Friday, April 20, 2007

The Outsiders

Here in the blasted wastelands of Missouri, where ultimate feeds on a sparse but nutritious diet of brand new teams, struggling to survive, we've been having an ongoing conversation about the Missouri High School State Championship Tournament.

The crux of the issue is about out-of-state teams being allowed to play in the tournament, and I'm not talking about teams in states which don't yet have their own championship; I know and agree with the UPA's policy in that situation (they are to be allowed to compete for the championship). So, some will contend that inviting out-of-state teams adds a little prestige and maybe raises the level of competition a little at the tournament, while others say that it makes for all sorts of complications when trying to determine a state champion: teams who do poorly in a pool with out-of-state teams may be unfairly seeded on Sunday, or knocked out altogether. Good teams, maybe the best team in the state, might end up losing to an out-of-state team in the semi's, and that loss would result in a third- or fourth-place finish, etc.

So, my question is to the states out there with the more developed communities who might have cleared this hurdle already: If you invite out-of-state teams to your State Championship, how do you manage it such that a clear in-state winner is determined? If you don't invite out-of-state teams, why not?


Ryan said...

Why not? Because it's a *state championship*. To determine the best team in the state. There will be some teams that are much worse than other teams. But it's states, so that's what you have to deal with.

Mike Mullen said...

I agree with the previous comment. It is indeed a state championship. So only teams from your state should be allowed.

I don't know of other sports that allow teams from out of state to participate in their state championships. And I want to sell the idea to school administrators and parents that ultimate is a legitimate sport.

Some might argue that it is a lame championship if there aren't that many teams playing in the state anyway. My counter argument would be that in Washington our state HS athletic association allows an 8 team state championship for a sport if 30% of the teams in that sports' school size classification field teams. The classification sizes range from 55-72 teams. That means that the smallest classification can offer an 8 team state championship if 17 schools offer the sport. (Obviously has to be a WIAA sport) That isn;t that many teams.

And there are a lot of states that have 17 schools playing ultimate even if only 4 or 6 or 8 can come to the championship..

So I say host a state championship with only schools from your own state even if that means two teams. When people see the trophy in the trophy case 30 years hence and there are tons of teams playing, it will still be a state championship trophy.


환희 said...

gotta say, that is a sweet picture