Alternate Two-Piece Uniform Approved for High School Wrestling

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Official press release from www.nfhs.org.

An alternate two-piece uniform consisting of compression shorts or shorts designed for wrestling and a form-fitted compression shirt has been approved for the 2017-18 season in high school wrestling. Wrestlers will have the option of the new two-piece uniform or the traditional one-piece singlet.

This revision to Rule 4-1-1 was one of 11 rules changes recommended by the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Wrestling Rules Committee at its April 2-4 meeting in Indianapolis, and all changes were subsequently approved by the NFHS Board of Directors.

The compression shorts or shorts designed for wrestling shall be school-issued and shall have a minimum 4-inch inseam that does not extend below the knee. The form-fitted compression shirt shall not cover or extend below the elbow and shall have a minimum 3-inch tail. The shirt may be worn under a singlet or with compression shorts or shorts designed for wrestling. 

Specific language was developed regarding undergarment requirements for female contestants wearing a one-piece singlet or a form-fitted compression shirt, as well as for male contestants wearing shorts designed for wrestling.

The committee approved use of the alternate two-piece uniform in the hopes of increasing boys and girls participation in the sport after receiving favorable results from experimentation and positive comments from schools, students, coaches and officials.

The committee approved several rules related to minimizing risk of injury in the sport. Rule 4-5-3 now prohibits any activities that promote weight loss or weight gain when an athlete misses weight on his or her first attempt on the scale. In addition to activities that promote dehydration or drinking fluids to gain weight, the rule now prohibits activities such as cutting hair, modifying clothing, etc.

Another change designed to reduce risk of injury was elimination of the straight-back salto, regardless of which body part (head, neck or shoulder) hits the mat first. The straight-back salto in the rear-standing position that brings the defensive wrestler straight back with feet in the air is intended to have the defensive wrestler's head, neck or shoulder(s) hit the mat first, and is now an illegal move.

In addition, added to the list of illegal holds/maneuvers in Rule 7-1-5 was a front flip and/or front hurdle over an opponent in the standing position.

"The attempt to flip or hurdle an opponent from a neutral position is not only an elevated risk to the wrestler attempting the maneuver, it also places the opponent in a disadvantage position as he or she is not only left to counter the scoring attempt, but is placed in a position of responsibility for not reacting in a manner that may cause a slam or unsafe return to the mat of the wrestler who actually initiated the maneuver," said Elliot Hopkins, NFHS director of sports and student services.   

The committee approved two changes in Rule 5-11 related to falls and near falls. In 5-11-1, the shoulders or scapula of the offensive wrestler no longer must be inbounds to earn a fall. The committee agreed that wrestling should continue if the offensive wrestler's supporting parts remain inbounds and no body part of the defensive wrestler goes off the mat. In 5-11-5, "unless any part of the shoulders or both scapulae of the defensive wrestler is inbounds" was eliminated. If wrestling is continuing during a match, near falls and falls will be awarded/earned regardless of the out-of-bounds line.

In a related rule, Rule 5-15-2b, c was changed as follows: "Near-fall points or a fall shall be earned while the supporting points of either wrestler are inbounds."

"The committee agreed that offensive wrestling should be rewarded," Hopkins said. "If wrestling is continuing, as allowed by current rules, and points for escapes and reversals are allowed, the ability to earn a fall or near fall should be there as well, with no deference to the out-of-bounds line."

Other changes approved by the committee include the following:

• Rule 5-19-10: The referee no longer may be behind the contestants when starting the wrestlers from the down position, which has led the false starts by one or both wrestlers.
• Rule 6-6-4a(1) and 6-6-5a(1): Errors by the timekeeper, official scorer or referee must be corrected prior to the offended contestant leaving the mat area and before the start of the next match on that mat. 
• 7-6-4d: Stalling occurs when the contestant in the advantage position stays behind the opponent while on his/her feet, making no attempt to bring the opponent to the mat.
"The wrestling rules committee did another phenomenal job in taking the necessary strides to promote participation by approving a two-piece alternate uniform to be worn," Hopkins said. "The committee also continued its commitment to reducing risk by making the straight-back salto and suplay illegal maneuvers, as well as prohibiting weight loss or gain in the weigh-in area. In addition, scoring a fall or near-fall is strengthened by the modifications to the definition and location of fall and near-fall in our rules book."

Wrestling ranks seventh in popularity among boys at the high school level with 250,653 participants, according to the 2015-16 NFHS Athletics Participation Survey. In addition, 13,496 girls participate in the sport throughout the nation.

By The Numbers: Iowa & Oklahoma State's Season So Far

The Hawkeyes and Cowboys are on a collision course scheduled for impact on Sunday, February 24th in historic Gallagher-Iba Arena. Both teams are loaded, with marquee matchups slated for just about every weight. Both teams have also gone through plenty of changes this season. We breakdown their respective journeys below. 

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Second Coaches Poll And RPI Breakdown

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The second coaches' poll was released this week, this time with an RPI accompaniment. Over 400 individual wrestlers made at least one of the lists. We've copied those two lists at the end of this article. Before them is a breakdown of the implications of both lists. 

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Daton Fix's Path To The 1 Seed At NCAAs

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Daton Fix came into his redshirt freshman year as one of the most hyped recruits in history, having won a Junior world title in 2017 and wrestling in Final X before ever wearing the Oklahoma State singlet.

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Iowa Travels To Wisconsin On Sunday With B1G Seeding Implications At 165

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Iowa finishes up their Big Ten schedule this weekend, starting with senior day against Indiana at Carver Hawkeye on Friday. Two days later, they make the trip to Madison to close out their conference duals.

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Can Oklahoma State End Missouri's 35-Match Winning Streak This Saturday?

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The #4 Oklahoma State Cowboys and #10 Missouri Tigers renew their rivalry this weekend in Columbia. The home team owns a 35-dual winning streak, which includes last year's 21-19 win in Stillwater.

Chris Ayers' 7 Ways To Defend A Leg Rider

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Plenty of us have had trouble with a tough/savvy leg rider. 

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Jody Strittmatter's Spencer Lee-Like Top Game

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Spencer Lee is an absolute hammer on top. 

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FRL 353: 165lb Big Ten Seeds + Micic/Suriano Will Tell Us A Lot About 133

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FRL 353 - 165lb Big Ten Seeds + Micic/Suriano Will Tell Us A Lot About 133

What 2 Watch 4: It's Game Time

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Do nothing but watch wrestling this weekend. Don't even think about doing anything else. I've got all the links and matchups for you right here. If you screw up this weekend by not watching wrestling, you have only yourself to blame!

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PIAA AAA Recap: Bethlehem Catholic On Historic Run

For the third time this year Bethlehem Catholic defeated Northampton. The all District 11 final provided plenty of drama as the Konkrete Kids pushed the Golden Hawks to the limit in the final dual of the year. All bouts are archived on FloArena and can be played on-demand. Here are some finals thoughts from Hershey.

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