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Penn State Wrestling: Playing Catsup

We're back, catching up with old news.

Apologies for the short absence, friends. But we’re back and playing catch up. Quite a few things happened in the Penn State Wrestling world since our last update, way back on April whatever. Let’s recap the action.

US Open Results

  • Mason Manville won the 75kg (165 lbs) Greco bracket. That means the PSU freshman is your Team USA representative for this fall’s World Championships.
  • Let’s repeat that, because it’s crazy talk. The college freshman will be representing the United States of America at this year’s senior level World Championships. Congratulations, Mason, and welcome to PSU.
  • Nico Megaludis fell short in the 57kg bracket. In March, a few weeks before the Open, Nico was ranked 3rd nationally by USA Wrestling. At the Open, with USA Wrestling’s #2 ranked guy Tyler Graff not participating, you’d think Nico would get the 2-seed, right? (Nope.) The 3-seed? (Nope.) The 4-seed, then? Nope. USA Wrestling seeded him 5th. How does that make any sense? It does not, at all.
  • Even better (meaning, even worse), Nico’s half of the bracket featured USA Wrestling’s #1, 3, 5, 6, and 10 ranked wrestlers. Well okay then the #2, 4, 7, 8, and 9 were on the other side, right? WRONG. #2, 4, and 9 didn’t wrestle. Thus, the other half of the bracket had only #7 (Nahshon Garrett) and #8 (Alan Waters). That’s it. The top 4 guys - really, the top 5, because Tomasello as #10 is idiotic and everyone knew it - were all on the same half of the bracket.
  • To recap, here’s the pre-Open ranking, and Open seeding, according to USA Wrestling, who makes the rankings and the seeding.
Rank - Wrestler - Seed
1st - Ramos - 1
2nd - Graff - did not compete
3rd - Megaludis - 5
4th - Joe Colon - wrestled at 61kg
5th - Delgado - 8
6th - Perrelli - 9
7th - Garrett - 2
8th - Waters - 3
9th - Gilman - did not compete
10th - Tomasello - 4
  • Attaboy, USA Wrestling.
  • At 65kg, Zain Retherford took 3rd, losing 4-3 to eventual champ Jordan Oliver, even though Zain scored 100% of the offensive points in the match. First, Oliver was awarded 2 points - the same value as a takedown - because the referee decided Zain had put his hands into Oliver’s face too many times. Then, with 10 seconds remaining, and Zain leading 3-2, and Zain in deep on another takedown, Oliver tried a last ditch “flying cement job” / elevator (technique discussed in this post’s comments). Oliver had to try something, because if he tried nothing, he was going to lose. So he tried this low success-rate throw. It failed. He didn’t convert it. And you’d think at this point that Zain wins, then, right?
  • NOOOOOPE, not in international rules freestyle, friends. Instead, Oliver was given 2 points as the result of a “correct throw”. That is, Oliver tried a throw, didn’t convert it, but the referee gives him 2 points for it anyhow - same value as a takedown.
  • Imagine football giving 6 points for an incomplete pass in the end zone. “Well, you didn’t complete the pass, so you didn’t score a touchdown obviously. But you tried to complete a pass . Therefore, since you tried, we’ll give you 6 points for trying and failing.” That is the definition of “(in)correct throw”, and it’s a crime against real competition.
  • Six years ago, the international governing body of wrestling had screwed up the rules so badly, and had exhibited such corruption that wrestling was kicked out of the Olympics. Remember that? The sport that started the Olympics 3,000 years ago was booted from the Olympics because of colossal cheating and unrepentant stupidity.
  • Getting kicked out is what it took to get the Eastern European communists to finally straighten up - which they did, for about 18 months. They allowed wrestling to return to actual wrestling again, as it’s supposed to be, and got reinstated. Hooray. Freestyle was awesome again, in a way it hadn’t been since about 1988.
  • Unfortunately, now that wrestling is back in the Olympics, they’re bringing back all of the moronic rules that got wrestling kicked out. Why? Because wrestling is run by Eastern European communists who cheat. That’s why. They’re a bunch of freaking cheaters. They buy mat referees to get the results they want. If wrestling rules are relatively clear and objective, then the refs they bought “out” themselves in the middle of the Olympics with outrageous calls and phony video review. Mongolian coaches stripped naked at the blatant cheating from the commies. Thus, by creating bullcrap rules like “correct throw”, the commies take the match out of the wrestlers’ hands, and let the refs pick a winner - the refs that they buy.
  • (//big exhale) Apologies, everyone. Had to get that off my chest, because it’s so dang infuriating. Let’s get back to actual wrestling, and actual correct throws, like this one.
  • David Taylor creamed everyone at 86kg. The Magic Man wrote a post about the difficult path from 163 lbs to 189 lbs, the training involved, and being able to hit an ankle pick again. Visit his site, buy a t-shirt, and hop on the M2 bandwagon if you’re not already on it, because DT’s slaughtering dudes again.
  • Mark Hall creamed everyone at 74kg Juniors. So PSU still had 3 champs, even with commie rules.

Beat The Streets

BSD Brother tikk had a photo pass to Beat The Streets NYC, as USA took on Japan in the middle of Times Square. Check out the awesome photos of Zain Retherford breaking his opponent, who was clearly exhausted by the end of the 6 minutes, and David Taylor pinning his opponent in about 75 seconds (among other great shots). Thanks, tikk!

Recruiting

Amateur Wrestling News released their high school All-America selections. AWN picks three teams for each of the 14 high school weights, across all high school classes (FR thru SR). Because Nick Lee finished high school online while training at the Nittany Lion Wrestling Club, he was excluded from AWN’s results. So was Yianni Diakomihalis, who was injured and didn’t wrestle most of the season. They both belong in the list, so we added them in, and got 44 total names (rather than AWN’s (14 x 3)=42).

Fourteen college programs have a commitment from one of the 44 wrestlers on the list. Three programs - Iowa, Nebraska, and Cornell - doubled that haul, with 2. Ohio State signed 3, which topped all D1 programs, save one: Penn State.

Penn State has 8.

The latest to sign on is Malvern Prep’s Michael Beard. Malvern Prep is a private school, and doesn’t wrestle in PIAA. For those who haven’t seen any of his matches, Beard is an animal. (Surprise, I know.) The kid is very physical, a great athlete, a killer on top, and has an outstanding head-inside shot to your right (usually lead) leg. He scores lots ‘o points. Welcome, Michael.