Shocked is the best word I can find to describe what I am feeling. By my screen name, you can tell I am into the sport a bit. My middle son is wrestling in college on a full ride scholarship. He was also a national Greco runner up and a freestyle all american in his schoolboy days. I am a mat official and a coach. My oldest wrestled in college and is now an mma fighter. My youngest wrestled up until he hurt his knee last season. He now races MX.
Being in Colorado Springs with the OTC in my back yard, I get an up close view of some of the best talent in the world. Freestyle Gold medalist Henry Cejudo went to the same high school as my sons. He comes back and visits all the time.
I still cannot believe how back handed and politically motivated this travesty was. FILA, the governing body of wrestling world wide was caught with their pants down on this. How on earth do you drop the founding sport from the Olympic Games? In a secret vote? No one knew about this?
I know FILA and the IOC are as corrupt as Chicago politics, but wrestling? How about dropping syncronized badminton or the 5k molly flogging?
There have been a few statements from the OTC and USA Wrestling yesterday and today, but none of them really are saying anything other than condemning the decision. Here's a couple of issues that have been raised by wrestling community.
1) Iran is pissed. Wrestling is to Iran as the NFL is to the USA. They have already begun jumping in the face of the IOC. A pissed off Iran is not good for the IOC. They may bomb the embassy....literally.
2) Russia is even more pissed. Wrestling in Russia is like soccer in England. They live and breathe the stuff. Their top wrestlers earn in the $500k - $1m range to wrestle. Seriously, Michael Jordan type money. The meeting where the IOC and FILA will decide officially to drop wrestling is being held in St Petersburg, Russia. Other than Des Moines, Iowa during the NCAA D1 Championships, you could not hold this meeting in an area where there are more wrestling fans. And they are pissed off. They WILL riot.
3) Dan Gable is launching an attack against the IOC and FILA to get wrestling reinstated. Dana White and the UFC are also involved. Most if not all the UFC athletes have wrestling backgrounds. NFL players are outraged. The Falcons Roddy White (2x state champion) is all over it.
Right now it looks like the IOC has a fight on its hands. I don't know if it will help and I don't know if they can get wrestling reinstated. There were a few pages that popped up on Facebook in support of this. One of them had over 500,000 likes in 12 hours. If you want the back pages info, jump on Facebook and give them a like. I am getting updates almost every hour.
I really hope this gets done and soon.