Jump to content
MagnetBack

U.S. Freestyle Struggles at 65/66 kg

Recommended Posts

Why has the U.S. struggled so much at 65/66 kg in freestyle at the World Championships and Olympic Games? I believe the last world or Olympic medal won in the 65/66 kg weight class was 15 years ago by the current national team coach. Please correct me if I'm wrong. This year it's the lone freestyle weight not qualified for the Olympics. It seems like it's a weight class American wrestling fans get very excited about (not sure why), but the results at the Worlds and Olympics have not been good. Going into the Trials I thought JO was the best wrestler in the weight class (so it wasn't a surprise to me he won it), but it will take quite an effort to get the weight class qualified for Tokyo. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's an absolutely brutal weight. This is the results of the 2019 Worlds:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2019_World_Wrestling_Championships_–_Men's_freestyle_65_kg

One example:

Haji Aliev has three World Golds and an Olympic Bronze

First round he barely lost to Rashidov who went on to win the tournament, and was a double Silver previously

After he won his first repechage round, he had the defending gold medalist, Takuto Otoguro, who he lost to 11-9

Otoguro won another match then lost to Musukaev for the bronze medal match.

So, neither Otoguro nor Aliev medaled. 

We aren't necessarily terrible here, it's just an absolutely brutal weight class 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the replies. Great points about the depth at 65 kg internationally. I also think American wrestling fans tend to overrate successful collegiate wrestlers (Metcalf, Zain, Yianni, etc.) and create unrealistic freestyle expectations.

Edited by MagnetBack

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We don’t historically have guys who can score on anyone. We need someone like Yianni who can score on anyone while giving up points vs someone overly defensive. Then we get into Metcalf territory where he gives up early 4 pointers and loses 4-4 with a takedown and 2 push outs losing to a big 4 pointer. We need guys who can expose.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, MagnetBack said:

Why has the U.S. struggled so much at 65/66 kg in freestyle at the World Championships and Olympic Games? I believe the last world or Olympic medal won in the 65/66 kg weight class was 15 years ago by the current national team coach. Please correct me if I'm wrong. This year it's the lone freestyle weight not qualified for the Olympics. It seems like it's a weight class American wrestling fans get very excited about (not sure why), but the results at the Worlds and Olympics have not been good. Going into the Trials I thought JO was the best wrestler in the weight class (so it wasn't a surprise to me he won it), but it will take quite an effort to get the weight class qualified for Tokyo. 

We have a 65kg guy who is capable of medaling at the Worlds/Olympics...he has won every international tournament he's ever entered and beaten multiple senior world medalists.  We keep leaving him on the bench at home because we continue to select our team with a challenge tournament.  Our selection process is a huge part of the problem.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 minutes ago, ShakaAloha said:

We have a 65kg guy who is capable of medaling at the Worlds/Olympics...he has won every international tournament he's ever entered and beaten multiple senior world medalists.  We keep leaving him on the bench at home because we continue to select our team with a challenge tournament.  Our selection process is a huge part of the problem.  

Doesn’t seem to hurt the other weights 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
29 minutes ago, AnklePicker said:

Doesn’t seem to hurt the other weights 

You mean the other weights where we won 1 gold medal and 2 medals total (out of 6 weights) at the last Olympics?  Or 2 golds (both at non-Olympic weights) and 4 medals total (out of 10 weights) at the last Worlds?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, ShakaAloha said:

You mean the other weights where we won 1 gold medal and 2 medals total (out of 6 weights) at the last Olympics?  Or 2 golds (both at non-Olympic weights) and 4 medals total (out of 10 weights) at the last Worlds?

In the last three years we’ve placed 1st, 2nd and 4th in the world. It’s not our qualification system that’s the reason for our lack of success at 65.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, ShakaAloha said:

You mean the other weights where we won 1 gold medal and 2 medals total (out of 6 weights) at the last Olympics?  Or 2 golds (both at non-Olympic weights) and 4 medals total (out of 10 weights) at the last Worlds?

I think we have a legit shot at 4 medals this Olympics. 4 out of 6 ain’t bad at all. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Ogalthorpe Haywood said:

I think we have a legit shot at 4 medals this Olympics. 4 out of 6 ain’t bad at all. 

Good point.  And everyone gets a fair shot to make the team, more or less.  I guess we have to live with the fact that we might not qualify 65 some years.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Even Cary Kolat never won a title at this weight (think it was 63 then), though backdoor dealings had as much to do with that as performance.  It’s a brutal weight, always has been, and with that kind of depth around the world, our selection process is not nearly as detrimental as our development process.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's definitely a sweet spot size-wise for getting a beast from every nation. 

The top few nations have someone tough at every weight. The documented larger stature next-tier wrestling nations (e.g. Belarus, Ukraine) can struggle at 57 & 61, but 65 isnt too small. The documented smaller stature wrestling nations (Japan, Mongolia, India) struggle at the biggest 3-4 weights, but 65 isnt too big for them. It's a perfect middle ground to get not only someone good from every nation--but the best of a deep pool of talent from each of those nations.

Edited by maligned

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It's definitely a sweet spot size-wise for getting a beast from every nation. 
The top few nations have someone tough at every weight. The documented larger stature next-tier wrestling nations (e.g. Belarus, Ukraine) can struggle at 57 & 61, but 65 isnt too small. The documented smaller stature wrestling nations (Japan, Mongolia, India) struggle at the biggest 3-4 weights, but 65 isnt too big for them. It's a perfect middle ground to get not only someone good from every nation--but the best of a deep pool of talent from each of those nations.
This!!!!
I like the break-down.
I've always said it's the one weight where every country has a great athlete.
Would be great if JO qualifies but man... What a tall order to hope for a medal

If I need to know anything about wrestling or sports, I ask Frank Rizzo because he knows more than me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, ShakaAloha said:

We have a 65kg guy who is capable of medaling at the Worlds/Olympics...he has won every international tournament he's ever entered and beaten multiple senior world medalists.  We keep leaving him on the bench at home because we continue to select our team with a challenge tournament.  Our selection process is a huge part of the problem.  

We do have that guy.  He lost in the Olympic Trials Semi Finals and ended up 4th for the mini tourney and got wasted in the bronze medal match 16-8.  I like Yianni but he does not do it here domestically. 

mspart

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, mspart said:

We do have that guy.  He lost in the Olympic Trials Semi Finals and ended up 4th for the mini tourney and got wasted in the bronze medal match 16-8.  I like Yianni but he does not do it here domestically. 

Given his last name- are you surprised?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...