Extra Qualifier Sectional Plan

Rationale

The extra team qualifier plan was created to help solve the issue of the “best teams” not always earning a trip to state. This will alter the current system which often sees the elimination of strong teams because some sectionals are loaded with several ranked teams with only two earning a berth to the WIAA state meet. The proposal presented here takes a look at whether or not the association could develop an agreed-upon percentage that would help address this issue. This proposal seeks to provide an avenue to state qualification for those teams that are in “tough” sectionals.

Rationale

The extra team qualifier plan was created to help solve the issue of the “best teams” not always earning a trip to state. This will alter the current system which often sees the elimination of strong teams because some sectionals are loaded with several ranked teams with only two earning a berth to the WIAA state meet. The proposal presented here takes a look at whether or not the association could develop an agreed-upon percentage that would help address this issue. This proposal seeks to provide an avenue to state qualification for those teams that are in “tough” sectionals.

Proposal

This plan proposes basing state qualification on the current system of two slots per division/gender but adds additional qualifying slots based on rigorously high performance by a team. The proposal has been vetted by two methods:

1.  In order to earn an extra qualifying berth in this proposal, data suggests a team would need to place its top five runners within the top 29% of the field and finish in third place. The 13-year collection of data suggests that 29% is a good number because, on average, one team from each division/gender would earn a berth to state. To restate this, in most years based on past data, the state meet would need to accommodate one extra team in each division in each gender race. That is a total of 6 additional teams in the tournament. This is the Carstens data-based proposal.

 

2.  Kent Miehe created a different take - When trying to put a metric other than state rankings into account to determine what a “strong” or “weak” sectional would look like, his calculations determined at the 29% of the field criteria, 77% of the time, a team would qualify from what would be considered one of the top 3 toughest sectionals in each division/gender.

 

2.  In terms of operation, trophy and medals for the extra qualifier team would be sent to the third place school(s) following the sectional race. Individual qualifiers are still the top five runners not on the qualifying teams (whether there are 2 or 3 teams)

Supporting Thoughts           

Qualifying based on a percentage of the field works well across all sectionals and the state because it is performance based and must be done on that day. Very similar to how track and field athletes can earn an extra qualifier in sectionals, this proposal helps support the WIAA’s mission of having geographical representation across the state. All areas are still represented as they have in the past along with the possibility of having another team at state due to anomalies of a higher concentration of strong teams in that part of the state for that one year.

Other reasons that this works well is the impartial and objective nature of the decision. There is no committee or group of individuals who would decide the fate of a team long after the races are over. Teams will leave their sectional knowing mathematically if they have met the criteria because it will be calculated by the timer/host school and be announced at the awards ceremony.

Data

Chad has done extensive data as he put together this proposal below are links to a number of different documents and spreadsheet outlining what would have happening if we had used this method in past season.  If you have any questions about the specifics of the plan please email Chad Carstens at ccarstens@wwusd.org.

The Proposal with 10 years of Data

Percent of Scoring Runners

Strength of Sectional

Coaches Conversation
Click Here to read the conversation on the WCCCA Forum that coaches have been having about this proposal.  If you would like to contribute to the conversation you need to be a WCCCA member and request access to the forum.
Contact Us

Bryon Graun

President

Matt Polzin

Past President

Chad Carstens

Proposal Author

Dominic Newman
Clinic Chairman

Memberships

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