Author Topic: Anyone find this odd?  (Read 26147 times)

Offline prudentman

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #165 on: May 28, 2010, 09:30:47 PM »
I am not from CA but do know:

The Frosh/ Soph State tournament held by CAUSAW has been as high as 1400
The Kids Folkstyle state as high as 1800
They do not have an open Cadet/Junior tournament
Nor a defined road to states for junior high or elementary

However the Nuway group in CA (SCWAY) has all of these events planned for 2010-2011

A Frosh/Soph/Junior States
A Road to States for the Elementary and Junior High
A Dual Championship Event

It will be interesting to see what happens in CA. They must be getting big support from Dave Dean or someone. I have read they have several exchanges and teams going out this summer. It is also apparent that they have great support form parents and athletes as the first event they are doing has all of their best athletes participating in it. The guys leading the charge in CA are from the most successful programs. I compare it to a hypothetical movement in PA where the powers from District 11 revolted and started a statewide movement due to Penn State, Lehigh, and Pitt being dropped in one year. My guess and maybe Ray could confirm would be that it would gain traction quickly. The truth is that the states have little resources to invest in protecting there infrastructure because they are feeding the national office. In my experience in the private sector of business that my friend is a failed model. The national office should be feeding itself based on the merits of a flourishing state system rather then a broken state system.

I am not the smartest old bird but it seems like long standing proven coaches with a track record for winning have one thing in common. They find a way to win. If these coaches in CA repeat their historical success Mr. Dean could very well find his organization in a position to affect the future direction of our sport. I vote YES as I believe their plan makes more sense then the current plan.

If your wondering why I feel so strongly. I have heard from a reliable source at the highest level of USAW that the head of CA USAW spends more time golfing then leading his state. These accusations seem to be confirmed by the current events in CA and the fact that they have shaped their vision around an event center that they wont even own if in deed it is ever built at all rather then protecting their college programs. If he is next in line to lead then it proves the current process of selecting leadership is flawed. As a prudent man, I believe that offers little to no hope as I see it of our sport flourishing.

Ray your a leader and I have always shared the hope that leaders would always lead and followers would follow until they were inspired to one day lead themselves. I say either lead an effort to change the current leadership in Colorado or join the NUWAY Movement. My grandchildren are depending on your leadership. Many advisers would tell you that getting involved may hurt your legacy or pocketbook. I would say if you love wrestling as I know you do then your greatest concern is the viability and purity of our sport and goodwill always is a precursor to prosperity and respect.

Offline Rockhard

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #166 on: May 29, 2010, 12:51:08 AM »
Quote from: "prudentman"
I am not from CA but do know:

The Frosh/ Soph State tournament held by CAUSAW has been as high as 1400
The Kids Folkstyle state as high as 1800
They do not have an open Cadet/Junior tournament
Nor a defined road to states for junior high or elementary

However the Nuway group in CA (SCWAY) has all of these events planned for 2010-2011

A Frosh/Soph/Junior States
A Road to States for the Elementary and Junior High
A Dual Championship Event

It will be interesting to see what happens in CA. They must be getting big support from Dave Dean or someone. I have read they have several exchanges and teams going out this summer. It is also apparent that they have great support form parents and athletes as the first event they are doing has all of their best athletes participating in it. The guys leading the charge in CA are from the most successful programs. I compare it to a hypothetical movement in PA where the powers from District 11 revolted and started a statewide movement due to Penn State, Lehigh, and Pitt being dropped in one year. My guess and maybe Ray could confirm would be that it would gain traction quickly. The truth is that the states have little resources to invest in protecting there infrastructure because they are feeding the national office. In my experience in the private sector of business that my friend is a failed model. The national office should be feeding itself based on the merits of a flourishing state system rather then a broken state system.

I am not the smartest old bird but it seems like long standing proven coaches with a track record for winning have one thing in common. They find a way to win. If these coaches in CA repeat their historical success Mr. Dean could very well find his organization in a position to affect the future direction of our sport. I vote YES as I believe their plan makes more sense then the current plan.

If your wondering why I feel so strongly. I have heard from a reliable source at the highest level of USAW that the head of CA USAW spends more time golfing then leading his state. These accusations seem to be confirmed by the current events in CA and the fact that they have shaped their vision around an event center that they wont even own if in deed it is ever built at all rather then protecting their college programs. If he is next in line to lead then it proves the current process of selecting leadership is flawed. As a prudent man, I believe that offers little to no hope as I see it of our sport flourishing.

Ray your a leader and I have always shared the hope that leaders would always lead and followers would follow until they were inspired to one day lead themselves. I say either lead an effort to change the current leadership in Colorado or join the NUWAY Movement. My grandchildren are depending on your leadership. Many advisers would tell you that getting involved may hurt your legacy or pocketbook. I would say if you love wrestling as I know you do then your greatest concern is the viability and purity of our sport and goodwill always is a precursor to prosperity and respect.


Great post. The people fighting our movement here, either collect a stipend from our state org or have buddies working at USAW that they feel we owe them jobs. They disguise it with comments like, you're destroying wrestling yet have no clue how the system even works or how flawed it really is. People like that, will never change their minds. I found out things within our state org I didn't like, as well as at our National office and for years tried to enact change in a system that refuses to change and finally said enough is enough. I resigned all my board positions within our org and decided to go a new direction.

ORWAY has begun in Oregon and it will be the best thing that has ever happened to our state. The things we have in store for our state, would've never happened under the USAW banner. Change is coming and NUWAY is leading the way.
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Offline Ray Brinzer

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #167 on: May 29, 2010, 12:53:05 AM »
Prudentman:  I am about to head out on a road trip, so this is going to be an inadequate, rambling response.  I did want to say something tonight, however.

My understanding of history is that, in the beginning, USA Wrestling agreed a system of governance which gave a lot of autonomy to the states, in order to win local support as they tried to take over from the AAU.  The result, as I see it, is an arrangement which seems a lot like our nation's federal system in the first half of the 19th century.

Now, today we have an overweening, virtually unlimited federal government in the United States.  A lot of people (myself included) are inclined to see this as the cause of many of our problems.  But it's useful to look for historical perspective.  In the early 20th century, most people seem to have felt that the relative autonomy of the states, and the weakness of the federal government, was the cause of many of their problems.  Why?

Well, I'm presently back in my home, Pennsylvania, and I caught this article in the paper a few days ago.  Here's an excerpt:

Quote
HARRISBURG -- A "mad as hell" grand jury that investigated the Bonusgate scandal issued a list of recommendations improving a state Legislature they condemned as "broken," but was skeptical that any of the proposals would ever occur in a system so rife with corruption.

"The current operational structure and ingrained procedures of the Pennsylvania House Democratic and Republican caucuses are irretrievably broken and in desperate need of systemic change," the grand jurors wrote.

The self-serving culture of the Legislature's caucus system and patronage is so entrenched, the grand jury wrote, that the only way any change might take place is through a constitutional convention.

"The grand jury has determined beyond any doubt that the General Assembly, if left to its own devices, is utterly incapable of reforming itself," the report said.

Well, that's nice.  Probably some states are functioning well, but if we were suddenly to start taking the Constitution seriously (which, mind, is exactly what I frequently argue for), these are the people who are going to be running everything where my family lives.  I shudder to think what the state of New York, where I've been living lately, would decide to do with the power.  Imagine what cesspools certain antebellum state governments must have been.

Now, I bring this up because "corruption", "patronage", and "in desperate need of systemic change" are all characteristic of several of our state federations.  Others, from what I can tell, are great.  And yet it's this very federal system which accounts for what I regard as the relative virtue of USA Wrestling itself.  The national office has a lot of people to deal with; unchecked, they'd be a whole lot worse than they are.  And that, 18th-century brand cynic that I am, I regard as not as an indictment of the people at the national office, but as a matter of human nature.

In fact, most of the guys in Colorado really do care about wrestling.  Some too frequently put their own best interests first, but there are only a few that I have no use for whatsoever.  And if that doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement of the organization... well, they're a government.  They're quite a bit better than the other NGBs I know, as well as most of the other groups that make decisions in wrestling.  Actually giving a damn about wrestling and the athletes distinguishes them completely from the NCAA, any high school state federation I know of, and, by all accounts, the AAU of the past.

Anyway, back to the point.  I don't think that the states "have little resources to invest in protecting there infrastructure because they are feeding the national office."  Some of the states are doing quite well.  Some do well honestly, some not.  You cite a case where a state director seems to make enough, and do little enough, to spend his time golfing.  If the money is being allocated so badly already, allowing the state to keep more of the money would do nothing but deepen the corruption.

I do believe that USA Wrestling has failed to make hard decisions.  Virtually nobody gets fired from the organization itself, no matter how poorly they do their jobs, and they are unwilling to take on state organizations, no matter how corrupt.  The latter may be argued to be a virtue, in the sense that they're letting the locals work things out for themselves; but if the whole apple cart gets tipped over because of it, we all lose.

So, now, we have some rival organizations popping up.  Nuway seems to be doing some good things, and have a sensible direction.  I have a lot of questions about its governance, and about what safeguards it has, or will put, in place.

Let's look at American history again.  At the time of our Constitutional Congress, various good, smart people opposed the addition of a bill of rights to our Constitution.  Alexander Hamilton asked, "Why declare that things shall not be done which there is no power to do?"  There was also a real concern that if you enumerated certain rights, you might later be taken to have provided an exhaustive list... whereas the popular wisdom of the time was that natural rights were innumerable.

Over 2 centuries later, this looks like madness.  Our various governments have grasped what power they could, and tried to do every sort of thing according to the mood of the day.  Life without the 1st Amendment (for instance) would be very different, in a bad way.

Good people count for a lot, but the good people who founded our country are dead, and so are their good children.  What we have left over from them is a system of governance, and a bunch of rules they wrote, which many of us regard with a sort of sacred reverence.

So, I know that USA Wrestling has a bunch of state federations to deal with, and a lot of committees, and a board, and a general system of governance which keeps them somewhat in check.  What does Nuway have?  It has good people, from what I can tell, full of the fervor for change and fixing the obvious problems before them.  But while I'd easily trust Dave Dean with my kids and my wallet, I want to know what the system of governance is which will slow the (perhaps inevitable) march of human nature toward corruption.

Since you seem to have been around for a long time, you probably have a sense of why I have a good deal of affection for USA Wrestling.  At their best, they've been very good.  I don't think the idealism there is dead.  I do think they need to be chastened publicly when they do wrong.  They need to have their faults pointed out repeatedly by their friends, not just their enemies.  And when they do right, we should praise them for it, because they're human and it helps.

Doing this requires work, though.  When people complain about their state federation but won't show up for a meeting once a year, or speak out when they do, we lose.  Likewise, we have a venue here in which to discuss the problems our sport faces... but usually we don't, or we merely complain that things aren't being done for us.  That, too, is human nature.

Time to drive... past time, in fact.  I may be scarce for a few days.  Ciao.

Offline prudentman

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #168 on: May 29, 2010, 04:41:08 AM »
Ray,

You make some very sound arguments. I guess here is what I am most disturbed about in regards to the current leadership governing our sport and why I have given up entirely on the current system.

If we are going to have a national governing body then I see that organizations role as acting on behalf of all whom make up the wrestling body. To do this the organization must look at wrestling as a business and its member base as its shareholders. The leadership of  USA Wrestling should define what the key drivers of the organization must be at all times to ensure success. The day to day function of the organization would entail organizing, promoting, protecting, advancing, regulating and building the brand which is wrestling. We as a member base have entrusted this fiduciary role to them up until now. I believe they have failed to act in and of the manner required and what you are witnessing is the early stages of our wrestling body entrusting that role now to another organization. Here is how I have come to my conclusion.

If one can agree that USA Wrestling which is a member base organization must function as a fiduciary then you must also conclude that it has to be professionalized to ensure long term viability. The primary function of the member base is then to determine if the leadership that they have put in place is effective in carrying out the organizations missions. This is a process that we have allowed to fail and one that we must demand take place in the future.

How is it Ray that while you and I can admit that there have been many instances of failed leadership and vision yet you and I tolerate a system that does not empower us to hold it accountable. I agree with you that there are some good people at the top level as well as those who are incompetent. But I ask you Ray are we also responsible for the organizations failures? I would say you and I are both responsible and in many cases more so then the incompetent person failing the body in the first place. Why? It is simple, we have tolerated and been part of a system that is without safeguards, checks and balances, and a mechanism to effectively manage the business of wrestling.You and I actually owe a few of those lumps in Colorado an apology, for if it were not for our failure to act they would have been let go long ago.

Now I may say we should have done something about it. I will go a step further and say that we couldn't have done a thing about it. Ray guys like you and I are never going to make it to the top level. Guys like you and I are going to be closely managed to ensure that we never drift too far away but are always at a safe distance. This is not a new strategy but rather the age old strategy of a tyrant, dictator or absolutist. Make no mistake Rich Bender is all of the above. He surrounds himself with a board who is so far out of the mainstream element that they are very much like a band of sheep. He is the Shepard and they follow him grazing as he allows. Ray, you and I are no sheep which is exactly why he can never be our Shepard. He knows who the sheep are and he picks them accordingly which is exactly why Dave cast himself out long ago.

The states run the same way as the national board. Sure a state organization like Wisconsin or Minnesota may be the poster child of how USA Wrestling could work but equally the antithesis would be California or Ohio. Lets once again call out Dwayne Morgan in California whom I believe sits on the executive board. He has his board which is made up of association directors that many of the wrestling base in California have never heard of. For example if you go down the historic top 10 list of the most successful programs you will not find their leadership on any association board. In fact you will find the opposite, the top programs have been shunned, misled, and in fact are the very programs that are now leading this uprising against the state organization. So why has this system been put into place? It is simple Duane Morgan stays in power because the real leaders of California wrestling are shut out. The end result is that Rich Bender stays in power as long as Duane Morgan does. I think they call this form of succession a predetermined transition of power.

Now why don't we just vote them all out? Because you and I have allowed an organization that is empowered by few to be the voice of all. Simply we cannot vote as a member body. They have structured a system that allows you to rely on the good will of the same tyrant who is keeping you out of the circle.

In short the leadership has failed in so many ways that I could give you a twenty page thesis citing everything from the lack of  legacy benefits for our athletes such as pensions or medical insurance to the lack of vision in monetizing wrestling media content. Many joke about the disgrace at this years open and empty stands but in reality it summed up the incompetence of Rich. When stands are empty at the highest level and a college administrator is watching this affirms the fact that wrestling is indeed dying. I have heard that the MSU field house holds a MYWA event with 2400 athletes and another 1600 or so parents. I recently heard a story about a Michigan State University administrator whom was angry and in search of the idiotic owners of the cars blocking his parking space and ended up sitting amongst the 4000 participants enamored at the spectacle of such a youth event. That to me seems like the difference between failed leadership and potential leadership.

Ray Fargo is another sign of failed leadership. If I want to protect and grow wrestling I would put what is boasted about as being the worlds largest tournament in an arena out west. Having run a company or two I learned early that if you cover your flank, and strengthen the weakest link in your armor your overall suit becomes forever fortified.

I am too damn old, and too damn tired to continue this rant. Ray I hope when you see the tide turn you will bring your leadership and vision to the forefront. Dave Dean has my vote and very soon I will come out vocally with some friends in support of him and NUWAY. A wise old man once told me "son if you want to be remembered by someone then you better do something worthy of remembrance." In conclusion none of the things that once moved me seem to do such today. Maybe its mortality or maybe its senility; but I just feel if I sit idle then everything I have accomplished in wrestling or for that matter what my athletes have achieved will be for not. I cannot and will not let that be my legacy.

For many the decision to serve a set of principles rather then cater to a host of individualistic ideals will simply come down to overcoming both the defect of fear and or greed. Many will fear failing, others will fear losing something that is a false virtue in itself such as self importance or self esteem. Some will fear losing the economic or financial resources that come from being indifferent and uninspiring. There will be those that will also not be able to picture life without the small amount of shekels they amass at the cost of tainting our beloved sport. I have all that I need economically which to many may be little and others an abundance. I have come to a deep understanding that the virtue that enables all of us as individuals to flourish is hope. I feel you and I both owe it to the six year old that will walk out on the mat for the very first time tomorrow to be his protector of that hope.

Have safe travels

Offline Rockhard

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #169 on: May 29, 2010, 11:50:07 AM »
CA has around 17000 members. 1800 at kids state is rather small.
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Offline prudentman

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #170 on: May 29, 2010, 06:35:14 PM »
Cadet FS/GR
Junior FS/GR
Open/Woman FS/GR
Kids FS/GR

versus

1 cadet event (1400 at frosh soph states)
1 kids event that is held on competing days with other JR high State tournament
1 womans event

I will get you exact numbers as I was told that the limited folkstyle events actually had higher participation.

Offline prudentman

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #171 on: May 30, 2010, 03:51:29 AM »
I agree, this is not a fs/gr versus folkstyle issue

to me its a leadership issue and a structure issue. I have said my peace on the issue

now it is time to get into action

Offline Rockhard

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #172 on: May 30, 2010, 07:51:23 PM »
You'll enjoy this prudentman. Today, CA people promoting a Save CA Wrestling event through NUWAY were banned from the CA boards by CA USAW people, for trying to promote this event. Adam Tirapelle being one of them. These are the type of people leading our sport? Are you fricking kidding me? They would rather watch CA wrestling continue to be destroyed, than support an event where all proceeds go to a college that had been dropped and saved.

Tell me why we are continuing to support these kind of people who only care about their power and stipend?
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Offline prudentman

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #173 on: May 31, 2010, 12:39:50 AM »
I have spoke to the people leading the NUWAY charge in CA, Adam being one of them The issue that they have there is that a paid employee of CAUSAW is a moderator on the forum. As a result supporters of NUWAY and there CA Affiliate have invested in the site www.californiagrappler.com which is moderated much like this site.

The owners of www.thecaliforniawrestler.com have viewed it as a threat. I know I have spoke to several of the people involved and it seems like a standoff. Every week individuals are banned or posts erased etc. I saw today both Adam, and the NUWAY state chair were reinstated to there senior member status.

I like the fact that there is huge debate and reform going on in CA. I think when you look at the SCWAY (NUWAY state affiliate in CA) you see guys like Paul Keysaw, Adam Tirapelle, Ryan Halsey and others as part of their leadership it lends a ton of credibility.
I am not sure how Dave found those guys or if they found him but none the less the showdown in CA will be exciting.

I also heard that an ex D1 coach in Oregon is looking for info on ORWAY. Think ex Clackamas College Coach who recently had his program dropped. If I were Oregon i would get him on board within your leadership. Some of us old timers will fight harder if we see our old friends taking a stand.

Hope Ray had safe travels.

Look for a major NUWAY group to start up in the heartland in the coming weeks. The movement is spreading as my fellow grey hairs do have some fight left in them after all.

Offline Rockhard

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Re: Anyone find this odd?
« Reply #174 on: May 31, 2010, 02:38:01 AM »
I know exactly who you're talking about and I'll be in touch with him as I'm heading up the Oregon nuway affiliate. We have all the college coaches in our state on board as well.
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