Nationals is two things: the National Tournament (Section 126.96.36.199) and the extra-strength Non-Bracket Matches (Section 188.8.131.52). 184.108.40.206 is purposely written broadly, but for the time being we’ll refer to it as Saturday and Sunday. Currently, it defines that each team gets three unique opponents to play on Saturday.
I propose a less stringent definition of Saturday’s required games, a minimum of two. For Nationals 2016, I also propose that each team receives 2 matches on Saturday and at least one game in Sunday’s tournament bracket. This will guarantee that each team receives at least three matches over the Nationals Event weekend.
In a sixteen team bracket, Sunday’s bracket will result in the two Championship teams playing four games on Sunday, meaning they could play Seven 50 minute games in 45 hours over the event. That’s insane and dangerous. At least four teams will play three matches on Sunday, totaling Six games in 43 hours.
There have been 176 events this season. The average games played per attending team is anticipated to be 17.6 after this weekend. The median is about 15 games. We don’t need 3 games on Saturday to boost team’s match counts and give a more accurate seeding for Sunday’s bracket. That’s already been done to good effect in the regular season.
PSU (3 games), WKU (8), and UWP (8) have the least games played among the attending teams, so they would benefit from a third game to help boost the accuracy of their ranking. We could still schedule an extra game exclusively for these competitors. As far as the remaining 15 teams, they have played more than enough games to determine good seeds.
This frees up a great deal of time, which I believe we don’t really have to begin with. This will also allow us to Instead of needing to schedule 9.5 hours for 27 games and 7 heats on Saturday, we only need to schedule 7.5 hours for 18 games and 5 heats. Maybe 20 matches to give PSU a games played adjustment. This also saves us about $388 in officiating costs on this year’s increasingly tight budget.
This extra two hours gives us some serious advantages. We have actual time to host the All Star Game, Ladies Match and Alumni games. We can hold a decent Fastest Throw comp, and other amenities for team players. Gladiatorial series? Continuous / last man standing? We can schedule an hour for the entire Executive Board to meet and do work. We have extra time for a Captains’ Meeting where everyone’s not grossly tired and cranky.
I think this is going to be more fun, more healthy for our organization, more healthy for our collegiate athletes, and more fun.