West Virginia Wrestling


by Dr. Bill Welker

... on the Comradeship of Mountain State Officials and Coaches

I never realized what a close relationship wrestling officials and coaches had in West Virginia until a few years ago.

Why do I say this? Well consider the following story. (Note: Although the narrative is true, I will not identify the sport or individuals in question out of respect for the one person involved.)

For a number of years, I have observed a certain athletic official give both his time and energy, often on a volunteer basis, to an event he loves. Because of his loyal dedication to the sport, I thought it would be proper and fitting to present him with a "Service Award." Furthermore, I assumed that an officer in his officiating organization would want to play a role in this presentation. I couldn't have been more mistaken.

Upon contacting one of the "powers to be" in this group, I was rudely informed that he would have absolutely nothing to do with the accolade. Moreover, he ended the conversation by calling me an !?!?!?! (I must say that it wasn't a very complimentary closing.)

Isn't it amazing how attempting to do something worthwhile can sometimes be very trying.

The deserving official did receive his just reward during a very appropriate ceremony. And I, unfortunately, learned a negative lesson regarding human nature. That is, some people in sports (and in life for that matter) can be very petty and envious of another's efforts.

Thankfully, such attitudes are not found within the ranks of West Virginia wrestling referees and coaches. We truly care about one another, taking pride in the accomplishments of our fellow officials and coaches.

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