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ONE NYS Tournament

Joined: Nov 28, 2003
Posts: 1096
If, you have read my posts over the years- You would know that I was never in favor of a two divisional tournament. New York / New Jersey were unique in having a ONE TITLE system

I was in favor of wildcards basically, to help the Larger Sections to get more into the Tournament because of the extreme completion in their qualifying tournament. Today, more than ever- with all the sociological changes it has me thinking in a different way. I believe a REGIONAL Format would benefit the State and the state of wrestling in New York. Here is how I see it. The completion has been getting "watered" missing other talented kids." Easier to win here- than to win there". This is not what this sport was suppose to instill. Other State's wrestlers are passing our wrestlers . If, you do a little research on the past 10 yrs of New York State will see that MOST not all had NO IMPACT at the next level.

Here is what I suggest. ALL SECTION CHAIRMEN rationally , without "bias" - work out a plan to REGIONALIZE a true NYS Championship- eliminating the word "Section" in it's formation. Yes, keep the Sectional format for administrative reason but, then combine Sections within a Regional Qualification Tournament. It only makes sense in this sport that has to "reward" the best and to lose the "equal representation" by Section. Whose to say that the 3rd or 4th best kid from one section isn't more deserving to go to the State Tournament- than, a kid from another Section who is the Section Champ.

Kyle Dake proved- not only in HS winning many National Tournaments and then proceeding to do what he did in College. He proved that a kid from a small high school if, he does the extra work- finds quality opponents and workout partners well, the results can change your life. Lansing HS is a pimple in size to most schools. Nick Gwiz from Duanesburg HS - another school size that can fit in the pocket of most High Schools.

IMO- A REGIONAL FORMAT will generate more funds to the Sport in NYS and will reduce costs of the current WILDCARD SYSTEM. From a wrestling view. It will generate more competition within the state. Wrestling will get stronger again. The BEST will have to be at their BEST to win a NEW YORK STATE Title- ONE TITLE.

lastly, High School aged wrestlers can read. At least I hope most of them can. Don't you think that it bothers a DI kid when they see a DII kid going to Albany- and- they aren't ?? The same kid they beat 2-3 times over the past two years. This has happened since the inception of this "wildcard"- "two divisional tournament". We are talking about FEELINGs and future REPROCUSSIONAL effects that will leave sour tastes in these young men's minds. It will not benefit the future of this sport in this state.


PSAL/ Section VIII/ Section XI- East Region (4-6 reps)

Section 1/ Section/ 9 and eastern Section 4- South Region (4-6 reps)

Section 2/ Section 3/ Section 7/ Section 10- North Region (4-6 reps)

Section 4 -west/ Section V/ Section VI- West Region (4-6 reps)

CHSAA- Invites (2 reps per weight)

Qualifying Tournament at various locations- then we all meet in Albany. The "truest" way at finding the best in each weight class in NYS- without worrying who you are leaving out by felonious WILDCARD point systems. etc. etc.

Joined: Oct 25, 2009
Posts: 277
I really don’t understand how people have so much hatred for the large school/small school system? The disparity that exists between large and small school districts is the real reason for the split.

Look at the disparity that exists in the educational systems today, funding/population etc...

I mean I know the old “all ya need is a wrestling mat and a coach” argument, but let’s face it, a district with an increased tax base has distinct advantages above the smaller districts with a smaller tax base. Spending is scrutinized to the penny in smaller districts. Try requesting a new mat or try talking a school board into starting or restarting a modified program.

All the arguments you set forth are true when you look at them from your point of view, from the “purist” “it was like this in the 70s, 80s and 90s” however things change, smaller districts face challenges that large schools just don’t and YES that does trickle down to effecting the wrestling on the mat.

It’s a reality, there is a real palpable reason for the two division split. It’s not an example of the “everyone gets a trophy” culture. It allows student athletes to compete on appropriate levels, which is what it is really about, the student athletes, not the grumpy old men complaining about how the sport was better when I played.

And just one question, how does the WILD CARD/AT LARGE system incur any cost?

Joined: Nov 15, 2009
Posts: 139
I totally agree with the Regional Format and having 4-6 kids from each region qualifying. Number of qualifiers to be determined by some strength of region format. But I do think the D1 & D2 format should not change. I agree it waters things down; but it gives more kids oppurtunity and more kids exposure. Are we trying to build more D1 wrestlers or more people that love wrestling and pass it on. I prefer building more people who love wrestling and passing it on. Either way changes need to be made to the Sectional formats....we need to evolve.

Joined: Nov 28, 2008
Posts: 1097
Location: Hen House
Here we go again. Marty's annual February condensending rant about how the sand bar called Long Island gets screwed because any JV team down there would be League champs up here. This thread won't be worth the memory space on my phone.....

Joined: Feb 18, 2017
Posts: 159
While I take umbrage at being called a sandbar, that's really funny....

Joined: Dec 7, 2017
Posts: 13
I'll never understand why you all cry so much about two divisions. How many states out there actually have three divisions? I came from a state that had three and NOBODY cried about it. At one point that state was a much better wrestling state than New York. Hell I was a division 3 wrestler there and like here we had a sectional that was arguably tougher than state. There really was no difference from a state champion at any of the three levels. Since New York has gone to two divisions they are definetly the better wrestling state now. Ask yourself how many kids would say the heck with it and quit and play hockey or basketball or something instead if we were a one division state. There's less of an opportunity to be successful. State wrestlers all work hard because they want to succeed. Those who are state wrestlers will always do that regardless if there is one or two divisions so the quality of those wrestlers wouldn't be any different. If you go to one division though then it's harder to keep interest of all the other wrestlers who are very good athletes.

Multiple divisions helps the sport grow and this in turn makes the quality in the state better. The problem isn't the number of divisions. The problem is poor recruitment and maintaining interest in kids of all ages. The problem is needing more schools to even have a wrestling program. Wrestling is the hardest sport there is. Today's kids like things handed to them or the easy approach to things. If you wrestle even to have a little success you need to work hard. Kids don't want to put in work when nothing is telling them they have to or that's the way to be. Trust me the state will regress if it goes to one division. The more divisions the better Ask Pennsylvania. Give a kid more of anopportunity to succeed and those who qualify at the state level will still put in work.

Joined: Feb 9, 2018
Posts: 5
Nicely put Poecat. Many hold on to the one class thought because NYS was one of only a few states without multiple divisions for it's first 40 some years (I may be off, but I think the others that still have just one class are Indiana, California, and NJ) . I was one of those who wanted to hold onto the tradition of one class when NYS changed this in 2004. Change is often a tough pill to swallow for some of us. I had my eyes opened to the benefits of multiple divisions when I started coaching in other states that both have 4 divisions at the state tournament. I find it highly unlikely that NYS will ever go back to one and really feel the two divisions is perfect. The two other states I have coached in both use the regional format to qualify and I think it is ideal. They both broke the state into 4 regions with the top 4 from each region advancing. I have to think one day NYS will forego the sections for regions and all of us traditionalists will have to once again reset our brains. I remember explaining to my college teammates about how we went to the state tournament as a sectional team and wore sectional singlets at the state tournament and they all thought it was the craziest thing ever. For all those who weren't following NYS wrestling in the 70's, 80's, and 90's (sorry not sure when the wild cards were really started) not only was NYS just one class but there was also no wildcards. Only the section champion went. This left many highly deserving wrestlers from ever making the state tournament and also some state finals where really wrestled in the sectional final. I remember back in 1986 when Zito beat Grabenstatter in a close match in the Section 6 final and then went on to win the State title somewhat easier. I know LI Marty can give us many examples of this throughout the years in Section XI. So thankfully we finally added those wildcards. With participation numbers fading lately it is time to look at how we can adapt to the times and get more young student athletes out for wrestling. Do any elementary schools still have wrestling in PE class? How do we capitalize off the MMA/UFC success? How do we keep JV wrestlers to pay their dues and stick with the sort until they make varsity? I wish there were easy answers for those questions. I like the regional thought, but I don't think going back to one class will solve anything. Best of luck to all NYS wrestlers next weekend. Enjoy the experience and bring home some hardware.

Joined: Dec 7, 2017
Posts: 13
I’d be a fan of the regional format. It sounds like it is similar to what I did. Our class was called regionals. I believe it was top 4 places advanced to sectionals. Here top two placers advanced to state. They changed that though to top 3 advance now. They also did a wrestleback for second place if the third place guy didn’t wrestle the second place guy. To get the true second. I’m guessing they don’t do that now though because top 3 advance. I too thought the sectional team thing was the craziest thing I heard when I moved here. But now I like it.

Honestly I think they should rearrange the sections. Adjust them so there is no wildcard and top 2 go to state. Or make the state bracket bigger and send top 3. Either way though there would need to be adjustments of the sections. Get rid of sections like ten and seven. Put them in another section. I’d also have serious talk with the catholic schools. You’re either onboard with us or do your own darn tournament. The having two podium awards because of them or better yet the two state champions last year because of them is the most ridiculous thing I’ve heard. If they are onboard with us you mix them in the demographic regions and sections where they are located once you realign sections.

Joined: Feb 18, 2017
Posts: 159
Wow, Poecat & bobbyjackson cant agree more! Yes wrestling is better now because of the increased opportunity, yes we have to grow this sport (I have only met a handful of people like me in the last 15 years who didn't wrestle and caught the big through our kids, we need more behinds in the stands), we need better youth opportunities (hard to break into this sport). Having one girl and three boys I never liked ladies wrestling, but the more I read the more I become a fan. It is a venue that will help wrestling of that I am certain. I also like what they are trying to do with the state dual meet, although we need to promote it better. Great posts both of you, please keep posting!

Joined: Nov 28, 2003
Posts: 1096

bigkidsdad...."better now". It isn't even better than last year....last decade.... too funny !!! I went to the Suffolk Co. Sectionals - and- I wasn't too enamored by the level of competition. Canceled my plans to Albany this week. I don't think I will be missing anything that I haven't seen before.

REGIONAL FORMAT simply puts the right contenders in place and leave the pretenders home. In this Sport- in New York State- it has been proven over the decades that small/ large schools are ALL individually successful. In this Sport- there isn't a need for two divisions cause since the 90s- ALL these kids in NYS wrestle together at camps, at clubs, Tournaments , etc. etc. ..all year.

COSTs...each wrestler and his Coach gets- food and lodging in Albany. More inclined to have ONE-TWO-THREE REGIONAL/Sectional Coaches paid for- and- any assistants foot their own bill


Joined: Jan 5, 2017
Posts: 80
LImarty explain to all of us how this would grow the sport...I believe all decisions about wrestling be about growth. You are only interested in the top tier....that does not grow the sport. More wrestling, more opportunity, girls only high school teams...growth growth growth. And why are you so worried about the cost....we all pay taxes nice to see the money used for wrestling once in a while.

LImarty wrote:

bigkidsdad...."better now". It isn't even better than last year....last decade.... too funny !!! I went to the Suffolk Co. Sectionals - and- I wasn't too enamored by the level of competition. Canceled my plans to Albany this week. I don't think I will be missing anything that I haven't seen before.

REGIONAL FORMAT simply puts the right contenders in place and leave the pretenders home. In this Sport- in New York State- it has been proven over the decades that small/ large schools are ALL individually successful. In this Sport- there isn't a need for two divisions cause since the 90s- ALL these kids in NYS wrestle together at camps, at clubs, Tournaments , etc. etc. ..all year.

COSTs...each wrestler and his Coach gets- food and lodging in Albany. More inclined to have ONE-TWO-THREE REGIONAL/Sectional Coaches paid for- and- any assistants foot their own bill


Joined: Feb 18, 2017
Posts: 159

Martin, you are a funny one. The fact that your predictions are soo often wrong and soooo salacious never ceases to amaze me. Case in point. This years Suffolk county championship was the equal to any in the last 10 years, that is an opinion (mine), we can banter about that back and forth but that would be conjecture on your part or mine. What may have you down on section XI may be the venue, the lack of a large stage that Stonybrook University and later Hofstra brought us is no longer there and it is what it is and absent of a better place this is what we got. Now if you want to say that there is a thinning of quality in Suffolk (and across the nation by the way) I might agree, but the top talent is as good or better then it has ever been as has been proven here by me to you last year on this forum (you never addressed the facts so I assume you agree? And if not do you have "alternate" facts??). Now your conjectures are your own but you are a history of wrestling looking for an agenda. You want to have relevance but you can only see this decline (not real) because the farther you get from your perfect time the more your memory becomes a hindrance to the truth. There were great matches in the past, ones which today can never live up to, however there is greatness to yet behold. Just your predictions of how "David Taylor will never achieve on the international level" is one of a large list of wrong comments you have made and continue to make, yet you never say you were wrong which is why you aren't taken seriously, you are guaranteed to stir the pot with the same salacious comments every few months never saying anything new just repeating yourself like my crazy uncle joe who sits in the corner at holidays repeating a mantra until we put him to bed.

Your regional idea is a great one but not for solving any of the problems that you espouse to "fix". It is great because as someone here made clear the sectional system where we all wear our section singlets is doing more to divide then it is doing to bring us together. Our sport is small enough and we don't need the infighting that you so often fuel the flames of. Oh by the way, your system which I would like to explore some more, would make it even harder for section XI guys to place, and move on to the state championship. That being said I still like it, if you think it through you will see the logic of what I just said, right now Suffolk gets 3 guys when we have a tough weight class (Ryder, Redding, Carter this year, similar situations other years), unlikely all 3 would qualify if you add Nassau and NYC. Still I like the thought of a regional tournament I just feel you haven't thought it through.

If you take a moment and breathe before your knee jerk responses you might be a force for a better wrestling system in NY. Right now I am not sure if you are a force for good or like that old clock without batteries "correct twice a day" despite the fact that it's broken

Joined: Jan 31, 2005
Posts: 70
Location: Southern Tier
Whether it's 1 or 2 divisions, I personally think the wildcard system is a big problem because it's more about quantity than quality during the regular season. Everyone's chasing as many matches as possible, causing these every-weekend, all-weekend, round-robin events. You can't reasonably expect this not to take a toll on your roster size.

Here's one simple way to eliminate the wildcard. Just let everybody in who would currently be eligible for a wildcard, minus the tiny sections... something like this:

Section 1 = 3 qualifiers
Section 2 = 3
Section 3 = 3
Section 4 = 3
Section 5 = 3
Section 6 = 3
Section 8 = 3
Section 9 = 3
Section 11 = 3

Section 7 = 1 qualifier
Section 10 = 1
PSAL = 1

TOTAL = 32 qualifiers

Joined: Apr 3, 2017
Posts: 16
Im a section VI dad and former HS wrestler....I find these forums sometimes informational and always entertaining. LIMarty IMO is missing the fact that by dropping divisions lower than 1 will fundamentally drop wrestling participation rates....that's common sense. Its tough enough to fill a D1 wrestling room, now you want all the small schools to compete at that level when they don't have the population to do so. Yes some will fair well, however most will lose wrestlers because they will feel like they are waging an uphill battle vs larger schools.....I could drop a great analogy of WNY Repubs vs Downstate Dems but this forum devolves into turmoil enough without politics

If your goal is to grow wrestling - keep division - increase them actually.

If your goal is to make sure kids that weren't quite good enough in your section make it to the show because they are better than another sections kids....then move, get a new address or work kid beat the Catholic school kid who won the Msr Martin champ at his weight then my kid got soundly beat in Sections while that Champ got soundly beat in Catholic States....we aren't moving my kid to that school because he is a freshman that just beat their senior (tho we are working harder....putting on some more muscle and working technique to get farther in our section


Because there is always someone better....maybe that's whats getting forgotten here. Regardless where you wrestle, or how great you are in NY, PA, CA, IN it doesn't matter because there is a wrestler on Tuesday somewhere that worked that much harder, got that much luckier or caught you on your down day and pinned you

Just my oversimplified view

Joined: Nov 28, 2003
Posts: 1096
first off ringwork and chicken....

This Sport has always been based on "feeder" programs...."peer pressure" ..."competition". In PA - there isn't a question on whether wrestlers are going to wrestle. They just do. Starts as babies- then it just multiplies.

NYS....for about a decade- ran their Middle School programs not simultaneously with the High Schools. This had a nightmare effect on High School programs- a year or two down the road.

The BIGGEST problem I have seen in the past 10-15 a dramatic difference in talent in wrestling rooms. Too many novice underclassmen not in tune with the upperclassmen. You would think when a kid enters a Varsity Wrestling Room- that he would know what a switch is...a whizzer....hand control.

Another thing that has left the building....TEACHING FUNDAMENTALS without worrying about "W's". Too many Coaches not interested in teaching- more concerned about winning.

TWO DIVISIONs makes perfect sense when the QUALITY of wrestling is at it's peak....when the QUALITY lacks more than one or two top kids - from the grouping of both DI/DII ....there is a failure overall. PS. I'm tired of the EXPOSURE- nonsense. Our BEST wrestlers in NYS are at best 50% scholarships- the select few can get more. I said the "select" few...less than a hand full on good years.

The PHYs ED Teacher- is the "old school" recruiter of this Sport. Teachers today in NYS seem to be transient...same for coaches. Ask yourself WHY...schools who constantly produce champions- then ask yourself HOW LONG has their coach been around.

I can tell you that even in SUFFOLK- the most productive area in NYS for HS results is actually, not healthy...WHY ?? League 1- was the dominant by size in Section XI....For the past 20 yrs- League 1 has lost out to lower Leagues. This alone goes unnoticed and talked about. When and If, League 1 in Suffolk Co comes back....highly doubt. Then NYS WRESTLING would be considered "healthy". Impractical because most of the TOP Coaches who knew how to get kids to a different level- are gone.
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