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  • Photo: Sam Janicki

    Photo: Sam Janicki

    Takeaways, Random Thoughts, and More from the 2022 Collegiate Duals

    Paniro Johnson (left) and Shayne Van Ness (photo courtesy of Sam Janicki; SJanickiPhoto.com)


    We're now almost two days removed from the 2022 Collegiate Duals and I've had a lot on my mind. It was an excellent couple of days chalked full of excellent wrestling action. Plenty of great matches, upsets, and quality duals. Normally, I'll have a more coherent, flowing article ready to pull together all of the key happenings into a few talking points. However, there's a lot to talk about. So without rambling any further:

    I wasn't sure what to anticipate from a fan-attendance standpoint. The event was held in a state that hasn't hosted a DI wrestling event since 1985 and doesn't traditionally have strong high school wrestling. And it's less than a week away from Christmas. All things considered, I thought the attendance was strong.

    While the event was held in a Convention Center, it wasn't your typical setting. No temporary metal bleachers and fans hovering over mats. It took place in a theater. The acoustics of the building made 50 fans screaming sound like 300, which was good. Generally, it looked like fans had good sightlines for both mats.

    My photographer friends weren't keen on the walls which were primarily black. I'm sure that isn't very high on the list of priorities when planning an event, but probably something to keep in mind going forward.

    University of New Orleans athletic director Tim Duncan (not that one) was in attendance for the second day. I don't want to read too much into that, but his interest in the event is at least a positive sign. I understand that were UNO to add wrestling, they'd also need to add a pair of women's teams (let's do women's wrestling also!)

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