US Juniors needs MORE Nat'l and advanced experiences not less
The US/USTA needs to apply the age old time tested good karma principle
that a player plays with levels above them and below
ala Roddick mentoring Harrison nurture develop and give back
ala the hired (former)college hitter at the academy for the best juniors
who play with the next best juniors
While the stated intentions/goals of the USTA Jr Committee have merit
1) grow tennis (mission statement)
2) not miss school
3) more family time
4) reduce costs
5) increase local play
6) more local/regional qualifying for nat'l play
7) have best players playing best players
8) identitfy best players and help develop best players
the Best path for US tennis and their stated goals is
more national play not less
more players playing nationals not less
more futures and challengers
more ITF's across country
more inter college/ junior tournament events
more team tennis
Reducing incentives like # of tournaments from 8 to 6
and changing point structure has already deemphasized
needs to chase points
However, Limiting draw sizes from 64 to 32 in Nat Opens ridiculously excludes
50% of participation and gross revenues for the benifit of final 4 main's and back's one day hotel cost and missing school (if not home schooled)
NO active Parents,players,coaches directors have supported this (save a up to a theoretical min 2-5% that I havent met)
Further Reducing Natl Opens to 2x' a year once in Feb which has been even finished in recent years due to rain and during Thanksgiving (FAMILY TIME?)
not that anyone REALLY minds. But eliminating July Nat opens when no school? and reducing 3 site field to 96 total?
Easter Bowl to 32? from 128? x 8 divisions...75% denied former nat'l opportunity and this was compromise for some of USTA that wanted the Easter Bowl Gone!!!
Winter Nationals to a 32 training team workshop? Great, now include all 128 per division and include 12's whose players and families would really love it as they do zonals
Then reducing and restricting Regionals to own regions? Playing Same Kids again.
Qualifying progressively is a system but why limit to that.
Before 2011 WE have experienced freedom of choice, freedom of opportunities to play more Nat'l family events, travel fun, missing school where kids make up assignments and or do online and still pull 4.0's, get a
2nd CHANCE at playing someone from NY or FL or Mich or in an older division
and train a few days extra on the road for the Copper Bowl.
These are valued, beneficial, and treasured experiences minimized and or denied.
In their quest to development of pros The 2014 USTA changes appear to confuse and favor the goals of the development program at the expense and denial
of freedom of participation of the multitudes where the next champions may very well come from, the late bloomers, injured, the multi sporters etc..
Instead of denying participation
how about ADDING and GROWING participation
for Better players
MORE FUTURES and Challengers
and top junior events with
Create incentives for futures players to train and compete with top juniors
Perhaps a bridge between those impossible first ATP points
As the USTA has proposed and passed and implemented certain changes
its current system has not provided adequate input nor beneficial structure
representative and in the interests of WE the parents, Jr community players, coaches, directors, and industry.
With modern technology, input and representative consensus and mandate can be better achieved with surveys, open meetings.blogs,etc..
But this is another discussion that will help achieve the free flow of ideas
towards a truly mandated, beneficial, and representative system and structure that we in US JR tennis may participate, thrive, and flourish.
Who are you really? Is this your first time on the forum? I donít think so. This issue has been hashed through so many times I donít see how anything new is going to be said.
If you have some new idea or angle feel free to add something. After you have read though the other 10,000 posts on the subject.
I am new to this forum
frustrated with the state and direction of US tennis
and willing to express
my ideas in spite of unproductive stifling attitudes
as yours expressed
I don't know why 99% of regular junior tennis supporters need to be so concerned about what is facing the top 1%.
Seriously, if you are good enough to be ranked in top 50 to 100, you have plenty of opportunities to play people better/worse than you. I am not going to lose sleep over the fact that these miniscule percentage of players are somehow being wronged.
USTA needs to worry more about the 100,000 junior players of varying skills and get them more interested in tennis. What happens with top 36 or 64 players will have no effect on that.
I think what they were trying to say that this topic has been discussed ad-infinitum here, that's all.
You will find plenty of support for your position, but you will also be attacked mercilessly as a whining, rich tennis parent with a kid who sucks at tennis who just wants to point chase all over the country..
have fun storming the castle...:)
No storming here just asking for modern communication.
Freedom of speech and choice ,Buddy
If you take the time to read what has already been posted, you will find I am on your side, probably no stronger advocate for you position, buddy.
I wasnt making accustations, I was just trying to I give you a friendly heads up, but nevermind, buddy.
and in turn be challenged with higher levels
There are very few futures, ITFs, challengers in west US
and TOP players DO affect and INSPIRE all levels of players
Michael Chang, Arthur Ashe, Agassi, Federer, Roddick's serve, the Williams sisters, all inspired new players and products
we all watched Oudin a few years back, or root for Big John,... who's the next young buck?
We are all in it together
Little late to the party?
IT ALL STARTED WITH THIS THREAD. THANKS TO JUSTINMADISON.
Drastic cutback in Junior Tournaments for 2010 ( 8/5/2010)
NO ONE IS BEING RUDE, BUT WE HAVE HASHED THIS TO DEATH.
THIS IS JUST A FEW OF OVER A DOZEN THREADS.
WISH YOU WERE HERE WHEN WE NEEDED ANOTHER VOICE LAST MARCH THOUGH.
Time To Reduce Draws Sizes for National Championships??? ( Started 3/17/2011)
New USTA PPR Point Table for 2012 ( Started 10/21/2011)
New Rule Changes For Tournaments ( started by me 1/5/2012)
New Ranking system ( started 1/13/2012)
From the Trenches at Junior Tennis Tournaments ( started 1/25/2012)
5 pages ( info in here was picked up for letters)
Has Anyone Looked At The Wait Lists ( started by me 2/12/2012)
Revised USTA Proposals for National Junior Competition Structure ( started 2/22/2012)
Up To You! Call Your Sectional Office! ( started by me 3/14/2012)
Sean Hannity Vs Usta ( started 6/26/2012)
I am going to give you the same advice I would give any junior.
It is done. We had our chance in March before the vote went through.
Not one section wanted it, but they were all forced into it.
If you didn't agree to it as a sectional, you were fired. Two folks were.
If you want to vent here, feel free to do so.
If you want action, write to your section, national office, Hannity and the press.
(And to the press - please ask why were ITFs cut in this large country of ours?)
When not writing, make the best of the bad situation.
And if your high school team is not the pits, play it.
Try to get to state, and call the college coaches then and ask them to come watch you.
( And my new focus is the refs and their small pay that barely covers the gas to a tournament 3 hours away.
Can't the USTA kick over some? Why do tournaments have so few refs?
That is my focus on what CAN BE changed........)
Sadly, for American junior tennis, we probably have to wait 2-4 years before the USTA realizes their "uh-oh" mistake
like they did when they cut the BOYS 12 competition because they thought that was a good idea too..........
The 2010 changes, 2012 changes and finally the 2014 changes ( they took it away slowly, maybe to lessen the pain)
is like watching a train about to crash except our kids are on it with Pat as the conductor.
Too bad that American junior tennis is run by a few folks who can't be voted out.
Thank you tennis5 for the background on this forum
I dont party much and didnt participate on your forum but did observe
and I did give input to USTA prior to 2011 changes vehemently in summer 2010
but of course just heard the inadequate rationales that have failed to be fulfilled. Thanks for all your right on analogies re train(s).
What is DONE is that the USTA passed something Bad in March 2014 Yes
However there is a clear mandate from the players,parents, coaches, TD's, and industry and now with a little media exposure that these changes are not supported by membership and affiliates served.
What is also DONE is 2011 and much of 2012 living with the changes and their adverse affects on participation,tournament directors, and economies.
The systemic boiling point IS reached with these 2014 changes.
We all get burnt out and dont want to be bothered in futility.
But like this great game of tennis, as we teach our kids it might be 2-5 in the 3rd of this match,
but there's another match tomorrow and the day after that.
It aint OVER. It is not 2013 yet. There will be more meetings.
The train will come around again and our bags need be packed.
MORE Media exposure and high profile support, tennis stars, celebrities
need be involved. All that is asked is a fair and accountable participation
in process of determining structure of participants served.
...by participants served
The record of USTA producing top players over last couple of decades (at least in men's side) have been abysmal. What you are suggesting is just going back to the same system that has produced jack squat.
I agree top players do inspire others. And I think the record shows that catering to those top 200-300-400 players does not produce inspiring results. What will produce better result is to get more and more juniors to participate because it will increase the chance that someone out of that increased pool will become great.
USTA needs to focus on growing the game more broadly. If cutting back on top 200-300-400 players will allow them to shift the resources to top 200,000-300,000-400,000 players, that is a wise choice to make.
The changes to the competition schedule have nothing to do with that, except Pmac thinks that by reducing the amount of national competition the sport will look more attractive to parents deciding what sports there kid should focus on at the age of 8,9,10, etc(his own words). You are mixing apples and oranges.
Keep in mind the changes were not just to national tournaments, they eliminated half of the sectional events that had national ranking point too. The changes to the national competition schedule are about focusing more on top players and eliminating the riff-raff.
They say they know who the potential pros are by 13 or 14 via there Talent ID network, so they want to focus all the national tournaments on them, make them better. That's why most of the 'new' events are exclusive 'master' events for the top 16, 32, etc. What was eliminated were the bottom half of the draws for the other tournaments, the kids over 100.
Look, what they are saying is if you are not a top 100 player, they don't care about you. You could be 200, 2000, or 200,000, doesn't matter. Don't play national competitions, you are a nuisance, and wasting the time and money of the really good kids.
And support the handful they think can make it, a few American champs to feed the fan base they created.
The problem with the plan is that no one can hand pick a group from which the next champion will come. But they think they can.
Whenever I read a post with which I very STRONGLY agree, 9 times out of 10 I see it was written by the same person. We think just alike, Aloha Tennis...YOU GET IT.
However there needs to be a free and open pipeline of opportunities for all.
Eliminating nat'l opportunities for the aspiring #200-800 doesn't add 100,000-400,000 players it actually discourages them if they are looking for upward competitive opportunities. You have brought up a very valid and important point of getting more players involved. I am all for that and have spent much of my tennis energy participating in that in NJTL's for years and team tennis etc The USTA has long recognized that this a game and kids want to play and compete. The 70's Natl Jr Tennis Leagues were
give 'em a racquet, teach them to play, play games matches immediately
technique as you go, within match play.10 and under tennis....
Like the 50 kids at a summer NJTL clinic that only play each summer, need an intermediate competitive level forum prior to HS to progress
The top 1000 need a free flow of opportunities earned to the top
They are the closest to the future pros. No matter the resources
No,stifiled,limited, and delayed nat'l opportunities = discouragement.
Growing the grassroots is a parallel level of focus to natl play opportunities
Its about bridges, progressions, and a free flow multi-pipelines of opportunities.
ADD the sweet 16's , Masters fine but dont eliminate the nat'l trnies, players opportunities. Let good old American supply and demand economics 101 dictate tournaments like pre 2011
Growing the grass roots is a parallel topic
Just trying keep the water flowing and light shining.
Is this the Madison's that moved to Europe? Sweden?
good father and son...
or someone using their good name?
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