Seven wrestlers – including NCAA Division I All-Americans Daniel Dennis, Jarrod Garnett, and Darrius Little -- will compete in the 135-pound bracket at the first-ever Association of Career Wrestlers event in Pittsburgh Oct. 20, Tour ACW announced Monday.
All seven have college mat backgrounds. Three are currently working as assistant wrestling coaches at the college level: Garnett, assistant coach at Bucknell University; Chris Notte, on the staff at University of North Carolina-Pembroke; and Alex Radsky, assistant at VMI (Virginia Military Institute).
Dennis was a two-time NCAA All-American at the University of Iowa, making it to the 133-pound finals of the 2010 NCAAs. The native of Ingleside, Ill., who was a 2008 Midlands champion.
Garnett, a 2013 NCAA All-American at VMI (Virginia Military Institute), was also a three-time ACC (Atlantic Coast Conference) champion. A product of Newark, Del., Garnett also won a Midlands title.
Little, an All-American at North Carolina State and Southern Scuffle finalist who’s originally from Thomasville, N.C., said of Tour ACW, “It means a lot. Get to stay around the sport. Keeps me in shape too but it really gives us options. Instead of resorting to freestyle we have another option to wrestle which is huge for the sport.”
Other competitors in the 135 bracket at the inaugural Tour ACW event include Rob Miller, a two-time NCAA Division III qualifier for Thiel College in Pennsylvania; Chris Notte, an NJCAA (National Junior College Athletic Association) champ at Nassau Community College and two-time NCAA Div. I qualifier for Oklahoma State; Alex Radsky, an NCAA Div. I qualifier for North Carolina’s Davidson College; and Jeffrey Streu, a two-time NCWA (National College Wrestling Association) champ for Renssalaer Polytechnic Institute.
Tour ACW, designed to provide wrestlers with the opportunity to compete after they’ve completed their college careers, will have its debut event Sunday, Oct. 20 in the Grand Ballroom at the Hyatt Regency Hotel at Greater Pittsburgh International Airport.
“We’re attempting to start a new style of wrestling, with new rules that bring together elements of folkstyle and freestyle,” Teague Moore, American University head coach who’s one of the founders of Tour ACW, said in an interview with InterMat. “The idea is to create a more fan-friendly, action-packed event.”
“Unlike college wrestling, there won’t be a match time limit, and there won’t be a set number of periods,” continued Moore, who was 118-pound champ for Oklahoma State at the 1998 NCAAs. “There are two ways for a wrestler to win: by pinning his opponent, or by being the first to score ten points.”
There will be competition in five weight classes. In addition to 135, other Tour ACW weight classes include 155, 170, 205, and 265 pounds.
Winners at the inaugural Tour ACW event will each receive $2,500.
Want to know more? To learn more about Tour ACW, visit their official website homepage… and check out the InterMat feature on this new competitive option for wrestlers who have concluded their college wrestling careers.
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