The 2016 University World Wrestling Championships, as of press time, are apparently still slated to take place in Corum, Turkey next month. It’s just that the US won’t be attending.
Per Richard Immel of USA Wrestling, the US University World Team will not be making the trip due to concerns regarding security in the region. There has been no official statement coming from the NGB at this time.
A bombing at Istanbul Airport claimed 42 lives in July. Later that month, there was an attempted coup. And most recently, Turkey has begun to take an offensive role in the war against ISIS, sending tanks and armor into Syria. With so much unrest in the area, USA Wrestling is preferring to take a cautious approach by keeping its athletes at home.
This is especially crushing news for several USA athletes. Northern Michigan, in particular, put five wrestlers on the squad that was headed to Turkey (with Barrett Stanghill replacing Geordan Speiller). Several of the University members, including Dalton Roberts (NMU-OTS), Patrick Martinez (NYAC) and G’Angelo Hancock (NYAC) had made other World Teams, with Roberts and Hancock having recently competed at the Junior World Championships in France.