At What Point Does the USTA System Move Someone Up

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by heninfan99, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    How many benchmarks, tournament and playoff runs before a player gets bumped up?

    In my area there's a team that's been dominant for years. The Captain has benchmarks but hasn't been forced up.

    Is it purely computer based? Can you whine about someone else gaming the system?
     
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  2. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    It's purely computer based.

    Yes you can whine if you want to.

    Other than that though, there isnt much you can do about it unless it's a brand new player and you know of some player history that would preclude them from being at your level. (player history is like their former tennis experience, like if they were a pro, or nationally ranked or a top college player, etc...)

    Being a benchmark is meaningless, that just means you were in the playoffs. It doesnt mean they are any higher or lower then a regular computer rated player.

    Just because someone is winning a lot doesnt necessarily mean they are out of level, it's when they are clobbering everyone by an obcene score that they tend to get moved up. (especially if they beat people who happen to beat everyone else)
     
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  3. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    re:

    Well, this guys has 7 sets that are either 6-1 or 6-0. I think algorithms need to be changed on the system. He also plays & wins in a higher league. What do you think?
     
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  4. ESP#1

    ESP#1 Professional

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    how many seasons have they been at that level? they should be getting moved up soon if its to that point, till then enjoy playing against them, its always more fun playing better players:)
     
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  5. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    7 seasons and it seems both our county coordinators are on his teams. Very corrupt system.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2009
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  6. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    The system is tweaked here and there from year to year. It may be a bit differenet even in different sections but we dont have evidence of that.

    What typically happens is the team that wins first place goes on to the playoffs. At some point they meet a team that is even more under-rated then they are and they get killed.

    50% of your rating is based on on your highest level of play, so it causes the phenemon that a lot of those "benchmark" players sometimes never get moved up, but if you have some players on your 2nd or 3rd place team that do well against them in local competition they actually have a better chance of getting moved up.

    That's the part of the system that I think is screwed up, but it's because the league puts a emphasis on what happens in the playoffs over what happens in local play.

    So until they change that, you'll see the same teams win year after year after year after year.

    From that team's perspective (and Ive heard this point of view many times), they are probably not making it past some level of play, so they will just claim that the rest of their entire local league is just rated too low. So these teams pretty much play for the playoffs, and the rest of the local season (which is what most of us sign up for) is just sort of a formality for them.

    It's a common debate on whether the league as a whole is rated too high or too low, but I think if you follow it down to the lowest levels of play, you can find tons of players who would otherwise belong at that lowest level, but they are not competitive because everyone else is rated too low. (not the other way around)

    I used to complain about things like this. In my area there are always teams that win every year. We have one team that's never not made the playoffs in like 20 years. (I even heard about how there was a big USTA League meeting in our area and their stupid club coordinator actually admited that they encourage their players to doctor the scores so they dont get moved up)

    But now it's just a joke. This will be my sixth year running the same team, and rather than whining about those single teams who always win first (we know who they are), we enjoy the rest of the season and it's still a fun league. As long as there are plenty of other teams to play it's not a big deal. Sometimes we recruit certain players who's only purpose is to play against those certain teams as well to make it a little more interesting.

    (sometimes it's always a hidden goal for us and some other teams to work together to try to knock one of them off, but it usually doenst happen)

    We beat the 2005 State Champions in 2006 in a local match though, so that was pretty cool. Unfortuanlly also in our same division was the team that eventually took 4th in the nation in 2007.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2009
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  7. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    Ahhhhhhhhh, I see. "50% of your rating is based on on your highest level of play" Allowing a team to have a monopoly on the playoffs year after year is BS and takes some of the excitement away from it all. Getting to the playoffs looks like a lot of fun. If any team wins three years in a row maybe an actual human being --an impartial USTA pro should assess the team. Either move those guys up a level or mix up the players throughout the level.

    So basically the only way to challenge these dominant teams is to build a new team and load it tennis coaches that haven't played USTA in three years? hehehehe

    "It's a common debate on whether the league as a whole is rated too high or too low" If someone complains a league is rated too low and they win every year, they can petition to move up if they truly want better competition.

    It IS a joke and people can get crazy with this stuff as they do in local soft ball leagues.

    Thanks for the info. It clears up a lot. :)
     
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  8. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    Congrats on your 2006 win. Musta been sweet.
     
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  9. Jim A

    Jim A Professional

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    What do people think would be solutions for this?

    Around here there was a player who had nearly equal number of points in both 3.0 and 3.5 but stayed @ 3.0, while players underneath him (he was top 5/10 in the state) ranked through #30 were mostly moved up

    Being new to it all myself, its tough for me to find a solution at this point but it seems the system is based on overall points and not a pts per tournament average? There are tons of people who play 1-2 tournaments a year, get to the quarters/semi's but at the end don't have a slough of points so they don't get moved up. it seems if you want to move up you play quite a bit, win some key matches and have a decent amount of points at the end of the year (I think its top 5 tournaments?)

    Just not a big fan of computers having a large say in rankings whether it be the BCS or USTA.
     
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  10. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    I think the USTA is really trying to address this through the rule change to prevent Benchmark players from appealing back down. For example, I know a 4.0 guy who went to nationals 9 times in 4.0 mens/8.0 doubles. He is a good 4.0, bad 4.5 (no weapons but never misses) and appealed down every year dispite never losing matches. He is now bitter because he is a benchmark 4.5 and cannot appeal back down, so he is starting to take losses.
     
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  11. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    What matters is the match score differential and the rating of your opponent. If you beat a lower-rated player 6-0, 6-1, it will not raise your rating like it would if you beat someone at the top of the level with the same score. In fact a blowout score may even lower your rating. My belief through some research is that 6-0, 6-1 is equivalent to about a 0.35 NTRP differential. So someone at 3.36 is supposed to beat a 3.01 player by that score, otherwise the 3.35 player's rating will go down after the match.

    People only get moved up when 1) they get disqualified because their rating surpasses a threshold 3 times and they are self-rated or appeal-rated or 2) at rating calculations at the year end their new rating crosses into the next level.
     
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  12. goober

    goober Legend

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    I don't get the bitter part. I mean how many more times does he feel like he needs to go to Nationals? Sounds like is only having fun if he is winning. Tennis is suppose to be recreation. He sounds like he is in a similar situation to me. I don't mind taking my lumps though. I am going to try my best and if I don't do well eventually I will get moved back down.
     
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  13. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    IMO the majority of the problem would be solved by a simple formula:

    1- If you make it to Nationals, you get moved up.

    2- If you make it to Sectionals or Regionals and you individually have a winning record (> 50% wins) at Sectionals/Regionals, you get moved up.
     
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  14. kylebarendrick

    kylebarendrick Professional

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    ...how about if you beat someone in local league play that went to nationals?

    ...or if you are the worst player on your team that went to nationals and you lost your only nationals match 0-0?

    The simple formulas break down in the details.
     
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  15. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    If you beat someone who went to Nationals earlier in the season, we'll let that one go on the assumption that the other guy improved over the season (that's why he did so great at Sectionals and Regionals), so your win in the regular season won't count against you.

    If you make it to Nationals that puts you in about the best 0-3% of teams in the nation. My guess is the rest of the team selected you for a reason, not randomly, so my guess is you'll do fine in the next half level. Not a world beater but you won't get smeared either.

    I'm not seeing the "breakdown".
     
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  16. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    They should stop self-rating all together and go back to getting rated by a pro, NTRP style. Also, its obvious to everyone involved in a county who is gaming the system. After a few years of dominance it should be automatic.
    Shooting from the hip here: Maybe if you have a winning percentage of 75% or greater over 20 or more matches you get moved up automatically. The local coordinator should have the power to move someone up.
     
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  17. goober

    goober Legend

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    It is pretty easy to game the system with a pro rating you too. If you are a 4.5 and you want a 3.5 rating, just shank balls, barely move for them, ect. Also from what I understand in the days when they had that system you basically could pay the pro and get whatever rating you wanted in many cases.

    Whatever system you devise people will figure away around if they are intent on it. The only system I could see working is taking the incentives away in the first place (i.e Nationals)
     
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  18. cak

    cak Professional

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    I'd say the system is pretty good as it is. The one change I might make is there are enough players shooting for nationals they could safely say that if you play at Nationals you can never go back to nationals for that same league and rating. For instance, if you played at Nationals as a M3.5 you can't ever again go to Nationals for a M3.5 team. You can go for a SM3.5 team, or a Mixed 7.0 team, or a M4.0 team, but not the same level and league. Time to give someone else a chance. It would encourage people to move up if they really want to try again. And discourage people who are only playing to go to Nationals over and over again. Perhaps to make those traveling teams happy they could start traveling team tournaments in lovely destinations around the country. So you could take your M3.5 team to say, Arizona, in say March to play against teams from around the country.
     
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  19. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    I don't get why this would be necessary. If someone goes to Nationals and doesn't get moved up, then they are playing at the correct level because they probably did poorly there. If they do well at Nationals though its a lock they will move up and cannot appeal down.

    The new rule that benchmarks cannot appeal is probably the best rule change they have done in years.
     
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  20. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    "At some point they meet a team that is even more under-rated then they are and they get killed."

    Seems the consensus is that the Nationals are a bunch of teams/players that underrate themselves so that they can dominate year after year.

    It can take a season before you realize what's going on.

    I do see that the problem could be top down. In other words, not even enough players for a 5.0 league so the very best (including some teachers) play at 4.5 or even 4.0. So the real 4.0s want to win so they go to the 3.5s.

    BUT...they gotta bumping perennial winners up a level after a few years.
    I still like having a human being judging your rating, maybe even every year.
     
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  21. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    When a team is successful at Nationals, most of the contributing players WILL get bumped up at the year's end. I played 6 matches at Nationals and my team won and not only did all of our team get moved up (except the captains who don't play really, and two of us got moved up 2 levels), but all of my opponents did as well. So we killed most of our competition and many of them still got moved up so its not like we caused sandbaggers to get stuck at the same level because we were super-sandbaggers.

    So it is a myth that the same teams dominate and make it to Nationals year after year. It might be the same captain whose team dominates, but not the actual players. For the most part a Nationals-calibre captain has to rebuild their team from scratch each year because they find self-rated players who are above level, then they get moved up afterwards. That is alot of effort, I know this because I've seen what my captains went through to build and manage our team.

    It is not logical that someone could dominate and do well at Nationals and not get moved up because a large percentage of players at Nationals are self-rates who are at the next level anyways.
     
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  22. cak

    cak Professional

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    In NorCal, the senior 2009 league started in September. Right now, as we speak, there are quite a few 4.0B ladies playing in the playoffs for senior women's 3.5. One of them in the lineup last week earned her 4.0B from going to Nationals last year in 3.5. They can't appeal this year, but can, and plan to appeal next year after the end of the year ratings come out. If their appeals win they can again play 3.5 for the last month of the season, and go to Nationals next year too.

    I just think if the be all/end all of USTA league tennis is to get people around the country together to play Nationals we should give that chance to as many folks as possible, not the same people over and over again.
     
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  23. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    People getting beaten by better players always complain about sandbagging, but for the most part, most of the players who go to nationals simply work very hard to improve their games. After improving, these players are temporarily better than their rated level and do well for while before the computer re-adjusts the ratings. The USTA should encourage players, like Raiden, to improve and do well.
     
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  24. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    You're the only person exclusively talking about Nationals. You can dominate a local league year after year after year by going to the districts all the time.

    If you made it to the Nationals in the current system(and the way it works) you probably rated yourself too low for whatever reason. ;-) You were probably a 4.0 all along playing as a 3.5. :shock: Hopefully the new changes will help fix these problems.
     
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  25. Jim A

    Jim A Professional

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    I've had to deal with this in other sports but where there are larger groups of talent (ie. Platinum, Gold, Silver) most of the good gold teams could play Platinum, but without the computer issues.

    thoughts on the following (which would apply to me)
    -no appeal for self-rated players following their first ranking
    -any sort of limit on how far a self-rated player can play (i.e. no nationals?) to help curb the 'baggers?
    -point system, includes tournaments & league play with a *bump* automatically at certain levels, points would be weighted but someone who hides in doubles and does well in 1-2 singles events that would normally not move him up would be found out a bit more, and you could see if people were hiding/bagging by all of a sudden stopping play (again my 3.5/3.0 buddy here...plays all the 3.5 ladders is top 50 in state in 3.5 but rated 3.0 and top 10, )

    agree that most of the people who go are trying to better themselves and improve, however we live in a time when people hold their kids back in school a year from the start so they will be among the more physically developed and mature, and who will do almost anything for a t-shirt sportsmanship be dammed
     
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  26. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    That's actually not true in my case. I was undefeated in the last league I was in, have nice trophy. I don't want to play in that league in again. To me that would be useless. I MOVED UP ON MY OWN for the upcoming season. With tennis link & knowing what goes on the local tennis community it's no secret whose gaming. :)
     
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  27. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    I think the OP is mainly talking about the experience in each local league.

    In many local leagues it is NOT a myth that the same team advances year after year.

    Typically they go on and get clobbered by a team that is even more under-rated then they are (from their perspective).

    So you are right in Nationals it varys who ends up there, but at the local level it's rarely like that.

    And it's those teams that dominated the local level that tend to not get moved up as often although that changes sometimes from year to year as they tweak the rules.

    Even at Nationals, if you look at the teams that got slaughtered there (took last place in their flights) they dont always all get moved up. 50% of their rating is still based on Nationals so that keeps them where they are at sometimes.

    Obviously if you do well at Nationals it works the other way (you get moved up).
     
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  28. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    Actually he was playing as a 3.0 I think.

    But in his defense, I think his is a case of someone who legitimately improved enough, had the right lessons, worked on his game, whatever....

    If someone is skilled enough and they are taught the right way it's not impossible to believe that they are not even 3.0 at any point realistically. And I dont think you can fault them for whatever rating they started out in.

    I think what you are complaining about (which I dont believe is raiden's case) are the teams and players that are at the same level year after year after year even though they can go 10-0 and better in their local league and probably dont lose until they get to some level of the playoffs, and they appealled like nuts when they got moved up. (although you have to blame the system for that more then anything)

    So they waste the whole entire summer clobbering everyone just for the playoffs, when they could be challenged by playing the higher level for more of a majority of their season.

    I know a team that took 4th in Nationals and they were the biggest cheater's on the face of the earth when it came to manipulating the rules. They openly told me they were looking for 4.5 players for their 3.5 team, and they even got a player eliminated before the season even started.

    So it's hard to imagine that any of those other teams "just got better". We'll never know either way, Im sure there are some in raiden's situation, but I doubt "most" of them are like that. (but that's besides the point anyway, who cares what happens in Nationals?, 98% of the players who they brag about when they tout the numbers could care less)
     
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  29. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    No there were some posts regarding Nationals. If someone dominates their local league year after year and does not get moved up, then it means that their local league is filled with players whose dynamic rating is generally at the bottom of the level. A strong 3.5 player should not *dominate* a well-distributed 3.5 league but instead should win more than they lose. The only players that should dominate are those that need to be bumped up.

    I made it to 3.0 Nationals but skillwise I had no business whatsoever playing at that level. I did follow the USTA rules exactly in good faith (and was computer-rated after a mediocre season the previous year). The best you can say is that I should have removed myself from 3.0 league play once it was no longer a challenge, but instead i took advantage of a unique opportunity.

    javier,

    Getting crushed in districts/sectionals/nationals should not cause a dominant local team's players not to move up. See my first paragraph. If the area has alot of weak players, then dominating at a local league means nothing within the big USTA picture. If they aren't competitive with players of the next level outside of their league, then they don't deserve to be moved up to that next level just to appease the players in their local league.
     
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  30. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    It does cause them not to get moved up because the rules on how much of their rating is affected by it.

    That's the common debate around here. Whether the local area's players are really rated too high or whether those teams that win every single year are rated too low.

    It's the common debate in my area as well.

    I believe it's the players in the local leagues in most cases that are where they should be. The way I justify that is if you follow it all the way down to the lowest level (which is 3.0 for men in most areas) you'll find a lot of real 3.0 players that are not even competitive in that league.

    You yourself admits that you were not really a 3.0 player. So if someone does get crushed by you at a higher level it does not mean they werent over-rated themselves.

    You are right about how the picture looks in the USTA or at least how the system is working, but it's debatable on whether it should be that way.

    The playoffs are really less important then the local league in my opinion, and the fact that they put all the attention and emphasis on something that happens to less then 5% of the players is misplaced.

    Most people sign up for the league in general and the regular season may take 2 or 3 months, versus the few weekends that account for the playoffs. It's retarded to go year after year spending months clobbering everyone just for a chance at a plastic waterbottle or a pen, and it shouldnt be such the award that someone wants to do that (if they are good enough to play at the next level)

    And the sure fact that you were in the 3.0 playoffs and you admit that you had "no business being there", proves that there is some illegitimacy to those playoff results. (regardless of whether you're justifyed or not in being there) So you cant say that someone getting clobbered at a higher level somehow deserves to not get moved up. (maybe they should not move two levels up....)
     
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  31. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    I have never heard of a player dominating a local league and not getting moved up. I have never seen it at 3.0 and never seen it at 3.5 in my area. I would like someone to provide an example of a player that crushes all their opponents year after year at the same level.

    In my case I stayed at 3.0 after I did crappy in 2007. In 2008 I did good and got moved up. The system did what it was supposed to. I simply improved during the off-season which the system does not account for.

    Its true that the top teams might win the division year in and year out, but those players are not sandbaggers, they are just the strongest at the division in the local league. For instance I am currently a weak 4.0 (truly) and I can beat any of the players who won the 3.5 division in my local league in 2008. I might not win every time, but I am capable of beating every single one of those players (even those that got bumped to 4.0), so worst case is that a few are bordering the 4.0 level, but none clearly should be at 4.0. There are a handful of self-rated players in the league from last year that might own me, but they definitely did not remain at 3.5 if that is the case.
     
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  32. SlapShot

    SlapShot Hall of Fame

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    Or, you could end up in my situation, where I went to Nationals as a 3.5, won one match, was in it for the entire match for another against a guy who was winning local matches 6-2,6-2 in SoCal, and lost a not-so-tight doubles match, and am currently a 3.5B player, despite being 5-2 at 4.0 this year and having advanced to the finals in an 8.0 tourney this weekend, beating a couple of good teams on the way.

    The USTA system is not flawless, and people sometimes do "slip through the cracks" with regard to the ratings.
     
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  33. tykrum

    tykrum Rookie

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    Got to the finals playing with a 4.5! Well, I'm not an amazing 4.5, but still. Lost to two good 4.0s where at least one of the was "treeing" a little bit.

    No, the USTA system isn't flawless, but when you are trying to create a system that rates hundreds of thousands of amateur tennis players across the country, you'd be asking quite a bit for it to be. I'd say it does a pretty darn good job for what it has to work with. 'SlapShot', in your situation, your poorer results from 2007 are still in your rating, although obviously your more current results are more heavily weighted.
     
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  34. OrangePower

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    Definitely there are players (and teams) who year after year manage to end up at or near the top of their level. But that does not necessarily mean that the system is flawed when it comes to level promotions.

    Remember that the 'levels' are just arbitrary cutoff points in what is really a continuous distribution of ratings. And sooner or later, each player is going to get to a personal peak where further improvement is very slow or just not possible. So there are going to be players whose true rating really is right at the cutoff point between levels.

    For example, there will be players who peak with a rating of say 3.95. That makes them strong 4.0s who will consistently beat other 4.0s. But it doesn't make them a 4.5, and there is no way such a player would be even remotely competitive at the 4.5 level. And they will not get bumped up despite winning consistently at 4.0.

    On the other hand, there will be players who peak at 4.05, at which point they are considered too strong to play at 4.0 but at the same time are really too weak to ever have a chance at playoffs at 4.5.

    Maybe that's not fair but there you go - the levels are arbitrary. The bottom line is that the system is not intended as a way to give everyone an equal shot to make playoffs, but rather as a way to group people so that you ensure relatively competitive matches during the course of a season. And I think it does that pretty well for the most part. So don't worry about who is or is not making playoffs in your league, and instead just enjoy your matches.
     
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  35. saram

    saram Legend

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    Just remember we are talking about a national rating system--not a local one.

    I sense sour grapes here.
     
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  36. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    Yeah, that's what I'm talking about. Most players will never see the Nationals but are looking for some competitive seasons on the local level and a real shot at entering the playoffs. :)

    I heard the USTA made some changes recently so I'm excited about that. Hopefully the system will be better this year.
     
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  37. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    National rating system? Thanks for the tip Sherlock.
    Of course I'm sour. Its a lot of work to run a team. You don't do all that to play cheaters.
     
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  38. equinox

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    Does it really matter?
    It's not like you are playing real tennis below 4.5 level.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2009
    #38
  39. Moz

    Moz Hall of Fame

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    The system is essentially flawed because it doesn't incentivise people to improve their rating.

    Until it does that no change to the rules or algorithms will address the issues on this thread.

    Not to mention using scorelines (rather than results) as determinants is a foolish way of doing it.

    The USTA must be the only system in the world where so many people dread official comfirmation that they have got better. Everywhere else people are embarrassed by their own low ratings and are desperate to improve them.
     
    #39
  40. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    That nails it.
     
    #40
  41. cak

    cak Professional

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    My biggest problems with the system is the huge loopholes. Right now there are about 10 players between two teams that are rated 4.0B playing in the 3.5 playoffs. It's an early start league, and in the fall these players appealed their 4.0 early start ratings to play 3.5. (Note, they got the early start 4.0 ratings from cleaning up in that same 3.5 league last year.) They can't appeal the 4.0 ratings this year, but they don't have to, they can still play as 3.5. So they have two years of blowing through local leagues before their ratings kick in. And if they don't make sectionals and receive the b rating next year, they will appeal and play the last half of the early start season to make another run at 3.5, though the computer tagged them as 4.0 two years prior. The new rule that prohibits appealing benchmark ratings won't really affect leagues that span the end of the year.
     
    #41
  42. dgordon

    dgordon New User

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    Algorithm

    The computer has an algorithm for the ratings which has a predictive index. So, if you are a 4.49 playing singles against a 4.0, it predicts the result, perhaps you ought to win 6-1, 6-1. Any variance from the prediction will increase or decrease both ratings, i.e. you win 6-4, 6-4. You do down, he goes up.

    For doubles, the team is averaged.

    Thus, if a 4.0 guy is winning a lot of singles matches in the 4.0 adult league by lopsided scores, but his opponents are 3.5 guys playing up, he's not going anywhere.
     
    #42
  43. boilerfan

    boilerfan New User

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    I am not sure if this counts as crushing, but I did a quick tabulation of 5 guys from our team. We have all played together pretty much since 2003. Went to states every year winning states in 2003 and going to nationals in 2007. At no point was any of the 5 moved up. All play mostly doubles with a few singles matches in there. The singles guys from 2003 and 2007 were moved up though.

    Totals from 2003-2008(local play only):
    Player 1: 36-1...lost 3 sets total
    Player 2: 48-3...lost 10 sets total
    Player 3: 38-5...lost 15 sets total
    Player 4: 29-6...lost 15 sets total
    Player 5: 27-6...lost 15 sets
    Total - 178 - 21

    The numbers were hurt a little by players 4 and 5 going 1-7 in 2008 as they didn't play much after going to nationals. The numbers were helped a bit by Player 1 and 2 winning states again in 2008 on a different team and combining to go 14-1 in local play.

    So, for reference Players 1 and 2 are 84-4 in local play and won states in 2003, 2007 and 2008 going to nationals in 2007. At least those 2 should constitute "crushing" the local league.

    Not saying any of them need to be bumped as they would be mostly lower level 5.0's, just showing that you can pretty much dominate the local level every year without being bumped.
     
    #43
  44. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    How did they do against players who did get bumped up? Since you have been playing with these guys for years, would you say they are head and shoulders better than the rest?

    I figure it is more the exception than the rule that a overly strong player would remain at a level too low year after year. If it was so common like people here might imply, then why have i never seen it? Never seen a 3.0 or 3.5 who went more than one year at a level too low for them.
     
    #44
  45. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    How many years have you been playing?

    From most of your posts it sounds like live in bizarro world or at least some very special place that is not the norm. (although I just figured your perspective just came from your unique situation, most "3.0 players" are not making it to Nationals and playing 4.0 a year later)

    Ive been running a team or playing continually from 2002 to 2009, and I ran a team 1999 as well.

    Before DNTRP what the OP describes was common place, and even up to the National level I think there was a definate pecking order. (for example whichever team made it out of my state always got crushed by everyone in the Mid_West Sectional, and whatever team made it out of the Mid_West got crushed at Nationals, which was obviously screwed up because a 3.0 player in Illinois shouldnt be that much different then a 3.0 player in Arizona)

    I think since DNTRP began at least in the playoffs you're seeing at least more parity there. (different teams make it every year)

    At the local level though, they introduced the appeal system so in my state for example 80% of the players that got moved up, appealed.

    Now that's not as likely starting this year because of the new rules.

    So I guess my point is what the OP is observing may not be the case in many areas over the past few years, but anyone who's been playing for a long time probably has that perception.

    In the future if they dont wimp out on the rules again, it may disapear everywhere since players wont be able to appeal if they make the playoffs and that may very well fix it.

    Then it's just a matter of who gets moved up and who doesnt which seems to at least change in some areas from year to year.

    What also happens sometimes (which happened in my team's case) is if you have a 2nd place team or a 3rd place team and your player does really well against the first place team, your player will get moved up, and their player will not. (because they eventually got crushed in the playoffs)
     
    #45
  46. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    Awww crap!!! Have I been playing fake tennis all this time!?!?

    :roll:

    Well, again, I do think that is the case for a lot of people...but there are plenty of people in USTA working hard to improve and move up as well. In my case, I always worry that I don't play up to the potential of my rating! I suppose I'm a bit backward!
     
    #46
  47. Moz

    Moz Hall of Fame

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    Agreed, the difference being plenty rather than all.
     
    #47
  48. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    I have been playing league for 2 years, however I've become a tennislink junkie for my local area. I've gotten to know who most of the 3.0 and 3.5 players are at least enough to put a name to the face. I watch who gets moved up and who doesn't, and we of course have our overly dominant teams. But the more dominant a team is, the more of its players get moved up after each year. My former 3.0 captain has advanced far into the playoffs several times over the past 5 years or so. He basically has to rebuild his team every year from scratch.

    I think the reason some areas do better year in and year out is because they are in popular tennis areas where it is easier to find players who they can recruit into the league to play at a level too low.

    I think the fallacy I often see on this board is that people here judge an area's strength (meaning the actual skill level of a particular rating) by its representation in the USTA league championship events. The most important thing to look at for any such team is how many of those players are self-rated. Another fallacy I think is to assume that an appeals player is head and shoulders above everyone else. They are only .05 above the top, which is not a lot. They might still beat the bottom players easily, but they will still be competitive with the strong players, and will likely struggle in the post-season against the self-rated players.

    As for my rating, it seems impossible to me. When the appeal-email exploit still existed to determine your exact rating, I found mine was a 3.60, which means even if I wasn't a benchmark player, that I was out of appeal range. How can you become a 4.0 beyond appeal range after playing 11 3.0 matches in a row? This makes me believe there is human intervention at Nationals. They either blanket raise everyone's rating at year's end or they raise ratings on an individual basis.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2009
    #48
  49. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    I believe you, if people are looking at nationals to try to figure out which areas are better, they would be mislead these days. Because different areas seem to have a successful team every year now. (in the past it wasnt like that)

    You probably beat a bunch of players decently that also beat a bunch of other players (so their rating was pretty high for a 3.0).

    I think when you get to National's and you do really well the reverse affect applys. You beat a bunch of players who were going to get moved up to 3.5 themselves and the number that resulted from that is 50% of your rating.

    I think we've been thru this before, but it's even possible those players already had ratings over what's considered 3.0 (but didnt get DQ'ed yet because they didnt have 3 strikes).

    A lot of teams hide self rated players during the local league as well so when they get into the playoffs they have a small sample of matches (that they are crushing) so they can have a very high rating without getting DQ'ed.

    That's the "problem" with looking at Nationals as some sort of a benchmark in a skill rated system. If you continue to play one level and then the next and then the next and then the next, eventually there is no way (mathmatically at least) that you'll have 3.0 players in the final outcome.

    Again, the OP's talking about a perspective from the local league, not from the Nationals. Everyone who goes to Nationals at least gets moved up, that's not a big deal. It's what happens to those players who get crushed along the way in the playoffs that's debatable. (because they dont always get moved up)
     
    #49
  50. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    This is really the only part of the system that I think is broken. Its when players tank matches or partner with a weak doubles partner to weigh their rating down. There is nothing they (USTA) can do though, other than to restrict self-rated players more in league play (ie. no playing at Nationals). But then its unfair to an honest self-rated player who works their tail off to play well and isn't allowed to play at Nationals after getting their team there.

    Since Nationals has a significant effect on the local league ratings, I think its relevant. I really think people need to look at the quality of the players the person beat before saying the person is overly dominant for going 10-1.

    For example, I've seen in tennislink where people who played up at the next level and won more than half their matches, but did not even get moved up to that level at the year's end. Then I click on their opponents and many of them are playing up as well. I see this a lot with women and with doubles players, because it seems women are more likely to play up than men.

    My take is that a win-loss record doesn't mean a whole lot, and even the score differential doesn't mean as much either. What means a lot to me is the win-loss of players you beat who were top-level players and not bottom-level players.

    There's a guy I play a lot and lately we almost always go into 3 sets, yet I win the third set like 9 out of 10 times. From USTA's standpoint we are equals, but if that were true we'd split the wins nearly equally.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2009
    #50

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