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jroddin
March 2nd, 2010, 04:21 PM
Nationals Scoring: Regional vs Local Club Categories

The USMS House of Delegates passed a rules change regarding club scoring at Nationals that took effect beginning with 2009 Short Course Nationals in Clovis.

Previously, club awards at Nationals simply went to the top ten highest scoring clubs in Menís, Womenís and Combined categories. The new rule established two separate club categories: Regional and Local. A formal description of the two club categories is below (104.5.6B[1] & [2] from page 34 of the 2010 USMS Rule Book):


(1)Regional - For competition at national championship meets, a Regional Club consists of a club made up of those swimmers who represent a club at nationals, but at competitions within their LMSC, they compete for an entity or subgroup (such as a workout group) that is different than the one they compete with at nationals.

(2) Local - For competition at national championship meets, a Local Club consists of a club that does not qualify as a Regional Club.

Based on these definitions, the following scoring categories will be in place for 2010 Nationals:

Regional Clubs:
AFAM
AKMS
ARIZ
CMS
FACT
GAJA
HIMA
HMS
IAMA
IM
MICH
MM
NCMS
NEM
NIAG
NMMS
OREG
PNA
SKY
SMS
SWOM
UTAH
WMAC
WMSC

Local Clubs: all other registered USMS clubs.

Please note clubs may contest their designation or the designation of another club by filing an appeal with the chair of the Championship Committee (Jeff Roddin, Championship@usms.org) at least 45 days prior to the national championship meet (those deadlines would be April 5 for Atlanta and June 25 for Puerto Rico).

Jeff Roddin
Championship Committee Chair

osterber
April 5th, 2010, 10:51 AM
I will be interested to know if or how much controversy this causes at nationals, and/or how many appeals get filed, and how they get resolved.

I think part of what I'm fearful of is that the rule is necessarily a bit vague.

For example - NEM (New England Masters Swim Club). NEM is, completely, absolutely, a "regional club". Absolutely no doubt in my mind and I would never claim otherwise. We have 1500 or 1600 swimmers, spread across dozens if not over 100 workout groups.

However, here in New England, there are only three meets per year where NEM swimmers compete as separate workout groups. Those meets are our SCY, LCM, and SCM championship meets. At all other New England meets, NEM people are simply NEM.

Further, at our championship meets, we do have NEM swimmers who still swim as NEM, without a workout group. At our SCY meet a week ago, there were about 20-25 people in this category.

So I could see some of those people making the claim that they're not swimming for workout groups, and they are swimming on the same club, NEM, in their local meets as they do at Nationals. As such, their club, NEM, should not be considered a "regional" club, per the letter of the rule.

I'm not saying I would agree with that at all. NEM is a regional club, period, in my book. I'm just saying that it's admittedly very difficult to write an ironclad rule that leaves no room for interpretation. I wonder if there are any regional clubs out there that are more borderline cases than NEM is, and who might have more gray area to appeal in. :-)

-Rick

Betsy
April 5th, 2010, 12:55 PM
Rick,
This was a hot topic at convention. Your questions indicate that you see the problem in writing a rule. I think the current rule is the best we could come up with that is enforceable. It's not an opinion of what should or shouldn't be regional. If the LMSC indicates the subgroup on the registration card (workout group names) then it is a regional club. If the registration card only indicates the club name, it is a "local" or single club.
Betsy

osterber
April 5th, 2010, 02:13 PM
Correct. I have no problem with the rule conceptually. Just, as always, it's very hard to write any sort of legislation without creating potential loopholes. For me, this rule is certainly clear enough that I certainly understand the spirit of it, and have absolutely no objection to the spirit of it. Just will be interesting to see if anyone tries to create a loophole, etc.

I had forgotten (not really, but temporarily forgotten) that USMS has made workout groups slightly more official in that they're on the registration card, and thus tracked in the registration database. That does certainly help to make this a more black and white with far fewer shades of gray.

-Rick

pwb
April 6th, 2010, 04:44 PM
How about we just not score teams at all? Wouldn't that save a lot of time & energy at the meet, at conventions and on these forums? Do the majority of USM swimmers who go to Nationals care about team scoring? I like the idea of teams for relays, but the team scoring, regardless of how you slice it, has never really seemed to matter that much as it's generally about numbers of swimmers.

Betsy
April 7th, 2010, 12:24 PM
I agree. I love relays, but I don't get too excited over team scores.

Chris Stevenson
April 7th, 2010, 05:10 PM
How about we just not score teams at all?

I have thought this many times. But I have also heard others claim that team scoring helps motivate people to compete or even to build their program (based on a good finish at nationals).

Relays are fun, though.

stillwater
April 7th, 2010, 06:08 PM
Team scores are fun.

Perhaps the problem is a few vocal people who really, really, really, care about being on the winning team.

Our team won a banner (maybe we had it printed ouselves) that we hung at the pool for a day. It was nice, but I don't think most cared one whit. It did raise interest in competition, allowed people to brag a bit, and have a group hug.

It is a tough problem as how to score fairly, and somebody will alway be pouting.

I salute those who are trying to resolve the issue.

Allen Stark
April 8th, 2010, 03:45 PM
I am fine with the way things are.I suspect the main thing team scoring does is help motivate the local swimmers to come.I doubt the team scoring motivates many people to fly cross-country to a meet.