Final exam week is stressful. The guys have been taking exams. I am hopeful they have prepared properly and perform well. All practices this week were optional. I wanted the guys to have the freedom to train on their own with less stress. As a coach, it has been scary to let go. I have to trust the guys will get the work done. I feel out of the loop and anxiously wait to see who enters the building to train. I haven’t seen guys as much as I would like, but I remain optimistic that they are getting their training done.
As great wrestlers know, there is nothing easy about wrestling. You have to put countless hours in just to have the hope that you are ready when the bright lights are glaring. Often times, training is lonely. To be great, lots of your preparation is on your own. Late night runs, watching video and cutting weight are just a few of the many things done when no one is looking. Guys need to understand the sacrifice required to succeed. My hope is they have heard my sermons this fall, understand from past experience and are doing their utmost to grow as grapplers. We will see.
I liken the season to a race. The season is long, so it is more like a marathon, not a sprint. Guys need to be consistent in their training over a long period of time. We have no returning National Champions or All-Americans, so we are playing catch up. In order to catch those ahead of us, we will most likely need to do more. It won’t magically happen. To gain the necessary ground we have to out work our competition. No small task, but it can be done.