SACRAMENTO, CA - Wrestlers have a new fight on their hands after the Olympics have decided to drop the sport.

The decision prompted an outcry across the internet from wrestling fans, who took to social media calling wrestling the world's oldest competitive sport and most worthy of the international spotlight.

The move caught many in the wrestling community off-guard, but this isn't a group to be treated lightly, and wrestlers said they won't give up without a fight.

Fighting out of Sacramento, mixed-martial arts star and former UC Davis wrestler Urijah Faber took a break from training to say he's baffled by the International Olympic Committee's decision to drop wrestling from the 2020 games.

"The Olympics is something that has been the crown jewel of our sport as wrestlers 'cause there hasn't been a professional avenue in the past, and to take that away is just really strange. I don't know why they would do that," Faber said.

The Olympic committee wanted to drop one sport to make way for a new one. The group considered things like TV ratings, ticket sales, anti-doping policy and global popularity, but its report doesn't list a specific reason why committee members chose to drop wrestling.

MMA fighter Lance Palmer said wrestling allowed him to go to college on a full scholarship, and it provides opportunities for many young people.

"Wrestling is... that's the biggest base that you could have, the best base for any type of sport other than wrestling. It sets up your dedication, your motivation, your work ethic, your character as a human being," Palmer said.

No one knows that better than Rene Delgado. The Casa Roble High School wrestling coach plans to tell his student-athletes not to give up on Olympic dreams.

"It's just like being down big points late in the match. You always got a shot, and with wrestling we always got a shot. You always got a shot to come back and win," Delgado said.

Wrestling advocates will have an opportunity to appeal the decision in May, and Faber hopes the IOC will consider all that's at stake in the final decision.

"It's providing opportunities and direction and structure and leadership for these kids that may not otherwise have it," Faber said.

The last sports removed from the Olympics were baseball and softball, voted out by the IOC in 2005. Wrestlers will make their appeal, but they'll have to compete with the likes of roller sports, squash and wakeboarding to make it back into the 2020 games.

The Olympic committee will make its decision in September.

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