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Challenge Calls


quickpick
Joined: Jan 9, 2015
Posts: 276
Is it just me, or are the challenge calls the worst thing to happen to college wrestling ever? I mean, I want the call to be correct as much as anyone but there are two officials on the mat for basically any match that means anything. Three specific matches that come to mind one being this weekend at Big10's and leading me into the other two. The one this weekend is DeSanto/Gross. I was a big Seth Gross fan when he was at SDSU but he didn't work anything offensive this entire match. I also hate Iowa and thought DeSanto took poor shots but stalemate some of these situations faster so he can push the offense that Gross refused to do. Backs was absolute garbage in this match, I could see it should have come off immediately. Instead, we take 3 minutes to review and give Gross his gas back just to make the call that the other ref could have fixed in the first place.

Next is Yianni/Zain. Obviously this challenge was ridiculous and I still don't think it was resolved correctly. They can't even get this right on an national level with the highest stakes involved. They should have figured it out that day, instead they let it go to arbitration and have someone who likely wasn't even there resolve the situation 3 months later.

Last is probably the worst match I've seen controlled at this level, Suriano/Fix from January of last year. A 30 minute match that is essentially decided on locked hands calls? This match was ridiculous. The refs took way too long to make the calls and turned the whole thing into a circus. There was a ton of great action when wrestling was actually happening but 20 minutes of this match was the refs looking at a screen trying to figure out how to make a call.

Maybe I'm alone here and I do understand that there is a lot at stake but part of this sport is the judgement of the official in critical situations. Be prepared to make the call and be in the right position. With two officials on the mat, they should have every angle they need to make the call. There is no need to spend that long in a sport that emphasizes continuous action and elite conditioning. It's time to fix this problem. Mark my words, at least 50% of the National finals matches will have a brick thrown. It's not the NFL, keep the kids on the mat and let them wrestle.

https://www.flowrestling.org/video/6315613-133-daton-fix-oklahoma-state-vs-nick-suriano-rutgers

https://www.flowrestling.org/video/6552163-breakdown-of-yianni-vs-zain-final-x-match-2

https://www.flowrestling.org/video/6736984-133-lbs-3rd-place-seth-gross-wisconsin-vs-austin-desanto-iowa


faceinthemat
Joined: Dec 17, 2018
Posts: 185
I like getting the call right, but hate the amount of challenges stopping action so often. I think the penalty for a challenge that isn't reversed should be fairly significant, like a team point or something. This is a tough subject...chime in wrestling fans


faceinthemat
Joined: Dec 17, 2018
Posts: 185
quick...your 3 examples are awesome. The Yanni Zain thing was stupid, and they did not ever get it right. Great point about the time they gave Gross to recover/re-energize...he needed it and it wasn't fair to Desanto. Fix/Suriano is another example I remember well. Tough to say what the best resolution is here. I am a huge wrestling fan, I know the sport well, and I know that I would never want to be a referee, even at the junior level...there's just too many close calls and these kids/men are putting their whole life into this stuff, the stakes are high and I wouldn't want to be the one to make some of these calls that fulfill dream and rip hearts out on the flip side.


quickpick
Joined: Jan 9, 2015
Posts: 276
I feel like we go to the tape too quick on these calls. Many could be made if the ref just asked the side judge. I’d like to think that Gross not getting a 3 minute break in the match could have made it so DeSanto was able to escape. If not in the first, quicker in the second. That riding time point was everything in that match and DeSanto was 7 seconds from clearing it. Getting the call right is a big deal but allowing wrestlers to use their assets, in this case an Iowa gas tank, is as important to the match as the call, granted the call was in favor of DeSanto.


bigkidsdad
Joined: Feb 18, 2017
Posts: 166
While I agree that the examples you posted were horrible, I want to give them more time to work out video replay. At its worst the video replay slows the sport to a standstill, and can change the dynamic of the match they are trying to get right. At its best referees can "see" what they missed and get things right. It is still new to wrestling. For the most part I see it working 80% of the time. This year (more then last) I have seen referees actually reversing bad calls. Maybe this will self correct if not then some more drastic action. I was under the impression that in Dual meets if you lose the challenge you lose it for the rest of the meet, that should prevent most frivolous challenges. If I am correct then the problem comes with individual style tournaments. Maybe a total number of challenges each round of wrestling divided by the number of wrestlers still alive for that school at events like the Midlands, Conference Championships, or NCAA's. Until we get a better solution what I don't want to see is losing team points for anything (FRL Radio actually has devoted large segments of their program to how no other sport loses a "team" point when a player or coach misbehaves, and I think I agree the scores are too low in dual meets that a team point seems almost draconian).


quickpick
Joined: Jan 9, 2015
Posts: 276
bigkidsdad wrote:
While I agree that the examples you posted were horrible, I want to give them more time to work out video replay. At its worst the video replay slows the sport to a standstill, and can change the dynamic of the match they are trying to get right. At its best referees can "see" what they missed and get things right. It is still new to wrestling. For the most part I see it working 80% of the time. This year (more then last) I have seen referees actually reversing bad calls. Maybe this will self correct if not then some more drastic action. I was under the impression that in Dual meets if you lose the challenge you lose it for the rest of the meet, that should prevent most frivolous challenges. If I am correct then the problem comes with individual style tournaments. Maybe a total number of challenges each round of wrestling divided by the number of wrestlers still alive for that school at events like the Midlands, Conference Championships, or NCAA's. Until we get a better solution what I don't want to see is losing team points for anything (FRL Radio actually has devoted large segments of their program to how no other sport loses a "team" point when a player or coach misbehaves, and I think I agree the scores are too low in dual meets that a team point seems almost draconian).


I guess I'm not totally against it, it's just the way that it's being used. Are there times where a ref could confirm with the side judge and possibly change his call before going to watch 5 minutes of film? I also have an issue with how much it is being used. Let's say for example that I have one kid left in NCAA's and with your system, I have one challenge left. My kid is wrestling in the National finals and he's starting to drag. If any questionable call comes up, I'm going to throw the brick to give him time to recover.

I'm not suggesting that this is what happened in any of these. I know the coaches have the best interest of their kids in mind and I want to see the call made right too. But is going to the tape for anywhere between 3-20 minutes really what this sport is about? I will agree that I have seen more reversals of calls this year than last. It was really frustrating to watch last year, at B1G's and NCAA's, a 5 minute stand still and a call upheld. What a waste. I do believe there are already some limitations as to how many challenges you can make in duals and tournaments but I am not sure exactly how many are allowed.



backsuplex
Joined: Feb 11, 2005
Posts: 554
Location: Back to the Future
I was at the PAC 12 Championship. I won’t say the calls were bad, but if you had a red or maroon singlet they were going your way.

The CSUB coach challenged, refs denied on review, coach protested, head official review and won. The next time the refs decided to review on their own, the coach protested and won. 5 times in 4 matches in a row the coach won. The head official finally watched with the refs to save time.

When you witness this, you see the need for the review.
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quickpick
Joined: Jan 9, 2015
Posts: 276
backsuplex wrote:
I was at the PAC 12 Championship. I won’t say the calls were bad, but if you had a red or maroon singlet they were going your way.

The CSUB coach challenged, refs denied on review, coach protested, head official review and won. The next time the refs decided to review on their own, the coach protested and won. 5 times in 4 matches in a row the coach won. The head official finally watched with the refs to save time.

When you witness this, you see the need for the review.


In that case, I see a need for new refs. How do they deny and then the head ref overturns it? These guys sound completely incompetent if the head ref has to work with them for the call to be correct. I feel like all this does is confirm my point that the officials a using video as a crutch. Make the right call in the first place but if they can't even get it right after review they shouldn't be officiating DI matches.



backsuplex
Joined: Feb 11, 2005
Posts: 554
Location: Back to the Future
quickpick wrote:
backsuplex wrote:
I was at the PAC 12 Championship. I won’t say the calls were bad, but if you had a red or maroon singlet they were going your way.

The CSUB coach challenged, refs denied on review, coach protested, head official review and won. The next time the refs decided to review on their own, the coach protested and won. 5 times in 4 matches in a row the coach won. The head official finally watched with the refs to save time.

When you witness this, you see the need for the review.


In that case, I see a need for new refs. How do they deny and then the head ref overturns it? These guys sound completely incompetent if the head ref has to work with them for the call to be correct. I feel like all this does is confirm my point that the officials a using video as a crutch. Make the right call in the first place but if they can't even get it right after review they shouldn't be officiating DI matches.


I have been seeing this from CA refs for years. It makes me homesick for Sev V refs, even at their worst, they are better than some alternatives.
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backsuplex
Joined: Feb 11, 2005
Posts: 554
Location: Back to the Future
[quote="backsuplex"]
quickpick wrote:
backsuplex wrote:
I was at the PAC 12 Championship. I won’t say the calls were bad, but if you had a red or maroon singlet they were going your way.

The CSUB coach challenged, refs denied on review, coach protested, head official review and won. The next time the refs decided to review on their own, the coach protested and won. 5 times in 4 matches in a row the coach won. The head official finally watched with the refs to save time.

When you witness this, you see the need for the review.


In that case, I see a need for new refs. How do they deny and then the head ref overturns it? These guys sound completely incompetent if the head ref has to work with them for the call to be correct. I feel like all this does is confirm my point that the officials a using video as a crutch. Make the right call in the first place but if they can't even get it right after review they shouldn't be officiating DI matches.


I have been seeing this from CA refs for years. It makes me homesick for Sev V refs, even at their worst, they are better than some alternatives.

Prime example where I politely told a CA ref off- “How can you call a pin, when both wrestlers are kicking you in the face?????” And the guys have the “experience” to be reffing College?..
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quickpick
Joined: Jan 9, 2015
Posts: 276
Guess we won’t have to worry about it for a while.....
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