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  1. #41

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    I can't speak for anyone else, but I try to think in terms of the big picture and all the skaters I watch over the years, not to choose favorites.

    I originally had the qualifying circuit idea a decade or so ago when there was more TV coverage of skating in general and I was thinking what might might get enough good skaters at regionals/sectionals that a network like ESPN might be interested in showing highlights.

  2. #42

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    Initially I would say yes, but looking at the scores of Siraj and Wyckoff and their content from Regionals - I would shout NEVER

  3. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by oubik View Post
    Initially I would say yes, but looking at the scores of Siraj and Wyckoff and their content from Regionals - I would shout NEVER
    Yup. And my guess is that the judging would become even more out-of-line if scores were used to fill Nationals slots.

    I would be comfortable with some USFSA committee being allowed to choose two wild card entries for each senior discipline, with no requirement that the slots must be filled.

  4. #44
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    I'd be all for it. Maybe dump Regionals and just have Sectionals, with Qualifying Rounds.
    Do these events make money or are they a drain of the USFS' coffers? Unless the USFS is actually wanting to get rid of these events, I don't think a qualifying score system or a GP style qualifying would improve on the results. As someone mentioned upthread, a qual score system could produce fields that are much too large. They could counter that with a Top N system, but then kids would not know if their score was good enough until after the last event. Plus, it would create the chaos of kids (and we are mostly talking school age teenagers here) flying around trying to cram in one last event in the hopes of raising their score, and most parent do not need this additional expense.

    I understand the issue that the skaters at Nationals aren't necessarily the best, but we are really talking only about the weakest skaters in the field vs similarly weak skaters who did not make the field. In other words, who cares who the bottom 3 skaters at Nationals are? Obviously, the individuals involved care, but if you are looking at the big picture, it really is a non-issue. It is not going to make any difference to the folks watching on TV nor to who makes the international teams.

    I think the kids competing like the pyramid style qualification system. The do well, they move on to the next round. It is very clear and understandable and that next round can be the immediate term goal in itself. For some of these kids, their goal for the season is just to get to Sectionals. Also, one of the things the current system tests is the ability to perform under do-or-die pressure. The alternatives proposed here all have a multiple chance flavor that takes some of that pressure off.
    Last edited by Susan M; 10-06-2011 at 03:56 PM.

  5. #45

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    Quote Originally Posted by barbk View Post
    I would be comfortable with some USFSA committee being allowed to choose two wild card entries for each senior discipline, with no requirement that the slots must be filled.
    The idea of having a very limited number of wild cards (Novice/Junior/Senior) being selected for Nationals from the Sectionals with extra deep/competitive fields has been discussed here in the past. I like it, but the question again arises -- would just using scores across the 3 Sectionals be a fair enough selection process?

  6. #46
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    I think we can all find examples where using a system that relied solely on scores would cause as much issues as we have now. At the Jr/Sr level I think it is important that the best skaters possible all there. For juv/int/novice, I think it also important to have as many skaters as possible have the opportunity to skate at a national level. It is good for the sport to encourage skaters to keep skating and as we limit the number of girls who have a chance we will continue to see smaller numbers. This doesn't mean we open the floodgates, but national events give the best experience possible to skaters that will someday represent the US internationally.

  7. #47
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    You are absolutely correct, oubik! The East Coast (especially New England) always inflates scores to an almost laughable level. At this years N.E. regional for senior ladies a skater earned 125 pts. and never did a triple jump (and she did 1A). Meanwhile, 6 different skaters at the E.G.L. regional had programs chock full of high level triple jumps and 5 of the 6 scored less than 115. That's because East Coast judges consistently hand out ridiculously high component scores. Therefore, it would never be possible to implement any of these proposals because East Coast girls would miraculously score 300 pts!

  8. #48
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    That's because East Coast judges consistently hand out ridiculously high component scores. Therefore, it would never be possible to implement any of these proposals
    I don't actually like a score based qualification system, but I think this particular objection could be pretty easily overcome by making sure the panels at Sectionals all include judges from across the country.

    I do think the idea of USFS-selected wildcards for the final spots has some merit, but don't think it should be based strictly on scores. They should look at the skaters performances, scores, results, and the quality of their skating as a whole and make a subjective judgment. Unfortunately, it probably would not work that way. Instead, the wildcard spots would go to kids with the best connected coaches and/or skaters who have been to Nationals before.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Susan M View Post
    Unfortunately, it probably would not work that way. Instead, the wildcard spots would go to kids with the best connected coaches and/or skaters who have been to Nationals before.
    I agree that the theory is good, but the politics could get ugly.

  10. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    The idea of having a very limited number of wild cards (Novice/Junior/Senior) being selected for Nationals from the Sectionals with extra deep/competitive fields has been discussed here in the past. I like it, but the question again arises -- would just using scores across the 3 Sectionals be a fair enough selection process?
    I would let a committee handle it on a holistic basis, with a goal of only making the invitations when a particularly STRONG performance at Sectionals wasn't quite good enough because of a depth of the particular field at Sectionals. This is simply to address depth-of-field issues, not a good skater having a meltdown at sectionals.

    I'd also only do it for Seniors. There's no tremendous injustice done for a novice or junior skater who finished fifth at sectionals. Yes, he or she might miss a JGP invite, but typically that isn't as much of an issue with those that don't finish strongly at sectionals, and many of those assigned to JGP events compete as Seniors within the USFSA system.

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by barbk View Post
    I'd also only do it for Seniors. There's no tremendous injustice done for a novice or junior skater who finished fifth at sectionals. Yes, he or she might miss a JGP invite, but typically that isn't as much of an issue with those that don't finish strongly at sectionals, and many of those assigned to JGP events compete as Seniors within the USFSA system.
    Most of the senior competitions at sectionals don't tend to be deep enough to warrant this on a regular basis, I'd say. I'm not a fan of the idea in general; it would be way too subjective and political.

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