Penn State Wrestling had an eventful second half to their 42-6 blowout win against Maryland Sunday afternoon.
Four of the last five Nittany Lion wrestlers won via fall as Mitchell Mesenbrink, Carter Starocci, Bernie Truax, and Greg Kerkvliet all turned their opponent’s shoulders to the mat. And Mesenbrink and Kerkvliet did it in less than a minute.
But this isn’t what made news following the conclusion of the dual meet.
— The Wrestling Room (Pat Mineo) (@MrPatMineo) January 28, 2024
In the clip is Maryland’s head coach, Alex Clemsen, as Cael Sanderson and Casey Cunningham are going through the post-dual handshake line. And it’s clear that Clemsen has a problem with, well, something.
And in the three second clip it does appear that Coach Clemsen mouthed the words “You don’t have to pin”.
Which at the very least is a very strange take.
Look, I like Alex Clemsen and I think he’s done a tremendous job in College Park in both recruiting high level wrestlers to Maryland as well as making them better in the wrestling room.
But come on, man.
You do realize you’re dealing with wrestlers, right? They are some of the most ultra-competitive people I have ever been around and given the chance to stomp someone on the mat, you better believe they are going to take it every day of the week and twice on Sunday.
Furthermore, you trotted out backups at 165, 174, and 285. What on earth do you think was going to happen to backups going up against, and to use a phrase from a recent post circulating social media, “Whatever the hell Penn State Wrestling is”?
This is Big Ten wrestling. If you don’t want your guys to get pinned then don’t even send anyone out onto the mat if your starters aren’t available. I get it if they weren’t, because things come up (illness, fail skin check, etc.) and your starters aren’t always going to be able to go.
But if you throw out non-competitive guys against the likes of Carter Starocci and Greg Kerkvliet, don’t worry if they get pinned or not, just be happy the wrestler’s come off the mat in one piece.
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