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News and Announcements
  • 2/23/2017

    SRE Clarification to Responsibilities when Standing up with Legs In.  Click here to read the article.

  • 2/15/2017


    With the postseason taking place over the next five weeks, please review the following Points of Emphasis.

    Tim Shiels
    National Coordinator of Wrestling Officials

  • 1/20/2017

    In this posting I will look at scenarios related to rule 3.21 video review and also 3.11.2 correction of timing and/or scoring. Click here to read the full article.

  • 1/18/2017

    Please click the link to read the reminder from Chuck Barbee, NCAA Wrestling Secretary-Rules Editor and Weight Management Liaison, REMINDER: February 15, 2017 Weight-Loss Descent Deadline.

  • 1/6/2017

    In this 2016-17 Mid-Season Rules Review audio presentation, Chuck Barbee discusses several important rules for both coaches and officials to consider.  Click here to listen to the full presentation. 

  • 12/14/2016

    TO: Head Wrestling Coaches and Conference Commissioners.  

    FROM:    Mark Branch
                  Chair, NCAA Wrestling Rules Committee 

        Chuck Barbee
        Secretary-Rules Editor, NCAA Wrestling Rules Committee.

    SUBJECT: Call for Proposals. 

    The NCAA Wrestling Rules Committee is now accepting your rules change proposals to be considered for the rules survey and discussion at its annual meeting in April. The committee is interested in your ideas and concerns relative to playing rules you think need to be changed. 

    Please use the link on the central hub to record your proposal and rationale. This form must be fully completed in order for the proposal to be accepted. All proposals must be received by January 20, 2017

    If you have any questions about the proposal process, please contact Ashlee Ferguson at

  • 12/13/2016
    The following scenarios have occurred at dual meets and tournaments during the first six weeks of the season.  Some of the situations have been called correctly, and some have not.  Please take a moment to review, and ask yourself, “did I know the correct ruling, and would I have made the proper call?”  The correct answers and explanations will be posted Monday, December 19th. 
  • 12/1/2016

    In this posting I will look at a couple of scenarios related to Rule 2.9.  Click here to read the full article.

  • 11/17/2016


    The first few weeks of the season have gone by without many controversies, and issues.  Let’s take a quick review of the positives, and address areas of concern that we need to improve upon, moving forward.

    Rule 5.9.2

    Wrestlers have been doing a great job of staying on the mat in the neutral position, we have very few stoppages, and officials have been more consistent with making the proper call of “Action, Backing Out” or “Pushing Out”.  Officials, make certain you’re signaling the call, and verbalizing which call you’ve made.


    Officials, this being the second year of Rule 5.9.2, we need to continue to recognize traditional stalling in the neutral position, and in all areas of wrestling.  I’ve seen improvement in the early season, and you’ve  been warning the wrestler who is defensive or playing the edge, and doing a better job of awarding the wrestler who is being the aggressor and making the legitimate takedown attempts.

    Areas to Improve Upon

    5.6 – Flagrant Misconduct

    The highest incidents of Flagrant calls come early in the season at Open Tournaments.  Officials, these can be long days for everyone, yet it is imperative that we understand the severity of the Flagrant Misconduct call.

    Remember, a Flagrant Misconduct call takes that wrestler out of their next event!  If the call is warranted, make it, but we also need to do a better job of preventive officiating.  Verbalize to the wrestlers that we’re going to wrestle within the rules.  Penalize for unsportsmanlike or for unnecessary roughness early.  Set the tone, and take control of the bout.  This will help diffuse situations before they become flagrant.

    5.18 – Interlocking Fingers

    Officials, when you see interlocking fingers, verbalize to the wrestlers to release the lock.  If they fail to release the lock after 1-2 seconds of reaction time, call stalemate.  After making the stalemate call, make it very clear to each wrestler that if you have to make another stoppage for interlocking fingers, one or both of them will be warned for staling.  Following this sequence will help reduce the repeated use of interlocking fingers.

    Officials and coaches, please email me with both the great things you see happening in our sport and with your concerns.  Let’s continue to work together to make the 2016-17 wrestling season our best ever!

    Tim Shiels
    National Coordinator of Wrestling Officials

  • 11/9/2016

    Officials and coaches, during the 2016-17 season I will be posting a variety of rules review articles.  For the first posting I am discussing the rules related to calling injury timeout during overtime.  Click here to read the full article

  • 11/2/2016

    It’s time to kick off another season of college wrestling!  

    Throughout the season it is very important that you are working with the most up to date rules information.  I have put together a few bullet points to consider before we start competition.  Please click here for the full article.

    Chuck Barbee 
    Secretary-Rules Editor
    Weight Management Liaison

  • 10/26/2016

    Congratulations on completing the 2016-17 NCAA wrestling rules exam.  I have reviewed exam data and compiled a list of the five most frequently missed exam questions.  Please click the link below to review these questions and my accompanying rationale.  

    Five Most Frequently Missed Wrestling Rules Exam Questions - 2016-17 Season.

    Chuck Barbee
    Secretary-Rules Editor
    Weight Management Liaison

  • 10/5/2016

    Please click the links below to access the
    2016 NCAA Wrestling Officials Grant Program:



  • 9/9/2016

    The "2016-17 NCAA Wrestling Rules and Officiating Clinic," which is required for postseason consideration, is now available.  Please follow the instructions below to view the clinic.  You must be registered for the 2016-17 season to view the clinic.

    After reading all instructions, click the link below to be taken to your Eligibility Center.  In your Eligibility Center, click "View Clinic.”  After viewing the clinic in its entirety, you will have the option to print your certificate of completion from your screen.  A copy will also be emailed to you. 

    Please allow 24 hours for your status to show as complete (green checkmark and completion date) in your Eligibility Center.  After viewing the clinic once for eligibility, you may return to your Eligibility Center and click "Review Clinic" if you'd like to view it again.


  • 8/31/2016

    Welcome to the 2016-17 NCAA wrestling season.  By registering with the NCAA, you have taken the first step of many that indicates your commitment to NCAA wrestling officiating.

    We are committed to providing you with the most up-to-date information to prepare you for your season.  The “Center Mat” Central Hub will provide the most current officiating information, rules and interpretations, online exam and training videos.

    The welcome packet includes flip disks, a special offer from Cliff Keen Athletic for 20-percent off your next equipment order at, and the 2015-16 and 2016-17 NCAA Wrestling Rules and Interpretations Book.

    We are committed to providing officials with the resources needed to improve performance and promote consistency throughout the country at every level.

    We sincerely thank you for your time, effort, and commitment to the sport of wrestling.

    Have a great season!

    Tim Shiels
    National Coordinator of Wrestling Officials

  • 8/22/2016

    Officials, please note, the following sites will be hosting officiating clinics this fall:

    September 25th - Toledo, Ohio
    Hosted by the MSWOA Officials Association
    Contact:  Fred Feeney  -

    October 7th - 8th - Oregon, California Officials Clinic
    Site:  TBD
    Contact:  Scott Hall -

  • 7/6/2016

    The NCAA is excited to announce that four sites have been confirmed to host the “Wrestling Officiating and Enhancement” clinics for the upcoming 2016-17 season.
    Tim Shiels, National Coordinator of Officials, along with veteran officials, administrators, conference assignment coordinators and evaluators will present at each clinic.  
    Click here to read the full document, NCAA Officiating Clinics Set for Fall 2016.
  • 5/2/2016

    Please click here to read Secretary-Rules Editor-Post NCAA Championship Note, by Chuck Barbee NCAA Wrestling Secretary-Rules Editor.

  • 2/25/2016

    Please click here to read Assistant Refereeing.

  • 2/1/2016

    Officials and Coaches:

    I have made a recent interpretation regarding a single leg finish that is now considered an illegal hold.  Please read this article carefully and let me know if you have any questions.

    Thanks very much,

    Chuck Barbee
    Wrestling Secretary – Rules Editor

  • 1/28/2016

    Officials and Coaches, 

    Please review this video clip that contains points of emphasis regarding neutral out of bounds stalling from a tie-up position.  There is no audio with this clip.


    Chuck Barbee
    Secretary-Rules Editor

  • 1/28/2016

    This is a reminder that your wrestlers have until (on or before) February 15 to reach or descend back to the lowest certified weight class, as determined by their individual weight-loss plan. (See Rule 8.3,3) There is no appeal for missing the February 15 deadline. The weight class as determined by their weight loss plan on that date is the lowest they can wrestle after February 15.

    After February 15, If a wrestler weighs-in with an actual weight higher than their weight class as determined by the February 15 deadline, the wrestler will no longer be eligible for that weight class.

    Example 1: Wrestler A has a Weight Loss Plan weight of 124.8 on February 15 which makes the wrestler eligible for 125. On February 18, the wrestler weighs-in with an actual weight of 126.00, the wrestler's new minimum weight class would be 133. They would not be able to descend back down to 125.

    Example 2:  Wrestler A has a Weight Loss Plan weight of 124.8 on February 15 which makes the wrestler eligible for 125. On February 18, the wrestler weighs-in with an actual weight of 125.2 for a dual meet, therefore NOT making weight for the 125 weight class.  Since the wrestler stepped on the scale at the official weigh in, the weight of 125.2 MUST BE RECORDED IN THE OPC even though the wrestler missed weight and did not wrestle in the dual.  The wrestler's new minimum weight class would be 133. They would not be able to descend back down to 125.

    Please feel free to email or call Ron Beaschler at or 567-674-5133 with any questions.

  • 1/26/2016

    Officials and Coaches, 

    Thank you for taking the time to read this article on illegal holds.  The proper application of the rules regarding illegal holds will better ensure the safety of our student athletes. Click here for the article.

    If you have any questions, let me know.


    Chuck Barbee
    Secretary-Rules Editor
  • 1/13/2016

    Coaches and Officials,

    Please review the following link regarding a side headlock interpretation found in the rules book that is being stricken.  
    Chuck Barbee
    Secretary-Rules Editor
  • 1/12/2016

    This video presentation addresses important wrestling rules interpretations related to the folllowing areas: verbal and visual counts for the drop-down rule, neutral out of bounds stalling by pushing and neutral backing to the edge of the mat.  
    In addition to watching this video, please make sure to re-watch the previous video presentation on neutral out of bounds stalling, as well as the original wrestling rules clinic, both of which can be found by clicking on the Center Mat Videos Tab.  Lastly, interpretations in the written form can be reviewed by accessing the appropriate document on this site.
    Keep up the good work!
    Chuck Barbee
    Wrestling Secretary-Rules Editor
  • 12/14/2015



    It’s been an exciting and interesting past five weeks observing and evaluating officials.  Coaches and wrestlers have made adjustments to a number of the new rules put forth for the 2015-16 season.

    To the coaches:  I can understand your frustration at times, yet you have demonstrated great patience. I appreciate our shared and universal belief that wrestlers need to make every effort to stay on the mat (Rule 5.9.2), and, that a 1 second hold when starting wrestlers on the mat is helping both wrestlers receive a fair start (Rule 2.1.3).  Thank you!

    To the officials: My appreciation and gratitude to those of you who have been consistently making the proper calls and adjustments (even when being criticized); continue to do so and keep up the good work! Additionally, I’d like to point out some trends I and many evaluators throughout the country have observed.  

    We need to address and improve on the following; understandably, when the season kicked-off on November 1st, officials had a lot of new rules to look for:  

    1. Making 1 of 3 calls when the wrestlers went out of bounds in the neutral position.

    2. Holding for a 1-second or longer pause when starting wrestling on the mat.

    3. Interlocking fingers.

    4. The new 4-point near fall criteria.


    In focusing on these new rules, in many cases we simply did not call stalling on the wrestler who consistently backed out, was defensive, or, award the aggressive wrestler who had made 3-4 unanswered quality takedown attempts, and not call stalling on his opponent. Make The Stall Call.  This is clearly defined on page 52 of the Rule Book under 5.9: Stalling.

    Let’s also remember the intent of Rule 5.9.2 is for wrestlers to make every effort to stay on the mat. If you’ve warned a wrestler for stalling in the neutral position and that wrestler has clearly backed off the mat 10 seconds later, then Make The Stall Call.  Award his opponent the 1 point for the second stalling call.  I know that in previous years, we would almost never call a wrestler for 2 stall calls in a 10 second span.  Yet, by rule, it is imperative the call is made when warranted.

    Holding for a 1 Second or Longer Pause:

    In the past 5 weeks, officials and wrestlers have made great strides in holding for 1 second or longer when starting wrestling on the mat.  Officials, you’ve done an excellent job of getting yourself set and staying motionless.  This has greatly reduced the number of false starts.  However, later in tournaments and duals, the 1 second pause, and (in many cases) clearly calling the second set has become less frequent.  Hold For 1 Second and make certain both “sets” are clearly announced.

    Officials, thank you for your hard work.  In working together, I know we will continue to make great strides.


    Tim Shiels
    National Coordinator of Officials

  • 12/14/2015

    Officials and Coaches, 
    Please review this rules reminder and points of emphasis document carefully; there are several very important points I want to clarify so that everyone is on the same page.  

    Thank you, 
    Chuck Barbee
    Wrestling-Secretary-Rules Editor
  • 12/7/2015

    The NCAA is initiating a pilot program to conduct background checks on officials for the NCAA championships in three sports (Divisions I, II and III field hockey, Division III women’s volleyball and Divisions I, II and III wrestling) beginning with the 2015-16 championships.  Background checks will be conducted for the dual purposes of student-athlete safety and the integrity of the NCAA championships. 

    Please click the link below to read the memorandum, and then click the link to consent to the background check:

    NCAA Officials’ Background Check Pilot Program Memorandum

    NCAA Officials' Background Check Consent Form

  • 12/2/2015

    Reading and understanding the NCAA wrestling rules book is critical for both referees and coaches alike. To date, each certified wrestling official and all NCAA Division I, II and III programs have at least one rules book in their possession.  While I do admittedly maintain four or five copies of the hard copy rules book for my use, I bet most of you do not have that many copies laying around.  In this electronic day and age however, it is very easy to utilize the online version of the 2015-16 and 2016-17 NCAA Wrestling Rules Book to search questions and issues that you might have in regards to wrestling rules. I have put together some instructional documents that will help you access the wrestling rules book on your computer, or smartphone. As you will see, the computer instructions are on a Windows PC and the smartphone instructions are on an Android device. Mac and iPhone users will use the same basic idea, but obviously the details will be different based on your computer or phone. Ultimately, I would like each referee and coach to understand that their rules book can be accessed even if you cannot locate your hard copy version.

    Keep up the good work!

    Chuck Barbee
    Wrestling Secretary-Rules Editor

    Click here to review how to access the rules book on your computer.

    Click here to review how to access the rules book on your smartphone.

  • 11/19/2015

    Click here to view Rule 5.9.2 Neutral Position Stalling Video Clips.  Please note there is no audio with the clips.

  • 11/17/2015

    Please click here to read NCAA Sports Wagering Policy, a memorandum from Mark Lewis, Executive Vice President, Championships and Alliances, and Dan Calandro, Director, Championships and Alliances.

  • 11/4/2015

    Congratulations on kicking off another NCAA college wrestling season! While I’m afraid that I cannot discuss first-hand all of the successes and challenges of this opening weekend, I can report that I was very happy with the implementation of the new rules at the All-Star Classic.  Without a doubt, we have some additional work to do in regards to educating and clarifying situational issues, but I have no doubt that in due time we will resolve these matters.

    Coaches, I appreciate your feedback, and I encourage you to continue reviewing this website, and educating your athletes appropriately.  Officials, your professionalism and desire to get this right is very much appreciated.  The opening weeks of a rule change year can be somewhat trying; I encourage everyone to stay focused, and we will continue to move these new and existing rules forward together.

    Take Care,

    Chuck Barbee
    Secretary-Rules Editor

  • 9/16/2015

    The "2015–16 NCAA Wrestling Rules Test" is now available by clicking on the TESTING Tab.  It will be available until October 19.

  • 8/31/2015

    Welcome to the 2015-16 NCAA Wrestling season, and thank you for your NCAA membership.  By registering with the NCAA, you have taken the first step of many that indicates your commitment to NCAA Wrestling officiating.  

    All wrestling officials who wish to officiate NCAA wrestling matches during the regular season or postseason must be registered. The Center Mat serves as the official site for NCAA wrestling rules and officiating, housing the NCAA rules book, interpretations, points of emphasis, as well as videos, testing, and periodic rules and mechanics updates.

    We are committed to providing officials with the resources needed to improve performance and promote consistency throughout the country at every level, and we sincerely thank you for your time, effort, and commitment to the sport of Wrestling.


    Welcome Video from Tim Shiels, National Coordinator of Officials

    Welcome Video from Chuck Barbee, Secretary-Rules Editor


    Online Clinic

    Welcome Packet Information

    Have a great season!

    Tim Shiels
    National Coordinator

    Chuck Barbee
    Secretary-Rules Editor

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