The NCAA continues to propose positive changes to the sport of wrestling, despite the howls of protest from certain curmudgeonly contingents.
Finding time between allowing scholarship athletes the opportunity to sell pop tarts and ice cream sandwiches to the starving, huddled, non scholarship students on their freshman hall and preparing to go full on Harlan County USA on some Northwestern Wildcats, the NCAA Wrestling Rules Committee decided it was going to try experimenting with some new and exciting and potentially scandalous new rules.
Perhaps in an effort to not completely abandon virtue in the eyes of traditionalists, the rules committee is only recommending a comely dipping of the toe into experimental waters. Pending a full review and ratification, the pre-season All-Star exhibition meet may implement a rule, whereby a wrestler will be issued a stalling warning should both their feet step out of bounds from the neutral position.
So while still good news, this falls short of the much simpler and more effective penalty point once a wrestler places any supporting point out of bounds, which I would clearly prefer to see implemented. But whatever, it’s a start, and progress is slow to come by in this sport. I’ll take my victories where I can get them.
And if anyone needs evidence as to the effectiveness of the step out rule (and evidence combating the notion that it will simply turn folkstyle into sumo (as if sumo isn’t rad and being more like it would be a bad thing)) check out these highlights from the Russian National Wrestling Tournament that Flo put together. It’s phenomenal. I could watch these videos all day. Hey maybe I will!