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Kempf won by DQ.  As I recall, he was wrestling a great match and had Lydy frustrated to the point that Lydy got DQ'd for something (biting maybe?  Can't remember exactly).  Not sure superior conditioning had anything to do with it.

He also caught him with a spladle, as I recall, that prompted the frustration.  Again, as I recall, there was also a death in the Lydy family that also contributed to the emotional out-break.  

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...I don't like wrestling when they simply fish for a stalling call rather than earning one.

First I think this statement is so true. If neither wrestler is doing much then one kid shouldn't be called. Pushing isn't offense.

 

Second if we would go more towards college when it comes to out of bounds where if a wrestler goes out of bounds without a takedown attempt happening then there is a stall call. If you keep the kids in the middle of the mat it makes the matches a lot better.

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In order to become a licensed IHSAA wrestling official you can follow this link for details on the process.http://www.ihsaa.org...72/Default.aspx
********************************************************************************************
Specific points about the On-Line Testing Process that you need to know:

- The testing process is an on-line application. No longer do you need to plan to be at
a site on a certain day. You do need to have access to a computer to take the test. You
will need to plan when to take the test within the Testing Period indicated for each sport and
submit your results before the deadline. This is not a timed test.
- No on-site paper and pencil tests will be provided unless you are taking a class in that sport.
- Application Deadlines must be met.
- The test is composed of 100 questions, mostly True-False, but a few multiple choice. You must earn 75% or better on the test to
become licensed.
- You should receive your rules books from IHSAA as soon as they are published and available by the NFHS. If you are testing in more than one sport, the books for the later
seasons will be sent when those books arrive in the IHSAA office. Please begin to study for the test
upon receipt of the rules books.
- You may only take a test one time within a program year. If you do not meet the 75%
standard this program year, you will need to wait until the next program year to apply again.
- You should not apply to take a test in any sport whose deadline dates have passed.
- You should receive immediate feedback on your test results but you may not schedule
contests until you receive the insignias and license card from this office which should come
within 7-10 days after your test is submitted (and you have scored 75% or better).
**********************************************************************************************

Remember, you do not have to be licensed to officiate middle school events or elementary events, and this is a great venue to work and gain experience, especially for those of you who are unsure as to whether or not you actually want to proceed to the high school level. It's a perfect part-time job... especially for a college student. It's a 100 question test that is open book and done online, so you are allowed ample time to complete the examination with little or no stress.
Also keep in mind that nearly all officials begin at lower levels and work their way up, so you will not be thrust into the high profile varsity contest with 3000 screaming fans in the stands. If you like the sport and are physically able, becoming an official is a great hobby that pays well, gets you in the door for free, and gives you the best seat in the house!


 

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The best way to get ranked higher in the nation is to wrestle in national tournaments, but ISWA is preventing that.  The best national tournaments are right after folkstyle state, but we have to miss some of them to compete in local freestyle tournaments(wrestling mostly beginners) so we can qualify for freestyle state.  #boycottfreestylestate

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B Wrestling on a knee/both knees from open tie... Indiana's newest wrestling fad as soon as you drop to a knee you should be instantly hit with stalling.

so because someone has a different wrestling style/stance than you, they should be penalized? Yes we should base all rules of your style, correct? It's a smart tactic to get a better angle at legs. Dont penalize kids for wrestling smart
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Wrestlers adapt to how the refs call stalling, which is a product of how indiana referees operate now. All i would ask is the refs call stalling by the rules, which is to call it exactly when they see it no matter the period or situation; its clear they dont do that now. And its not always on the feet. When the top wrestler is riding with his hips on top of the bottom wrestlers hips and just staying there, it should be called whether the first match of the year or the biggest match in Indiana's history.

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The problem with stalling is that everyone wants it called, against the person they are rooting against. Stalling is generally a no win situation for the ref as he is the bad guy anytime he calls it or doesn't call it. I think a push out rule has more to do with getting kids wrestling as opposed to extending the wrestling surface. Now that I hit a nerve with a lot of people lets just ask the question: Push out rule like international wrestling or move to college rules and extend the out of bounds? What is everyone in favor of? 

The biggest problem I see with a push out rule is when a wrestler stands up from bottom, there could be some issues in that situation. 

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so because someone has a different wrestling style/stance than you, they should be penalized? Yes we should base all rules of your style, correct? It's a smart tactic to get a better angle at legs. Dont penalize kids for wrestling smart

Not sure you know "my" style of wrestling but as a coach I see kids wrestling on their knees every single weekend.  As a decent coach I teach wrestlers to stay lower than their opponents so when a kid on an opposing team drops to a knee our kids drop to a knee taking away absolutely all offensive possibilities from an open tie.  If someone drops to a knee and their opponent is still standing they deserve to give up their legs and get taken down.  Two 126 kids wrestling on their knees is as boring as two 285 kids standing straight up pushing on each other in neutral.

Edited by whambam130
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Not sure you know "my" style of wrestling but as a coach I see kids wrestling on their knees every single weekend.  As a decent coach I teach wrestlers to stay lower than their opponents so when a kid on an opposing team drops to a knee our kids drop to a knee taking away absolutely all offensive possibilities from an open tie.  If someone drops to a knee and their opponent is still standing they deserve to give up their legs and get taken down.

 

I know many kids who utulize blast doubles from knees.
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I know many kids who utulize blast doubles from knees.

Not sure you read my post... if wrestler A drops to a knee and wrestler B is well trained he will also drop to a knee making scoring nearly impossible... If wrestler A drops to a knee and wrestler B stands there like a throwing dummy he will be taken down.  Maybe just call a stalemate when both wrestlers are on their knees not touching one another.  You cannot blast double someone who is on their knees and has learned any hint of head and hands defense. 

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No, it's obvious that they are good because they have class wrestling.

I'll add you to the list of people converted to a class wrestling supporter.

 

Glad to have you on board. You'll be getting our weekly class wrestling mailings now.

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Whoa.  Let's slow down on boycotting freestyle state. This mindset is actually one of the reasons more of our kids aren't nationally ranked and why we aren't a top 5 state. The ISWA is not pushing kids away from getting nationally ranked. It's actually part of our objective.  Where most local coaches, fans and wrestlers are concerned with their school program, the ISWA, as a subsidiary of USAW and fueled in the OLYMPIC spirit, have the ENTIRE state to worry about.  To be fair, I don't think anyone is knowingly pushing kids away. Everyone wants the best for the state in some way, it's just that some people have different opinions on what it takes to be one of the best in the country.

 

I believe more of our kids are NOT nationally ranked because more of our kids do NOT wrestle - or win - where there are more nationally ranked kids. Specifically with our H.S./Cadet/Junior athletes, this means success at high-end tournaments like Fargo, UWW Cadet and Junior World Trials, Flo, Super 32, Walsh, Junior & Cadet Duals, USAW Regionals, etc. Indiana has a few guys that can wrestle with the best guys in the country, but we simply aren't deep enough.  Most of even our best kids are largely unequipped to consistently beat the nation's best and are usually outclassed, if not immediately, as these tournaments get into the later rounds. There are a variety of factors as to why this is so (class system, time, money, population, politics, etc) but I'll get right to it and say one of the biggest reasons we aren't ranked higher as a state is because we don't train in Freestyle and Greco enough. 

 

We primarily focus on Folkstyle because that is what we wrestle in school.  As a H.S. coach, their job is doing the best they can for that school's program.  IF the coach has time, which most usually don't, this essentially means a year-round program, developing a strong feeder system, keeping as many of them together as possible throughout the summer, training, bonding, strengthening that TEAM concept, camps, summer team competitions, etc.  If you want to build a high school dynasty these are some of the things that must be addressed in some capacity. This is very difficult to do for internal and external reasons. Tonte, Schoettle, Harper, Snyder, Schaeffer, Pendowski, etc. all are perfect examples of coaches who have been fortunate to get some things clicking and build great high school programs using these methods. Many of them will also tell you how vital Freestyle and Greco are as they push their kids to train in these styles as much as possible.  Yes, they have great programs and state ranked guys, but I'm 99% certain that every one of their NATIONALLY RANKED athletes wrestle Freestyle.

 

Unfortunately for the bulk of Indiana athletes versus the nation's best, because our primary focus is Folkstyle, this hampers our wrestler's growth as more nationally ranked kids wrestle Freestyle and Greco than not.  Can you become nationally ranked by being solely focused on Folkstyle?  Sure. I trained Nathan Boston for a few years, who already had some national success, but he stayed away from the international styles until I basically had to make him do it. Drew Hughes, Colton Cummings, and Blake Rypel don't really mess around with it as much as I'd like either - and that's ok. I know them all and have love for them all.  They rep Indiana so I rep them. Mason Parrish doesn't as well...yet. :) But I would also argue, and they've heard it directly from me and other credible sources, that they would be ranked even higher, and more dominant, if they did wrestle these styles as much as possible.

 

Not only do you have a higher chance of being nationally ranked with success in the international styles but more, and better, colleges will be recruiting you with this success. There are only a few Folkstyle tournaments after Folkstyle state out there that effect the national rankings.  Intermat and Flo don't even put that much stock into USAW Folkstyle Nationals. Aside from H.S. state, Flo, and maybe one or two more folkstyle events in the summer, the top, top, top college coaches and programs don't put that much stock in them either - because they prefer the well-rounded wrestlers that Freestyle and Greco PRODUCE.  

 

These folkstyle tournaments are alive, both locally and nationally, because the masses have to be fed - but the masses of our kids arent nationally ranked. There are absolutely a few nationally ranked guys at Disney Duals and other national folkstyle tournaments, and the top collegiate programs like Penn State, Oklahoma State, Iowa, Minnesota, etc. just might send a letter to you if you win USAW Folkstyle Nationals.  On the other hand, you can actually go up and talk to John Smith, Brands, Sanderson, etc. personally because you'll SEE them at Fargo. 

 

Why Fargo? Because when you look at the majority of nationally ranked wrestlers - THEY WRESTLE FREESTYLE.  Yes, there are exceptions, but I am talking about the majority.  Plenty percentages have been thrown around so I am sure someone can look at Flo's Top Sophomore list and see the percentage of these guys who wrestle in the international styles. http://www.flowrestling.org/ranking/607-steveson-snags-top-sophomore-spot/2016-02-19/sophomore. Guess who is at the top of that list? Gable Steveson, and yes he is an avid freestyle and greco wrestler.  Look at Intermat's top 100 seniors and you'll see the same.  Are there guys on there who don't wrestle Folkstyle?  Sure.  But not the one's at the top.

 

How about this: Fans LOVED the CJ Red vs. Nick Lee match.   LOVED IT!  Highlight of the night!!!  Standing ovation before it even started! Let's make it the last match. Two of Indiana's absolute best, aaaaaaaaaaaand they train and wrestle avidly in the international styles.  Why?  It's not BECAUSE they are great, it's because they want to BE great. It helps them do just that and they'll tell you the same.  But most fans don't know this.  They see them from the stands, they get a quick picture if they're lucky, maybe even have a brief chat, rave about them online, but they only see the results and not the process. The process is about MAXIMIZING YOUR POTENTIAL. Will you get better training Folkstyle year-round?  Absolutely.  Will you almost double that progress by wrestling Freestyle and Greco? Yes you will.  Crunch those numbers and see for yourself.  Jordan Burroughs will tell you. So will Kyle Dake, David Taylor, Tony Ramos, Logan Stieber, Angel Escobedo, Jason AND Alex Tsirtsis, Andrew Howe, Stevan Micic, and so many others.  Don't take it from me. I know enough to know I don't know anything at all. Take it from them.

 

Deondre Wilson, former 2x undefeated state champ, started wrestling as a freshman. Some called him an athletic phenom.  He wasn't really, but he was programmed mentally and had just enough technique to win in Indiana at the time.  As soon as his freshman season was over, and every year after, we went to as many freestyle and greco tournaments as possible to double his output because we didn't have time to waste and I knew better.  His first summer of wrestling we sent him to Cadet world Team Trials (very funny at the time) knowing he wouldnt win a match - and he understood that perspective too. Our goal was to score just once on someone.  He didn't win a match or course, but he pushed out eventual placer Kyle Norstrem.  This one point was an extra ingredient to a relatively successful high school career knowing now he could "score on the best in the country". 

 

He wrestled freshman Drew Hughes in the finals his Junior year for his first state title and if I remember correctly scored all his takedowns on the edge of the mat, because you have to keep wrestling on the edge. He got that from Freestyle and Greco.  Folkstyle wrestlers know you have to wrestle on the edge, but you aren't penalized for it like you are in the international styles, which creates more of a HABIT of wrestling on the edge.  This is just one small example of many on how the international styles help out your folkstyle wrestling. I believe he ended up ranked around 13th in the country by graduation.

 

Since stalling has been a discussion, another advantage of Freestyle and Greco is they penalize you even more for it, to MAKE you wrestle!  You get hit for stalling in Folkstyle from running away, hanging on, not doing anything, etc.  But most kids know how to squeek by this and so what if we get hit for stalling as we have a couple more times before it costs us. On the other hand, if you get for stalling in F/G you are put on the clock and HAVE to score or you are penalized. You try and hang on to something and you're going to get scored because of how easy it is to score.  Much more mat and body awareness is required for success in F/G, which directly crosses over to even more folkstyle success. The officials, although I of course don't agree with every call, do their best and that's enough for me. Officiating isn't easy. But ultimately it's not the refs fault we do or don't stall.  That's on us.  Freestyle however enforces the HABIT of action.

 

Again, there a countless amount of reasons where we could pin our lack of national success on. I do think classing Indiana wrestling WILL help get more kids wrestling, and I had pride being the only champ at my weight class at the time.  But many of the things that may be holding us back (wrestlebacks, ending the 300 mile rule, classing or not, population, school culture, admin support, etc) may not change any time soon.  We essentially must play the hand we are dealt like it's the hand we want.  It's like our expectations are just too low sometimes.  We operate more on hope, and hope is not an effective strategy.  Our kids won't be Olympic Champs anyway? Why not? Well they definitely aren't off to a good start if we are holding them back right out of the gate.  Instead we should be pushing EVERY last one of our athletes in our programs to aim for an Olympic title because it's going to take their best to do it. Every great athlete started their ultimate journey with a belief.  So what if they fail?  Aiming for the stars at least gets you to the moon.  

 

In conclusion, training in Folkstyle year-round is a step in the right direction, and better than doing nothing.  However, if that is all you choose to focus on, you are not maximizing your potential in this sport - plain and simple. You are trying to master the art of wrestling with 1/3 of the tools actually needed to even get close.  This is almost identical to trying to become a state champion but you are only good on your feet and are absolutely terrible on bottom and top.  Can you get close?  Sure?  But chances are you will fall short, and that is exactly where 95 % of Indiana athletes are versus the top athletes in the country.  Please do not call to boycott Indiana's Freestyle State Tournament.  We need to embrace it.  The two tournament qualifier is new and the waiver issue got out of hand last year, but if you want more CJ Red's and Nick Lee's then we individually and collectively need to train in the international styles much, much, much more.

Edited by Coach Hull
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Worst things happening in Indiana wrestling right now are

A) Refs scared to call early stalling calls... The typical IN ref only calls stalling in the 3rd period usually in the last few seconds of the match when it absolutely does not matter. Stalling is called much different in other states.

B Wrestling on a knee/both knees from open tie... Indiana's newest wrestling fad as soon as you drop to a knee you should be instantly hit with stalling.

So Anthony Robles and other wrestlers with one leg who always go to a knee should be hit with stalling?

 

The lack of action seems to be a better approach to call it then automatically when dropping to a knee.

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Not sure you read my post... if wrestler A drops to a knee and wrestler B is well trained he will also drop to a knee making scoring nearly impossible... If wrestler A drops to a knee and wrestler B stands there like a throwing dummy he will be taken down. Maybe just call a stalemate when both wrestlers are on their knees not touching one another. You cannot blast double someone who is on their knees and has learned any hint of head and hands defense.

 

so wrestler A who blast doubled another wrestler ( b ) 3 times in a match, with B being on his knees in a defensive stance, and A on his knees as well, was a fluke? B was a regional champ. So yes, it does work against good opponents. This is a true story I saw at semi-state Edited by DelCo
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In order to become a licensed IHSAA wrestling official you can follow this link for details on the process.http://www.ihsaa.org...72/Default.aspx

********************************************************************************************

Specific points about the On-Line Testing Process that you need to know:

- The testing process is an on-line application. No longer do you need to plan to be at

a site on a certain day. You do need to have access to a computer to take the test. You

will need to plan when to take the test within the Testing Period indicated for each sport and

submit your results before the deadline. This is not a timed test.

- No on-site paper and pencil tests will be provided unless you are taking a class in that sport.

- Application Deadlines must be met.

- The test is composed of 100 questions, mostly True-False, but a few multiple choice. You must earn 75% or better on the test to

become licensed.

- You should receive your rules books from IHSAA as soon as they are published and available by the NFHS. If you are testing in more than one sport, the books for the later

seasons will be sent when those books arrive in the IHSAA office. Please begin to study for the test

upon receipt of the rules books.

- You may only take a test one time within a program year. If you do not meet the 75%

standard this program year, you will need to wait until the next program year to apply again.

- You should not apply to take a test in any sport whose deadline dates have passed.

- You should receive immediate feedback on your test results but you may not schedule

contests until you receive the insignias and license card from this office which should come

within 7-10 days after your test is submitted (and you have scored 75% or better).

**********************************************************************************************

 

Remember, you do not have to be licensed to officiate middle school events or elementary events, and this is a great venue to work and gain experience, especially for those of you who are unsure as to whether or not you actually want to proceed to the high school level. It's a perfect part-time job... especially for a college student. It's a 100 question test that is open book and done online, so you are allowed ample time to complete the examination with little or no stress.

Also keep in mind that nearly all officials begin at lower levels and work their way up, so you will not be thrust into the high profile varsity contest with 3000 screaming fans in the stands. If you like the sport and are physically able, becoming an official is a great hobby that pays well, gets you in the door for free, and gives you the best seat in the house!

 

 

 

I actually intend on pursuing refereeing as a part-time job in order to help pay some college expenses! Thanks for the productive post!

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