Author Topic: When do you hit a wrestler with a caution on setting up on bottom?  (Read 199 times)

Offline New2TheGameNYRef

  • Section Champ
  • *
  • Posts: 146
    • View Profile
How many times have you seen a wrestler set up in referee position on bottom with their hands and knees on the two parallel white lines?!?! How many times do instruct the same wrestler regarding this rule before hitting them with a caution? I've seen countless wrestlers set up incorrectly, but I, personally have never awarded a caution for this. Has anyone?

When on top, I have given cautions for

a) Getting on too hard)
b) Having a tight waist (I'll give him/her two "preventive" fixes with a prompt like "flat on the navel" before banging him/her

But, never the bottom wrestler for setting up incorrectly due to knees and/or hands on the white lines.

I almost want to start calling it to see if wrestlers would improve. With the new point of emphasis on stalling, I have seen A LOT more action in the center. I wonder if this set up on the bottom position became a point of emphasis, wrestlers would correctly set up in the bottom position correctly without any preventive officiating.

Thoughts?

Offline Ray Brinzer

  • Ipse Dixit
  • Administrator
  • Get a Job
  • *****
  • Posts: 7201
    • View Profile
    • http://ray.brinzer.net/
Re: When do you hit a wrestler with a caution on setting up on bottom?
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2018, 12:28:30 AM »
That's one of those calls which I'd scale to the level of competition.  In the novice division of a kids' tournament, it'd be pretty tough to get me to throw a caution, except as a teaching tool.  I haven't reffed NCAA matches, but if I did, I'd hit them on that right off.  At that point you should know better; in fact, odds are you do know better, and you're looking for an advantage.

That said...

How many times do instruct the same wrestler regarding this rule before hitting them with a caution?

At the high school level, once.  They need to listen.  If they don't listen, bad things happen.

I almost want to start calling it to see if wrestlers would improve.

Why not?  The rules support you.  Use your judgment, and be consistent.  In a dual situation, you might want to mention this in the talk before the meet.

We want the athletes to know what they're supposed to do, and then handle their business.  I see both instruction and cautions as serving that end.

Offline New2TheGameNYRef

  • Section Champ
  • *
  • Posts: 146
    • View Profile
Re: When do you hit a wrestler with a caution on setting up on bottom?
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2018, 03:19:32 AM »
Ray,

Thanks for the in-depth breakdown. I will bring it up at our meeting because I think it's almost important that all of us are on the same page and consistent.

Offline Ray Brinzer

  • Ipse Dixit
  • Administrator
  • Get a Job
  • *****
  • Posts: 7201
    • View Profile
    • http://ray.brinzer.net/
Re: When do you hit a wrestler with a caution on setting up on bottom?
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2018, 09:03:08 PM »
I will bring it up at our meeting because I think it's almost important that all of us are on the same page and consistent.

While consistency is important, I think looking for this kind of consensus may be setting the bar too high.

You're talking about enforcing an existing rule, which you have never been told not to enforce.  Before a meet, you'd tell the entire team, "Look:  I'm going to enforce this!"  Then, verbally correct an athlete.  Then, if he doesn't comply, give him a warning. Then another warning.  Then, when all lesser measures have failed, and the scoundrel once again puts his knees in front of the line (either out of sheer defiance, or because he struggles with concepts like "behind"), you must award the other wrestler one whole point.

Personally, I'd just do it, and tell other refs, "Here's what I'm doing," with the hope that they'd follow suit.  But, of course, do as you think best.

Offline New2TheGameNYRef

  • Section Champ
  • *
  • Posts: 146
    • View Profile
Re: When do you hit a wrestler with a caution on setting up on bottom?
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2018, 09:14:39 AM »
Ray,

Great advice.....I like it.

A few things......At a dual meet, this would work perfectly.....however, at a Tournament (Invitational or Dual Meet Tourney)...I don't have the liberty to speak to every wrestle and give this talk.I believe you would give caution, caution, then one point, and that's after the two "warnings" you recommended which I personally think is fair.

I think at my next dual meet, I will follow this advice since I will have the luxury to speak to every wrestler that steps on the mat. I'm very  curious to see what happens if I make this a point of emphasis during my pre-talk.

Personally, I don't think it's fair to just come out and do it at a Tournament just yet. From experience, I do not think wrestlers are doing it to get an advantage, I don't think it's taught anymore, or they're just lazy and not paying attention.

This is why I would caution a top wrestler for a tight waist as I see a considerable advantage there. I do correct them a couple times before a caution. I do the same if the wrestler gets on hard to from the top position.

Good discussion, and thanks for all the feedback, Ray. I love it!

Offline Ray Brinzer

  • Ipse Dixit
  • Administrator
  • Get a Job
  • *****
  • Posts: 7201
    • View Profile
    • http://ray.brinzer.net/
Re: When do you hit a wrestler with a caution on setting up on bottom?
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2018, 01:21:22 PM »
A few things......At a dual meet, this would work perfectly.....however, at a Tournament (Invitational or Dual Meet Tourney)...I don't have the liberty to speak to every wrestle and give this talk.

A dual meet is indeed a better situation for teaching. 

I believe you would give caution, caution, then one point, and that's after the two "warnings" you recommended which I personally think is fair.

Scale the number of verbal warnings to the situation.  New wrestlers have a ton of stuff to learn, and coaches struggle to cover everything.  I have actually thanked referees for instructing my newer athletes on points of protocol.

In a novice tournament, often the problem is that you have to choose what to correct, because they're doing so many things wrong at once.  If you give them a little information, they'll learn it; if you give them a lot, they'll just get confused, and you'll delay the match unreasonably.  So you fix the big things (often by physically moving limbs), try to make sure they understand why, and then blow the whistle.

High school athletes should need less instruction, and therefore fewer "free" warnings.  The opposing coach also tends to expect that that you'll call what you're seeing; people are more focused on the outcome of the match, rather than the learning experience.  Still, there's room for judgement.  Being overly strict with a 9th grader who just started wrestling isn't productive.

Excessive leniency also causes problems, though.  Sometimes the best teaching strategy is a good kick in the ass.  In the end, you're in charge.  We want wrestlers, coaches, and referees to know what they're doing, and to handle their business.  Try to push things into that state, and don't be afraid to follow the rules.

I think at my next dual meet, I will follow this advice since I will have the luxury to speak to every wrestler that steps on the mat. I'm very curious to see what happens if I make this a point of emphasis during my pre-talk.

Yeah, again, the athletes are only going to absorb so much during that talk.  But if you have a few points of emphasis, it's very reasonable to expect that they'll heed them.  Go for it.

Personally, I don't think it's fair to just come out and do it at a Tournament just yet. From experience, I do not think wrestlers are doing it to get an advantage, I don't think it's taught anymore, or they're just lazy and not paying attention.

Mostly, yes.  It's pretty easy to tell when someone's angling for advantage:  if you see the hands creep toward the knees, and the back bow like he's trying to kneel with his torso upright, it's intentional.

Offline New2TheGameNYRef

  • Section Champ
  • *
  • Posts: 146
    • View Profile
Re: When do you hit a wrestler with a caution on setting up on bottom?
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2018, 03:36:15 PM »
Ray,

Great stuff. Thanks for taking the time to type that up. It's appreciated!