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Do Today's Champions Avoid Each Other?

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Use to be that the top dogs went out of their way to wrestle each other. Prescott moved up a weight to meet Terry Brands; Nate Carr moved up to match up with Zalesky; Kendall Cross went at it with Tom Brands; Cable went up a weight class to beat Mike Grant of Oklahoma; Owings moved down to take on Cable. There are numerous examples.

 

But recently it seems today's stud collegiae wrestler avoid each other. Dake won't move up to wrestle DT. Howe seems to want to settle in at 174, coincidentally vacated by Ruth. Do these guys have a preseason meeting and work this out. Are there written Mutual Non-Agression Pacts. What gives?

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I said the same thing and someone argued with me. Using math, which explains nothing about why these guys went after each other like they were the trophy.

 

One reason I can point to is the podigy-ism our sport has created. We have all these little prodigies that seem content not to face each other and risk losing in front of their' parents. To an extent. In the old days guys didn't know each other as much and didn't mind kicking each other's butts. IMO

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This is silly. First off, let's discuss Dake. Dake did in fact go up into the same weight class as CALDWELL who was far more formidible than Taylor. The fact that they didn't actually wrestle can't be held against either guy, DC got hurt. It's also worth noting that Dake then went into the class where Taylor had been (157), Taylor is the one who went out of that weight class. Owings is a horrible example, he wasn't anyone when he went in Gable's weight.

 

As I mentioned on the other thread, G Gillespie recently faced THREE NCAA champs in the same bracket and the top 4 guys in that weight (Burroughs, Poeta, Leen and Gillespie) all could have been competitors for the title in the weight above if they chose to flee each other. Metcalf won a weight with FIVE other NCAA champs in it (Burroughs, Bubba, Schlatter, O'Connor, Caldwell).

 

The majority of the examples you gave are regular season matches, they aren't guys spreading out for different weights at the NCAA's. Brands didn't go up to face Cross, that was his weight class (and he wasn't Tom Brands yet, he had never even placed at the NCAAs at that point.)

 

This is an illusion, it's "I used to walk 5 miles to school uphill both ways."

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Jersey Joey, provide examples of any wrestler in the last ten years that has moved a weight class for the specific purpose of facing "the man". And actually, I am referring to the regular season too -- that is presicisely the context in which most of these matchups have occured.

 

#1 In 1992 Prescott, a returning national champ, went for the purpose of wrestling Terry Brands, also a NCAA champion.

 

#2 Nate Carr moved up to go against Zalesky in a dual. Gutsy move.

 

#3 Cable took on Grant, the defending national champ a weight up. He did this in a dual.

 

#4 What the hells the differance if Owings wasn't on the map. He move down specifically to wrestle Cable.

 

Your examples of wrestlers moving to or staying in a difficult weight classes are not even remotely similar to these showdowns I'm referring to.

 

Can you name one wrestler who switched weight clases for a single match or a season to face Cael Sanderson? How about to wrestle Taylor or Ruth? Who's gone after Dake?

 

Back up your old fart comment. Until then I'll stand by my opinion that these guys don't want to wrestle each other.

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Jersey Joey, provide examples of any wrestler in the last ten years that has moved a weight class for the specific purpose of facing "the man". And actually, I am referring to the regular season too -- that is presicisely the context in which most of these matchups have occured.

 

#1 In 1992 Prescott, a returning national champ, went for the purpose of wrestling Terry Brands, also a NCAA champion.

 

#2 Nate Carr moved up to go against Zalesky in a dual. Gutsy move.

 

#3 Cable took on Grant, the defending national champ a weight up. He did this in a dual.

 

#4 What the hells the differance if Owings wasn't on the map. He move down specifically to wrestle Cable.

 

Your examples of wrestlers moving to or staying in a difficult weight classes are not even remotely similar to these showdowns I'm referring to.Can you name one wrestler who switched weight clases for a single match or a season to face Cael Sanderson? How about to wrestle Taylor or Ruth? Who's gone after Dake?

 

Back up your old fart comment. Until then I'll stand by my opinion that these guys don't want to wrestle each other.

Ben Askren bumped up in a dual to face Roger Kish a returning national runner-up. That is the most recent marquee bump up I can remember.

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Move up, move down, challenge someone, or not challenge someone: it isn't possible to win an NCAA championship in the toughest three day tournament of these guys' lives by "avoiding people."

 

I recall a few years back that Adam Tirapelle said something to this effect, and it couldn't be more true.

 

Who the hell can you "avoid" in a tournament like this, for God's sake!?

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How do you know what people's motivations are? In 30 years someone might say that Dake specifically had a Vision Quest to go against Caldwell. And we won't know if that's true anymore than the we know if the rationales that you are mentioning are true.

 

What about Pat DeGain going up to deal with Mocco and Konrad? Damion Hahn is more highly regarded than Trenge now, but at the time (Trenge only losing to Cael the year before) it was considered a dumb move.

 

Didn't Jesse Jantzen bump up to wrestle Tirapelle (defending NCAA runner-up) a few years ago? Didn't Askren go up to face Kish? Johnny Hendricks went up to 165 when Letters was the defending NCAA champ and a prohibitive favorite.

 

At the NCAAs, it appears that top guys go up after good opponents even MORE than they did. As far as dual meets, you gave 3 examples literally over a 35 year span. And Prescott and Carr got hammered btw. Also, with the reduction in teams, the great teams have fewer gaps. I mean, did you want Chris Pendleton to bump up on occasion and have Rosholt not in the line-up? You are also ignoring the newer weight rules that make it more prohibitive to go up just for a match.

 

Regardless, this is "glory days". At the NCAAs guys go after each other more than ever. For dual meets you had 3 examples (2 of which were completely pointless) in a 30 year span. It still happens when it makes sense for the team. Cornell lost to Illinois last year 100% because of the Illini 197 pounder bumping up to heavyweight.On the flip side, Cornell beat Binghamton by 3 after Dake went up to 165 and got a pin.

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My memory may be getting foggy, but didn't Mark Perry move from up to 174 for his junior year - where Herbert and Askren were waiting for him - even though 167 was less competitive that year and he dropped back down to 167 the following year?

 

that was to get away from Johny Hendricks....and after Perry found out how tough 174 was he went right back down to 165 the next year. Not the best example!

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My memory may be getting foggy, but didn't Mark Perry move from up to 174 for his junior year - where Herbert and Askren were waiting for him - even though 167 was less competitive that year and he dropped back down to 167 the following year?

 

that was to get away from Johny Hendricks....and after Perry found out how tough 174 was he went right back down to 165 the next year. Not the best example!

 

But, it IS an example of what I said: who are you going to avoid at the NCAA tournament to become a national champion?

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Jersey Joey, provide examples of any wrestler in the last ten years that has moved a weight class for the specific purpose of facing "the man". And actually, I am referring to the regular season too -- that is presicisely the context in which most of these matchups have occured.

 

#1 In 1992 Prescott, a returning national champ, went for the purpose of wrestling Terry Brands, also a NCAA champion.

 

#2 Nate Carr moved up to go against Zalesky in a dual. Gutsy move.

 

#3 Cable took on Grant, the defending national champ a weight up. He did this in a dual.

 

#4 What the hells the differance if Owings wasn't on the map. He move down specifically to wrestle Cable.

 

Your examples of wrestlers moving to or staying in a difficult weight classes are not even remotely similar to these showdowns I'm referring to.

 

Can you name one wrestler who switched weight clases for a single match or a season to face Cael Sanderson? How about to wrestle Taylor or Ruth? Who's gone after Dake?

 

Back up your old fart comment. Until then I'll stand by my opinion that these guys don't want to wrestle each other.

 

Who in the world is this Cable guy you keep referring to?

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Seriously, it does hurt your argument a bit when you don't even know the name of the most famous wrestler of all time. But maybe your wish will be granted and we'll get to see Drake and Tyler wrestler each other again.

Big deal. Maybe I got hit in the head a few too many times. Wait 'til you get older and things don't work like they should.

BTW, I'd LOVE to see DT and Dake.

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the new weight rules that went in for the 99-00 season keeps these matches from happening during the season. for a while you could not weigh-in over your weight class at all or your certification was pulled from the lower weight class. they revised that, but you still have to follow a descent plan that prevent guys from weighing-in a full weight class up. in order to be back down at your own weight class you have to weigh-in light for the next weight class up. you don't even have a chance to to a break from cutting weight to get some of these matches.

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I know that a few years ago 2x 149lb DII Champion Waylon Lowe bumped 2 weight classe to take on Shawn Silvis a 2x 165 champ. Silvis won at regionals, Lowe won at Nationals and I believe got the OW in the process.

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I said the same thing and someone argued with me. Using math, which explains nothing about why these guys went after each other like they were the trophy.

 

One reason I can point to is the podigy-ism our sport has created. We have all these little prodigies that seem content not to face each other and risk losing in front of their' parents. To an extent. In the old days guys didn't know each other as much and didn't mind kicking each other's butts. IMO

 

 

"prodigy-ism" is something to be considered. Today, many of the elites have been traveling to tourney's for many years to kick the local johnny's butts. Obviously in the process many become friends and almost family. This happens in a variety of sports today and no one wants to lose. I've seen this first hand at the HS level. John Doe doesn't want to chance not being a 3x region champ so they stay up or down a weight from John Q. Fact of life I guess. I wonder if the elite guys are going to become so much better than everyone else it won't even be a competition anymore unless you can travel nationwide all year for many years to practice wrestling.

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I said the same thing and someone argued with me. Using math, which explains nothing about why these guys went after each other like they were the trophy.

 

One reason I can point to is the podigy-ism our sport has created. We have all these little prodigies that seem content not to face each other and risk losing in front of their' parents. To an extent. In the old days guys didn't know each other as much and didn't mind kicking each other's butts. IMO

 

 

"prodigy-ism" is something to be considered. Today, many of the elites have been traveling to tourney's for many years to kick the local johnny's butts. Obviously in the process many become friends and almost family. This happens in a variety of sports today and no one wants to lose. I've seen this first hand at the HS level. John Doe doesn't want to chance not being a 3x region champ so they stay up or down a weight from John Q. Fact of life I guess. I wonder if the elite guys are going to become so much better than everyone else it won't even be a competition anymore unless you can travel nationwide all year for many years to practice wrestling.

 

 

I think it is this for sure. My friend's kid is a good young wrestler and they are family with all of the local guys. I can't imagine those families going at it with one another.

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Almost imposiible for guys to move up for dual meets because of the current weigh in rules. Owings was far from a nobdy as I think his only loss was to Grant at 150. Pretty crazy to think he bumped up to 158 to wrestle NCAA champ Carl Adams pinning Adams in a dual. Abbas moved up and lost to Eric Guerrero for a dual as well. Penrith moved up in dual lost to John Smith as well. I would say biggest obstacle is the weigh ins.

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Yeah, it's easy to reinvent the past and build some of these guys from long ago into more than they were, but the Owings story is pretty macho. Whereas most people would have run from Gable, Owings started telling everyone that he was gunning for him, going to prevent him from making the record books. And he did. Can you imagine if some guys had started talking trash about how he was going to change weight classes specifically to beat Cael his senior season? And then pulled it off. It would have been epic.

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