Former Oklahoma State*wrestler*Obenson Blanc*will make*hisfourth*appearance in*the*U.S. World Team Trials*June 21-23*in Stillwater, Okla., a place Blanc has called home for many years.
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"It's the first time that I don't really have to travel to compete," Blanc said.*"So, it's a little more important for me to win here. It's where I live and train."
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Blanc recently won*his*second national title at*55 kilograms at the*U.S. Open.*His first came in 2010 after compiling a 30-10 record in his only competitive year at Oklahoma State.
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Blanc has been a member of Team USA since 2009. In 2011-12,*he had a team*ranking of No. 3 at 55kg. Blanc has gained a lot of experience in his four years being on the national team.
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"From being on the team, I've learned that consistency is key," Blanc said. "I've gotten to travel a lot and learn quite a bit about other places. That's a big advantage because you get to see some of the fiercest competition.*I think*now, I can be more consistent by pulling from the best of what I have learned over the years."
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After*falling one win shy of All-America status at the NCAA Championships his senior season at Oklahoma State,*Blanc continued his training under Cowboy coach*John Smith,*the*winningest*coach in OSU wrestling history.
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Blanc has a pretty significant advantage of competition having already gone through a tough 55*kg bracket at the U.S. Open.
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"From this point on, the top guys don't really change that much," Blanc said. "Wrestling the Open let me know who the top guys are. Basically, I don't think I'm going to be surprised much about my competition.*The top guys usually*remain the top guys. My job is to be*prepared to win against whichever one comes through the bracket."

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*Just last month, wrestling's governing body (FILA) implemented new rules*in an effort to keep wrestling in the Olympics after the International Olympic Committee's shocking*recommendation to remove wrestling as one of the core sports. Matches are*now*made up of two three-minute sessions instead of three two-minute periods, with scoring*now*cumulative instead of the previous two-out-of-three system.
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"I like the new rules because it forces guys to wrestle," Blanc said. "Before, you could take someone down twice and it would be 2-0, and it wouldn't be a huge deal. Now, if you take somebody down twice, it's 4-0,*so now there is*a sense of urgency*for the other guy to score.*That's good for the fans, and it's good for the Americans because we like to score a lot of points and stay active. It levels things out for us as a country, and it makes the sport easier to understand. I think that's what is needed in order for wrestling to stay in the Olympics."
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A lot is riding on the World Team Trials in Stillwater this year and the pressure will be on to support wrestling.
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"It's*important*for us to have a good showing, and to have a competitive team that can go out there, compete and put on a good show for the rest of the world," Blanc said.
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In order to put on a show of his own,*Blanc has been training one-on-one with the*Oklahoma State*coaches leading up to the trials.
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"We've been doing a lot of cardio lately because that's going to be a factor with*the periods being longer now," Blanc said. "We've*been focused on our conditioning and scoring more points more than before. We have to push ourselves to put more points on the board."
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Blanc has also been working with former OSU*wrestler*Coleman Scott,*a bronze medalist at the 2012 London Olympic Games*at 60 kg.
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"It's cool to see where Coleman has come from and what he has accomplished," Blanc said. *"Our relationship is kind of like that saying that `iron sharpens iron.' If you surround yourself with motivated guys, there's a tendency that you're going to be on that same path.*Training*and being around each other for solong*is good for pushing one*another, as our training has to very tough to compete and win at a world level."
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Blanc says it is a good thing to have someone like Scott around with as high aspirations. Blanc will continue the pursuit of these great goals at the World Team Trials and all eyes will fall on him to put on a great show.
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"I feel like I've gotten close before, but I didn't really finish that up in 2010," Blanc said. "It's just been a long journey of getting back and having the opportunity to be on the world team again. I've competed against some of the best and I've defeated some and lost to some. I'm trying to get everything together so I can be the best in the world*every time."