When Should You Enter the Open?

On this special episode of the RUDIS Wrestling Podcast Kyle Snyder joins Ben Askren and Matt as they discuss the U.S. Open, Beat the Streets, and Final X. Askren starts by asking Snyder what his takeaways were from watching the U.S. Open. Snyder was surprised by a few wrestlers who wrestled even better than everyone already knew they were. One of those wrestlers being Yianni Diakomihalis who beat Jordan Oliver and then Zain Retherford who were favorites in the 65 kg weight class.

Snyder is of the belief that as a college wrestler you should only enter the U.S. Open with the intentions and belief you’re going to win. This goes against the idea of entering the tournament and testing the waters against the best senior level freestyle wrestlers. Snyder then breaks down his journey to making the world team and how he knew through reassurance in the practice room and from coaches that he was ready.

Diakomihalis vs Oliver (13:11)

From Snyder talking about his time where he knew he could surpass the best in the world, Dernlan brings up the Jordan Oliver vs Diakomihalis match. Askren talks about how some wrestlers don’t let the big stage and bright lights impact their wrestling or mindset and rise to the occasion. Snyder elaborates on this point that just because you haven’t beaten an opponent in the training room doesn’t mean you aren’t ready to beat them when it counts.

Jordan Burroughs (18:30)

Askren and Dernlan disagree on Askren’s statement that the Burroughs of 2018-2019 has lost a slight edge compared to the Burroughs of previous years like 2012-2013. Dernlan says you can’t use the Franklin Gomez match as a fair comparison because you’re looking at one of the most athletic competitors in wrestling when you’re watching Gomez. Snyder speculates that Burroughs could have been affected by the new weigh-in rules during the last World Championships. After watching him compete at Dan Kolov, Snyder says Burroughs looked just as good as he ever has if not better.

Young Guns Make a Splash (23:37)

Dernlan switches the topic back to the U.S. Open and asks Snyder if he had any surprises from the younger guys at the tournament. Snyder was impressed with Bo Nickal because he knows the level of wrestlers he was beating in Michael Macchiavello and Hayden Zillmer. He was surprised but happy for Pat Downey as he’s overcome a lot of adversity. Snyder was also impressed with Daton Fix beating a strong Thomas Gilman. He noticed Fix’s improvements in hand fighting and made adjustments since the NCAAs. Askren picks Fix to beat Gilman again at Final X.

Beat the Streets (34:26)

This will be Snyder’s fifth time competing at Beat the Streets. Snyder talks about some of the things he loves about competing at Beat the Streets. One of those being the unique experience of competing outside at Times Square. Overall he loves the exciting matchups you won’t find anywhere else and what that does for growing wrestling and strengthening its community. Snyder was surprised to hear the announcement of Jordan Burroughs vs Ben Askren and loves the conversations it has started.

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Ben Askren and Matt Dernlan host the RUDIS Wrestling Podcast. Askren, World Champion, and Olympic Wrestler joins in official partnership as a content provider for all things RUDIS. Matt Dernlan joins from years of experience in D1 college coaching at Binghamton, Clarion, and Penn State University.

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