I have come to the complete realization after following the past couple of contests that IFBB judging is fixed. This is not to say that every placing is decided in a smoke filled room two weeks before the contest, or that no surprises can occur, or that there will always be a unanimous result, but in general favorites are picked even though the physiques do not warrant it. I think after the 2007 Mr. Olympia, everyone talked about how IFFB contests were completely rigged. Then Jay loses in 2008 and with an unheard of top 3 for 2009 Mr. Olympia (Jay comes back in first, Branch edges out the Mr. Olympia for 2nd), people became deluded with the view that narrow victories can occur and that this really is a "free for all" sport. Lets look at some recent contests, from late 2011 to now. Bear in mind that this is only recent contests, and does not include some all time favorite riggings. 2011 Olympia. Phil Heath wins, much to everyone's relief, beating out Jay Cutler. The problem was Jay and Phil were separated from everyone else, giving little chance for them (especially Jay) to be compared to Kai, Victor and Wolf. While Jay did improve for the finals, he clearly was beat in prejudging yet still "shielded" from the rest of the top 6. The IFBB does the whole "teacher versus student" thing even though Kai/Victor/Wolf should have all been bumped up a place. 3-5 were cheated out of a nice paycheck simply for making the show "interesting." 2011 "202 Showdown". Kevin English wins. I have yet to see a convincing argument for why he even placed top 3. I have come to the only logical conclusion that Kevin English won to add more suspense to the Mr. Olympia and scarce the audience into thinking Jay Cutler may actually defend his title. 2011 Sheru Classic. Exact same placings as the Olympia, even though Jay did not deserve second again. Kai should have been second. 2012 Flex Pro. Lionel Beyeke wins. "Okay," everyone says "I guess mass and shape were favored over conditioning today. I mean, clearly, right, because Beyeke got perfect scores?" 2012 Arnold Classic. Branch Warren beats Evan and Dennis. Hell, Branch Warren wins BEST POSING!There is no reason to rehash what has been said in many threads, but clearly fans are upset with the results. Branch wins with perfect scores. The confusing part is, why was mass and shape preferred two weeks ago but now conditioning is desired now? Could the IFBB judges suffer from schizophrenia, or perhaps judging opinions are so inconsistent and varied that there really is no objective judging criteria for them to follow? Fans can debate all day long and pretend like this is a "sport", but I think the far easier solution is to conclude that many placings are simply rigged. I feel bad for Evan, Victor, and Wolf. Whats the point of trying for these fellows (especially Victor, if he can actually compete again?) in the 2012 Mr. Olympia? They will fight for 5-8 (one will wonder if the judges will actually place Mr. Olympia Dexter Jackson outside of the top 6). The top 4 has already been preordained as Phil, Kai, Branch, and Jay. I would hope that the judges allow Branch and Jay to be placed lower, but I highly doubt it.