Author Archives: Wade Schalles

What Are We Doing To Our Sport?

In order to know where wrestling ranks relative to all the other sports, and with the folks in the entertainment industry, all we need to do is look at some statistics. There are 363 Division I universities in America. And out of that number, 34 of them have a wrestling program. That means that 91%… Read More »

Are We There Yet

I think I’d like to change course from worrying about the NCAA Rules Committee and USA Wrestling’s lack of interest in the sports spectator appeal, and shift to the creation of a promotional video. Especially when wrestling’s two most influential governing bodies, mentioned above, have been asleep at the wheel seemingly forever. In support of… Read More »

To Lace, or not to Lace . . .

When I awoke this morning I was thinking; what could possibly have been going through the rules committee’s heads when they created all the various scenarios regarding the pre-kindergarten skill of tying one’s shoes? As it is now, or was recently, if a competitor’s laces become untied, heaven forbid, the match is stopped, the offending… Read More »

Television: The Devil You Don’t Know

Regarding broadcasts, the general consensus within the wrestling community, and among its leadership is; isn’t it great that ESPN, the worldwide leader in sports programming, thinks enough of us to televise our NCAA Championships? But is that really a good thing? Not if you’re capable of thinking outside the box, or seeing outside the box… Read More »

Wrestling Needs Another Division

The most important aspect of school is to learn how to problem solve. Those who do it best, succeed the most. If I developed one skill that helped me achieve what I did in wrestling, it’s being able to solve problems. So let’s work on problem solving this. As we know, the NCAA is divided… Read More »

Competitive Thoughts

Winning isn’t always about executing your most effective technique, it often comes down to stopping your opponent’s most effective technique. Kyle Dake didn’t beat Jordan Burroughs to make the Olympic team as a result of his offensive prowess. He was in Beijing because he was successful at stopping Jordan’s legendary, and lethal, double leg. The… Read More »

How Wrestling Wins

For those who know me, I’ve never shied away from sharing my perspective on subjects. Some of you seem to love my unfiltered openness, others not so much. But it seems I’m the only man in the arena right now to quote a partial line from Teddy Roosevelt. For this blog, as you read How… Read More »

#1 A Point Earned, is a Point Scored

This will be, or could be, the most important rule change the sport has ever adopted, or rejected, and it’s so logical that it’s beyond comprehension how we could have overlooked it. The current system of receiving 3 team points for a decision, 4 points for a major, 5 points for a tech, and 6… Read More »

#2 Doubling Up

We should take a close look at allowing athletes to “Double Up” 3 times a year; but only if we want to create more heroes and legends like baseball did with Babe Ruth, boxing with Mohammad Ali and basketball with Michael Jordan. We need super stars who are just as well-known in our sport as… Read More »

#3 Jumbling Weight Classes

I love this idea by the way. It makes Doubling Up; doubly exciting, doubly interesting and doubly strategic. Here’s how it works. The sport still has a flip of a coin before the match with the winning coach selecting the first weight class to be contested. But after that, with jumbling weight classes the other… Read More »

#4 Can’t Be Saved by The Bell

Next up, the rules committee should immediately embrace is a rule that states a wrestler cannot be saved by the bell (buzzer) if he’s on his back. The name of the game is pinning, it’s what everyone wants to see. The take’m down and cut’m loose style of wrestling is okay for a while but… Read More »

#5 Dual Meet Centric

So how do we get to sustainability? One of the first things wrestling should consider is returning to being a Dual Meet Centric sport. The why is simple; spectators and audiences only engage in activities that, on average, requires 2 hours to complete. So why does wrestling believe so religiously that Tri’s, Quad’s and Tournaments are the… Read More »

#6 Redefine The Wrestling Season

That needs to be accomplished two ways. The first, we need to move our season from being a Winter sport, to becoming a Winter-Spring hybrid . . . where we start training in December, begin competing in January and space our national events out so they occur before and after the men’s and women’s NCAA… Read More »

The History of Wrestling, Part I

Over the years there has been plenty of arguments regarding which martial art is the oldest, and the father of all the others? With a little research, I believe you’ll find the answers here. Three to four million years ago Homo sapiens appeared on earth . . . naked, hungry and in constant danger. Survival… Read More »

Lifetime of Achievement Award

Lifetime of Achievement Award Amateur wrestling has its share of national awards, but when we compare our numbers to other organizations and sports, we need to do better. Especially at the elementary and middle school levels where we have so many outstanding coaches, mentors, and administrators who play pivotal roles in our children’s development. At… Read More »

Tokyo Olympics

Nothing I’ve read in the past two weeks has mentioned Rich Bender’s name and his contributions to our successes in Tokyo. There’s no question our athletes did an amazing job. Greco, not so much, but that pretty much follows a trend. More on that later. As for Rich, he’s America’s CEO when we talk about… Read More »

Solving the Problem of Forfeits

For this edition of How Wrestling Wins, I will attempt to put an end to the pandemic of forfeits, and then offer a suggestion regarding how we can improve wrestling’s pinning percentages. I hope you’re sitting down . . . To begin, I believe everyone would agree that we can’t allow forfeits to continue, they… Read More »

Doubling Up and Jumbling Weight Classes

I would like to begin this blog by expressing my extreme gratitude to all of you who have been so supportive of my musings. The last five years have been more than enjoyable, while being equally as frustrating. I have tried to make a difference, and maybe I have, but it seems little has changed.… Read More »

A Point Earned, is a Point Scored

Over the years, individual collegiate sports have been classified as either revenue or non-revenue; with wrestling being the latter. It’s been that way for over 100 years, and we still can’t figure out how to make a profit. What an embarrassment. And, if I were to guess, I’d say that at least 80% of all… Read More »

Change, It Isn’t Easy

Friends, I’m struggling. I know what we need to do as a sport, but to say what needs saying only upsets many of those that I consider friends. But I love wrestling for all the same reasons as you do, or you wouldn’t be reading these words. However, I’ve come to the conclusion that the… Read More »

Attendance is Survival

After you read the following, if you agree with me, or have found what I wrote was interesting, may I ask you to share it with others? InterMat this past two weeks, did 21 stories on dual meets and triangulars, and listed the results on their home page. But only two of the articles mentioned… Read More »

The Juggernauts

I think it’s time for a list; they’re always popular. This one isn’t that long, but for those I mention here are the most iconic wrestlers in the history of the sport. This group of greats, are yes, at the very least, legends of the sport. But more than that, they were the most exciting,… Read More »

Another Opportunity Blown

Wrestling, and those who are in charge have, once again, stepped in it. I could be wrong, but either I’m operating on 70 years of experience, or, I’ve severely overestimated what I learned during those 70 years? Recently, both the leadership of the EIWA and the NWCA have come out with statements relative to coronavirus… Read More »

Sad Predictions

For this year’s wrestling season, it’s sad to say, Iowa isn’t going to win a dual meet and Clarion is going to go undefeated. No, that’s not a Golden Eagle fan wishing for the best. It’s just that there isn’t going to be a wrestling season so both of my predictions are correct. And, by… Read More »

Passing Up Opportunities

Given the state that wrestling is in with coronavirus, and our leadership being all too happy with status quo remaining quo; plus, athletic administrators who regard non-revenue sports as, well, philanthropic endeavors; to say we need help would be understating the issue. Somehow, you, me, we, need to find ways to energize the sports leadership… Read More »

The Danger of Coronavirus

I’m afraid, the orbit of non-revenue sports around the financial sun, and quite possibly, the nation’s athletic departments, is about to go sub-zero. But, certainly, the beginning of an ice age for non-revenue sports, especially wrestling, is here, and it’s called COVID-19. Financially, colleges and universities are in deep trouble. Too many incoming freshmen and… Read More »

The Lost NCAA Tournament

I’m not sure I agree with most of the posts on Facebook that would like to see an extra year of wrestling given to those who were denied the final weekend of the season. I certainly understand everyone’s frustration, but this isn’t the first-time something like this has happened. There were no championships in 1943,… Read More »