If I were still coaching in college….
Long long time ago, in a wrestling room far away, I coached on the collegiate level (for 15 years).
So recently, thanks to an invite from my good friend, let’s call him John like his parents did, I found myself at the Ohio State Buckeyes wrestling match.
And of course, the coach part of me looks at it from a slightly different perspective.
My perspective was, based on observations from that meet, if I were still coaching in college, here are some things I’d make sure to do…
One: Run Cradles. Specifically, run cradles because the tripod standup is so prevalent today in college wrestling. I would guesstimate that at least half the wrestlers that night were using it.
And countering with a strong cradle taught with the necessary skills – would be rather easy.
Tripod stand ups are BEGGING for the return of the cradle (Keaton Anderson says ‘Hi’).
Two. I’d especially teach the Ohio boys how to get off the bottom position.
It always disappoints me to see how many from our state wrestle poorly on the mat – which leads to PA still being dominant at the collegiate level because in college, they let you ride so much more. In fact, in college, it is absolutely critical to be able to escape from bottom.
Three (related). I’d encourage the Ohioans to attend a strong Mat Wrestling camp in the summer – like our Mat Machine Camp. You possess an enormous edge over most of the state if you excel on the mat.
Four (also related). For the love of all that is wrestling, learn the fundamentals of shutting down leg riders. While I recognize that the finer details of beating elite leg riders can be quite complex for wrestlers to grasp, the basic fundamentals really don’t take long to learn and can be taught rather quickly.
Five. Funk is fun but most funk is countered rather handily with a few core skills. Every collegiate wrestler should master these core skills to stopping their opponent’s funk. They could immediately elevate their game by doing so.
Them’s my observations.