Policy Proposal – Reformatting the Bracket for Nationals

This policy proposal was authored in two parts by Felix Perrone and Adam Hynes. Both parties wish to see change to the single-elimination bracket portion of Nationals, but they wish to see things change a bit differently.


Felix Perrone: Limiting Spots for the Championship Bracket

This policy proposal is to reformat the way the single-elimination bracket portion of Nationals is structured. This will certainly cause some controversy, but I want you to consider it for the betterment of the organization and the Nationals event, not just your team.

I believe only teams ranked 1-8 should play for the National title. With our organization growing so rapidly, we need to think about the structure of Nationals in the future. This year’s Nationals will consist of 24 teams, this means if you are ranked 1-8 you will have to win 4 games in a row to be crowned champions of college dodgeball. If you are ranked 9-24, you will have to win 5 games in a row. All of this comes after playing three games the day before. That is a lot of dodgeball. I would say it’s too much for one weekend.

I would like to restructure the Nationals championship Sunday bracket starting Nationals 2018. Anyone ranked outside of the top 8 will play one more game on Sunday against an evenly matched opponent who they have not played this season, then they will leave. The top 8 will play each other to determine the winner. This will reduce the number of games the champions, and runners-up, have to play on Sunday to three. This will also save the organization time and money because there will be less games to officiate, less gym time to pay for, and less worry of sending people on the road late in the evening to complete a long trip home after a weekend of tiring dodgeball.

To determine the number of games to be played in any single elimination tournament, all you do is take the total number of teams and subtract it by 1. So this year we have 24 teams, that means there will be 23 games played on Sunday. With this format I am proposing, there would only be 14 games for a 24 team tournament. Each game at Nationals this year costs the league $43.00 to officiate, so this will save us $387 which can be used for other amenities that teams can benefit from.

This will also get rid of some of the games where the outcome is almost certain (1v16, 2v15, 3v14, 4v13). There’s no need for those games to be played in all honesty because the higher ranked teams feel as if they’re wasting energy for the tougher games later, and the lower ranked teams are not having as much fun as they could be since their opponent is vastly more skilled.

I’d be willing to discuss options for only allowing the top 12 to participate in the championship run also. With a 24 team tournament, this will only require 17 games to be played, which is a savings of $258.

I believe this will enhance the competition throughout the season because teams know they have to fight for those top 8 (or 12) spots in order to be a contender for the Nationals champion title. I am open to this discussion though! Let’s begin :)


Adam Hynes: Championship Bracket and Consolidation Bracket

There are certain aspects of Felix’s proposal that I agree with when it comes to reformatting Nationals however I wanted to give my own spin on this as well.  I believe that Nationals should be TWO different tournaments on Championship Sunday.  I believe there should be a Championship bracket and a consolation bracket; very similar to the NIT in college Basketball.  I also would like to see this happen for Nationals of 2018.

Rationale: I believe there would be better and fierce competition of games to play among all caliber of teams.

I agree completely with Felix; I will be honest and say no one wants to watch a GVSU vs. Ohio match up round one or two on Sunday.  Quite frankly, that is just a waste of energy for both squads and I play for Ohio University.  Right now, I still believe the league talent gap is too big so why not start out with seeing GVSU play Penn State for a potential round one or BGSU vs Ohio round one? It would give people more of a reason to come to nationals and see our league grow knowing that they have a better chance of winning on Sunday.  If every other college sport has some type of big national tournament and other consolation tournament, I cannot see why we would not have the same option available.

This also does not hurt/help any team for the future of their program.  This gives teams of all talent levels a reason to continue to play games and keep pushing forward.  It would depend on the record that the team has for which ever bracket they are placed in.  I would rather see a top 8 Championship bracket with no play-in games and then another bracket for the remaining teams with play-in games.

Everyone that goes to Nationals loves to compete, have fun, and show that they are a proven dodgeball program, otherwise if they don’t feel that way it would be a waste of money, time and effort.  Everyone wants to see the league grow and I believe this would be step in the right direction for all schools and all skill levels.

Please make comments and concerns noted, it will only help us grow for the future.


Policy Proposal by Wes Peters: Change to Nationals Sunday (and potentially Saturday) Format

This proposal is meant to change the way we organize nationals and how it is played on Sunday. Saturday can remain as is, or we can potentially change it to 2 games per team, or 2 games per team for the teams that qualify for the “Championship Tournament”, I’m open for debate on that.

For Sunday: Only the top 10 or 12 (again, open for debate) teams in the nation qualify for the Championship Tournament. From there the bracket is simple, and it’s single elimination (as it is now), until a champion is crowned. I would also honestly be open to making it the top 8 teams, and double elimination. Actually now that I think of it, an 8 team double elimination tournament would be dope AF. 

Meanwhile, the team’s that do not qualify get an additional 2-3 (depending on whether we shorten the number of games we decide to play Saturday) games of round robin style play, in order to ensure teams stop coming to only wake up and potentially play one game on Sunday where they will (inevitably, lets not beat around the bush for the sake of being nice) get crushed by a high seed. And lets be honest, we’ve had teams no show for the first round in the past because of this very reason.

Rationale: There are only a certain number of teams that realistically have a shot at winning the national title. Why make a bunch of teams show up Sunday morning to get smashed by high seeds and go home at 10am?

Having teams that don’t qualify for the main tournament play 3 games on Sunday, they get more opportunities to play teams they never normally get to play, they get their money’s worth for traveling that far, and the teams that qualify for the main tournament don’t have to use a lot of their energy playing first (and potentially second) round matches that are inevitable wins for them. We can even start the bracket play a little later so that we can get more round robin in first, doesn’t matter.

Oh, and by having to qualify for a national tournament, combined hopefully with the Bailey/O’Brien ranking policy change, will make the regular season EXTREMELY competitive where the every match counts.

Feel free to debate and disagree, nerds.

Author: Felix Perrone

NCDA President

1 thought on “Policy Proposal – Reformatting the Bracket for Nationals”

  1. Only taking the top 8 teams due to their ranking makes it pointless for midrange and bottom level teams to make the trip. Why have all those costs if you don’t have the possibility of winning the championship?

    What about group play? As the league expands invite the top 32 teams. (If one of the top 32 can’t make it then open the invitation to number 33 and so on) 8 groups of 4. Winner of each group competes in the single elimination bracket on Sunday. (Seeding of elimination bracket dependent on point differential and other tie breakers).

    -Having a max amount of teams for nationals would further legitimize our championship event as a league. Bubble teams will really have to work it.
    – Teams play a max of 6 games in the weekend.
    – Every game in group play becomes valuable (that 2-0 team has to make sure the 0-2 team doesn’t screw them for Sunday seeding)
    – 32 teams get the chance to win it all
    – Instead of all these scheduling troubles you’ll have a mold to go on for future years (48 games on Saturday, 7 on Sunday)
    -With so few games on Sunday teams not competing in the elimination bracket can play some extra games.

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