After the previous class, I did some more research on YouTube, and discovered that I may not need to transition to 50/50 guard in order to do the sweep I’m after. The sweep can also be done from a position known variously as single leg x guard, or footlock x guard, as it is commonly called at my gym. The advantage of using the single leg x guard over the 50/50 is that you don’t lock yourself into a specific course of action as with the 50/50. Also, you don’t have to worry about getting footlocked, while still having the straight ankle foot lock as an option to use against your opponent. The one downside to the single leg x guard is that you are more vulnerable to being mounted, since you are no longer blocking his advance with your full leg like you would if your leg were in 50/50 position. This shortcoming can largely be overcome by paying attention to grips as well as proper placement of your shin. I was able to play single leg x for a protracted period of time against two purple belts tonight. Even though I was unable to sweep either of them tonight, I felt like the sweeps and back takes are there for the taking with a bit more practice. I took a look at a number of videos while researching this position, but one video really stood out for me. It was a friendly sparring session between two world champions, Marcelo Garcia and Rafael Lovato Jr. Imagine if Jimi Hendrix had kicked his drug habit, and lived long enough to jam on stage with Stevie Ray Vaughan, let’s say around 1989 or so. This sparring session is the jiu jitsu equivalent of that. Both men have formidable guards, but I feel like Marcelo Garcia has really given me a blue print for developing my own bottom game.