Originally Posted by West Coast Ace
So this email basically is an admission that the local level officials see that the USTA ranking system is severely flawed. When all you have left is pulling out the 'sense of fair play' card, you've basically admitted defeat.
Instead of begging the players to move up, the local officials should be passing their observations to the regional or national level to point out the huge problems with the system.
Yup, pretty much what I thought when I got the email, and why I posted it. To be fair, the flaws are mostly around the self-rating system, and there is no simple solution. Especially at lower levels, where improvement is rapid - a person could legitimately self-rate as 2.5 for adult league in the spring, and legitimately have improved by fall, but since ratings don't get adjusted until the end of the year, that person is still nominally a 2.5. Releasing DNTRP would address that, but that ain't gonna happen
One actual example: I was watching districts, and saw this one guy who looked like a 4.0/4.5 pummel this other guy who looked like a 3.5. Turns out this was a 3.5 match
I talked to the winner after the match... turns out he only started tennis a year or two ago, and so had self rated as a 3.0. At the end of last year he got bumped to 3.5C. He is mid-20s and a former DI volleyball player, so has been improving fast. Since he is computer rated, he can't be DQ'd, but he is clearly a level above everyone else at 3.5. Don't know what you do with cases like this.
Re all the comments about sandbagging, I must say that I find that most people and teams are playing at the right level. But it's the 10% exceptions that make it deep into playoffs etc, and that clobber all the other teams during the regular season.