Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Regionals Recap

I wrote one for USAU here. I've gt just a couple of comments that didn't make the general report.

First, the format issue is so weird. The USAU is trying to balance a zillion different concerns in their formats. Well, at least three. First, they are trying to get everyone a reasonable number of games which means at least five. (No matter that teams are forfeiting because they're worked over by the end.) Second, they are trying to determine the perfect quarterfinal match-ups entirely within the framework of the tournament. This often means exhaustive pool play and crossovers. Third, they love elimination games. (No matter that round robin ranks everyone.) There are some real advantages to this approach, particularly the elimination games. One and done is a nice way to settle the issue of who goes with some clarity. The real problem is the soft pool play. It encourages teams to throw games. The latest controversy emerges out of the South-Central open division, but teams have been 'throwing' games for a long time. (Quick aside: is it throwing a game to sit all your starters? Is it throwing a game to play equal playing time? Is it throwing a game to intentionally turf the first pass every possession?) The real issue is that there is fluff in the schedule. When there is fluff, people will take advantage of it.

Second, the 'coaching experiment' I referred to in my report was to play O and D lines. There are two dangers in playing O and D and we got torpedoed by both. The system only works as long as the O team is scoring consistently. (UBC went on an 8-3 second half run.) The split of O and D creates divisions within the team. Essentially, it creates two teams that are pasted together. Managing this division is one of the big personnel challenges on any team with an O and D split. Fugue needed only one day to discover that we hated it.

1 comment:

  1. Lou,

    My team had issues with the O and D split as well. What do you suggest? Do you have your seven best players (or best players for certain positions) play O and then just call 7 D players based on match-ups?

    Love to hear your thoughts.