Thursday, December 8th, 2011
Wrestlers work with new weight classes
By Gary R. Rasberry
One big change for the 2011-12 wrestling season will be a change in the weight classes.
The National Federation for State High School Associations (NFHS) shuffled the 14 weight classes this season, increasing the lowest weight division while adding an in-between weight between 182 and 220 pounds.
It's the first time in over 20 years that the NFHS made changes in weight classes.
Among the changes was increasing the smallest weight group from 103 pounds to 106.
"I know in the past, Celina has had trouble getting the real lights and real heavys," said Celina's coach Dave Hucke.
"It was something that the governing body of wrestling pushed for to get some consistency from state to state. ... I also think when you're at 103 or lighter, and the lightest weight in college (which only has 10 weight classes) is 125, if you're 103 and a junior or senior, what are you going to do at college? There's no weight for you. I think this is bridging it a little bit."
Ten of the 14 classes had shifts in weights, with only the 145, 152, 160 and 285 pound divisions staying the same.
One change that may help some teams is in the upper weights, which used to be set at 171, 189, 215 and 285 pounds. Now, a 195-pound division has been set, with 189 dropping to 182 pounds and 215 gaining five pounds at 220.
For Coldwater coach Rob Schmidt, that could help some of the football players who are in the 180-200 pound range.
"We don't nearly have the depth there this year," said Schmidt of the heavier weights, where in past season there was a battle for the 189 and 215 spots among several wrestlers. It's helped us that 215 became 220. Justin Post would have had a tough time making 215, but he'll be a full-solid 220
So far, Hucke has not had many issues with the new weight classes.
"Right now, that's not really a factor with us," said Hucke. "We're almost looking at it like we're starting over, so these are the weight classes we have, and this is what we'll do. The good thing is we were able to get guys in those weight classes."
Schmidt, who is missing several wrestlers due to the football playoff run, will have to wait and see.
"Tyler Tebbe could have been a 103 for us this year," said Schmidt of his current lightweight wrestler. "He's grown and will be nice at 106. That didn't hurt us at all.
"Overall, for most schools (the new weight divisions) will be a good thing."
The National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS) has
adjusted the weights for the majority of the 14 weight classes used in high school wrestling.