Rethinking College Wrestling

October 3, 2017

A proposal before the NCAA would make Division I college wrestling a one-semester sport. According to the Silver City Sun-News, similar changes have been discussed in the past, but there is now increased support for the idea. Tom Ryan, Head Wrestling Coach at Ohio State University, is a member of a task force that developed the plan.

“There’s great momentum,” Ryan said. “There’s more momentum right now than I’ve seen in 25 years.”

According to Jim Fallis, facilitator of the task force, under the proposed model, practice would begin on November 10, and competition would begin during winter break, eventually leading to championships in March, followed by a brief post-season consisting of duals. Fallis said that at this point, the proposal only applies to Division I.

“For Division II and Division III, if keeping the season where it is now is best for them, they can do that,” Fallis said. “And they should do that.”

Troy Nickerson, Head Wrestling Coach at North Colorado and another member of the task force, said that changing the timing of wrestling season would assist the athletes with academics, especially in their first year.

“If you just look at the facts with wrestling in general, we have a lot of first-generation college students and I think when you add in these kids coming to school and starting preseason right away, cutting weight and trying to get certified for the beginning of the year and then competing really close to those first final exams, it puts a lot of stress on the athletes in that first year,” Nickerson said. “That’s one of the big reasons why we chose the second semester being a better fit for it."

Nickerson said he was hopeful that the changes would be put into effect.

“We have a lot of hoops to jump through,” he said. “It’s going to certainly take some time. I think we will ultimately end up there — absolutely — the question is when? Will it be two years from now? Five years from now? Ten years from now? I think ultimately we will get there eventually.

From New World Of Coaching
Long-time crew coach and athletic administrator Mike Davenport explains one of the methods he uses to improve as a coach: A Coach in Improvement Action List. You can A refer to this list in times of doubt or struggle.
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