Header image source: Bodybuilding Bros YouTube Channel 

USAPL Raw Nationals took place in Scranton, PA, the weekend of October 15-18. A mind boggling 1100+ lifter were on the roster and scheduled to lift over the course of only four days, so I was a little trepidatious about how this meet was going to be run.

I can say that after attending in my capacity as a coach, that the spotters and loaders did an amazing job of keeping things moving smoothly, while the expiditers maintained good communication with the lifters and coaches as far as when the lifters were expected to be ready to lift.

Joe Franzo and Swede

Joe Franzo 

From my perspective the judging seemed to be very strict, but consistent, which is paramount in my opinion. After the event there was a good deal of contention on social media about a particular 733 pound squat performed by high profile lifter, Jesse Norris, which received red lights for depth. The decision was contested by USAPL lifter Joseph Franzo, and so it went to the national committee, who could have overturned the decision if they agreed unanimously that the lift was good. This did not happen as only two of the three jury members agreed that this lift was performed to depth.

WATCH: Jessie Norris 2015 USAPL Raw Nationals

Immediately after completing the lift, Jesse shook the judges hands and maintained an impressive level of good sportsmanship. Some would say this is in contrast to a statement he was quoted on the week before, drawing into question the depth Amit Sapir's world record, saying "I'm not going to compare him and I as his squats are not walked out and his depth is questionable."

team elitefts

Jesse's squat was around 50 pounds lighter, but in all fairness, it did look to be around the same depth as Amit's 782.6 pound world record. One thing is for sure, that walk out was beautiful.

There was a strong showing of EliteFTS team members at this event including myself, the legendary Steve Goggins, and the powerful Mikelina Belaineh.