Variability of NTRP ratings by geography?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by skydog0203, Aug 11, 2010.

  1. skydog0203

    skydog0203 New User

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    I may be pointing out the obvious here, but how many people have noticed a difference in the skill level of players at the various NTRP ratings in different areas?

    I guess theoretically there shouldn't be a difference, but I've heard that a 4.0 in my area (New Orleans) would be a 3.5 somewhere like, say, Dallas (from someone who's lived and played in both cities). This particular comparison seems obvious given the different sizes of the two markets (and the greater depth in tennis ability that results), but I'm wondering just how different it is. I'm also wondering whether it's all about size, or whether a smaller but more developed tennis community can have the same depth that a larger market would have.

    Hopefully everyone's comments can help me figure out just how much I suck and how far away I am from reaching my goal of being a 4.5 (that can compete with other 4.5s in different areas, not just my own).
     
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  2. tnnsman7

    tnnsman7 New User

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    We see definite evidence of that every year. We dominate our side of the state(Western Michigan), then go to state and usually lose to a much better Detroit team. If we're very lucky(once in 14 years) we beat Detroit and go on to sectionals in Indy, where we(or the usual Detroit team) gets killed by a team from another state. My best friend plays on a 4.0 team from western Kentucky and sees the same thing. Bigger cities make for better teams, that's my experience anyway.
     
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  3. JoelDali

    JoelDali G.O.A.T.

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  4. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    There may be local differences, but there are no systematic differences by region of the country that I can discern. I have played people from other sections across the country who are 4.0 players and they play more or less just like the 4.0 players around here.

    Of course, I was 8-1 in Middle States this season and 0-3 in Eastern, so who knows?
     
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  5. skydog0203

    skydog0203 New User

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    I think it's cool when someone who has posted 3,595 times makes fun of someone who has posted 7 times for asking a question they have seen discussed before, instead of politely refraining from the discussion, or maybe even making a value added comment based on his/her experience discussing the topic. Nice approach.
     
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  6. JoelDali

    JoelDali G.O.A.T.

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    Sorry, but its been discussed so many times here that I could not resist.
     
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  7. NoSkillzAndy

    NoSkillzAndy Rookie

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    Seconded.

    As for the topic, from my experience there can definitely be variance in skill & ability within the same "level" depending on the area. This is noticeable in juniors tennis as well, not just NTRP (eg, a Champ in CA would likely be a Super in most other areas). However, I'm fortunate in that I get to play in Texas where the overall level of play is fairly high and fairly consistent across the board.
     
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  8. skydog0203

    skydog0203 New User

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    Fair enough. You could have also told me to spend three minutes searching for previous threads on the subject instead of being lazy and posting a new one, but you resisted, which was nice.

    Either way, reading a bunch of posts about how ratings differ isn't going to make my 1 and 0 losses when I leave my region any easier to take. If it wasn't hurricane season and raining constantly I'd be out practicing instead.
     
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  9. skydog0203

    skydog0203 New User

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    Just moved from Texas after living there for five years and kick myself everyday for not having taken the sport back up sooner and while I was there. I'm certain I would be a better player right now if I had.
     
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  10. Z-Man

    Z-Man Professional

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    Here are the differences as I see them:

    1) Talent will be deeper at each level in areas where tennis is popular, affordable, and the weather is accommodating. The levels are the same, but there will be more teams and thus more opportunities to put together all-star teams.

    2) Urban areas have more former college players and club players who have never played USTA. These people are able to self-rate and become ringers, which works well until they run into even more ridiculous ringers at state and sectionals.

    3) The higher levels can actually be STRONGER in smaller cities. In some areas, 4.5 really means 4.5 and everything above. Those 5.0s want to play somewhere. If there is no league for them, they're going to end up in 4.5.

    4) A lot of people have absolutely no idea what their real rating is. These people are all over the country, and they love to play tennis while they're on vacation. If you're at a tennis resort and want a good match, add at least .5 to your rating. If you're a 4.0 and you beat some guy from Texas who tells you he's a 4.5, it doesn't mean tennis is weak in Texas. It means you played a guy who didn't know his rating. It happens all of the time.
     
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  11. DANMAN

    DANMAN Professional

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    New Orleans holds its own...there have been players on the teams that have won 4.0 and 4.5 nationals (teams technically listed out of Baton Rouge but players were mixed). Several other New Orleans teams and LA teams have gone to Nationals. The Southern section does well on a whole. I just beat a guy rated half a point higher than me from Texas in an open tournament, so it goes to show that the variability can be up and down.
     
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  12. GuyClinch

    GuyClinch Hall of Fame

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    I think people on this thread have it right. There are some quirks but it's not simply Texas, SoCal, Florida > everywhere else. You can see this because often the national winners are from nowhere.
     
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  13. Xisbum

    Xisbum Semi-Pro

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    I've played 3.5 and 4.0 levels in 3 distinct areas - Memphis, St. Louis and the northern Virginia area. I also watched many NTRP tournaments in Memphis, including matches at 4.5 and 5.0. My personal observations - not to be confused with an actual, bonified, documented study - are these:

    * Memphis men are overrated by at least one level compared with the other two places (in 3.5 and 4.0), women sometimes by two full levels;
    * St. Louis and NOVA area men and women roughly compatible in skill level at those two ratings;
    * Memphis 4.5 or 5.0 women would do just fine in St. Louis, but struggle in NOVA;
    * Memphis 4.5 or 5.0 men would struggle in both St. Louis and NOVA.

    Again, just personal observations, not dedicated studies. Take them for what they are worth. :)
     
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  14. innoVAShaun

    innoVAShaun Hall of Fame

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  15. Applesauceman

    Applesauceman Semi-Pro

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    You must play for Ramblewood if you're in Western Michigan!
     
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