JV Alignment 2015

A Debate Has Begun
Mixed or tiered JV Regular Season Play
Reasoned debates are a healthy thing.
Here is a perspective:
BCSSFA Junior Varsity 2014 (Regular Season)
vs. AA
53 games -average score difference of 24.3
Largest score difference: 86 points
18 Games (34%) decided by 14 points or less
21 Games (39%) decided by 28+ points
vs. AAA
21 games -average score difference of 25.2
Largest score difference: 54 points
4 games (19%) decided by 14 points or less
9 games (43%) decided by 28+ points
vs. AAA
57 games -average score difference of 25.5
Largest score difference: 61 points
16 Games (28%) decided by 14 points or less
8 victories by AA teams over AAA teams
25 games (44%) decided by 28+ points
Have received some statistical comparisons
of play this past year at the JV level. 
Take a good read folks.  At face
value this would lend itself to a sense of parity, particularly between the AAA
vs AAA and AA vs AAA games.  Still,
parity is not complete.  AA vs AA is
where the percentage of close contest is most favorable.  The AA vs AAA margin of victory is decisive in
terms of percentage is 44% to 28 % being 16 % from a 2-1 margin.

Still, this may be palatable to some from a
mathematical point of view.  Thank goodness
however, our species does not communicate in numbers.  Our literature
would lose meaning and relevance.  Try sitting down by the fire and
several chapters of great binary code or rich exchanges of prime numbers
algebraic formulae.  Could turn into one
of those nights where you just couldn’t put that book down.

What is missing here, is the reality of
cross-over play in mixed divisions.  You
see, I would venture to say that the majority of AA teams facing AAA
competition in the JV (***developmental***)
league did not roll their benches very hard at all.  In fact, coaches seeking to 1) win the game
2) keep the score close 3) keep the integrity of their offensive, defensive and
special teams units 4) prevent ridiculous one on one mismatches for safety
reasons,  probably don’t play their
complete rosters or anything approaching their complete rosters in such
contests.   The result being that:  1) starting units become 2 and 3 way starters
peppered perhaps with middle of the roaders here and there 2) Attrition due to
injury over a season spikes (a mathematical risk-management certainty), many
players, through no fault of their own other than physiological development do
not see meaningful playing time and are relegated to being living, breathing
hitting dummies at practice at a time in their football career where they
should be getting more playing time on a level playing field.   The ripple effect of this being: 1) Sagging
morale 2) Loss of interest in the sport 3) Depleted rosters mid-to late
season.  This depletion of the roster
numbers is compounded by the attrition taking place amongst the iron men.

Now, this situation gets big legs in year
two and three.  You see, in small
schools, with the smaller pool of eligible athletes, the loss of a player or
five is huge: 1) Less kids move up to varsity from the previous year’s roster
2) The kids new to the sport/in less mature stages of adolescence are not dumb
to the experience of those who preceeded them. 
They figure out what is coming down the pipes and they vote with their
feet by not even trying the sport.  Many
of those who do, opt out at the first adversity they encounter with playing
time/getting smacked around 3) This again factors in to the atrophy of their

Factor in things like coaching
availability, geography, school culture et al and you see where this is headed.  Over time, the competitive gap between the
strong and the week widens to the point of absurdity.

There is a reason for anti-trust law in the
business world and there is a reason for numbered tiering and scheduling.   This is particularly so at our JV level of
play.   The statistics above cannot
adequately give a back story, illustrate how games were played or even come
close to nuance.  They do not speak to “facts
on the ground”, group psychology/perception, physical attrition or cumulative
effect on programs.   They are
descriptive in a stove piped way.  They
are a tool to rationalize a point of view in an argument, but are merely a
sentence in a much larger and layered story.  
They are crude.

I would submit to everyone that the litmus
test for determining whether or not JV football is aligned in the most proper
way would be to measure how many young people come back to play again the
following year.  Other forms of
measurement beyond this single statistic being nothing more than commentary
upon it.

If we retain football players in our
respective programs from the grade 8/JV level, we are successful.  How else can success be measured?

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About Khondoker Hafizur Rahman

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