Unwritten Rules Of Wrestling

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So many times you hear about the "unwritten rules" of baseball and see the backlash of someone violating them. My favorite "violation" of these rules will always be Jose Bautista's legendary bat flip after a home run in the 2015 ALDS that cleared the benches. It was epic.

Other sports certainly have their own set of these rules as well, but do they exist in wrestling as well?

Last week, on Twitter I asked the question of whether or not there are unwritten rules in wrestling like there are in baseball and got a lot of pretty good responses. While I think that some of the responses could be considered more to be quirks about our community, such as tucking your sweatpants into your socks, not wearing ankle socks, or running counterclockwise during warm-ups, there were plenty that of things that we "embrace" as rules in our community.

So let's dive in.

To Celebrate Or Not To Celebrate

When it comes to celebrating we get mixed reviews, but for the most part, the "act like you've been there before" crowd tends to be a bit bigger.

Over the years, we have seen wrestlers celebrate in a number of different ways. From Darion Caldwell's interrupted backflip in celebration of beating Brent Metcalf in the NCAA finals to Reece Humphrey breakdancing to Chad Red hitting them folks (see picture above) after beating Luke Pletcher both at FloNationals and Who's #1, we've had plenty. Those seem to be the ones that get the wrestling purists the most fired up (see photo below).

nullBut why? Why is it so bad to have character and celebrate a win?

Recently, we saw Jordan Burroughs defeat Kyle Dake to win another spot on the world team, and Burroughs celebrated it. There was not one comment about JB needing to be more humble in victory or "acting like he's been before." In reality, he really has been there before. But what's the difference. It's emotion. It's passion. It's the person's character coming out. Having personality is what brings flare to our sport.

I guess it all depends on the platform. If you ask me, the more character the better.

The Handshake

Did you ever realize how many times wrestlers shake hands? Well, let's just say it's a lot. This is an actual written rule in the freestyle/Greco handbook. However, in folkstyle the handshaking tour is more of an option. It's not required, so why do we do it?

Yes, I get that it's great to have good sportsmanship and respect, but after a win or a loss most guys want to get off the mat and move on. Even the coaches look a bit irritated waiting to shake a kid's hand, especially after a loss. I understand that this is something small, but this is something that happens an awful lot "just because."

Finish The Match

As wrestlers, we are supposed to be (and think we are) the biggest and baddest athletes around. And with that comes this expectation that you never, ever take the easy way out. If you get slammed, it's OK to take the recovery time, but taking the win by DQ if you can continue to wrestle is not something accepted at all.

Also, being the coach to tell your wrestler not to continue goes right into this as well. Obviously, if you're seriously injured none of this applies. But if you can wrestle, you better strap up and get back out there.

Taking It Easy On A Lesser Opponent

There have been a few times when we have posted videos of an outstanding wrestler playing catch and release against a guy who is not on the same level. For example, we posted a video of two-time cadet world champ Yianni Diakomihalis playing catch and release during a match, and it was met with some negativity where some people felt that it was excessive.

The gist of the argument was that Diakomihalis should have just went out, took the kid down, and pinned him instead of racking up a ton of takedowns and "embarrassing" the kid. Well, I'll play devil's advocate on this one. Yianni proved time and time again that he was head and shoulders above his competition in high school. So going out and pushing himself the only way he could against the competition became his main objective. Going out and pinning a kid in 10 seconds does nothing for either guy.

I understand that practice is where you get your work in, but who said that's where it has to stop. Working on moving and trying things in real-life situations can only make you better. Taking it easy on someone because they aren't on your level could be worse, in my opinion. Even the master was once a beginner, and I'm sure he didn't get to where he was by someone taking it easy on him.

Ethen Miller Flips From Missouri To Maryland

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Maryland earned their fourth top 100 commitment in the class of 2021 Tuesday night when #28 Ethan Miller flipped from his home state Missouri Tigers to the Terrapins. 

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Ryan Crookham Out Of Who's #1 Due To Injury

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Yet another injury will deprive wrestling fans of a match at Who's #1. Ryan Crookham, who was slated to take on Nic Bouzakis at 132 lbs, has unfortunately suffered an injury and will not be able to recover in time to wrestle October 3rd.

The Biggest Loss For Each MAC School & How They'll Fill The Void, Part II

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Every year, college wrestling coaches grapple with how to fill the voids left by departed starters.

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Bader Show: Ben Provisor & Alec Pantaleo

Ben Provisor & Alec Panteleo

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Bader and Bray catch up with two-time Olympian Ben Provisor and three-time All-American Alec Pantaleo.

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Former Ohio State Champion, Big Ten Wrestler Transfers To Oklahoma State

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Oklahoma State brought in the #1 recruiting class in the country for 2020 and quietly added a nice transfer as a piece to that group recently.

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Official WNO: Nicky Ryan vs Tony Ramos Event Preview

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Who's Number One (WNO) returns on Friday, October 2nd, for the biggest event of 2020, and quite possibly the biggest event of all time. Named after its main event, WNO: Gordon Ryan vs Matheus Diniz will showcase the best no-gi competitors in the game using submission only rules. 

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Iowa Commit Drake Ayala Eyes 2020 Who's #1 & Much More In His Senior Season

84. 2020 WNO Breakdown

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In March, the question of what dominance Iowa’s lineup would hold following the career of two-time NCAA champion Spencer Lee was answered with the verbal commitment of one of the best lightweight recruits in the country. 

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UWW Junior and U23 Nationals Set For Omaha, Neb., Nov. 13-15

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From USA Wrestling - USA Wrestling announced today that it will host UWW Junior and U23 Nationals Nov. 13-15 at the Convention Center at CHI Health Center in Omaha, Nebraska.

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FRL 553 - Why Wrestlers Wouldn't Enter Senior Nationals, Metcalf Memories

553. Favorite Brent Metcal Memories

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On episode 553 of FRL, the boys give a little teaser of Metcalf, talk about their favorite Metcalf memories, and discuss why wrestlers wouldn't go to Senior Nationals.

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Brent Metcalf's Career Timeline

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Because of his time, team, style, and mentality, Brent Metcalf is one of the most popular and polarizing wrestlers in recent American history. His accolades include four-time state champion, six-time Junior Nationals champion, two-time NCAA champion, Hodge Trophy winner, and four-time World Team member.

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