A Call to Action – by Mike Novogratz

I had the privilege of listening to Mike Novogratz speak at the pre-meet social at this weekend’s NWCA All-Star Classic.  He left us all energized and encouraged. Here is his speech below. . . notice if you would the differences between what those who have achieved are saying and those who are struggling to lead are doing?

A Call to Action

By Mike Novogratz – Chairman of the Board-Beat the Streets-New York City

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USAWrestling Isn’t What It Used To Be

Looking Back

USAWrestling isn’t what it used to be. I remember very vividly when the AAU were the bad guys and a fledgling group known as the USWF headed by Steve Combs wore the white hats and began making waves. To look back on it now, comparing the old AAU to the current USAWrestling, there’s not much of a difference. Both had a Board of Directors, voting members and leadership teams but in each case, the only opinion that counted came from the very top. That’s a good thing when you have people like David Stern, Roger Goodell or a Bud Selig calling the shots. They’re all businessmen who understand when politics should not impede progress. But when you don’t have that . . . Continue reading

Stieber vs. Maple

Lineups are starting to be announced for the NWCA All Star Classic.  A BIG match-up was announced that is equal to the Dake vs. Taylor event from last year.  This year, NCAA champion Logan Stieber from Ohio State will be wrestling NCAA champion Kendrick Maple from Oklahoma. At last year NCAA championships, Logan won at 133 and Maple at 141. Logan is going up a weight to wrestle Kendrick. This year they’ll be at 141 and 149 at the NCAA’s.

The All-Star Classic will take place on November 2nd at 7:15pm on the campus of George Mason University.  To purchase tickets to the event, visit the Ticketmaster website.  For more information on the All-Star Classic, visit the NWCA website.

It’s Time to Expand National Scholastic Rankings
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All Star Classic Wrestling Clinic

Honoring Clinicians

Clinicians are the only group remaining that isn’t represented at the National Wrestling Hall of Fame or recognized by any of the national media outlets. Wrestling on the other hand does pay tribute to their coaches, athletes, contributors and officials as they should but not clinicians and I can’t figure out why?

I don’t think anyone will debate the importance and skill sets of clinicians. Their contributions to man’s oldest sport are extraordinary and for most wrestlers, clinics are the only way athletes have of meeting their heroes and the legends of our sport. Shouldn’t there be a way for us to honor these men and women for their service and as a result provide incentives for their efforts?
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We’re Back… until 2024

Congratulations to all that did so much for wrestling.

  1. Jim Scherr for his tireless energy and effective presentation.
  2. President Putin for his sophisticative (I know, it’s a new word I just made up) approach to lobbying the IOC membership.
  3. America’s Big 5 business leaders who gave hundreds of hours of personal time and generous amounts of resources to the cause.
  4. FILA’s new President Nenad Lalovic who is making a difference and appears to have the support of FILA’s Board. And I should hope so after the Board’s lame attempt to deny any knowledge of what befell our sport. Lalovic’s two best attributes; a) he never wrestled and b) he’s a business man.
  5. Most of all, a firm handshake to the one man who single-handedly made the greatest difference on our behalf. Someone the American wrestling public has never heard of - Sheikh Ahmad Al Fahad Al Sabah of Kuwait. He’s the President of the Association of National Olympic Committees and didn’t think the Olympics would be the Olympics if wrestling wasn’t there.

It might be interesting to note that those who weren’t mentioned above will suggest it was their leadership that won the day. I believe as time passes and the facts are known, you’ll come to the same conclusion as I have.
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Great Video . . . Go Wrestling!

Several weeks ago I placed a video here that sold the benefits of Squash. I felt it was important for you see what the other sports were doing relative to our efforts.
So now it’s our turn. Please take a moment to watch this amazing piece of artistry from the desks of Nick Garone and Geoff Riccio. What a masterful job they did.
We Need Wrestling 2
My favorite segment was the photograph of the two wrestlers walking away from the camera arm in arm. One from the United States and the other from Iran. Powerful stuff indeed.

FILA’s Getting It, USAWrestling Isn’t

This is an article from yesterday’s New York Times.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/08/18/sports/wrestling-adapts-in-hopes-of-staying-in-olympics.html?_r=1&

Kudos to President Lalovic and FILA. This past week they evened the weight classes from 7-7-4 to 6-6-6 as part of their efforts to become IOC compliant and reiterated their support for women in leadership positions. That was a strong move on their part. If only FILA’s previous President would have been so attentive we wouldn’t be where we are right now.

What FILA needs to tackle immediately is Continue reading

Is Gender Equity Wrestling’s Undoing at the Olympics?

To begin . . . the following paragraph is the IOC’s Mission Statement regarding gender equity relative to events and administrative structures.

“The IOC is committed to gender equity in sport. The Olympics Charter states that one of the roles of the IOC is “to encourage and support the promotion of women in sport at all levels and in all structures, with a view to implementing the principle of equality of men and women.” Its commitment extends well beyond its efforts to increase women’s participation in the Olympic Games. The IOC also recognizes that gender equality is a critical component of effective sports administration and continues to support the promotion of women and girls in sport at all levels and structures.

So the question becomes, how will the role of women in wrestling play into the IOC decision this September? Here are my thoughts:
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2013 NWCA All Star Classic – Who’s on Your Must-See List?

Last year, for the first time ever, the annual NCAA All Star Classic was an absolute sell out; complete with the names of several thousand anxious wrestling fans on a waiting list. Needless to say the sponsor, the Greater Washington Wrestling Business Network (GWWBN) was more than ecstatic.
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2020 Olympic Wrestling: We Shouldn’t Get Too Confident

It’s wonderful that wrestling received eight of the 15 votes to become one of three sports who will make presentations in September. But in no way does this mean we have room for optimism. To the contrary, all that took place in St. Petersburg was we overcame the challenges of five considerably weaker opponents while failing to persuade seven other Executive Committee members that we’re a sport worth saving.

So Let’s Look at the Competition
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2020 Olympic Wrestling – Time to Thin the Herd

I have to say watching this Olympic level challenge play out has been fascinating. It’s been a blend of emotional roller coaster meets tilt-a-whirl. I read one email and it suggests everything is a done deal and we’re back.  The next has my head spinning, where a complete overhaul of FILA and USAWrestling is being suggested because the battle is lost.
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2020 Olympic Wrestling – What are the Odds?

I wish my crystal ball was a little clearer regarding next month when the IOC revisits their recommendation to drop wrestling. But I want to remind everyone that they shouldn’t be misled by IOC’s use of the word “recommendation.” Corporations often use the term when they really mean, “we’ve made a decision.” It’s a way to muzzle those whose ox was just gored, or is about to be gored. In no way does this term mean the sport doesn’t have a chance of recovery if we play our cards right. It’s simply means the IOC is using it as a measure to delay any retaliatory attack our sport may wish to launch.
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