For those of you wondering who or what the UWW is, it is the United World Wrestling, which was formerly known as FILA. It was a branding change that was approved last summer, and took effect just before the World Championships in September.

Now, on to the wrestlers. It has been a month, and for me as an American I am still washing the bad taste out of my mouth from the World Championships in Uzbekistan. To say the tournament didn’t go as well as American fans were hoping would be an understatement. With buzz floating around that this was one of the best American squads put together in recent memory, it was only natural to feel deflated when Team USA came home with only two medals. To twist that knife that is probably firmly planted in your heart, three time World champion Jordan Burroughs sustained an injury, and even though he wrestled hurt (which is an amazing story, don’t get me wrong) he still only came away with bronze. Iowans especially had high hopes for Brent Metcalf, who appeared primed to break through and medal, but his second round opponent Kaya of Turkey ended up being tougher than most believed (Kaya came in ranked 16th and wound up 5th).

However, with every loss there is a lesson, and with that something to be gained from it. Sure, it wasn’t the finish that Americans, or fans from Iowa wanted to see when all three of the alums (Metcalf, Tony Ramos, and Jake Varner) failed to medal, but at the end of the day it can be chalked up to vand hopefully we see all of the USA wrestlers grown from this tournament.

As for the rankings we see Metcalf come in at #17 after previously being ranked as high as 11. The good news is that Metcalf’s win at the Golden Gran Prix has given him the credentials to be ranked, and perhaps the best news of all, he isn’t done. Looking at the American scene there aren’t any wrestlers that were on Metcalf’s level. Oliver looked good at the Team Trials, but collectively, Metcalf appeared to be the most dominant American at 65 KG. I look for him to continue that trend in 2015, and hopefully he can bring home one of those “yellow medals” he is always talking about.

1. Soslan RAMONOV (RUS) – World No.1 (13)
2. Sayed Ahmad MOHAMMADI (IRI) – World No.2 (9)
3. GANZORIG Mandakhnaran (MGL) – World No.3 (17)
4. Mihail SAVA (MDA) – World No.3 (nr)
5. Azamat NURIKOV (BLR) – World No.5 (14)
6. Mustafa KAYA (TUR) – World No.5 (16)
7. Magomed KURBANALIEV (RUS) – Europe No.1 (1)
8. Yogeshwar DUTT (IND) – Asian Games No.1 (3)
9. Akhmed CHAKAEV (RUS) – Ali Aliev No.1 (2)
10. David SAFARYAN (ARM) – German GP No.2 (4)
11. Franklin GOMEZ MATOS (PUR) – CAC Games No.1 (5)
12. Daichi TAKATANI (JPN) – World No.7 (nr)
13. Servet COSKUN (TUR) – Europe No.2 (6)
14. Borislav NOVACHKOV (BUL) – Europe No.3 (7)
15. Konstantin KHABALASHVILI (GEO) – Europe No.3 (8)
16. Frank CHAMIZO MARQUEZ (ITA) – Spanish GP No.1 (10)
17. Brent METCALF (USA) – GGP Final No.1 (11)
18. Magomed MUSLIMOV (AZE) – GGP Final No.2 (12)
19. Ikhtiyor NAVRUZOV (UZB) – Asian Games No.3 (nr)
20. George BUCUR (ROU) – German GP No.3 (18)

Varner checks in at #16 and one only has to go back a couple years to remember that he was the best in the world at after bringing home the 97 KG gold in London.

1. Abdusalam GADISOV (RUS) – World No.1 (2)
2. Khetag GAZUMOV (AZE) – World No.2 (3)
3. Shamil ERDOGAN (TUR) – World No.3 (nr)
4. Valeri ANDRIITSEV (UKR) – World No.3 (7)
5. Reza YAZDANI (IRI) – Asian Games No.1 (1)
6. Elizbar ODIKADZE (GEO) – World No.5 (12)
7. Javier CORTINA LACERRA (CUB) – World No.5 (19)
8. DORJKHAND Khuderbulga (MGL) – Asian Games No.3 (10)
9. Magomed MUSAEV (KGZ) – Asian Games No.2 (13)
10. Ivan YANKOUSKI (BLR) – Europe No.3 (4)
11. Sharif SHARIFOV (AZE) – Ali Aliev No.2 (6)
12. Pavlo OLEYNIK (UKR) – Europe No.5 (8)
13. Egzon SHALA (ALB) – World No.7 (nr)
14. ZHANG Xueyi (CHN) – Dan Kolov No.5 (nr)
15. Rustam ISKANDARI (TJK) – Asia No.3 (nr)
16. Jakob VARNER (USA) – GGP Final No.3 (9)
17. Nicolae CEBAN (MDA) – Europe No.3 (18)
18. Radoslaw BARAN (POL) – German GP No.1 (16)
19. Yuri BELONOVSKI (RUS) – Ali Aliev No.1 (5)
20. William HARTH (GER) – German GP No.3 (11)


By Ross Bartachek (@rossbchek)

Lead Editor of IA Wrestle