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Footballking16

What A Playoff Qualification System Would Look Like

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2 hours ago, Footballking16 said:

Agreed. Especially for a team who generally doesn't enjoy much postseason success. I bet a team like North Central who hasn't been relevant in years would be psyched to have "earned" a postseason bid this year and would welcome the drive up to Fort Wayne. Or a community like Heritage Hills would embrace the hour and a half drive east to North Harrison High School.

The all-in format is redundant. It's taken for granted. I bet the atmosphere in rural communities is 10x greater if their team actually qualified for a post season.

I couldn't imagine the atmosphere being 10X greater at a Linton tournament game!  That would almost be a scary thought!  It is already one of the greatest atmospheres for a tournament game ANYWHERE in the state.  10 times that?  Yikes!

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2 hours ago, Footballking16 said:

In the all-in format yes. But in a format that eliminates half the field after the regular season in this given year they were not one of the 16 northern-most teams in 1A.

Ah. Pays to read. Thought it was top 16 north and top 16 south using current split. Start off with a 3 hr drive then possible trip to Hagerstown.....sounds like a traveling nightmare

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Current system is fine, why change it. A ranking system puts in a lot of paper tigers. Let all teams play and the best will win. I played during the "Cluster" system and it was not a good way to set up a valid playoff tournament.  Rankings don't mean much to a motivated team.

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I just saw teams in PA declining playoff spots due to lack of interest.  So much for excitement of qualifying.

 

As far as I can tell, the problems of all in are blow outs and that "good" teams go home early.  To be frank I don't think blowouts can be avoided, especially if you want to reward teams for success by seeding and setting up brackets for them.  Since we're just looking for "the best" who cares when the rest get eliminated?

 

There are problems with all qualification systems.  South Vermilion, who I missed because I didn't expect them in so I didn't look at 3A got in playing in a 1A schedule.  That's a likely paper tiger.  Playing Danville it doesn't matter, but if I was a borderline 3A and making it is a BFD, I have a legitimate gripe.

 

District qualifying is the "most fair" way, but it has obvious problems.  Regular Season travel and the end of conferences being the obvious.  Then again the travel might encourage some schools to play up and some conferences are tied more by geography than any school similarity.  It's pretty uncommon to see teams that play more than half their sectional, which blows my mind coming from the WRC which this year truly is a district. 

 

I think this all in is better than a seeded district, though.  North Vermilion, ranked #3 goes home a week earlier than expected, but after giving us a fantastic opening game with Attica.  Is Covington getting blown out by FC a week early really hurt anything?

 

If you cut out the bottom teams, these good teams still go home in the opening round and none of the games are close anyway.  And you lose a game that was profiled in the Star where two rivals are going at it for the final time, hoping to extend the life of the program one more week.

 

Plus, we are talking 15-17 year old kids.  Rockville's blocking technique improved enough in five weeks to turn a three TD regular season defeat into a 30pt blowout.

 

We truly can't know the future.  We can't tell the fourth best from fifth best or third from second.  Throw them all in and let the teams sort it out!

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20 hours ago, Footballking16 said:

Agreed. Especially for a team who generally doesn't enjoy much postseason success. I bet a team like North Central who hasn't been relevant in years would be psyched to have "earned" a postseason bid this year and would welcome the drive up to Fort Wayne. Or a community like Heritage Hills would embrace the hour and a half drive east to North Harrison High School.

The all-in format is redundant. It's taken for granted. I bet the atmosphere in rural communities is 10x greater if their team actually qualified for a post season.

Heck... Batesville is about to make the 2+ hour drive to North Harrison in the current format!

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The qualification system has some merit in terms of putting quality teams/matchups on the field, however it would never go through due to the financial structure of the IHSAA sectional  round.  The sectional round is the only round of the IHSAA tournament series where $$ go back to the participating schools.  No way half of the IHSAA membership would go along with being left out of that piece of pie.   

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51 minutes ago, OldSage said:

The qualification system has some merit in terms of putting quality teams/matchups on the field, however it would never go through due to the financial structure of the IHSAA sectional  round.  The sectional round is the only round of the IHSAA tournament series where $$ go back to the participating schools.  No way half of the IHSAA membership would go along with being left out of that piece of pie.   

Adding a tenth regular season game solves the idea of "every team is entitled to ten".

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My biggest current argument for legitimizing the regular season is playing out right now.

Park Tudor had to forfeit a game this year in the regular season due to low roster numbers: https://www.indystar.com/story/sports/high-school/2017/09/28/park-tudor-cancels-football-game-due-low-roster-count/715117001/

They now sit in the sectional finals.

Not only did the program cheat another school of a regular season game, but also by taking that week off and "getting healthy" has likely allowed them to play an extra two weeks compared to many other programs.

Edited by Hoosier Hawk

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If any more “proof” was needed to show how a qualification format would add excitement and intensity to the regular season, one only has to look at the buzz created when the college football playoff rankings came out last night. The football world is buzzing with many, many “what if” scenarios. Imagine if the top 50% of the schools in Indiana were eligible for playoffs. People would be looking at their schedules and the schedules of their opponents, identifying “must wins” and constructing innumerable “what if” scenarios. Instead, most of our schools are playing out the string over the last several weeks, hoping to get healthy and have the ping pong balls bounce their way. What a lost opportunity this represents.

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On 10/20/2017 at 2:06 PM, Footballking16 said:

Not only do you get rewarded with a playoff bid but you get home field advantage.

LCC gets a home game with two wins.  Tell me that isn't rewarding a schedule, ie an AD and geography over performance.

 

On 10/20/2017 at 3:10 PM, bobref said:

Beats the heck out of a patch on your jacket that says “8th place 2017 Sectional 32.”

In decades I have never seen a patch in football for sectional runner-up.  That's just being ridiculous.  

 

The fact is that any playoff proposal should be ran with 1A as the first test.  The most atypical results will be found there.

This year you find a 2-7 team with a home game, the geographic division of teams where in the south there is an incredibly disproportionate number of teams who didn't make it (25% of 'South' schools came from 'North Sectionals' or only 40% of 'south' schools qualified), and quite a few fairly long drives early.

1 hour ago, bobref said:

People would be looking at their schedules and the schedules of their opponents, identifying “must wins” and constructing innumerable “what if” scenarios.

I remember doing this a couple years back.  In 1A one of those games that mattered in the "what-if" was Florida Deaf vs. Alabama Deaf.  If a game with no media coverage hundreds of miles from Indiana means who gets to go home and who gets to go on the system is insane.

Edited by FLP_NDRox
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3 minutes ago, FLP_NDRox said:

I remember doing this a couple years back.  In 1A one of those games that mattered in the "what-if" was Florida Deaf vs. Alabama Deaf.  If a game with no media coverage hundreds of miles from Indiana means who gets to go home and who gets to go on the system is insane.

Anecdotal anomalies as evidence, the last refuge of a weak argument.

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11 minutes ago, bobref said:

Anecdotal anomalies as evidence, the last refuge of a weak argument.

The problem is that any computer qualifying system will be riddled with these anomalies, particularly for the smallest fifth of schools.  You'll see it elsewhere. 

Look at the school I previously overlooked, South Vermilion.  They went 7-2 in the smallest small school conference in the State.  However, a few years ago SV left their old conference of similar sized schools due to chronic uncompetitive teams.  That conference, the WIC, only had 3 of 12 teams in the top 32 of their respective classes (4A to 1A).  Every team in that conference has to think there's no way the Wildcats are more deserving, as do much of the 3A teams in the Sagarin ratings on the outside looking in.

It's not like Indiana Deaf is going to stop playing out of state deaf schools, so every year these out of state deaf schools will matter in systems where out of state strength of schedule will matter.  In class A the margins are so thin these games will matter to maybe a third of the 1A.

These anomalies need to be addressed before a qualifying system is proposed.

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Just now, FLP_NDRox said:

The problem is that any computer qualifying system will be riddled with these anomalies, particularly for the smallest fifth of schools.  You'll see it elsewhere. 

Look at the school I previously overlooked, South Vermilion.  They went 7-2 in the smallest small school conference in the State.  However, a few years ago SV left their old conference of similar sized schools due to chronic uncompetitive teams.  That conference, the WIC, only had 3 of 12 teams in the top 32 of their respective classes (4A to 1A).  Every team in that conference has to think there's no way the Wildcats are more deserving, as do much of the 3A teams in the Sagarin ratings on the outside looking in.

It's not like Indiana Deaf is going to stop playing out of state deaf schools, so every year these out of state deaf schools will matter in systems where out of state strength of schedule will matter.  In class A the margins are so thin these games will matter to maybe a third of the 1A.

These anomalies need to be addressed before a qualifying system is proposed.

The erroneous assumption underlying your critique of a playoff qualification system is that the schools' scheduling practices would stay the same as they are now, something that the experience of other states has proved is not true. There will undoubtedly be a period of adjustment, which will certainly include conference realignments. Then the situation will stabilize.

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2 minutes ago, bobref said:

The erroneous assumption underlying your critique of a playoff qualification system is that the schools' scheduling practices would stay the same as they are now, something that the experience of other states has proved is not true. There will undoubtedly be a period of adjustment, which will certainly include conference realignments. Then the situation will stabilize.

Again, it rewards ADs and Geography.  This isn't college.  This isn't even Ohio.  You are only going to play whoever is approximately your size within an hour, 2hrs tops.  Which is mostly who they already play as near as I can tell.

 

At that point you might as well play districts.

 

And I know you're OK with that. 

 

The problem is I don't know how many boards and/or ADs are OK with that.

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Just now, FLP_NDRox said:

Again, it rewards ADs and Geography.  This isn't college.  This isn't even Ohio.  You are only going to play whoever is approximately your size within an hour, 2hrs tops.  Which is mostly who they already play as near as I can tell.

 

At that point you might as well play districts.

 

And I know you're OK with that. 

 

The problem is I don't know how many boards and/or ADs are OK with that.

I suspect not enough are to foster a change. Too much of the entitlement mentality that the "all in" system breeds.

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4 minutes ago, bobref said:

Too much of the entitlement mentality that the "all in" system breeds.

Or not enough money to bus these kids all over the state every other week all fall.

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5 minutes ago, FLP_NDRox said:

Or not enough money to bus these kids all over the state every other week all fall.

That probably wouldn't be necessary in most places, at least for smaller schools, if you're talking about the regular season.

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1 minute ago, bobref said:

That probably wouldn't be necessary in most places, at least for smaller schools, if you're talking about the regular season.

To game the system like you imply they should, they will.  Every bad sectional drive will happen in 8 team district play.  I suppose it would be better in 4 team districts, but those will likely result in some great teams sitting.

My phone is dying.

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4 minutes ago, FLP_NDRox said:

To game the system like you imply they should, they will.  Every bad sectional drive will happen in 8 team district play.  I suppose it would be better in 4 team districts, but those will likely result in some great teams sitting.

My phone is dying.

Especially among smaller schools, they are relatively close together, or at least, no further apart than travel distances are now. The most likely scenario would be 8 team districts which would, in most cases, be the equivalent of your sectional. Travel distances would not be appreciably greater than they are now. The exceptions would be the small school surrounded by larger schools, or the large school surrounded by small schools, since they would have to go beyond the immediate area to find like-sized opponents. But in a system like Ohio's, where strength of schedule is factored in by using the success of the opponents you have defeated, there is still plenty of room to play schools of different sizes. You just need to make sure your schedule has the appropriate mix.

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I guess i really don't see the point in this.  It sounds to me like a solution looking for a problem.  What is the specific problem a qualification system would try to remedy?  How would a qualification system benefit student/athletes? How would a qualification system benefit school athletic departments? How would a qualification system benefit the IHSAA?  These are the questions that IHSAA and school corporations will ask.

Unless there are clear answers to those questions then this entire topic is really pointless IMO.

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9 minutes ago, slicer28 said:

I guess i really don't see the point in this.  It sounds to me like a solution looking for a problem.  What is the specific problem a qualification system would try to remedy?  How would a qualification system benefit student/athletes? How would a qualification system benefit school athletic departments? How would a qualification system benefit the IHSAA?  These are the questions that IHSAA and school corporations will ask.

Unless there are clear answers to those questions then this entire topic is really pointless IMO.

Not all change is designed to “fix a problem.” Sometimes change makes an already adequate situation better. It’s called “improvement.” Horse-drawn carriages got people where they wanted to go. Fortunately, someone wasn’t satisfied with that, and the automobile came along.

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So, schools still make their own schedules, right? That right there is the issue.  If all that goes into making the playoffs is record, like it is here in Illinois, why would a team go out and pick up a challenging game?  

Back when I was at Chatard (before the State title runs) Howe closed, leaving an open date in the schedule.  Chatard couldn't find an in state team that was willing to play.  The smaller schools were afraid to get pounded by a more physical school, while the bigger schools saw no advantage of playing a smaller school that had to potential to beat them and make them look bad.  

In a system where record decides who is in and who is out, it would make it even harder for a team like that to get a game.  It would reward teams that played easy competition, and possibly leave the schools that did take chances out.  Record only likely would have Chatard and Catherdal sitting at home right now. 

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Add this caveat and I'm down - You win 7, you are in.  Have to win at least 3 to stay in.

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14 hours ago, bobref said:

Not all change is designed to “fix a problem.” Sometimes change makes an already adequate situation better. It’s called “improvement.” Horse-drawn carriages got people where they wanted to go. Fortunately, someone wasn’t satisfied with that, and the automobile came along.

The someone who wasn't satisfied with a horse-drawn carriage likely identified specific problems (speed of travel, ability to travel long distances, the smell of manure), and then used the innovation of the internal combustion engine to solve those identified problems.

How would a qualification system be an "improvement" for the IHSAA, School Corporations and the Student/Athletes?  I understand that there are some fans that think it would improve the games by making the regular season "mean something", but this is high school athletics.  It isn't for the fans.  It's for the student/athletes. It makes great conversation, but like i posted previously, until there is an argument that any sort of qualification system would benefit these groups this is never going to happen.

I understand it makes for a fun diversion to discuss on this forum.  I just don't think this will happen.  The move to 6A had clear identifiable issues that a 6th classification was attempting to solve.  So did the success factor program.  They also had benefits to the IHSAA, school corporations, and student/athletes that could be articulated (regardless of whether or not everyone agreed with them).

Just my $0.02.

 

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2 hours ago, slicer28 said:

The someone who wasn't satisfied with a horse-drawn carriage likely identified specific problems (speed of travel, ability to travel long distances, the smell of manure), and then used the innovation of the internal combustion engine to solve those identified problems.

How would a qualification system be an "improvement" for the IHSAA, School Corporations and the Student/Athletes?  I understand that there are some fans that think it would improve the games by making the regular season "mean something", but this is high school athletics.  It isn't for the fans.  It's for the student/athletes. It makes great conversation, but like i posted previously, until there is an argument that any sort of qualification system would benefit these groups this is never going to happen.

I understand it makes for a fun diversion to discuss on this forum.  I just don't think this will happen.  The move to 6A had clear identifiable issues that a 6th classification was attempting to solve.  So did the success factor program.  They also had benefits to the IHSAA, school corporations, and student/athletes that could be articulated (regardless of whether or not everyone agreed with them).

Just my $0.02.

 

You don't think the student athletes who play high school football would enjoy the thrill of regular season games that have a playoff atmosphere because playoff qualifying is on the line? You don't think they'd enjoy having a community of fans behind them, excited about mid-season games because they represent a chance to put them in the driver's seat when it comes to playoff qualifying? Seriously, this isn't rocket science. When games have more meaning for all involved, they generate more interest, more excitement and, frankly, a better quality of coaching and playing.

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