LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Wrestlers from around the world will be in Louisville on Saturday for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. WDRB's Gina Glaros experienced what the athletes will be up against in the first-ever professional wrestling combine and draft.
Wrestlers from as far away as England will see how their skills stack up in five categories, to not only get noticed, but to get a full ride.
"Bench press, we're going to do a squat, we're going to do a vertical jump, a shuttle run and pull-ups," said Jay Bradley, Ohio Valley wrestler and combine coach.
They start with a warm-up. They're looking for 12 reps on the bench press.
Verticals were next. The goal was 24 inches.
"When you jump, you need to do a squat," Bradley said. "I want you to look up and keep your legs straight," Bradley said. "Tie your shoe. I don't want you breaking your neck. I don't want that on the news."
Gina jumped 19 inches.
After the shuttle run were pull-ups. The goal was 12. She did seven.
Squats were last.
Adding up Gina's numbers, it was the moment of truth.
"You are a 3.4 on our scale," said Chad Miller of Gladiator Sports Network. "We're going to have a lot of people that come right in at that for Saturday's combine. So, that would put you in the running for our potential draft Aug. 3."
Fun aside, what it says on the board will impact 15 athletes who qualify for a full scholarship.
"I just have never wanted to do anything else. I tried to go to school and try to figure out something I want to do there, and it just didn't work out, and I was always just focused on wrestling," said Cali Young, Ohio Valley Wrestling's champion for women. "So now that they're having a school for wrestling, I feel like it's just all falling into place."
Wrestlers will go to the Al Snow Wrestling Academy at Ohio Valley Wrestling, which is in the process of becoming a two-year, state-accredited trade school.
"It's a one-of-a-kind opportunity, and it's a life-changing opportunity," Bradley said. "I'm a 20-year vet of pro wrestling, and this opportunity just didn't exist."
It's a first for professional wrestling and sports entertainment in the country.
"The problem is professional wrestling in the past is great about teaching you skills to get in, but we don't give anyone skills to get out, to have an exit plan," said Al Snow, a former WWE Professional Wrestler and CEO and owner of Ohio Valley Wrestling. "I'll give them the ability to have an exit plan that ten years from now, 20 years from now, they can still have a career after their in-ring career is over. I'm really hopeful for that."
Five-hundred-thousand dollars in total will be invested for students' tuition, room and board.
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