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Not-so-good games


Dr. D
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After reviewing the results across the state for the first four weeks of the season, I have been surprised by the number of lopsided games.  For example, there were 237 final scores reported on this site for this week’s games.  The margin of difference in those games breaks down as follows:

“Competitive game”               1 – 14 points        75 games (32%)

“Marginally competitive”      15 – 23 points       43 games (18%)

“Not really competitive”       24 – 34 points       48 games (20%)

“Blowout/Running clock”       35+ points            71 games (30%)

Essentially, half of the games in the state were decided by 24 points or more, and therefore “non-competitive” by my definition.  In addition, there were 63 shutouts (27% of games).  While it’s great that there are a number of very strong teams in the state, anyone who is concerned about the long-term health of high school football in Florida should be worried by this trend toward non-competitive results.  Why are there so many struggling teams in Florida?  Is this just a further sign of the “haves” vs. “have-nots”, i.e., the transfer environment?  Are athletes at some schools just not playing football anymore?  Could a disparity in coaching or resources account for this trend?  How long before some schools just give up football if they can no longer compete at a reasonable level?  What are you seeing in your areas?  Am I overreacting or is this cause for concern? 

 

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This trend will continue or even worsen as time goes on, so yes it should be concerning to everyone.  Unfortunately some don't see it as a problem and without strong support for change it will persist.  Your stats basically reflect a running clock in a third of those games reported.  That ain't good for anyone, but I am all ears if you have some solutions in bringing this ship back to shore.  Thanks for the research and your effort in presenting a factual analysis. 

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2 minutes ago, Ray Icaza said:

This trend will continue or even worsen as time goes on, so yes it should be concerning to everyone.  Unfortunately some don't see it as a problem and without strong support for change it will persist.  Your stats basically reflect a running clock in a third of those games reported.  That ain't good for anyone, but I am all ears if you have some solutions in bringing this ship back to shore.  Thanks for the research and your effort in presenting a factual analysis. 

A good example is the Lakeland team we just played Friday night.  I don't consider Winter Haven nor Clearwater as poor programs as they generally are pretty good, yet the average margin in those two games was 36-0 .  Wait for it, AT HALFTIME!!   Thank goodness the staff there showed good sportsmanship and empathy by not scoring hardly at all in the second half I imagine getting reps for those deep on the bench.

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1 hour ago, DarterBlue2 said:

Their hands are tied. When you have the ability to pretty much enroll wherever you want, what can they do?

Not a thing.  At present the only viable solution I see is for HC to be realistic in where their team is competitively among the 570-580 so schools under the FHSAA umbrella.  You don't have control of the district you will be placed in, but you do have control in scheduling the remaining 5, 6 or 7 games.  Are you in the top third, the middle third or the bottom third whereby you choose opponents in your "Classification" for lack of a better term.  You will win some and lose some, but most importantly your kids can compete with teams at the same level.  Most scheduling requires a two-year commitment (home and away), so re-evaluate every couple of years to determine whether to increase/decrease the level of difficulty.   Yes, I know this formula can go completely out the window when someone poaches several of your players.:D

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38 minutes ago, Ray Icaza said:

Not a thing.  At present the only viable solution I see is for HC to be realistic in where their team is competitively among the 570-580 so schools under the FHSAA umbrella.  You don't have control of the district you will be placed in, but you do have control in scheduling the remaining 5, 6 or 7 games.  Are you in the top third, the middle third or the bottom third whereby you choose opponents in your "Classification" for lack of a better term.  You will win some and lose some, but most importantly your kids can compete with teams at the same level.  Most scheduling requires a two-year commitment (home and away), so re-evaluate every couple of years to determine whether to increase/decrease the level of difficulty.   Yes, I know this formula can go completely out the window when someone poaches several of your players.:D

For example a few years ago even tho Dillard was Avg with the coaching staff we had & the way we were losing our top talent to STA,AHP & etc Dillard would have never scheduled then like they did this year. 
 

i believe we’re in the top 5 of having one the toughest schedules in the state. 
 

3 of our opponents are ranked top #15 nationally. 
 

not counting playing 2 of those games on the road. Facing a very good MIAMI Norland team on the road in the KOC whose now (3-0) in regular season play. 
 

then to also travel to unbeaten Miramar and beat them , where Dillard haven’t won since 05. Now Miramar is (2-1) with their only lost is to Dillard. 4 out Dillard 5 games have been on the road. 
 

and even tho we haven’t gone thru this gauntlet undefeated Dillard will most def be battle tested & even better coming out then when we started this season. 

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1 hour ago, badbird said:

Promotion and Relegation system is needed.  Dividing the cheaters into Metro and Suburban doesn't work.

Seems to me we used that formula in our public schools by doing away with meritocracy and not pushing to improve poor performance.  What I described for coaches to do is what you propose without awarding a championship to the best poor performers.  Basically a participation reward.  Metro/Suburban doesn't solve the problems but it levels the playing field to some extent and every team winning a championship in this formula is among the top 10% overall in the state.  The other system would hand out trophies for schools in the bottom 30%  When it comes to cheating, that system won't eliminate that practice either only perfect who can do it best. 

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13 hours ago, PinellasFB said:

FHSAA has to do something about transfers.  It really is killing any chances for competitive balance.

Not true. It’s up to the coaches to not schedule wasted blowout games. Lake Gibson had no business going to play a top ranked GA team. 51-0 is the result. You can avoid that by not taking the game. 
 

“No thanks coach. We are nowhere near your level. We hope to be one day. Good luck with the season coach” 

 

it’s that easy 

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5 minutes ago, Ray Icaza said:

Seems to me we used that formula in our public schools by doing away with meritocracy and not pushing to improve poor performance.  What I described for coaches to do is what you propose without awarding a championship to the best poor performers.  Basically a participation reward.  Metro/Suburban doesn't solve the problems but it levels the playing field to some extent and every team winning a championship in this formula is among the top 10% overall in the state.  The other system would hand out trophies for schools in the bottom 30%  When it comes to cheating, that system won't eliminate that practice either only perfect who can do it best. 

If it makes you feel better you don't have to give them trophies.  With that said I don't see the problem with them getting a trophy.  You get a trophy for winning a two or three team crappy district.  At least they will beat lots of other schools to earn it.  The Metro/Suburban does not level the playing field it actually increases the gap from top to bottom in each class.   It does give a few more teams a chance to compete for a title but it does not level the playing field.   

Here's what I would like to see.  It will never happen but it's the only way to level the playing field.

1A bottom 112 teams 6-8 teams per district.  16 districts

2A next 112 teams 

3A next 112 teams

4A Around 80 schools 4-6 teams per district. 16 districts

5A  Around 80 schools 4-6 teams per district. 16 districts

6A top 32 programs no district go schedule who you want.  All make the playoffs.

 

 

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22 minutes ago, badbird said:

If it makes you feel better you don't have to give them trophies.  With that said I don't see the problem with them getting a trophy.  You get a trophy for winning a two or three team crappy district.  At least they will beat lots of other schools to earn it.  The Metro/Suburban does not level the playing field it actually increases the gap from top to bottom in each class.   It does give a few more teams a chance to compete for a title but it does not level the playing field.   

Here's what I would like to see.  It will never happen but it's the only way to level the playing field.

1A bottom 112 teams 6-8 teams per district.  16 districts

2A next 112 teams 

3A next 112 teams

4A Around 80 schools 4-6 teams per district. 16 districts

5A  Around 80 schools 4-6 teams per district. 16 districts

6A top 32 programs no district go schedule who you want.  All make the playoffs.

 

 

This was proposed a few years ago and couldn't even pass the first round of voting by the coaches committee

 

Problem is a lot of teams and areas represented on those committees are the ones who will try to game the system for their team/area but there are plenty of areas with no representation

 

For example Bobby Johns was supposed to be a North Florida representative but I know during the COVID issue he didn't even talk to every team he's supposed to be representing because he claimed his entire area wanted the season to start at normal start time and both schools in Columbia County were standing against it even though he's out there claiming he talked to every team in his area which is clearly a lie 

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46 minutes ago, nolebull813 said:

Not true. It’s up to the coaches to not schedule wasted blowout games. Lake Gibson had no business going to play a top ranked GA team. 51-0 is the result. You can avoid that by not taking the game. 
 

“No thanks coach. We are nowhere near your level. We hope to be one day. Good luck with the season coach” 

 

it’s that easy 

To be fair some of these teams actually take the games because one they make more money traveling to GA than hosting a game will make or two teams in their general area won't play them 

 

Ik Columbia playing a yearly series with Madison and TCA is because teams in our area won't play us or play those 2 so it helps both programs find games 

 

Too bad not everyone in North Florida are like TCA, Columbia and Madison when it comes to scheduling

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Especially that team one county west who decided to use an isolated incident to get out of playing Columbia in ALL sports the rest of the season 

 

Funny how it's supposed to be a county thing but Branford and Suwannee can still play Fort White but Branford and Suwannee aren't allowed to play Columbia even though Suwannee will play teams out of Jacksonville or Tallahassee which has gang issues worse than Lake City does 

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16 minutes ago, ColumbiaHighFan2017class said:

To be fair some of these teams actually take the games because one they make more money traveling to GA than hosting a game will make or two teams in their general area won't play them 

 

Ik Columbia playing a yearly series with Madison and TCA is because teams in our area won't play us or play those 2 so it helps both programs find games 

 

Too bad not everyone in North Florida are like TCA, Columbia and Madison when it comes to scheduling

These teams can’t be making that much money. Charter buses are expensive especially nowadays with gas prices. Hotels, food, sight seeing etc. it’s probably a wash. But it’s a free trip. But to get your ass embarrassed it doesn’t seem worth it. I would seek out teams more even. Not auto losses. It’s stupid and a waste. 

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Just now, nolebull813 said:

These teams can’t be making that much money. Charter buses are expensive especially nowadays with gas prices. Hotels, food, sight seeing etc. it’s probably a wash. But it’s a free trip. But to get your ass embarrassed it doesn’t seem worth it. I would seek out teams more even. Not auto losses. It’s stupid and a waste. 

Ik in the past bad Jacksonville teams drive an hour across the border so they one don't stay overnight and 2 take yellow busses 

 

They definitely make good money traveling across the border

 

Idk about some these SFL teams though

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2 minutes ago, nolebull813 said:

These teams can’t be making that much money. Charter buses are expensive especially nowadays with gas prices. Hotels, food, sight seeing etc. it’s probably a wash. But it’s a free trip. But to get your ass embarrassed it doesn’t seem worth it. I would seek out teams more even. Not auto losses. It’s stupid and a waste. 

Plus some of these teams get embarrassed by decent Florida teams and don't make 1/3 the money to travel to the FL school 

 

I can see the logic in taking the payday to pay for other expenses, like when Columbia played IMG a few years ago we had our travel expenses covered and probably banked 2-3k after the fact plus a percentage of the gate 

 

We don't get paid that to travel to Jacksonville or Tallahassee

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1/3rd blowouts

1/3rd competitive

1/3rd avg to bad.

isnt that the essence what how it always is?  the bell curve is 15% top end, 15% bottom end and then 70% in the middle,  those #s are 50% in the middle, competitive to marginal and 50 blowouts and not good, what more do you want when you have your hands tied schedule wise?

17 hours ago, Dr. D said:

After reviewing the results across the state for the first four weeks of the season, I have been surprised by the number of lopsided games.  For example, there were 237 final scores reported on this site for this week’s games.  The margin of difference in those games breaks down as follows:

“Competitive game”               1 – 14 points        75 games (32%)

“Marginally competitive”      15 – 23 points       43 games (18%)

“Not really competitive”       24 – 34 points       48 games (20%)

“Blowout/Running clock”       35+ points            71 games (30%)

Essentially, half of the games in the state were decided by 24 points or more, and therefore “non-competitive” by my definition.  In addition, there were 63 shutouts (27% of games).  While it’s great that there are a number of very strong teams in the state, anyone who is concerned about the long-term health of high school football in Florida should be worried by this trend toward non-competitive results.  Why are there so many struggling teams in Florida?  Is this just a further sign of the “haves” vs. “have-nots”, i.e., the transfer environment?  Are athletes at some schools just not playing football anymore?  Could a disparity in coaching or resources account for this trend?  How long before some schools just give up football if they can no longer compete at a reasonable level?  What are you seeing in your areas?  Am I overreacting or is this cause for concern? 

 

 

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2 hours ago, badbird said:

If it makes you feel better you don't have to give them trophies.  With that said I don't see the problem with them getting a trophy.  You get a trophy for winning a two or three team crappy district.  At least they will beat lots of other schools to earn it.  The Metro/Suburban does not level the playing field it actually increases the gap from top to bottom in each class.   It does give a few more teams a chance to compete for a title but it does not level the playing field.   

Here's what I would like to see.  It will never happen but it's the only way to level the playing field.

1A bottom 112 teams 6-8 teams per district.  16 districts

2A next 112 teams 

3A next 112 teams

4A Around 80 schools 4-6 teams per district. 16 districts

5A  Around 80 schools 4-6 teams per district. 16 districts

6A top 32 programs no district go schedule who you want.  All make the playoffs.

 

 

It ain't about making me "FEEL BETTER" and I am okay with giving them trophies; bottom dwellers champion, one step up champion, mediocre champion, etc...  Just don't call it a State Championship as your comparison of a trophy for a shitty district with a trophy for a State Championship is not a worthy argument.  I would be fine with a scenario like you lay out with having a SINGLE state champion in the upper division only, however a team gets into that "Classification".  It should be decided by whichever schools feel they can compete and want to compete at that level; let in whomever wants.  

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9 minutes ago, Ray Icaza said:

It ain't about making me "FEEL BETTER" and I am okay with giving them trophies; bottom dwellers champion, one step up champion, mediocre champion, etc...  Just don't call it a State Championship as your comparison of a trophy for a shitty district with a trophy for a State Championship is not a worthy argument.  I would be fine with a scenario like you lay out with having a SINGLE state champion in the upper division only, however a team gets into that "Classification".  It should be decided by whichever schools feel they can compete and want to compete at that level; let in whomever wants.  

Okay so by that logic should we discredit the 1a champs from the last 10 years because they were facing weak competition?

 

I don't see the problem because by that logic only the 8A champ should be considered a true champion even though none of the 8a champs have finished as the #1 unanimous ranked team by the Florida polls in the past decade so we also have problems there 

 

 

Point being why is that system a "true" system but the moment they use something besides enrollment as the "only" factor that it suddenly becomes an issue of teams not being the true champ

 

Enrollment was only used because it was deemed that would put teams "on a level playing field" which is the same narrative of metro/suburban so if enrollment was only splitting teams to make them "teams on level playing field" how does metro/suburban change that?

 

It's using a different way of doing the same thing so if the current championships aren't state champs then we haven't ever had a true state champs since they added multiple classifications in the 1960s

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14 hours ago, Ray Icaza said:

Not a thing.  At present the only viable solution I see is for HC to be realistic in where their team is competitively among the 570-580 so schools under the FHSAA umbrella.  You don't have control of the district you will be placed in, but you do have control in scheduling the remaining 5, 6 or 7 games.  Are you in the top third, the middle third or the bottom third whereby you choose opponents in your "Classification" for lack of a better term.  You will win some and lose some, but most importantly your kids can compete with teams at the same level.  Most scheduling requires a two-year commitment (home and away), so re-evaluate every couple of years to determine whether to increase/decrease the level of difficulty.   Yes, I know this formula can go completely out the window when someone poaches several of your players.:D

This is really the only thing the weaker teams can do in this current environment.  In Pinellas County, it appears that most of the lower tier teams have decided upon this model and are scheduling each other, leaving the tough games (i.e. unwinnable games) for their district games.  This will likely keep you from ever making the playoffs as an at large bid but it is better for the kids and the fans to feel like you have a fighting chance in most of your games.

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1 hour ago, ColumbiaHighFan2017class said:

Okay so by that logic should we discredit the 1a champs from the last 10 years because they were facing weak competition?

 

I don't see the problem because by that logic only the 8A champ should be considered a true champion even though none of the 8a champs have finished as the #1 unanimous ranked team by the Florida polls in the past decade so we also have problems there 

 

 

Point being why is that system a "true" system but the moment they use something besides enrollment as the "only" factor that it suddenly becomes an issue of teams not being the true champ

 

Enrollment was only used because it was deemed that would put teams "on a level playing field" which is the same narrative of metro/suburban so if enrollment was only splitting teams to make them "teams on level playing field" how does metro/suburban change that?

 

It's using a different way of doing the same thing so if the current championships aren't state champs then we haven't ever had a true state champs since they added multiple classifications in the 1960s

No it isn't.  What you are implying is that the classifications (2 or 3 of them) in the bottom half of that proposed system could beat even the 1A champ currently much less the 2A thru 8A.  I think both you and I know the answer to that.  In the system from the 60's we have been awarding a state championship to the best team based on enrollment numbers.  That seemed to be a fair way of doing it and the winner regardless of class was in the top 10% of teams in the entire state.  Now you also want to pretend this is the same thing when you are awarding a championship to the top shitty team, teams that aren't even in the top 70% in the entire state.   Get real.   As I previously stated , give them a trophy but call it something other than a state champ.  You may want to keep arguing this point, I have no interest in that as no matter how you want to justify it I will never think it is a good thing to reward poor performance.

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30 minutes ago, Ray Icaza said:

No it isn't.  What you are implying is that the classifications (2 or 3 of them) in the bottom half of that proposed system could beat even the 1A champ currently much less the 2A thru 8A.  I think both you and I know the answer to that.  In the system from the 60's we have been awarding a state championship to the best team based on enrollment numbers.  That seemed to be a fair way of doing it and the winner regardless of class was in the top 10% of teams in the entire state.  Now you also want to pretend this is the same thing when you are awarding a championship to the top shitty team, teams that aren't even in the top 70% in the entire state.   Get real.   As I previously stated , give them a trophy but call it something other than a state champ.  You may want to keep arguing this point, I have no interest in that as no matter how you want to justify it I will never think it is a good thing to reward poor performance.

Again enrollment was just done because it was PERCEIVED that doing so was putting "like minded teams" together in classifications

 

You can continue to argue that enrollment still matters but I can point to plenty of examples showing that teams in larger cities hold more an advantage over rural schools than an 8a school holds over an 1a school with actual examples 

 

The reason for the change is because of the open transfer movement it no longer creates a level playing field by ENROLLMENT alone 

 

If it did we wouldn't have seen such a discrepancy in metro teams not just beating suburban/rural teams but DEMOLISHING them in the finals and postseason

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33 minutes ago, Ray Icaza said:

No it isn't.  What you are implying is that the classifications (2 or 3 of them) in the bottom half of that proposed system could beat even the 1A champ currently much less the 2A thru 8A.  I think both you and I know the answer to that.  In the system from the 60's we have been awarding a state championship to the best team based on enrollment numbers.  That seemed to be a fair way of doing it and the winner regardless of class was in the top 10% of teams in the entire state.  Now you also want to pretend this is the same thing when you are awarding a championship to the top shitty team, teams that aren't even in the top 70% in the entire state.   Get real.   As I previously stated , give them a trophy but call it something other than a state champ.  You may want to keep arguing this point, I have no interest in that as no matter how you want to justify it I will never think it is a good thing to reward poor performance.

Columbia just beat the defending 1a champs 21-0 

 

By your logic because Columbia is suburban they couldn't compete with any state champ the previous system which would be a lie 

 

What they can't compete with is the same teams Baker County and Buchholz couldn't compete with and that's metro schools that can get 15-20+ FBS transfers in a single off-season

 

Explain how enrollment numbers is supposed to help a team compete with a team pulling from over a million population in a county??

 

I would love to see that argument

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The issues that has always been clear and present to need metro suburban wasn't about being able to compete with good teams it's being unable to compete with schools that can load up on transfers

 

That's always been the biggest issue that needed to be addressed but that can't be done because it doesn't fit the agenda of the governor's office who can pull the FHSAA funding if they step in the way and this was the only option that would even come close to accomplishing what was needed and that's get teams that perceivably can pull talent from larger areas and get them away from the rest of the state 

 

It doesn't stop transfers but it did put some of the biggest offenders of transfers in the metro classification which was the best the FHSAA could do 

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