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JohnnyThompsonnum1

Strongest wrestlers

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Wayne was extremely strong in that position. His nickname while wrestling at OU was "double-double" Wells because he hit the move you described regularly. One day in practice Tommy Evans had Wayne Wells show a half nelson tight waist on me. He had me lay flat, put a half nelson then while on his knees pulled me off the mat, and squeezed his elbows together. He said this was more effective than trying to turn the wrestler while he was on the mat on his belly. I thought I had pretty strong forearns until I felt him squeeze his around me. He said this was actually better than the double-double. Of course he had a great duckunder and he'd finish with the double-double a lot.

 

Wayne retired from law practice this past year. He was instrumental behind the scene in getting a coaching change made at OU. He and I worked together drumming up support for the coaching change. He had a serous health problem about 4-5 years ago that almost killed him, some sort of a rare virus. He'd got some land northwest OKC that he works on, kind of a gentleman farmer/rancher I think. I think he was getting an ankle replacement, I think he said he's had his shoulder fixed. We usually set together when we are both at the same event. One thing about Wayne, people always knew where they stood with him.

 

Ok -- so was it my imagination that Kharaghouli was the strongest guy I wrestled? I had to wrestle him twice -- and I think I would have rather gone against Sager or Haxel -- at least it would have been more fun -- even if I would have lost. Kharaghouli must have beaten them in tryout? Kharaghouli was so defensive -- AND STrONG -- that I really couldn't do a lot with him -- just had to try to wear him down. Do you think for his weight, he was a strong as Wells? He sure seemed so to me.

 

PS Please say hi to Wayne for me if you see him.

 

Best -

 

DA

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Funny story about Sager and Kharagouli.

 

Tommy Evans had guys rank for scholarships at the end of the season if they weren't national champs.

1st got a full scholarship, 2nd got 1/2, 3rd and lower got nothing. Sager wins as a sophomore so he had a full scholarship for his junior year. Didn't win the title as a junior and probably had lost his spot to Kharagouli during his junior year.

 

Sager and Kharagouli were tied at the end of regulation. I think it was the start of the 6th overtime that Sager gets down on his hands and kneesvand starts barking and growling like a dog! Kharagouli runs off the mat and says he is not wrestling a crazy man. Sager simply said I couldn't afford to go to school on a 1/2 scholarship, i wasn't going to lose that match.

 

I was told that Kharagouli was extremely strong. I never got to see him wrestle.

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I would have to put Chuck Jean in the conversation at 177. Gary Keck (one-time assistant at Minnesota) who wrestled him in college said it felt like a hydraulic jack was raising up his arm when Chuck Jean put a half nelson on him.

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DAA, I saw Wayne Wells along with several others at the NWHOF induction banquet in Stillwater last nite. He said you were a real nice guy to be around on the trip. Wayne's seat was to be next to me at the NCAAs, but he didn't make it, Bill Lam told me Wayne was ill. Wayne said yeah he wasn't feeling well enough to make the trip, but is doing fine now.

 

Visited with Jay Hammond who is battling cancer, he said he always wanted to be skinny, now he is. Said getting sick wasn't how he wanted to get skinny. I talked with him about Len Kauffman's pinning %, Jay said that Oregon State would wrestle several matches in those days that weren't collegiate opponents such as the Olympic Club, which was why Len wasn't listed in his records. I saw Len later who confirmed that, but he did have 66 pins in 79 matches in college.

 

Danny Hodge's handshake is still firm, you can feel the power when he grabs yourvhand, you are just glad he knows just how hard he can squeeze without hurting you.

 

Quite an evening seeing many old friends. Special night for my fellow Kansan Melvin Douglas III getting inducted as a distinguished member of the NWHOF.

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DAA, I saw Wayne Wells along with several others at the NWHOF induction banquet in Stillwater last nite. He said you were a real nice guy to be around on the trip. Wayne's seat was to be next to me at the NCAAs, but he didn't make it, Bill Lam told me Wayne was ill. Wayne said yeah he wasn't feeling well enough to make the trip, but is doing fine now.

 

Visited with Jay Hammond who is battling cancer, he said he always wanted to be skinny, now he is. Said getting sick wasn't how he wanted to get skinny. I talked with him about Len Kauffman's pinning %, Jay said that Oregon State would wrestle several matches in those days that weren't collegiate opponents such as the Olympic Club, which was why Len wasn't listed in his records. I saw Len later who confirmed that, but he did have 66 pins in 79 matches in college.

 

Danny Hodge's handshake is still firm, you can feel the power when he grabs yourvhand, you are just glad he knows just how hard he can squeeze without hurting you.

 

Quite an evening seeing many old friends. Special night for my fellow Kansan Melvin Douglas III getting inducted as a distinguished member of the NWHOF.

 

Wayne just plain had a different kind of strength -- usable strength as I mentioned in the stories about his double double. I had seen the move used on lesser wrestlers by LOTS of people -- and I think I even used it a time or two maybe in my career. I'm talking about Wayne's using it against Olympic ability athletes. Just amazed me -- he could just muscle them.

 

Anyway -- I shouldn't do this -- but I am interested in your OKlahoma connection. First, I had forgotten that I had seen Sager win the nationals in Cornell. Were you there? He then lost them in Wyoming -- probably to Stewart from Lehigh? Then lost them again at ISU in 66. That 37 pound class was stacked in 66 with a number of nationals champions in it. Also,, I always thought Haxel was the toughest of the three ( among Sager, Kharaghouli and Haxel) from reputation -- how did he fit in?

 

Finally -- I think if I would have had to try out against Kharighouli every week, I would have ended up in a mental institution. Twice was twice tooo many. Were you able to ask Wayne if Wayne worked out with him anything about his strength -- I noticed that in '67 Kharaghouli wrestled 145 at the NCAA's and Wells wrestled 152 -- so their weights weren't that far off. I'm not saying that Kharaghouli was in Wells' class wrestlingwise, but I would think even Wayne would have said the guy was REALLY strong!

 

Glad to hear Jay is getting around. I pray for him.

 

Best -

 

DA

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I wrestled in the Army and got out at the end of 1969. I was a helicopter pilot. Tommy Evans refereed the 4th Army tournament in 1969 at Ft. Hood. I told him that when I got out I wanted to go back finish my degree and fly in the National Guard. He said come see me I'm the company in Norman, Oklahoma. I am from Wichita, KS 200 miles to the north. I joined the Oklahoma National Guard in the fall of 1971, and transferred from Wichita State to OU. He got me a job running an athletic dorm. At the end of the first semester having watched be workout everyday, he said you're tougher than I thought you were. How would like to be an assistant coach? He said there are things i need help with, and Wayne only gets $3,000 a year and said he wasn't getting paid enough to do those things. So i finished out as assistant that season, then was an assistant for Stan Abel the next two years.

 

I was in an unusual financial situation, I had a 50% VA disability so my tuition, fees, books were paid for, plus i got a monthly vocational rehab stipend, VA disability, pay from flying in the guard, and free room and board for running a dorm. I think my standard of living was lower after graduating for about the next 5 years.

 

I think Wayne was just naturally strong.

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Two Oklahoma State stars of the early 1960s were mentioned in an earlier post -- Phil Kinyon and Joe James -- as among the stronger wrestlers in college history. Both were definitely physical specimens.

 

Here's an article I wrote about newly posted, complete film of the 1962 NCAAs, showing both Cowboys in action.

http://www.examiner.com/article/complet ... now-online

 

... and a photo album of some of the finalists, including Kinyon and James:

http://www.examiner.com/list/see-ten-ma ... b_articles

 

BTW, Kinyon was voted "Best Physique" in his junior and senior year at Stillwater High School, the same years he was an Oklahoma HS state champ. He was put together, even back then.

 

Mark

 

No disrespect intended, but what's with all the standing around? Didn't they call passivity back then?

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Two Oklahoma State stars of the early 1960s were mentioned in an earlier post -- Phil Kinyon and Joe James -- as among the stronger wrestlers in college history. Both were definitely physical specimens.

 

Here's an article I wrote about newly posted, complete film of the 1962 NCAAs, showing both Cowboys in action.

http://www.examiner.com/article/complet ... now-online

 

... and a photo album of some of the finalists, including Kinyon and James:

http://www.examiner.com/list/see-ten-ma ... b_articles

 

BTW, Kinyon was voted "Best Physique" in his junior and senior year at Stillwater High School, the same years he was an Oklahoma HS state champ. He was put together, even back then.

 

Mark

 

No disrespect intended, but what's with all the standing around? Didn't they call passivity back then?

 

"BACK THEN" ??

 

No disrespect intended, but have you seen a MIchigan State wrestle meet lately?

 

:D

 

DA

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