Mbaye is from Senegal. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in British Literature from Cheikh Anta Diop University in 2005. He also studied in the prestigious Senegalese Teacher Training School (formerly called École Normale Supérieure) and received his CAE-CEM as French and English teacher. As Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant (FLTA), in 2008-2009 academic year, Mbaye also taught Wolof at Indiana University, Bloomington. After completing the program, Ngom returned to his home country and taught English at Junior High School for four years. He is currently a graduate student at the Center for International Studies, with African Studies as major. As a teacher, Mbaye’s interests include education, student-centered pedagogy and African Renaissance. He has also developed interests in African politics and history.
Senegalese Wrestling: from harvest celebration to Sport Business
The first form of wrestling competitions used to take place at night in the moonlight, in villages during the harvest season. After a tough day of labor in peanut, millet, sorghum fields, young men came together to compete, through one to one basis. Young men rivaled in terms of strength, ingenuity and personal development. In addition to that, they want to catch the eye of nubile girls.
Conquering the heart of the girls or simply attracting their attention has always been an important factor. At the beginning the wrestling competition were confined in one village, it evolved from a village to an inter Village competition. Therefore, the issue began to gain importance and the winner is rewarded with cattle, sacks of grain, poultry, etc. The title won from these competitions shifted from individual, village, ethnic group, region and country’s honor.
Nowadays, the Senegalese wrestling has far exceeded its playful setting. Now wrestling means business and has become a sporty, economic and lucrative activity. From village squares, it has migrated to the arenas, and then in football stadiums, which are the only venues that can contain the growing number of spectators. The first wrestling that took place in a stadium and for a prize stage of one million francs had opposed the two tenors of the day, Mbaye Gueye and Mouhamed Ndiaye Diouf alias Robert in the early 1980s. Since then, the price stage reached 100 million francs on April 4, 2010, during the clash between Yekini "then King of the arenas” and Mohamed Ndao alias “Tyson ".
This price spike is due to the rush of sponsors who are willing to disburse tens of millions of francs to associate the image of their company with a wrestler who is getting more and more followers. In fact, wrestling once considered a cultural event has completely changed into a sport business. Once mocked wrestlers have become stars courted by both brands of all kinds and by wrestling promoters.