U.S. Sombo Newsletter
Greetings friends, fellow grapplers, wrestlers, and martial artists,
Last month, the USA Wrestling Sombo Nationals were held in Palm Beach, FL. While the turnout was small
by USA Wrestling standards, the competition was tough. The winners have qualified for a spot on the
American team for the World Championships in Turkey, and the World Cup in France, both to be held in
November. (See event schedule below). Also, the report from www.themat.com is included under the
news & events section below.
The 3rd Annual North American Freestyle Sambo™ Championships will be held in Rahway, NJ in October.
At this event, which is sanctioned by the American Sambo Association, they will be honoring the first three
Pioneers of American Sambo Award winners. One winner was selected for each year since the ASA was
formed. The award recipients were: 2004 OLEG TAKTAROV-Popularization of Sambo in the US, 2005
KHASSAN BAIEV, MDCharacter Attributes Best Representing Sambo, & 2006 SANDY NORTH-Competition
History. The list of other nominees included: Scott Anderson, Alexander Barakov, Lance Campbell,
Pransiskus Egminus, Jason Gabrielson, Greg Gibson, Josh Henson, James "Chico" Hernandez,
Vladislav Koulikov, Leonid Polyakov, Shaun Scott, and Scott Sonnon. These men and many others
have contributed greatly to the sport. Thank you to Steve Koepfer for creating an award to honor those who
have done so much for the sport. As the organizer of the awards, Koepfer was not eligible, although it should
be noted that he did receive nominations. He was certainly worthy of an award having done so much for the
sport himself. It was an honor to be nominated myself, and I was pleased to see these outstanding men be
recognized for their contributions to the sport. Please join me in congratulating the award winners, and the
In this issue, I write about the role of a coach. This will give you some insight into the many different hats
that coaches are forced to wear. If you have story ideas, or suggestions relating to future issues of this
newsletter, please drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yours in Sombo,
Vice President, United States Sombo Association
By Lance Campbell
Parents often become frustrated by their children’s coaches. I know I was when I learned that I would have
to spend my summer vacation getting up early to take my stepson to football practice. I was angry that they
were practicing all summer for a sport that doesn’t start until September. Yet, as a coach myself, I
understand the difficult role of the coach. Coaches have to wear many hats. It is not easy trying to balance
all of the responsibilities of coaching. Yet coaches take on the responsibility of these different roles, often for
less than minimum wage, or sometimes for no pay at all. Whether you are a parent of an athlete, an athlete,
or someone who is considering going into coaching, I think it will be beneficial for you to understand the roles
that coaches play. Having this understanding will help you to better appreciate the job that coaches do, and
may give you some ideas for ways that you can assist the coach, and make his/her job easier.
First the coach is an administrator. Running any sports program takes planning. Budgeting, scheduling, and making travel arrangements are just some of the administrative duties of the coach as an administrator.
Second, the coach is a personnel manager. The head coach is responsible for managing all of the athletes,
parents, volunteers, and other coaches. This often involves finding volunteers, adjusting to the schedules of
the various people involved, recruiting to fill necessary positions, and resolving conflicts between different
A coach is a public relations specialist, and salesperson. Some sports the media is eager to cover. For
coaches of these sports, they always have to be careful in what they say and do to represent the program
well to the media. They might also have to deal with negative press due to the actions of others (athletes,
fans, or other coaches). For sports that do not attract much media attention, the coach has to work to get
media coverage for the team. The coach has to sell the sport to the media, and try to find ways to attract
new fans to the sport as well.
Coaches have to be strategists and tacticians. Coaches have to develop game plans, and practice plans.
Coaches have to spend time planning the best ways to prepare to defeat the competition.
A coach is a trainer. Athletes suffer injuries. Coaches have to deal with analyzing the severity of athletes’
injuries, give advice, and often treat injuries.
A coach is a psychologist. Coaches have to deal with preparing their athletes for competition mentally. This
involves understanding the unique psychological attributes of each athlete. Also the coach might have to
counsel an athlete regarding problems that can range from academic performance, behavioral problems, or
emotional issues in the athletes life.
A coach is a fundraiser. Often the budget that coaches have to work with is not adequate to meet the needs
of the program. As a result the coach often puts in a lot of time outside of coaching to manage the
fundraising efforts of the program.
A coach is a judge. Coaches often have to decide which athlete will start, or referee challenge matches. This
puts the coach in a difficult spot as some athletes and parents are likely to be upset by these decisions.
These are just some of the roles that coaches must fill in addition to being a caring teacher of the sport. So,
the next time you want to give a coach an earful, remember the many roles that the coach has to play, and
the small amount of monetary compensation that he or she receives.
New & Events
Champions earn spot on U.S. World team with victories at the
U.S. Sombo National Championships in Florida
NORTH PALM BEACH, FLA. - Seven individual men’s champions were crowned at the first U.S. Sombo
National Championships held at the North Palm Beach Community Center on August 20.
It was the first national championships in Sombo held by USA Wrestling since FILA, the international
federation, reinstated Sombo as a form of international wrestling in 2005.
Champions in each weight class earned the right to represent the United States at the World Sombo
Championships in Antalya, Turkey, Nov. 1-5.
Three of the individual champions serve in the U.S. Marine Corps. Sombo has traditionally been a sport that
is popular among the branches of the U.S. military services.
Two of the Marine Corps champions are members of the U.S. Marine Corps wrestling team stationed in
Quantico, Va.: Moises Hernandez (Quantico, Va./U.S. Marine Corps) at 96 kg/211.5 lbs. and Frank
Workman (Spotsylvania, Va./U.S. Marines) at 120 kg/264.5 lbs.
Hernandez won all three of his bouts during the competition, including a 10-3 decision over runner-up Jeff
Zastrow (Whitewater, Wis. /Warhawk WC) in his final bout.
Hernandez was a high school wrestler from Vineland, N.J. who got involved in Greco-Roman wrestling in the
U.S. Marines, and began training in international wrestling with 2006 U.S. World Team member Jake Clark
while stationed in Okinawa, Japan.
“This is my first Sombo tournament, and I have not practiced it much,” said Hernandez. Greco-Roman is my
first and foremost style. When Sombo tournaments come, I will try my hardest, and compete for cross-
training. It is great to make the World Team and go to Turkey. This gives guys a chance to explore a new
sport at an elite level. I went out there and tried to do some serious damage.”
Workman earned his World Team spot with a submission of runner-up Thomas Campbell (Okoee, Fla./West
Orange WC) in 2:40. It was Workman’s second Sombo championship of the year, after winning a title at the
Pan American Qualifier in Washington, D.C. in May.
Workman is currently ranked No. 3 on Greco-Roman Team USA. He also qualified for the U.S. World Beach
Wrestling Team, by placing second in the World Team Trials for Beach Wrestling on Saturday at the Above
85 kg/187.5 lbs. division.
“I plan on going to the World Championships. I change duty stations in September, and I plan to attend if
they let me go. I have trained some Sombo, working with the judo guys on my base. They show me
submissions. There is also a dojo in my town. Chad Lebron has worked with me on how to get out of
submissions. Hopefully he will work with me leading up to the Worlds,” said Workman.
The other U.S. Marine Corps champion, Juan Ramos (Jacksonville, N.C.) at 84 kg/185 lbs., is stationed at
Camp Lejeune, N.C. He won five matches on the way to the title, including a 7-1 victory over runner-up Brad
Hurrell (Port St. Lucie, Fla./Williamson Trade) in his final match.
Ramos, a lieutenant in the U.S Marines, trained as a member of the Onslaw County WC in his community,
working mostly with youth wrestlers. He was a walkon wrestler for the Univ. of Oklahoma during his college
“I have done no Sombo until today, but I have wrestled and have done judo,” said Ramos. “This is an
opportunity to become a national champion, and to be part of the beginning of Sombo with USA Wrestling.
I would like to go to the World Championships.”
Joining Workman with his second USA Wrestling Sombo victory of the year was Matt Morkel (Washington,
DC/Gator WC) at 60 kg/132 lbs. Morkel was also a champion at the Pan American Qualifier in Washington,
D.C. in May.
Morkel won a competitive weight class, clinching a victory with a submission over Michael Santos (Tampa,
Fla.) in 2:42. He was in a competitive weight division. Morkel had lost a 3-0 match to past Sombo World Cup
champion Stephen Biedrycki (Fairfax, Va./Next Level WC), but Biedrycki lost a technical fall to Santos,
12-0. Morkel was the winner of the roundrobin based upon total classification points.
Morkel competed for American Univ., and will serve as a graduate assistant coach with the program next
“The first time I did Sombo was in May, and I also won that tournament. I have been working out often in
wrestling, and have working some Sombo in. I also went to a club in Reston, Va. for a weekend to improve
my Sombo. I wrestle quite a bit, which helped me here. I like it a lot. It is a chance to try something different
and still incorporate a lot of what we do as wrestlers. I have always had an interest in mixed martial arts and
in submissions. So this brings that in as well,” said Morkel.
The champion at 74 kg/163 lbs. was veteran Greco-Roman wrestler Faruk Sahin (Colorado Springs,
Colo./EA Kombat). Sahin, a member of the U.S. Army program, won two matches in his division, including a
6-1 victory over runner-up Sandy North of Florida. Sahin was an international wrestler in Turkey, who received
his U.S. citizenship in 2004.
“This year, I started training again after a long time off. I came to get some competition again and to show
my face. I competed for my buddy Eric Albarracin and for EA Kombat. I love competition. I wrestled
yesterday on the beach, and today in Sombo. I did no Sombo in Turkey. I am a Greco-Roman wrestler, and
mixing in freestyle skills is hard. But I love the competition. I would like to go to the Worlds for even more
competition,” said Sahin.
The champion at 55 kg/121 lbs. was Ramie Mohlman (Lake Worth, Fla./Seadog WC), who scored two
victories on the way to the title, including a 3-2 decision over runner-up Jarrett Hirst (Allentown, Pa.).
“My first Sombo experience was today,” said Mohlman. “Anytime you have an opportunity to wrestle, you
take it, in the sand, with a jacket, you take that opportunity. It is competition. I feel more comfortable with
Sombo. I learned a lot in the matches I had today. I studied Sombo on the internet, so as a greenhorn, I
knew a bit more. I am glad they brought Sombo back. I have a lot of work to do before the Worlds. I’ll learn
more submission holds. I want to have the experience of the World Championships. Anytime you can
represent the United States, it is an honor,” said Mohlman.
At 66 kg/145.5 lbs., Ray White (Clearwater, Fla./Team Pursuit) won the title, with a 11-11 criteria decision
over Lucas Morley (Port St. Lucie, Fla./Ultimate Sombo).
“I have done Greco-Roman and judo,” said White. “I was fifth in the nationals in Greco as a Junior and a
Cadet. I also took third in the Beach Nationals. I dropped a little weight to try this. I am a thrower. This is a
natural transition for me. We are hooked on Sombo. We have a program in my community and we will do
There were three individual champions in the high school division, Jarrett Hirst of Allentown, Pa. at 55 kg/121
lbs., Jacob Schalles of Orlando, Fla. at 66 kg/145.5 lbs. and Dan Leckel of Eyota, Minn. at 84 kg/185 lbs.
The Pan American portion of the tournament featured three women’s champions, Ingrid Santos (Tampa, Fla.)
at 48 kg/105.5 lbs., Clara Curtis (Colorado Springs, Colo.) at 59 kg/130 lbs. and Leigh Jaynes (Colorado
Springs, Colo.) at 63 kg/138.75 lbs.
A number of exhibition bouts were also held, providing the athletes an additional opportunity to compete in
Sombo and improve their skills and experience.
The U.S. World Team will prepare for the World Championships in a training camp in Fort Dix, N.J. under
veteran Sombo coach Floyd Winter, who was the coach of the U.S. Army wrestling team many years ago.
U.S. World Sombo Team
- 55 kg/121 lbs. - Ramie Mohlman (Lake Worth, Fla./Seadog WC)
- 60 kg/132 lbs. - Matt Morkel (Washington, DC/Gator WC)
- 66 kg/145.5 lbs. - Ray White (Clearwater, Fla./Team Pursuit)
- 74 kg/163 lbs. - Faruk Sahin (Colorado Springs, Colo./EA Kombat)
- 84 kg/185 lbs.- Juan Ramos (Jacksonville, N.C.)
- 96 kg/211.5 lbs. - Moises Hernandez (Quantico, Va./U.S. Marine Corps)
- 120 kg/264.5 lbs. - Frank
Workman, Spotsylvania, Va. (U.S. Marines)
Frank Workman named TheMat.com Wrestler of the Week for Aug. 15-21
Gary Abbott USA Wrestling
Frank Workman (Spotsylvania, Va./U.S. Marine Corps) has been named TheMat.com Wrestler of the Week
for Aug. 15-21.
Each week, TheMat.com will select an Athlete of the Week, based upon performance within wrestling for
that week. The selection committee will consider any level of wrestling, from youth programs through the
Senior level. The announcement will be made each week on Wednesday.
Workman qualified for two U.S. World Wrestling Teams during the weekend in competitions held in Palm
Beach County, Fla. He has earned a right to represent the United States at both the World Beach Wrestling
Championships and the World Sombo Championships, set for Antalya, Turkey, Nov. 1-5.
Workman qualified for the U.S. Beach World Team on Saturday, August 19 at the Hilton Singer Island
He placed second at the U.S. Beach National Championships at 276 pounds in the Senior division. He won
three of his four bouts for the tournament, stopping Doug Joseph of Pennsylvania, Robert Severin of Florida
and Carlos Dolmo of New York. His only loss came to U.S. Nationals champion Angelo Borzio of
Pennsylvania by pin.
By placing in the top three of his weight at the U.S. Nationals, Workman qualified for the U.S. Beach World
Team Trials, which was held immediately following the national tournament. He was entered in the Above 85
kg/187.25 lbs. division. He won his first two matches in the World Team Trials, beating Craig Salvatore of
New Jersey and Jeff Zastrow of Wisconsin. In the championship finals, he lost to Dolmo, 2-0.
The U.S. Beach World Team at the Above 85 kg/187.25 lbs. division will consist of three wrestlers:
Workman, Dolmo and Borzio.
The next day, on Sunday, August 20, at the North Palm Beach Community Center in North Palm Beach,
Fla., Workman won a gold medal at the U.S. Sombo National Championships. This is the qualifying event for
the World Sombo Championships, and only one athlete per division may compete at the World meet.
Competing at the 120 kg/264.5 lbs. division on the Senior level, Workman stopped Thomas Campbell of
Florida by submission in 2:40 to claim the gold medal.
Workman is currently a member of Greco-Roman Team USA on the Senior level, placing third at the 2006
World Team Trials. He was also a national team member in 2003-04, after placing third at the World Team
Trials that year. Workman was third at the 2006 U.S. Nationals, sixth at the 2004 U.S. Nationals and
seventh at the 2001 and 2002 U.S. Nationals. He was fourth in the the 2001 CISM World Military
He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, where he qualified for the 1997 NCAA Div. I Championships. He
was a 1993 Ohio state high school champion and placed second at the High School National
Championships that year. He holds a rank of Captain in the U.S. Marines Corps.
Note: To nominate a wrestler for TheMat.com Wrestler of the Week, send the athlete's name,
accomplishments for the week and career accomplishments to Craig Sesker at email@example.com
Help Save Wrestling at Fresno State University
When an NCAA Div-I wrestling program falls thousands of miles away from you, will one of the wrestling
programs nearest you be a victim too?
Take a few minutes from your busy day.
The momentum continues to build!
Be a part of it: http://www.savefresnowrestling.com/
If you are willing to help or have any questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
or write a letter to:
Dr. John D. Welty, President
California State University, Fresno
5241 North Maple Avenue
Fresno, California 93740-8027
Jim McCarthy College Sports Council
Use of Interest Surveys Will Safeguard Schools
WASHINGTON, D.C. – August 29, 2006 – In a letter to members of the NCAA Executive Committee, the
College Sports Council (CSC) is urging the use of interest surveys for both male and female athletes as a
way to bring fairness and common sense to the Title IX compliance equation. Pointing to a recently
published, independent legal analysis, the letter notes, “schools that conduct surveys will be vastly safer
from litigation or federal sanction than those who forego the option."
“Providing sports opportunities based on interest is a simple, fair, and obvious way for schools break free
from the widespread practice of limiting male participation,” said Eric Pearson, CSC Executive Director. The
CSC also sent the letter to Rutgers University and California State University, Fresno, both of which are in
the process of cutting men’s teams in order to comply with the proportionality prong of Title IX.
Pearson referred to a legal analysis published in the Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment and Technology Law
http://law.vanderbilt.edu/jetl that concludes schools can reduce their exposure to Title IX litigation simply by
issuing a survey of student interest.
On March 17, 2005 the Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights first issued a clarification of Title IX’s
three-part compliance test. Contrary to alarmist rhetoric from gender quota activist groups, surveys must be
diligently applied, such as through the student’s registration process. So that all students are given the
opportunity to express their interests, the CSC has asked that schools permit both male and female
students to participate in the surveys as part of their course registration process.
“Schools have not just an opportunity to utilize a better compliance method, but many schools that are not
proportional may have a legal responsibility to conduct surveys in order to demonstrate compliance,” the
letter cautions. “To advise any school to forego a safeguard that is as straightforward as the Department of
Education’s interest survey would appear to be simply reckless, in many specific cases.”
The College Sports Council is a national coalition of coaches, parents, athletes, and former athletes.
Additional Background and Sources:
College Sports Council website
Legal Analysis of Survey Implementation:
The OCR’s letter and guidance
COLLEGE SPORTS COUNCIL LETTER TO NCAA
College Sports Council
PO Box 53356, Washington, DC 20009
August 29, 2006
University Administrator/General Counsel
Schools TBD from NCAA Executive Council
It has been over a year now since the U.S. Department of Education (DoEd) issued a new guideline on Title
IX compliance, enabling schools to measure student interest in athletics through the use of a DoEd approved
survey. As you know, the NCAA has discouraged member institutions from using this new compliance tool,
citing efficacy and bias.
However, the College Sports Council (CSC) would like to bring to your attention, a compelling legal analysis
published in the Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment and Technology Law http://law.vanderbilt.edu/jetl. This
paper concludes that schools that conduct surveys will be vastly safer from litigation or federal sanction than
those who forgo the option. Even if schools aspire to proportionality compliance, having survey results in
hand will act as a legal stopgap, if they fall short on that prong.
It is worth noting that the “safe harbor” concept was the very rationale that made proportionality so
widespread in the first place. Schools felt that it was the only surefire, measurable compliance method. The
survey, as provided by the DoEd, is also measurable and now considered a “safe harbor.” Schools have not
just an opportunity to utilize a better compliance method, but many schools that are not proportional may
have a legal responsibility to conduct surveys in order to demonstrate compliance with one of the other
prongs of the three-part test. To advise any school to forego a safeguard that is as straightforward as the
DoEd’s interest survey would appear to be simply reckless in many specific cases.
Men and women both deserve the opportunity to voice their interest. There is no method that could be more
fair and straightforward for students to demonstrate their interest than simply to be asked.
As a new school year begins, we urge you to conduct a survey of athletic interest as part of your course
registration process, including both male and female students. The CSC believes that it is both a reasonable
way to provide opportunity and a prudent legal course of action.
We welcome your thoughts and dialogue on this issue.
Eric Pearson, Executive Director
College Sports Council
The Armlock Encyclopedia
By Steve Scott
Now available at www.TurtlePress.com at the sale price of $13.95. Regular price is $18.95, so get your copy
now and save $5.00.
264 pages, 485 photos.
Here's what the publisher, Turtle Press has on their web site about the book:
In a follow-up to his popular Championship Sambo: Submission Holds and Groundfighting, Steve Scott
teaches you 85 essential armlocks for jujitsu, judo, sambo and mixed martial arts. The armlocks taught in
the Armlock Encyclopedia apply to gi and no-gi combat sports, allowing you to use them in a wide variety
of situations, including self-defense and street applications.
Steve Scott makes it easy to learn the most effective and popular armlocks of modern grappling sports by
organizing them into four broad categories: the cross-body armlock, the bent armlock, the straight armlock
and the armpit lock. In addition to teaching how to set-up and apply each of the locks, he shows you how to
defend against common armlocks, fight from both the mount and guard, lever your opponent’s arm free for an
attack and vary your grip for maximum power.
For those new to grappling, you’ll also learn the core skills of applying armlocks, controlling position, and
training smart plus a glossary of grappling terms and a Rules of the Room guide to common sense rules on
Upcoming Competitions in 2006
2006 Sombo Events
email@example.com or visit http://sombo.net/events.htm.
- From U.S. Sombo with a littler editing from us (color, highlights, etc...)
Subject to change