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Chad Carsten's Sectional Proposal
In Sectional Proposals
Marty Bushland
Dec 11, 2019
Eric, Sadly, you probably are correct. There may not be enough support to try and better balance sectionals because I fear many coaches may vote for what is best for them and not what we may feel is best for the State Meet...getting more of the best teams to compete against each other at the last WIAA Meet of the season. It is, and isn't, surprising to me that the WIAA didn't listen to your concerns about the three teams you mentioned especially since as you stated, it would have been very easy to shift a team like Port north and they still would have maintained "acceptable geographical representation". In the past, the WIAA has made "accommodations" for certain teams but it appears that those notes and procedures were unfortunately not shared with our new Director. The issue of who is assigned to which Sectional has been a long time debated and fair concern that would be better understood, or probably still not, if some transparency was present. Certainly we see numerous teams that are not assigned to the closest sectional to them and when that happens concerns arise. Some simple tweaks to the current sectional set up could greatly improve neighboring sectional balance and maybe that is something that needs emphasized and shared with Kate and the WIAA Staff after Chad's plan goes through the approval process. His plan would gain much more support from coaches I have spoken with if the sectionals were better balanced, it then may be more like to determine some of the most worthy 3rd place finishers. But as Randy stated...a panel of coaches could very easily select some of the most worthy 3rd place teams. I'm betting we will see his plan shot down because it allows more more than the 52 teams we currently have, which means more expenses, and I have been told numerous times that is not happening. I know there are numerous other plans floating around and I encourage everyone with a thought on this to contact the WCCCCCCCCCCCA and get your plan on the agenda for the January Clinic.
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Chad Carsten's Sectional Proposal
In Sectional Proposals
Marty Bushland
Oct 29, 2019
The fundamental flaw with CC Sectionals is the lack of balance between them in the number of complete teams, total runners, and depth of quality runners. D2 Girls had the largest disparity with the Wisco Sectional only having SEVEN complete teams and 57 finishers in comparison to FIVE other D2 sectionals that had 14 or 15 complete teams and 95-103 finishers on the girls side!?!? So,7 vs. 15, and 57 vs. 103...that simply should never be allowed to happen. Even D1 had a sectional with only EIGHT complete teams and 61 finishers whereas 12/84 should be the norm... Then you have some sectionals with five ranked teams and neighboring sectionals with one or less ranked teams. So...the luck or unluckiness of your sectional placement may be a greater factor on qualifying for state than the health, and quality of your team... With the dumping of 40ish small former D2 teams in to D3 appears to have helped offset some of the big disparities that have existed in the past, but 11 vs. 17 and 92 vs. 123 still did occur! Looking at comparing divisions you have 7 vs 17 and two teams make it out of each, and then the next five best runners not on those teams would mean FIVE out a field of 43 vs. Five out of a field of 109...shocking that this has been allowed to continue to happen! As Randy mentioned, with the use of some ranking data, AND factual data on the incomplete, weak, average, and good to highly ranked teams - we certainly should be able come up with much better balanced sectionals, and THEN a system like what Chad has worked on would have much more merit. Can the D1 coaches explain why they are not pushing for combining sectionals? 8-12 teams seems like such a small meet, especially when you have 20 in the State Field. If Eight D3 schools were able to host sectionals with 20-22 starting boxes, I would think finding Five sectional sites for D1 that could handle 20-24 teams wouldn't be an issue. Let's hope Chad's plan and the current unbalanced set up of sectionals sparks some positive discussion and workable solutions that can be sold to the powers that be at the WIAA!
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Chad Carsten's Sectional Proposal
In Sectional Proposals
Marty Bushland
Feb 06, 2019
@Chad Carstens my bold will follow your underlined responses...probably time to start a new thread...Good Stuff, Chad! From what I've been hearing, historically, you are correct Marty. And that is the big issue here - WILL more teams be allowed to qualify for State? I am willing to try and see if we can change that perception with moving a proposal forward. Sounds Good! If told - No, we need their rationale and then it should be posted somewhere on this site so when others are working on a plan they would then know some parameters/guidelines with in which they should work, unless data could be gathered to prove the WIAA wrong, or that we are not being treated the same as other sports. However, I think we would be doomed to always think that must be the case and shouldn't try and come up with alternative solutions. I agree that we should keep trying to come up with alternative solutions, but after 10+ years of hearing NO MORE TEAMS/RUNNERS at STATE, and with no justification as to why, I get frustrated that you weren't given that parameter to work within, and that we spend time talking about something that has been shot down time and time again in the past. Again, I am willing to put something on the table for the WIAA to consider and see if it will be a yes or no. If we operate by what we've "heard" over the years, I think that is a troubling way to go. Agreed, but typically it doesn't make sense to present the same ideas when they have said no to more teams/individuals at State in the past. As you may recall, Kate was quite impressive in her answers to your thoughts on this at the clinic last Friday. I definitely give her credit for replying, but what did you feel was impressive? I walked away thinking that Kate has a strong knowledge of how the WIAA operates and I believe her that if the membership supports the proposal she will do everything she can to get it passed. That is definitely something different from any past director, but I would rather have YOU sell YOUR plan, and that was something that hasn't happened in the past and probably a reason we are still talking about this issue. I also don't believe Kate gets to speak about the plan at each level, but maybe I'm wrong. It would be best if BOTH YOU and her could be available for questions at each level. But basically everything that could and should pass should be so obvious that if the coaches of the sport that propose it, agree that if the majority want it, it should go through...all the way, at every level. Lastly, if we don't give the WIAA something to consider then there will never be any changes to our sport. I totally agree, but as stated above, I will be shocked if they (Jim/WIAA) allow more teams to advance to State. I ask for your support in voting "yes" so that we can see if there is light at the end of the tunnel on this proposal. I would also be excited to hear what they have to say. But if we don't give them something to consider, we won't really know what "they" think. This is where our Association and the WIAA has failed us (no transparency with past advisory meetings as to the whys and why nots). They (the WIAA) have said no to more teams and/or extra qualifiers in the past, and I believe it was because of financial constraints and field size concerns that already exist in the minds of many in D1. Something to remember....in this proposal the same amount of qualifiers from 2006 (when we went to 10 sectionals for D1 and 8 for D2/D3) are making it to state in 2019 and beyond so there is no change in that regard. Wait, isn't the point of your plan to add a few of the better teams that meet your top 29% criteria? Wouldn't there be more teams than there there is currently? I wasn't clear in my thoughts. I'm sorry. I meant for it to read that the current amount of qualifiers will stay the same, with the possible addition of a few more across all divisions/genders. So there aren't less qualifiers or a sectional being removed. At the very least, state will get the status quo, with the possibility of a few more teams. Does that make sense? Certainly, and that was what I thought your plan entailed. Many could argue yes as it doesn't reduce the qualifiers (If it gets passed as is) and there is a 77% chance of getting a team into the state meet from a "Top 3 sectional"" based on Kent's data crunching: Again, I appreciate your work, and Kent's work, but please explain how 23% of the 3rd place teams in "TOP 3 Sectionals" don't also advance as extra qualifiers? How would you feel if you were the 3rd best team in the State and were in the toughest sectional and you don't advance to State but 10 teams you have beaten numerous times advance, including an obviously average, never ranked at all during the season team advances? Have we fixed anything in that secenario? https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1xgWKnlpLX0Dbyeda7wrBV7mboiwkKBBaISCi9obRtHI/edit?usp=sharing Marty, if our team was ranked as the third "best" team in state and we don't perform at sectionals AND didn't meet the extra qualifier proposal then we obviously didn't do our job on race day. That's not a flaw on a system or sectional arrangement. The flaw lies in how we executed on race day and those other two teams clearly earned the right to compete the following week. So, if the #1, #2, #3, #4, #7 and #11 ranked teams in the state are all in your sectional and your kids all run season bests and your team is the closest they have ever been to the #2 ranked team, yet because your sectional is truly stacked and your top 5 are not in the top 29% how can you take the blame and say you or your athletes didn't do their job on race day? I hope you can see that the real issue here is the makeup of the sectional? Especially since the neighboring sectional has no ranked teams, and three of the ranked teams in your sectional are closer to the sectional with zero ranked teams...so much for geographical representation! Lastly, is this something you would support on a 2 or 3 year trial basis? Certainly, if the WIAA would actually allow more teams at State, I have to take my chances that maybe if we were 3rd we could get lucky and pick up one of the EQ spots. But the same complaints, or even more will surface when the best 3rd place teams fail to advance because of the disparities in sectional setups. Thanks for your support! You're welcome!
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Chad Carsten's Sectional Proposal
In Sectional Proposals
Marty Bushland
Feb 06, 2019
@Chad Carstens Thanks for the reply, Chad. I replied in bold below. From what I've been hearing, historically, you are correct Marty. And that is the big issue here - WILL more teams be allowed to qualify for State? However, I think we would be doomed to always think that must be the case and shouldn't try and come up with alternative solutions. I agree that we should keep trying to come up with alternative solutions, but after 10+ years of hearing NO MORE TEAMS/RUNNERS at STATE, and with no justification as to why, I get frustrated that you weren't given that parameter to work within, and that we spend time talking about something that has been shot down time and time again in the past. As you may recall, Kate was quite impressive in her answers to your thoughts on this at the clinic last Friday. I definitely give her credit for replying, but what did you feel was impressive? Lastly, if we don't give the WIAA something top consider then there will never be any changes to our sport. I totally agree, but as stated above, I will be shocked if they (Jim/WIAA) allow more teams to advance to State. Something to remember....in this proposal the same amount of qualifiers from 2006 (when we went to 10 sectionals for D1 and 8 for D2/D3) are making it to state in 2019 and beyond so there is no change in that regard. Wait, isn't the point of your plan to add a few of the better teams that meet your top 29% criteria? Wouldn't there be more teams than there there is currently? Something to think about....is this better than what we have now? Sure, adding a few of the 3rd place teams is better, but I don't like the fact that it is not a true predictor of the best 3rd place teams from sectionals Many could argue yes as it doesn't reduce the qualifiers (If it gets passed as is) and there is a 77% chance of getting a team into the state meet from a "Top 3 sectional"" based on Kent's data crunching: Again, I appreciate your work, and Kent's work, but please explain how 23% of the 3rd place teams in "TOP 3 Sectionals" don't also advance as extra qualifiers? How would you feel if you were the 3rd best team in the State and were in the toughest sectional and you don't advance to State but 10 teams you have beaten numerous times advance, including an obviously average, never ranked at all during the season team advances? Have we fixed anything in that secenario? https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1xgWKnlpLX0Dbyeda7wrBV7mboiwkKBBaISCi9obRtHI/edit?usp=sharing Lastly, is this something you would support on a 2 or 3 year trial basis? Certainly, if the WIAA would actually allow more teams at State, I have to take my chances that maybe if we were 3rd we could get lucky and pick up one of the EQ spots. But the same complaints, or even more will surface when the best 3rd place teams fail to advance because of the disparities in sectional setups.
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Marty Bushland

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