congrats to the iowa wrestlers who succeeded my gophs tonight as 2008 ncaa champs. i caught a few of the epic finals, especially the full-on heavyweight battle between ohio state's j.d. bergman and northwestern's dustin fox.
the multi-talented mr. bergman and osu were runners-up tonight, but they get 10 out of 10 for style. here's a display of their benefit-show ballet, backflip, n' breakin' virtuosity. i could offer a gender/race analysis of the video (esp. re: imagining how its content might've differed 20 years ago), but what really strikes me is how wrestling celebrates both the bigs and the smalls.
i love the competitive matches, of course, but one can often catch more seriously balletic moves between the competition at tournaments. neither partner offers resistance in warm-ups or drill sessions, so spectators can really see how or why a signature move might work in a match. for anyone curious about such things, here's some old video of the great john smith drilling with the great dave schultz.