College Dual Match Format Is The Greatest Thing Ever Invented

jmnk

Hall of Fame
#1
I attend as many college tennis matches as I can. I just spent three days at the ITA Indoor Championships. And I say that whoever came up with the idea of College Dual Tennis Match was/is a genius. There's nothing not to like.
  • The entire thing start to finish takes 2-2.30 hrs. Perfect.
  • There's always something to watch. Since they play so many matches simultaneously there are always two-three competitive matches at least.
  • No-ad, no let rules, well, rule.
  • The entire match can literally turn on one point. Illinois was down 0:3 and and trailing 2:5 in the third on court #4 against Texas. Keenan saved like two match points, climbed all the way to 6:6, I think saved another match point, and eventually won. Had he not saved that match points it would have been an uneventful 4:0 for Texas. Then Texas was up 5:3 in the third on court#6 - Illinois won again. And on #3 Illinois was up 5:3 in third, they failed to hold the serve for the win, and lost in the tiebreaker by the slimiest margin 7:5
  • No-ad - did I mention it rules? You are down to a final team point, the team is trailing 0:1 and 5:6, and it is 40:40. You lose - it's over, you win - they may be playing for another hour.
  • Since there are multiple matches at the same time there's no way to enforce any silence during the points. Since the point is always over _somewhere_.
  • The comments by players or public are sooo funny, and not really in a mean way.
  • Most players have no illusion that this is the end of the road for them as far as serious tennis goes. And they are not going to be pros. So they just enjoy it, feel terrible when they lose for the team - but it's not like the life is over.
  • for a player all outcomes are at least somewhat positive: you won and the team won - great, you won and the team lost - not great but pretty good, you lost and the team won - not too bad, you lost and the team lost - well, I'm not the _only_ one at fault.
The thing is made for spectators. I'm less sure about player development benefits as there are definitely _a lot_ of scoreboard watching. As in, if you are losing but the match may be over soon, you may, ahem, take a sweet time between points/games and perhaps you will never finish so there will be no loss on the record.

Discuss....
 
#2
The best dual matches are the ones with 6 courts in a row, fans can look at the score board, and then watch all the deuce points-never boring that way. So many indoor courts are set up with 3/3 or 4/4 courts so you cant watch 1 and 2 at the same time-have to keep moving between groups of courts and always miss a few points. Sometimes the matches are down to 2 courts on opposite sides-cant watch two tiebreakers like that (were you at the UNC match where two TBs were going on at same time-think they were both on even courts we couldn't see?) Are all the indoor courts set up like that? I have attended more outdoors. One of the most fun matches I watched was UGA/USC (think it was that Cali team-sometimes get the USC/UCLA/ Cal mixed up) at the NCAAs in '17- for that one I sat in the pit for 4-6 which was the most rambunctious bunch. Rowdy, feisty crowd. I went to one of the College Match Days at Lake Nona in '18 and that was a fun atmosphere too. Too bad only 8 teams will be at NCAAs from 2019 on. The first day at NCAAs when there were 16 teams allowed fans to see multiple ranked players and styles of play. At some sites, fans can be close enough to the courts to even hear coach instructions to players. Caught some of that even on livestream audio this weekend.

You were lucky to be live at the scene at indoors. Those of us streaming missed all the good matches at line 2.
 
#3
One thing that I'd like changed about the dual match format is to have each doubles match be worth 0.1 points so we can see at a glance which team took the doubles point, and how it was split.
 
#4
I attend as many college tennis matches as I can. I just spent three days at the ITA Indoor Championships. And I say that whoever came up with the idea of College Dual Tennis Match was/is a genius. There's nothing not to like.
  • The entire thing start to finish takes 2-2.30 hrs. Perfect.
  • There's always something to watch. Since they play so many matches simultaneously there are always two-three competitive matches at least.
  • No-ad, no let rules, well, rule.
  • The entire match can literally turn on one point. Illinois was down 0:3 and and trailing 2:5 in the third on court #4 against Texas. Keenan saved like two match points, climbed all the way to 6:6, I think saved another match point, and eventually won. Had he not saved that match points it would have been an uneventful 4:0 for Texas. Then Texas was up 5:3 in the third on court#6 - Illinois won again. And on #3 Illinois was up 5:3 in third, they failed to hold the serve for the win, and lost in the tiebreaker by the slimiest margin 7:5
  • No-ad - did I mention it rules? You are down to a final team point, the team is trailing 0:1 and 5:6, and it is 40:40. You lose - it's over, you win - they may be playing for another hour.
  • Since there are multiple matches at the same time there's no way to enforce any silence during the points. Since the point is always over _somewhere_.
  • The comments by players or public are sooo funny, and not really in a mean way.
  • Most players have no illusion that this is the end of the road for them as far as serious tennis goes. And they are not going to be pros. So they just enjoy it, feel terrible when they lose for the team - but it's not like the life is over.
  • for a player all outcomes are at least somewhat positive: you won and the team won - great, you won and the team lost - not great but pretty good, you lost and the team won - not too bad, you lost and the team lost - well, I'm not the _only_ one at fault.
The thing is made for spectators. I'm less sure about player development benefits as there are definitely _a lot_ of scoreboard watching. As in, if you are losing but the match may be over soon, you may, ahem, take a sweet time between points/games and perhaps you will never finish so there will be no loss on the record.

Discuss....
NO. all the college players hate the No Ad rule. it really messes them up in the ATP tour.
 
#5
One thing that I'd like changed about the dual match format is to have each doubles match be worth 0.1 points so we can see at a glance which team took the doubles point, and how it was split.
Doubles matches should also account for one whole point. I would be absolutely fine if a team wins all three doubles matches and goes with 3-0 in the singles play. In German league matches they follow a principle where they play singles first and then doubles.
The point is that even if you lose singles 2-4, you can still come back with 3 doubles wins. That would bring another dimension to already unbelievably exciting college dual match format.
 
#6
Doubles matches should also account for one whole point. I would be absolutely fine if a team wins all three doubles matches and goes with 3-0 in the singles play. In German league matches they follow a principle where they play singles first and then doubles.
The point is that even if you lose singles 2-4, you can still come back with 3 doubles wins. That would bring another dimension to already unbelievably exciting college dual match format.
In german league i ve seen it 3 times, that my Team in which i Play came back after 2-4 in Singles !!! with doubles worth only 1 Point it can never happen

BTW: NO-AD is CRAP !!! it is just for Tension and a match can get very lucky in one Players favor with that....
 
#7
In german league i ve seen it 3 times, that my Team in which i Play came back after 2-4 in Singles !!! with doubles worth only 1 Point it can never happen

BTW: NO-AD is CRAP !!! it is just for Tension and a match can get very lucky in one Players favor with that....
I believe there are plenty of great doubles players in college and I think recruiting would become different and great doubles players would get a bit more exposure with the 1 doubles point per match rule. Also, every doubles match would get played out as well!

I agree for the No-Ad, that rule should be reversed asap to regular scoring!
 
#8
Being a huge college tennis fan for years, I of course agree with your post. I encourage anyone who has tennis friends who are not familiar with college dual matches to take them to one. I have done this several times and the person has almost always enjoyed it (I encouraged my tennis playing group in Cedar City, UT to go to the SUU matches and they loved them and that's not even high level D1) .

People just aren't aware how exciting they can be if they have never been to one. Even an ordinary match is great as there are 6 singles matches to chose from and it's even better on the occasions you are treated to very close matches that come down to the final match or two. You can choose to watch the players you find most entertaining and out of 6 matches it's very rare that all 6 are blowouts, at least 1 is bound to be competitive. In many ways a college dual match can be more enjoyable than attending professional level matches. Your movement isn't restricted to changeovers and you can make plenty of noise.

Overall I believe no-ad is better for fan engagement and for making the matches fit into a neat time frame. However I do miss the occasional epic moments that ad tennis can create. I'm thinking specifically of the Big 12 championship in 2014 between Baylor and Oklahoma when Patrick Pradella and Axel Alvarez had an epic 8 deuce game at 4-5 in the 3rd that decided the match.
 

JW10S

Hall of Fame
#9
Doubles matches should also account for one whole point. I would be absolutely fine if a team wins all three doubles matches and goes with 3-0 in the singles play. In German league matches they follow a principle where they play singles first and then doubles.
The point is that even if you lose singles 2-4, you can still come back with 3 doubles wins. That would bring another dimension to already unbelievably exciting college dual match format.
This is how college tennis used to be. When I played all matches, both singles and doubles, were best of 3 sets and each match counted as 1 point. A team thus needed to win 5 points to win the match. Singles matches were played 1st followed by doubles. Matches took a long time though. The current format is certainly more efficient but I have to say I feel the single doubles set is too short--make it an 8 game pro set at least.
 
#10
When I coached HS tennis, I occasionally would take a few of the members of the team along, when I went to watch a mid-level D1 team play, about an hour from me. The guys enjoyed watching, and since I knew the coach, they were allowed to hit on the courts after the match was over. It was a lot of fun, and the HS players found it inspiring. Though, in today's social climate, I would never take students or team members somewhere in my personal vehicle. Sad. Though, I would tell any HS coach to encourage his or her players to go watch any decent college tennis that is nearby.

I don't mind the no-ad. It does help somewhat in terms of shortening long matches. It would be helpful in HS tennis, as many of those matches take forever, particularly at a lower level of play.
 
#11
I just read JW10S comment. I do officiate college tennis nowadays. I hear much more wishing that doubles sets were 8 games, than I hear negative comments about no-ad. Actually, I hear very little complaining about no-ad. I do see their point about the short doubles set. If you drop serve early, you are immediately in deep doo-doo.
 

jhick

Professional
#12
Being more of a doubles specialist who enjoys both singles and doubles, ideally I'd like to see the doubles go 10 (or at least 8) game pro sets (this is how it used to be back when I was in college). Six games can go awfully quick especially if one team gets off to a bad start. I also prefer each doubles match count as a point as opposed to 1 total point. No ad doesn't bother me as much. Right now doubles is really de-emphasized. But I understand singles is more popular and the issue with length/time of matches. Singles 3rd set decided by a superbreaker would be an option, however I'm sure that would get poo-poo'd by the pro singles enthusiasts.
 
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JLyon

Hall of Fame
#13
I just read JW10S comment. I do officiate college tennis nowadays. I hear much more wishing that doubles sets were 8 games, than I hear negative comments about no-ad. Actually, I hear very little complaining about no-ad. I do see their point about the short doubles set. If you drop serve early, you are immediately in deep doo-doo.
Coaches seem fine with No-Ad and contrary to what most think, cheating has not increased. Now doubles should be a pro-set, 6 games is not good.
 
#14
NAIA and D3 matches still count each dubs as a point. Dubs is the most exciting so it is a shame they cant play 8 game pro sets-would probably just add 10 more minutes. I think no ad keeps the interest of the fans, but the guys who play pros and college have to make an adjustment. Gojo and Roy Smith lost dual matches after winning matches at Challengers, while Wolf and Cressy seem to adapt back fine. Wolf did go down 0-3 vs Geller after playing the Cleveland Challenger a day or two before. Don't know if he was tired or just had to adjust game strategy at deuce. With the Transition Tour changes, fewer players will play pro tennis, but for those who do they have to tweak their games but they also have to do that going back and forth between outdoors and indoors and clay/hard for the pros. Tennis players may be the most flexible and disciplined athletes...
 
#15
I attend as many college tennis matches as I can. I just spent three days at the ITA Indoor Championships. And I say that whoever came up with the idea of College Dual Tennis Match was/is a genius. There's nothing not to like.
  • The entire thing start to finish takes 2-2.30 hrs. Perfect.
  • There's always something to watch. Since they play so many matches simultaneously there are always two-three competitive matches at least.
  • No-ad, no let rules, well, rule.
  • The entire match can literally turn on one point. Illinois was down 0:3 and and trailing 2:5 in the third on court #4 against Texas. Keenan saved like two match points, climbed all the way to 6:6, I think saved another match point, and eventually won. Had he not saved that match points it would have been an uneventful 4:0 for Texas. Then Texas was up 5:3 in the third on court#6 - Illinois won again. And on #3 Illinois was up 5:3 in third, they failed to hold the serve for the win, and lost in the tiebreaker by the slimiest margin 7:5
  • No-ad - did I mention it rules? You are down to a final team point, the team is trailing 0:1 and 5:6, and it is 40:40. You lose - it's over, you win - they may be playing for another hour.
  • Since there are multiple matches at the same time there's no way to enforce any silence during the points. Since the point is always over _somewhere_.
  • The comments by players or public are sooo funny, and not really in a mean way.
  • Most players have no illusion that this is the end of the road for them as far as serious tennis goes. And they are not going to be pros. So they just enjoy it, feel terrible when they lose for the team - but it's not like the life is over.
  • for a player all outcomes are at least somewhat positive: you won and the team won - great, you won and the team lost - not great but pretty good, you lost and the team won - not too bad, you lost and the team lost - well, I'm not the _only_ one at fault.
The thing is made for spectators. I'm less sure about player development benefits as there are definitely _a lot_ of scoreboard watching. As in, if you are losing but the match may be over soon, you may, ahem, take a sweet time between points/games and perhaps you will never finish so there will be no loss on the record.

Discuss....
This is a great post.

I think "no let" should be universal across all tennis - if it can hit the net and go over during the point, then why not on serves? Volleyball instituted this and it has worked really well for them.

I also like no-ad. It accomplishes two things: 1) it creates some very dramatic and crucial points, and 2) it helps keep the matches within a set time frame, which is important for spectators.

I like the 6 game doubles set. I think tennis, as a sport in general, should try to standardize things to make the scoring more accessible. One way to do that is to always make sets 6 games.
 

Nacho

Professional
#17
I have a lot of thoughts on this, but I'll try to keep to some of your points with maybe different perspectives (as you said discuss ;):

The entire thing start to finish takes 2-2.30 hrs. Perfect
Time has never been a real factor for me when it comes to tennis, but I understand that some fans, especially ones new to the sport or with limited attention spans, only can dedicate a short time frame. Fine...But the Doubles is way too short and should at the very least have remained an 8 game pro-set. Matches under the old school way of playing would last about 3 hours, with some close ones going beyond that to 4. Its about the same amount of time as a football or baseball game, so now a dual match is shorter then other sports...This idea that tennis is too lengthy to watch has been promulgated since the 60's when various people were trying to fit the sport into a TV cookie cutter frame. And I should also mention that the worldwide gambling industry has for years tried to create parity as that makes the house more of a winner. If you look up gambling and tennis lots of articles will come up...So, there is a long history to this idea of tennis being lengthy..

I am cool with no warm ups, btw, I think the pre-warmup is enough to get going

There's always something to watch. Since they play so many matches simultaneously there are always two-three competitive matches at least.
This has always been true, and it is one of the fun things about a dual match especially when there are matches on the line. However, keep in mind too that the dual match format can squash some players who might benefit or perform well in a tournament format. For many years tournament play and points gained during a tournament were what determined a team winner. They then did tournaments based on your position, and now just strictly team format. However, if you play 5 on a team, you may have the potential to play 1, but are limited on your growth and development to get there. Looks ok when you have the top 16 teams out there, but for the other 130 teams it can be a problem. And some matches are terrible to watch...so if there isn't a close match its boring. However, at least you have choices; oh wait, you have choices in a tournament format too right?

No-ad, no let rules, well, rule.
Let rules began because there were some high level coaches in the 90's who complained players called lets in critical matches when they felt it wasn't a let, and were abusing this. It doesn't save much time, and creates more parity. The purpose of the let is to allow the server and returner an opportunity for play without an immediate chance happening making the decision. By eliminating this, you are giving chance outcome to a point, and potentially a critical point like a 40/40 match point. I don't think that is very fair, and a lack of fairness can cause a lack of desire. Why work hard if chance makes the decision...Which brings me to no-ad

No-Ad might keep a multiple deuce game from transpiring, and thus lesson the time of a match by 25 minutes, but it creates parity and isn't a good way to determine a champion. Sure, 40/40 is an exciting point, but so is the third Ad that a returner is fighting through; probably more so. The point of the regular scoring is to eliminate chance winning, and determine a champion. By creating a situation that makes you HAVE to win 2 points in a row to win a game, determines a rightful champion. Its the same with winning by two games, and having 3 chances to serve in a set. The scoring is basic gaming math. No-Ad disrupts this, and thus creates more parity. So, if you are happy with parity, then No ad is great. If you are happy with 40/40 points being won with a serve let court in the championship match, then the system is great.

I am not a fan of no-ad. Won't play it if I don't have to, find most player prefer playing ad, and really don't think the ITA should have shoved this down as a rule when 70% of the players and coaches were opposed to it. Now, they did it in the name of shortening it for fans and creating more marketing opportunities, but the coverage of the indoors was awful, the TV opportunities have been slim to none since 2014, and the fan showing isn't happening....Plus, as I said above, why work hard to be a champion if random chance determines the winner?


The entire match can literally turn on one point. Illinois was down 0:3 and and trailing 2:5 in the third on court #4 against Texas. Keenan saved like two match points, climbed all the way to 6:6, I think saved another match point, and eventually won. Had he not saved that match points it would have been an uneventful 4:0 for Texas. Then Texas was up 5:3 in the third on court#6 - Illinois won again. And on #3 Illinois was up 5:3 in third, they failed to hold the serve for the win, and lost in the tiebreaker by the slimiest margin 7:5
I am assuming what you are saying is that No-Ad drove this "excitement". May have been exciting for Illinois, but for Texas this sucked. Texas is an awesome team, and with ad scoring they probably would have been the definite winner, and maybe had a closer match with OSU. Instead, a few no-ad points kept them from it. Again, more parity. I actually think Texas is the number three team in the country, but the scoring looks otherwise.

No-ad - did I mention it rules? You are down to a final team point, the team is trailing 0:1 and 5:6, and it is 40:40. You lose - it's over, you win - they may be playing for another hour.
Its called Parity, I would rather have a champion. Again, you have to decide if you are a fan of parity or a champion. People love and hate Federer because he is a champion. He sets the bar for other players, and has done it for years. He works hard at it. But if it was a different player every slam winning, I am not sure what that would do for the sport. May get some people excited short term, but long term you lose your champions, and thus lose interest. Additionally, as I mentioned, kids dream of being a champion, not losing because of a let court or bad call....No-ad doesn't give you a good shot.


Since there are multiple matches at the same time there's no way to enforce any silence during the points. Since the point is always over _somewhere_.
I do like the commotion on the side. However, some schools have taken this to the extreme. I am not an advocate for silence during tennis matches, but at least respect and unfortunately when it comes to the regular season this isn't always the case. But, for an event like this with multiple teams and officials you aren't going to see this be a problem.

The comments by players or public are sooo funny, and not really in a mean way.
They are, but it has also gotten out of hand on many occasions. And sometimes the nastiness at schools has been encouraged. Not going to name names and schools, other threads have mentioned this. I am not sure what example this sets for kids watching, but in a good forum can be fun and get the crowd a little more rowdy.

Most players have no illusion that this is the end of the road for them as far as serious tennis goes. And they are not going to be pros. So they just enjoy it, feel terrible when they lose for the team - but it's not like the life is over.
I would totally disagree with this. These are student athletes. This isn't a rec league for them. Most of the players, at the indoors especially, were top level jar's, Kalamazoo finalists, hold ATP rankings, play many futures events, and are competitive with the other players there. It means a great deal to them, and they take it hard if they lose just like a football player would if they lost a playoff game. Its big time, and some of these players will be trying to make their way on the pro tour. No one is out there for fun and games. And many of the players at the National Indoor final level are working hard to be competitive beyond college. Sure, there are some schools at a lower level where this is just something they are doing, but at the level you watched no way.

for a player all outcomes are at least somewhat positive: you won and the team won - great, you won and the team lost - not great but pretty good, you lost and the team won - not too bad, you lost and the team lost - well, I'm not the _only_ one at fault.
Sort of same as your previous statement, again I disagree with this assertion. You think Kyle Seelig didn't care that he lost yesterday?
 

jmnk

Hall of Fame
#18
I have a lot of thoughts on this, but I'll try to keep to some of your points with maybe different perspectives (as you said discuss ;):


Time has never been a real factor for me when it comes to tennis, but I understand that some fans, especially ones new to the sport or with limited attention spans, only can dedicate a short time frame. Fine...But the Doubles is way too short and should at the very least have remained an 8 game pro-set. Matches under the old school way of playing would last about 3 hours, with some close ones going beyond that to 4. Its about the same amount of time as a football or baseball game, so now a dual match is shorter then other sports...This idea that tennis is too lengthy to watch has been promulgated since the 60's when various people were trying to fit the sport into a TV cookie cutter frame. And I should also mention that the worldwide gambling industry has for years tried to create parity as that makes the house more of a winner. If you look up gambling and tennis lots of articles will come up...So, there is a long history to this idea of tennis being lengthy..

I am cool with no warm ups, btw, I think the pre-warmup is enough to get going


This has always been true, and it is one of the fun things about a dual match especially when there are matches on the line. However, keep in mind too that the dual match format can squash some players who might benefit or perform well in a tournament format. For many years tournament play and points gained during a tournament were what determined a team winner. They then did tournaments based on your position, and now just strictly team format. However, if you play 5 on a team, you may have the potential to play 1, but are limited on your growth and development to get there. Looks ok when you have the top 16 teams out there, but for the other 130 teams it can be a problem. And some matches are terrible to watch...so if there isn't a close match its boring. However, at least you have choices; oh wait, you have choices in a tournament format too right?


Let rules began because there were some high level coaches in the 90's who complained players called lets in critical matches when they felt it wasn't a let, and were abusing this. It doesn't save much time, and creates more parity. The purpose of the let is to allow the server and returner an opportunity for play without an immediate chance happening making the decision. By eliminating this, you are giving chance outcome to a point, and potentially a critical point like a 40/40 match point. I don't think that is very fair, and a lack of fairness can cause a lack of desire. Why work hard if chance makes the decision...Which brings me to no-ad

No-Ad might keep a multiple deuce game from transpiring, and thus lesson the time of a match by 25 minutes, but it creates parity and isn't a good way to determine a champion. Sure, 40/40 is an exciting point, but so is the third Ad that a returner is fighting through; probably more so. The point of the regular scoring is to eliminate chance winning, and determine a champion. By creating a situation that makes you HAVE to win 2 points in a row to win a game, determines a rightful champion. Its the same with winning by two games, and having 3 chances to serve in a set. The scoring is basic gaming math. No-Ad disrupts this, and thus creates more parity. So, if you are happy with parity, then No ad is great. If you are happy with 40/40 points being won with a serve let court in the championship match, then the system is great.

I am not a fan of no-ad. Won't play it if I don't have to, find most player prefer playing ad, and really don't think the ITA should have shoved this down as a rule when 70% of the players and coaches were opposed to it. Now, they did it in the name of shortening it for fans and creating more marketing opportunities, but the coverage of the indoors was awful, the TV opportunities have been slim to none since 2014, and the fan showing isn't happening....Plus, as I said above, why work hard to be a champion if random chance determines the winner?



I am assuming what you are saying is that No-Ad drove this "excitement". May have been exciting for Illinois, but for Texas this sucked. Texas is an awesome team, and with ad scoring they probably would have been the definite winner, and maybe had a closer match with OSU. Instead, a few no-ad points kept them from it. Again, more parity. I actually think Texas is the number three team in the country, but the scoring looks otherwise.


Its called Parity, I would rather have a champion. Again, you have to decide if you are a fan of parity or a champion. People love and hate Federer because he is a champion. He sets the bar for other players, and has done it for years. He works hard at it. But if it was a different player every slam winning, I am not sure what that would do for the sport. May get some people excited short term, but long term you lose your champions, and thus lose interest. Additionally, as I mentioned, kids dream of being a champion, not losing because of a let court or bad call....No-ad doesn't give you a good shot.



I do like the commotion on the side. However, some schools have taken this to the extreme. I am not an advocate for silence during tennis matches, but at least respect and unfortunately when it comes to the regular season this isn't always the case. But, for an event like this with multiple teams and officials you aren't going to see this be a problem.


They are, but it has also gotten out of hand on many occasions. And sometimes the nastiness at schools has been encouraged. Not going to name names and schools, other threads have mentioned this. I am not sure what example this sets for kids watching, but in a good forum can be fun and get the crowd a little more rowdy.


I would totally disagree with this. These are student athletes. This isn't a rec league for them. Most of the players, at the indoors especially, were top level jar's, Kalamazoo finalists, hold ATP rankings, play many futures events, and are competitive with the other players there. It means a great deal to them, and they take it hard if they lose just like a football player would if they lost a playoff game. Its big time, and some of these players will be trying to make their way on the pro tour. No one is out there for fun and games. And many of the players at the National Indoor final level are working hard to be competitive beyond college. Sure, there are some schools at a lower level where this is just something they are doing, but at the level you watched no way.


Sort of same as your previous statement, again I disagree with this assertion. You think Kyle Seelig didn't care that he lost yesterday?
I almost completely agree with your arguments. Which is why I also stated "The thing is made for spectators. I'm less sure about player development benefits ". I can certainly see that for some players, especially the ones that have a shot at pro, the format is less than ideal. But public does not care. They see exciting event, somewhat time constrained, with crucial points. As others also stated - I had not-really-tennis fans watch college match and enjoy it way more than a local Challenger with regular format and higher ranked players. And it is because of the format. I hate no-ad when playing too - but I love it when watching.

By no means I'm suggesting that players do not care. They are indeed heartbroken when they lose. We all felt for Zeke when he failed to clinch for Illinois against Texas - I bet he hated it all way more than Kyle (since Kyle's team won anyway). I'm just saying that they know it is 'just another, not matter how important, match' and their livelihood/income does not depend on it - so they get over it.
And yes, players on those 16 teams are top level stuff, many used to be top juniors. But surely by now most of them know that there are tens of players as good as them, another 20 or so better, and out of that top-top shelf only 2-4 will ever make it as pros. I think they are there for fun and games. There are plenty of top college players that just have not touched a racket after graduation for some time - because without team camaraderie/fun/travel/jokes tennis is just not something they want to do.
 

Nacho

Professional
#19
I almost completely agree with your arguments. Which is why I also stated "The thing is made for spectators. I'm less sure about player development benefits ". I can certainly see that for some players, especially the ones that have a shot at pro, the format is less than ideal. But public does not care. They see exciting event, somewhat time constrained, with crucial points. As others also stated - I had not-really-tennis fans watch college match and enjoy it way more than a local Challenger with regular format and higher ranked players. And it is because of the format. I hate no-ad when playing too - but I love it when watching.

By no means I'm suggesting that players do not care. They are indeed heartbroken when they lose. We all felt for Zeke when he failed to clinch for Illinois against Texas - I bet he hated it all way more than Kyle (since Kyle's team won anyway). I'm just saying that they know it is 'just another, not matter how important, match' and their livelihood/income does not depend on it - so they get over it.
And yes, players on those 16 teams are top level stuff, many used to be top juniors. But surely by now most of them know that there are tens of players as good as them, another 20 or so better, and out of that top-top shelf only 2-4 will ever make it as pros. I think they are there for fun and games. There are plenty of top college players that just have not touched a racket after graduation for some time - because without team camaraderie/fun/travel/jokes tennis is just not something they want to do.
Thats cool, you said "discussion" so it opened the door;). As a spectator though, and what may have been lost in all my explanations, is many have been conditioned to "believe" the mantra that tennis is too long, and that shorter time is good for the game. I too bought into this at first as it made it interesting overall. But overtime I have developed a different outlook. There is personally nothing more dramatic to me then a game where two players are battling it out; with multiple deuces. The drama intensifies, and while a 40/40 point is exciting briefly isn't causing people to fall in love with tennis. People loved tennis in the 70's and 80's. The NCAA's attracted 30,000 spectators in 1979 and they didn't come because of the scoring. In fact, championship matches were 3/5 sets then. The idea that people (spectators) have lost their interest in tennis because of scoring is misguided, but many have you believing this because of alternate agenda's. Truth is No-ad isn't bringing people back, I am guessing 30,000 spectators weren't at Midtown. And if you are going to call matches after 4 points, this in and of itself negates the need for No-Ad as it ends the match in an appropriate time, yet its still pushed on a population that hates playing it? I agree that playing full ad for 7 matches was lengthy, but 8 game pro-sets and calling matches at 4 is reasonable with ad.

...And I am glad you clarified what you meant. Even saying its "just another" is difficult for me to comprehend because as a former D-1 player myself, every loss sucked...and my team lost a lot. But I am not sure I would have felt differently playing Lacrosse, Golf, Basketball, running track or whatever. Are you thinking this because Tennis is an individual sport so there usually is a lot of pressure on the individual that team tennis might help mitigate? I can kinda get there if so.
 
#20
No-Ad might keep a multiple deuce game from transpiring, and thus lesson the time of a match by 25 minutes, but it creates parity and isn't a good way to determine a champion. Sure, 40/40 is an exciting point, but so is the third Ad that a returner is fighting through; probably more so.?
It's not even close. A no-ad point is way more dramatic than the third ad, which by definition is a scenario that has already played out twice that game. The deuce point at no-ad is do or die - there's nothing more exciting.
 

JW10S

Hall of Fame
#22
Good to see the love for no-ad, no-let in this thread.

This is the way to go and I hope pro tennis embraces it someday soon.
I can see the no let in the pros coming fairly soon but not no-ad in singles--except maybe in the odd special event. Much more likely that best of 5 set matches are dropped in favor of best of 3 in the Slams before no-ad gets introduced across the board.

As I mentioned earlier in this thread I played college tennis during a time when all matches, singles and doubles, were best of 3 sets. Matches took a long time to play. With warm-ups and break between singles and doubles matches, a match day could easily last 4-5 hours, sometimes even longer. I played on a national championship team and even when we played other top teams there were few spectators for the matches, and this was during the so called 'tennis boom'. People might come to watch the singles but leave before the doubles started, or at least before they were finished, it was just too long. By the end of the match the only people left in the stands were the player's girlfriends. Now I go to watch college matches all over and often see pretty big enthusiastic crowds taking in the matches. More matches are being televised, there's more coverage, so despite the initial mutterings of me and some of my contemporaries that things were better 'back when we played' I have to say the format is working. But, as I also said, the doubles needs to be more than one no-ad set to make it more relevant and competitive, as it is now it's almost like just flipping a coin as far as I'm concerned.
 
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Nacho

Professional
#23
It's not even close. A no-ad point is way more dramatic than the third ad, which by definition is a scenario that has already played out twice that game. The deuce point at no-ad is do or die - there's nothing more exciting.
We differ then on opinion of the excitement brought about by the battle for the game. I like to see the challenge of having to string 2, sometimes 3 points in a row, the mental toughness of the process, and the amazing points that come from having to battle. While one shot to the head is dramatic, it ends the battle prematurely. Thats just from my fan perspective. Nothing more agonizing then watching it unfold, and seeing someone battle back in a game. Whereas, watching a game lost from a let court fluke serve, or one shot mishit return just seems deflating as a fan unless it happens to the other team.

From a competition standpoint, No-ad creates a "grinding" type style in college tennis, as a defensive game is what will win out. So teams like Columbia which sit back and grind out points will have close matches with teams like Wake, a team made up of players with real next level ability. Instead of Wake blowing them out as they are a much more talented team, they got drug out into a close match with Columbia. While Columbia is a good team, they are built for No-Ad play and are doing well. I don't think they are a team with potential pro players. Likewise, the Wake Ohio State match would have looked a lot different under Ad scoring then No-Ad
 
#24
We differ then on opinion of the excitement brought about by the battle for the game. I like to see the challenge of having to string 2, sometimes 3 points in a row, the mental toughness of the process, and the amazing points that come from having to battle. While one shot to the head is dramatic, it ends the battle prematurely. Thats just from my fan perspective. Nothing more agonizing then watching it unfold, and seeing someone battle back in a game. Whereas, watching a game lost from a let court fluke serve, or one shot mishit return just seems deflating as a fan unless it happens to the other team.

From a competition standpoint, No-ad creates a "grinding" type style in college tennis, as a defensive game is what will win out. So teams like Columbia which sit back and grind out points will have close matches with teams like Wake, a team made up of players with real next level ability. Instead of Wake blowing them out as they are a much more talented team, they got drug out into a close match with Columbia. While Columbia is a good team, they are built for No-Ad play and are doing well. I don't think they are a team with potential pro players. Likewise, the Wake Ohio State match would have looked a lot different under Ad scoring then No-Ad
I think we'll probably have to agree to disagree, but could you explain why you think defensive tennis is more effective in a no-ad format? I'm not following that line of reasoning.
 

Nacho

Professional
#25
I think we'll probably have to agree to disagree, but could you explain why you think defensive tennis is more effective in a no-ad format? I'm not following that line of reasoning.
Sure. Aggressive, or Offensive minded players are inclined to piece points together, and take risks with their shots. Because there is always a second chance in ad scoring, their Risk can be rewarded or defended hence you have stronger, more offensively developed play at the pro level. Even Nadal, who many would consider sort of a grinder, has an offensive minded game, he just plays amazing defense. With a one chance approach like no-ad, taking Risks with shots is less likely as you have no way to recoup. So, the instinct for the offensive player is to play defense. Even a 3-2 point can become a 3-3 point, so you have to be more conservative less you are in a position to lose the game. The players that grind, play good defense, and are just consistent are ones that thrive in college tennis.

If you are into the "alt" theory of tennis play and listen to guys like Kriese and Bloemendahl, they would even argue the grinding style that is enhanced by No-Ad has led to even more internationals in college tennis. They believe that many American Jr's are taught to hit "big", which is hard to do coming from HS right into college, while many internationals have a clay court, grinding style that can't make it out of futures but does well in college tennis. I am not sure I would go that far with it, I think American Jr tennis is just subpar to International, but many people subscribe to this.
 
#26
Sure. Aggressive, or Offensive minded players are inclined to piece points together, and take risks with their shots. Because there is always a second chance in ad scoring, their Risk can be rewarded or defended hence you have stronger, more offensively developed play at the pro level. Even Nadal, who many would consider sort of a grinder, has an offensive minded game, he just plays amazing defense. With a one chance approach like no-ad, taking Risks with shots is less likely as you have no way to recoup. So, the instinct for the offensive player is to play defense. Even a 3-2 point can become a 3-3 point, so you have to be more conservative less you are in a position to lose the game. The players that grind, play good defense, and are just consistent are ones that thrive in college tennis.

If you are into the "alt" theory of tennis play and listen to guys like Kriese and Bloemendahl, they would even argue the grinding style that is enhanced by No-Ad has led to even more internationals in college tennis. They believe that many American Jr's are taught to hit "big", which is hard to do coming from HS right into college, while many internationals have a clay court, grinding style that can't make it out of futures but does well in college tennis. I am not sure I would go that far with it, I think American Jr tennis is just subpar to International, but many people subscribe to this.
Hmmm, I'm not sure I agree with any of that (but thanks for going over your thought process). When I watch the best colleges players in the no-ad situation, they win because they are aggressive and take control of the point. It would be really interesting to see the rate of winners vs unforced errors on no-ad point vs all other points, as I think that would be the best way of addressing this question. In pro doubles, where no-ad is frequently played, I would argue that the more aggressive teams do better overall and on the no-ad points. Obviously doubles is different from singles, but pro doubles offers a large sample size to evaluate.
 
#27
When I watch the best colleges players in the no-ad situation, they win because they are aggressive and take control of the point. It would be really interesting to see the rate of winners vs unforced errors on no-ad point vs all other points, as I think that would be the best way of addressing this question. .
That would be an interesting analysis. I agree with Nacho that some players may play less aggressive at deuce points-they may not want to risk an UE or a hook on a ball that hits the line. When you see players who win Challenger matches lose dual matches to lower level 1s and 2s the next week, you have to wonder if college tennis is penalizing their aggressive play or if they are just tired. Now the most confident players will probably play the same game for both realizing the points they lose will be offset by winners.
 
#28
That would be an interesting analysis. I agree with Nacho that some players may play less aggressive at deuce points-they may not want to risk an UE or a hook on a ball that hits the line. When you see players who win Challenger matches lose dual matches to lower level 1s and 2s the next week, you have to wonder if college tennis is penalizing their aggressive play or if they are just tired. Now the most confident players will probably play the same game for both realizing the points they lose will be offset by winners.
I think those players that won Challenger matches and then lost college matches did so because the colleges players they faced are just really good. They essentially faced Challenger level players at #1 singles. I know Gojo lost to Wolf, Sunderlund, and Cressy and beat Blumberg. Those are his 4 college singles matches this year. In fact, obviously it's a small sample size, but Cressy beat Gojo 6-4, 6-2 in a Challenger and then a few weeks later beat him 6-4, 7-5 in a college match, so very similar results.
 
#29
I think those players that won Challenger matches and then lost college matches did so because the colleges players they faced are just really good. They essentially faced Challenger level players at #1 singles. I know Gojo lost to Wolf, Sunderlund, and Cressy and beat Blumberg. Those are his 4 college singles matches this year. In fact, obviously it's a small sample size, but Cressy beat Gojo 6-4, 6-2 in a Challenger and then a few weeks later beat him 6-4, 7-5 in a college match, so very similar results.
I was more thinking of Roy Smith losing to Emil Reinberg when Emil is not a top 1 (e.g. lost a 1st set 2-6 to GT's 1) and Roy Smith was down 4-5 in the 3rd to Michigan's Mattias Simiar when matched was clinched. This is the same Roy Smith who beat Donald Young and lost 6-7 6-7 to Klahn. When college players with ATP points like Gojo, Cressy, Wolf play each other, somebody has to lose... However, maybe other players play better with ads. On this board, someone stated that Roy Smith has left Baylor-he didnt play last weekend. However, in an interview less than a month ago, he had stated goals to reach the top in collegiate tennis as well as top 100 ATP.
 

ClarkC

Hall of Fame
#30
A college dual match is great. 8 game pro sets in doubles would not lengthen the match that much, would give fans a few more minutes of doubles to watch (and doubles can be very exciting), and match length is not a problem right now with no-ad scoring, anyway. College develops doubles players in a way that junior tennis does not, so it is a shame to de-emphasize doubles by shortening it to 6 games. Putting college players into pro doubles helps increase the interest level among American fans of both college tennis and pro tennis.

The new shortened format was supposed to keep matches under 3 hours, to help get more TV coverage. Now matches are far less than 3 hours, not just a little less, but there is still no significant TV coverage. The NCAA should back off to 8 game pro sets in doubles to recognize these facts. But they might be afraid that a change would be an admission of error on their part, which is never permitted in our society.
 
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#31
Sure. Aggressive, or Offensive minded players are inclined to piece points together, and take risks with their shots. Because there is always a second chance in ad scoring, their Risk can be rewarded or defended hence you have stronger, more offensively developed play at the pro level. Even Nadal, who many would consider sort of a grinder, has an offensive minded game, he just plays amazing defense. With a one chance approach like no-ad, taking Risks with shots is less likely as you have no way to recoup. So, the instinct for the offensive player is to play defense. Even a 3-2 point can become a 3-3 point, so you have to be more conservative less you are in a position to lose the game. The players that grind, play good defense, and are just consistent are ones that thrive in college tennis.

If you are into the "alt" theory of tennis play and listen to guys like Kriese and Bloemendahl, they would even argue the grinding style that is enhanced by No-Ad has led to even more internationals in college tennis. They believe that many American Jr's are taught to hit "big", which is hard to do coming from HS right into college, while many internationals have a clay court, grinding style that can't make it out of futures but does well in college tennis. I am not sure I would go that far with it, I think American Jr tennis is just subpar to International, but many people subscribe to this.
I agree with you that this may be happening that players play more defensive on important points, but dont agree that would make them successful with the advent of no ad. While different strategies and mindsets work for different players, playing to not lose is almost always worse than going for your shots. I have always had more success when I went to put my opponents in difficult situations rather than just hoping they will miss. However it is frustrating when you go for a shot you normally make on a deciding point and miss it, you think "if I hadnt gone for that maybe I could have won that very important point." This results based thinking can hamper people especially with this all deciding point.
 

Nacho

Professional
#32
Hmmm, I'm not sure I agree with any of that (but thanks for going over your thought process). When I watch the best colleges players in the no-ad situation, they win because they are aggressive and take control of the point. It would be really interesting to see the rate of winners vs unforced errors on no-ad point vs all other points, as I think that would be the best way of addressing this question. In pro doubles, where no-ad is frequently played, I would argue that the more aggressive teams do better overall and on the no-ad points. Obviously doubles is different from singles, but pro doubles offers a large sample size to evaluate.
Well, your probably think this because you are used to watching the top level programs in Wake, the ACC and SEC. You have more confident players, the top players in the nation, and they are able to get through and play riskier tennis. Once you get out of the top 30 its grinder tennis. And certainly a lot of the depth is filled with this....I don't think we always see the full potential of some players. I realize its a little different, and I didn't quite see it till I talked with some coaches about it, but once you think about it you start to notice. Maybe just take this as a different perspective for future thought. I would really have to track data to make a true case for it, but I don't have time. For now I am just not able to accept No-ad and go off what most players and coaches tell me.
 
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Nacho

Professional
#33
I agree with you that this may be happening that players play more defensive on important points, but dont agree that would make them successful with the advent of no ad. While different strategies and mindsets work for different players, playing to not lose is almost always worse than going for your shots. I have always had more success when I went to put my opponents in difficult situations rather than just hoping they will miss. However it is frustrating when you go for a shot you normally make on a deciding point and miss it, you think "if I hadnt gone for that maybe I could have won that very important point." This results based thinking can hamper people especially with this all deciding point.
Totally get where your coming from. There are players that battle with a lot of confidence, not saying they all disappear. But you look at most D-1 teams, and the types of players, you will see a consistent defensive play dominating a lot of points. The top teams have players that are pros or almost pros, so if your just watching the Wakes and OSU's you may not notice. But watch some of the teams outside the top 30...I will say when your a team that has a big time player like OSU does with JJ Wolf, you can afford to have a couple of players that play riskier tennis like Kobelt and Joyce. It makes it easier to go after some teams grinding tendencies. Women's college tennis is to the pushing extreme, there are very few risky offensive players in women's college tennis.

For me, When I do play no-ad, which if I have a choice I don't so its usually some USTA mandated thing, I find I am a little hesitant to try anything risky. And on 3/3 points unless I am confident I can go for something I am not rushing the net, going for big serves or shots, etc...

I will admit that I never really thought about it till I had some discussions with coaches, and then I noticed it. Its not entirely obvious, but when you are looking for that style of play you notice it more in the strategies of players out there. I am not sure I buy in to that this is why so many college players struggle when turning pro, there are tons of factors, but the style dictated by this play could be one of them.

Just a different perspective...
 

Nacho

Professional
#34
A college dual match is great. 8 game pro sets in doubles would not lengthen the match that much, would give fans a few more minutes of doubles to watch (and doubles can be very exciting), and match length is not a problem right now with no-ad scoring, anyway. College develops doubles players in a way that junior tennis does not, so it is a shame to de-emphasize doubles by shortening it to 6 games. Putting college players into pro doubles helps increase the interest level among American fan of both college tennis and pro tennis.

The new shortened format was supposed to keep matches under 3 hours, to help get more TV coverage. Now matches are far less than 3 hours, not a little less, but there is still no significant TV coverage. The NCAA should back off to 8 game pro sets in doubles to recognize these facts. But they might be afraid that a change would be an admission of error on their part, which is never permitted in our society.
Most of the matches are shortened because they are called at 4 wins. If your going to do that play 8 game pro sets and Ad scoring! You still keep it under 3 if your calling it at 4 points.
 
#37
It differs by coach preference, travel deadlines and conference. The Pac 12 and Big 12 usually end on the clinch and typically do not play out their matches. The Big Ten and ACC have always played out their matches (except for a few travel exceptions). The SEC used to stop at 4 before the no-ad changes but in the last few years of no-ad they have played out their matches as well.

I just took a look at Florida's schedule from last year (just a random choice) and they played all 7 points of each SEC match except for a 4-0 win over Kentucky (which was on a Sunday and Kentucky probably wanted to hurry up and get on their way home). Meanwhile UCLA stopped on clinch in every Pac 12 match but did play out a few non conference matches (like vs Oklahoma)

Not sure if this inconsistency around the country is good because it can create discrepancies in the singles rankings for the ranked players if some are always being played out while others rarely get to finish a match.
 

ClarkC

Hall of Fame
#38
Most regular season non tournament matches play it out at all of the lines.
But the length is irrelevant for played-out matches. If the dual match had been decided, a TV network will be glad to have something to show during the rest of the scheduled time slot, and then they can just drop the telecast and move on. Picture a TV network that supposedly likes the new format because of time considerations. They provide a 3 hour time slot and the match finished in 1 hour and 55 minutes. What now? I would think they would ask for the matches to be played out. But the whole TV argument NEVER made a lick of sense when justifying the new format, and has made no difference in interest by TV networks.
 

Nacho

Professional
#39
It differs by coach preference, travel deadlines and conference. The Pac 12 and Big 12 usually end on the clinch and typically do not play out their matches. The Big Ten and ACC have always played out their matches (except for a few travel exceptions). The SEC used to stop at 4 before the no-ad changes but in the last few years of no-ad they have played out their matches as well.

I just took a look at Florida's schedule from last year (just a random choice) and they played all 7 points of each SEC match except for a 4-0 win over Kentucky (which was on a Sunday and Kentucky probably wanted to hurry up and get on their way home). Meanwhile UCLA stopped on clinch in every Pac 12 match but did play out a few non conference matches (like vs Oklahoma)

Not sure if this inconsistency around the country is good because it can create discrepancies in the singles rankings for the ranked players if some are always being played out while others rarely get to finish a match.
I also took a quick look at a few random schedules (Michigan, New Mexico State, Texas), and it is hard to quickly determine if a 4-3 match is because they pre-decided to play it out or because it was close. I guess looking at the order of finish you can ascertain this, but that is tedious to do and I don't care enough. Assuming it was just close, between the three schools I looked at it appears for every 1.5 matches, there is a match played out. And your right, usually the conference matches are played out. Some schools play 10pt breakers for thirds just to finish out a match rather then calling it, and I am not sure I would call this much different then calling a match at 4. I agree with you there is no real consistency though between schools, and many factors involved (Weather, closeness of the match, indoor vs Outdoor, schedule time, time on court by the players). To really have a good gauge of intentions you would have to do a hard core study, and who has time. By all accounts playing out a match is up to the coaches to decide, but why would they decide to play out a match? Because its ridiculous to call a match at 4 and they want to give their players the chance to compete and practice. And I agree, for those players who may not do anything in conference, but could qualify with a ranking to compete in the NCAA tournament, it would suck to never have a chance because your match always gets called as the rest of your team goes down fast before you can finish.
 
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Nacho

Professional
#40
But the length is irrelevant for played-out matches. If the dual match had been decided, a TV network will be glad to have something to show during the rest of the scheduled time slot, and then they can just drop the telecast and move on. Picture a TV network that supposedly likes the new format because of time considerations. They provide a 3 hour time slot and the match finished in 1 hour and 55 minutes. What now? I would think they would ask for the matches to be played out. But the whole TV argument NEVER made a lick of sense when justifying the new format, and has made no difference in interest by TV networks.
Totally....Zero difference, its been 4 years since they made this change in scoring.....So why continue with the No-Ad and called matches when you can't quantify more fans or more TV coverage? And then can't even set up the proper streaming for a major event like the indoors?
 

JW10S

Hall of Fame
#41
But the whole TV argument NEVER made a lick of sense when justifying the new format, and has made no difference in interest by TV networks.
Absolutely not true. The Tennis Channel is now highlighting college tennis matches on a weekly basis. Conference cable channels like the Pac-12 Network and others are showing college tennis matches, and other matches are available online. Just a few years ago there was nothing on TV or online, nothing. While it is true that ESPN will air college Cornhole matches or college Bowling over college Tennis that does not mean the new format has had zero impact. Lets face it, college tennis matches are not easy to televise. There are 3 doubles matches going on at the same time, then there are 6, 6!, singles matches going on at the same time, all of which have equal value to the overall score--so what do you show? I know I for one don't want to see a game from court 1, then a game from court 5, then a game from court 3, etc, even though score-wise they have equal value. What other college sport has so much going at once? I watched college beach volleyball on TV and they get it more right. They play 6 total matches but only have 2 matches going on at a time so you can more easily follow the progress of the competition, instead of all of them going on at once. And for those unaware the new format was not introduced just for TV. A big part of the change was to make it easier on the student athletes to make is easier to balance their studies and athletics. I know when I played the long matches would often lead to some very late night study sessions. And when a team gets to 4 why keep playing? The match is over! Who cares after that really? College tennis is a team sport, not an individual one like pro tennis. Back when I played I think I would have welcomed that, we always played out matches even when the score was 9-0, which now seems more than a little pointless. Clearly most of the people criticizing college tennis here never played it.
 
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#42
@Nacho @JW10S I think it makes sense to play regular season dual matches out as long as there is not a flight to catch... Maybe a team wins dubs and lines 1,3,5 easily. The next week the team may have a closer match. The players at 2,4,6 will be better prepared for the close match if they battle to finish their match and some get a win. It may not matter for the team the 1st week but it does for individual development. It usually only takes 30 min or less to finish the matches. If a match was not already in 3 sets, but splits after the clinch, just a TB is usually played. The matches already in 3 sets play out the full third. Unfinished matches don't count for UTR, and UTR is one of the factors in selection for fall flights, qualifier vs MD for some ITA regionals, selection to some gold ball events... Now for big tourneys like Kickoff, Indoors, NCAAs with multiple teams, it makes sense for the timing and for the excitement to stop after the clinch. But regular season matches, let the guys play. What if the bench player finally gets a shot due to injury, good to let him battle it out and see if he can take the 3rd set or not. Let the guys who finish early cheer on their teammates. Some days all can share in the team and individual victory when team wins 7-0. It has to be disappointing when a player is about to win and has to stop. Also the coach can see what the players finishing out matches need to work on. Before the clinch, the focus is on the win, but after the clinch, the coach can focus more on development. I think most players want to play matches out. Now dual season is tiring, so by the time conference playoffs come around, they are ready to quit at the clinch, plus the joy or sorrow at the results overtakes any other emotion for those key matches. It's all team those days.
 
#43
@Nacho @JW10S I think it makes sense to play regular season dual matches out as long as there is not a flight to catch... Maybe a team wins dubs and lines 1,3,5 easily. The next week the team may have a closer match. The players at 2,4,6 will be better prepared for the close match if they battle to finish their match and some get a win. It may not matter for the team the 1st week but it does for individual development. It usually only takes 30 min or less to finish the matches. If a match was not already in 3 sets, but splits after the clinch, just a TB is usually played. The matches already in 3 sets play out the full third. Unfinished matches don't count for UTR, and UTR is one of the factors in selection for fall flights, qualifier vs MD for some ITA regionals, selection to some gold ball events... Now for big tourneys like Kickoff, Indoors, NCAAs with multiple teams, it makes sense for the timing and for the excitement to stop after the clinch. But regular season matches, let the guys play. What if the bench player finally gets a shot due to injury, good to let him battle it out and see if he can take the 3rd set or not. Let the guys who finish early cheer on their teammates. Some days all can share in the team and individual victory when team wins 7-0. It has to be disappointing when a player is about to win and has to stop. Also the coach can see what the players finishing out matches need to work on. Before the clinch, the focus is on the win, but after the clinch, the coach can focus more on development. I think most players want to play matches out. Now dual season is tiring, so by the time conference playoffs come around, they are ready to quit at the clinch, plus the joy or sorrow at the results overtakes any other emotion for those key matches. It's all team those days.
I agree that there are many good arguments for completing all matches during regular season dual matches, and now that they are playing no-ad/6 game dubs/no warm-up there is the ability to complete all the matches in a reasonable amount of time.

I think this should be standardized across conferences.
 

Nacho

Professional
#44
So much to respond to here....

The Tennis Channel is now highlighting college tennis matches on a weekly basis
Barely! There are a small handful of facilities in which TV will operate from: Miami, FSU, USTA Campus, and Baylor come to mind. This is because they have built the necessary space and facilities for TV to operate. If this hadn't of happened you would see zero college tennis coverage. And very few matches at those places have been worth broadcasting

While it is true that ESPN will air college Cornhole matches or college Bowling over college Tennis that does not mean the new format has had zero impact
It means that the people in TV think there is more of an interest and market in those events then a college tennis event. Plus, for college tennis its a fortune to set up portable facilities and cameras....Cornhole is nothing, and lots of people love drinking beer and screwing around with corn hole while tailgating. So, the format of filming a tennis match is the expense, not the actual No-Ad scoring

Lets face it, college tennis matches are not easy to televise
I disagree here. Although you lay out you don't enjoy going court to court, most spectators zero in on the courts that have the biggest implications. If Court 1 is a blowout, but court 4 is close, most people go to court 4. I do think a "red zone" approach to broadcasting a college tennis match makes sense. Go to the important points, highlight the best players, and then focus in on the closing match. All the things the original poster of this thread outlined as "exciting" are the blue print for filming a college tennis match. Even early rounds of a Grand Slam have multiple court coverages. But most broadcasters don't want to put the time and money into this especially if the facilities are difficult to work with or they have to spend more money then they believe they will make. This is the biggest issue here as only 7% of adults are interested in pro-tennis, and 12% in mildly interested. With tennis channel grabbing this market, their investment is pro-tennis and their contracts with pro tennis events. College tennis is an after thought with no viewership right now.

A big part of the change was to make it easier on the student athletes to make is easier to balance their studies and athletics. I know when I played the long matches would often lead to some very late night study sessions. And when a team gets to 4 why keep playing?
Yea, they threw that in as one of the reasons, but that is a fallacy. These are high level athletes. Like any sport they want to compete, practice and be the best, especially when you are talking about the top schools. I don't see why playing tennis is more of a burden on a schedule then for a football or basketball player. And in many peoples opinion tennis is a sissy recreation sport played by old people at the local park, why be concerned about it as some grueling schedule?

The match is over! Who cares after that really?
The players care, they want to compete! They want to qualify for different events. Say you play number 1 for Toledo, and you are in every match you play, but your teammates are horrible and lose before you can finish. How can you get better, qualify for rankings, or get into bigger events, representing your school; if you never complete a match? These guys want to win, they aren't doing this as an after school activity

Clearly most of the people criticizing college tennis here never played it.
This is a silly statement. No one is on here criticizing college tennis, we all love it and want it to be better. Lots of former players on here, and this is a discussion. We don't have to agree, just stating our cases. I have learned a ton from some of the people on here (@Clemson_tennis @jcgatennismom @ClarkC @tennisjunky @Deacon Drive ) that I hadn't thought about before. I can tell you some of these threads and people on here have helped me to look at tennis differently even though I have played tennis my whole life and played D-1. If you dismiss everyone you miss out on the different perspectives and discussions
 
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ClarkC

Hall of Fame
#45
Some conference networks, such as PAC-12 and Big Ten, showed a little college tennis before the format change, and they still show just a little. The only difference is the College Match Day shows a few times each spring on the Tennis Channel. It is not clear that the format change is the reason for their interest.

Furthermore, it is not clear why 100% of NCAA matches have to change format so that 0.01% of them can be televised. This is the kind of point that I make over and over and no one responds to, for some reason.

JW10S missed the point about playing out matches, so I will spell it out. A TV network likes to schedule a block of time for an event. If they schedule 2.5 hours for a college tennis match and it reaches 4-1 in a little less than 2 hours, they have a problem. They could cut over to something totally different, but the guide channel info does not include that other event, so no one is tuning in expecting to see it. They won't get any new viewers. They might as well show the end of a close singles match that the viewers who already tuned in might be interested in.

Except for some football and basketball games going overtime, TV networks know how long those events will go, and overtime is exciting so they don't mind running over on time because the viewers stay tuned. Less popular sports need to fit their time slots. College tennis matches have unpredictable durations, both in the new format and in the old format. When they finish too quickly, what should the network do? They don't have this problem with football and basketball. When does a 3 hour football game unexpectedly wrap in 2.5 hours? When it happens in tennis, they might as well show the ongoing singles matches. This could be done only for the 0.01% of college matches that get televised; for other matches, no one is insisting that they be completed for TV reasons.
 

JW10S

Hall of Fame
#46
The TV thing is being way overblown. Programmers of live sports ALWAYS have contingencies in place to fill air time if something happens. Sometimes tennis tournaments, golf tournaments, auto races, baseball games, whatever, will get delayed. stopped midway or cancelled due to rain or some other reason and the programmers don't usually 'cut over to something totally different' as ClarkC said but fill the remaining time with previous competitions of the same sport. Claiming the matches should be played out simply to fill air time isn't very convincing. They could always go to an exciting, hard fought college match that was played in a previous competition. How many times did we see the Connors/Krickstein replay when the US Open was rained out? And I'm not sure how many people will stay tuned in to watch a dead rubber when the overall match has already been decided other than maybe if a particular match is very close--but not all are. Again, college tennis is difficult to televise. And unknowingly Nacho helped make my point for me by saying that some venues are 'hard to work with' and that the multiple cameras necessary are expensive and may cost 'more than they believe they will make'. But the bottom line is that I've still seen more college tennis on TV in the last year or so than I ever had before. I think the format has had more than a little to do with that--no one here has convinced me otherwise.

And the academic issue WAS part of the reason for the format changes, not just TV. Tennis matches and basketball games now run close to the same time, but comparing college tennis to football where they play one game a week is kind of silly, isn't it? As I said when I played college tennis matches often lasted longer than football games, and happened several times a week--home and away in the same week. It's much better now for the student/athletes.

Finally, I'd be very anxious to see the record of the player who has gone an entire season and not completed a single match as Nacho put forth as an 'example'. An argument based on hypotheticals is almost always a weak one. I've spoken to some recent and current D-1 players asking about the format and the opinions about whether matches should be played to completion or not has been mixed. The biggest determining factor is the score--if the match is deep into the 3rd set the players would like to finish, which is understandable. But one high ranking college player explained it to me very eloquently when he said 'I understand that college tennis is a team sport and not like junior tennis or pro tennis where it's all about me.'
 
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Nacho

Professional
#47
I appreciate your challenges, and there are some things I find common ground with you in.

And unknowingly Nacho helped make my point for me by saying that some venues are 'hard to work with'
No, we are just agreeing on one point. Its definitely a factor, that has nothing to do with scoring. Scoring didn't make the difference the expansion of venues did. And the biggest obstacle for broadcasting more tennis is the venue. Play sight has changed the playing field somewhat, and many of the broadcasts I see are utilizing the play sight equipment but then lack any sort of broadcast acumen. It costs about $150-$200,000 to set up play sight at a school, so you are seeing the schools with some money to burn do it.

but comparing college tennis to football where they play one game a week is kind of silly, isn't it?
Not silly at all. They are both student athletes? Really any sport. Regulating the amount of time a coach has with their players hurts tennis and is more of a generational thing then anything else. Some coaches get around it. If you are going to be good at tennis it takes 4-5 hours a day of playing/hitting, cardio and weight, and then the match play. Just because they are concerned for player safety and schooling doesn't mean there necessarily is a problem. A comparison with other sports shows there isn't the same concern. However, if you can find some reliable data showing tennis players GPA and graduation rates have improved since the 2014 implementation of No-Ad scoring, then I could reconsider its impact. I think what you will find is that there is no impact, and that tennis players rank ahead of almost all sports when it comes to academics and always have.

I'd be very anxious to see the record of the player who has gone an entire season and not completed a single match as Nacho put forth as an 'example'
Never said entire season, you are taking me out of context. However, as an example: If you go back in time, and picking a random example; Dusty Boyer who played 1 on a mediocre Nebraska team in 2016 was 19-5 with two unfinished matches. Problem was those matches were called because the rest of the team stank, and he was one of a couple of decent players on that team. The unfinished matches he was leading and they were against ranked players. He was in the rankings, but an opportunity to improve his ranking was lost because he didn't have the chance to finish the match. You could say "big deal, its two matches tough", but I think that can be frustrating for players. Andrew Dzulynsky on the same team had 5 unfinished matches, all because he was in three sets at the 3, 4, and 5 positions. So here he is competing, not finishing. He never learns to finish matches or if he can move past tough opponents. The argument (by some I am not sure yet if I fully by into this) is that sports like Golf have more professional players out of the college ranks then tennis because they learn how to compete. Their format allows all players to participate in tournaments, and those that might be at the bottom of the lineup have a chance to improve. I do commend the ITA for really expanding the summer and fall tournament season, as this has allowed some players to shine and surprise. But I do think the team format can slow this progress down, and some have argued that American players especially get lost in the team format. Again, very debate-able and I can see it both ways.

Not expecting you to agree with everything, I get it, I say some weird stuff....But at least consider it as you watch matches this season, and don't let the ITA propaganda machine convince you everything is hunky dory because they have an agenda. Most players and coaches hated the regulations and scoring and have voiced this out loud, and I trust them at this point.
 

JW10S

Hall of Fame
#48
College tennis currently is being aired on television more than ever, that is a fact. The new format does have something to do with that. You have to start somewhere, expecting to go from 0-100 is expecting too much. Given the adherent difficulties involved with televising college tennis anyone who believed that the new scoring system would instantly lead to widespread mainstream television coverage, and who now claims the format is a failure because it has not, is being naïve at best and just plain ignorant at worst. Give it a chance, things are slowly starting to happen.

By nature I am not a whiner, I look at things for what they are and deal with them. As a former college player myself I'm thrilled that more college tennis is being televised now. Sure I'd like to see more but as I said you have to start somewhere. I love going to college matches now and seeing enthusiastic crowds, something I didn't see much as a player myself and something I didn't see much going to matches as a spectator a decade ago. And for that matter I'm happy college tennis is still being played at all, I really wonder if that would be true without the format changes.

And again, like it or not, college tennis is a team sport. Most people when they think of tennis think of an individual sport. But that doesn't apply to college tennis. I remember being only 1 of 2 freshman on my college team and the 1st day of practice the coach took us aside and said, 'I know where you guys came from you were the hotshots. Well, you're not the hotshots here. You'll have to prove yourselves not only to me but to your teammates, and we're expecting a lot from you.' Instantly changed my whole attitude. And from talking to current players they know what they are getting into and accept it, I don't hear them whining about something they chose to be a part of. If the rest of the team finishes their matches and you don't whose fault is it--yours or the formats? Teams will often swap their #1 and #2 players or their #4 and #5 players, etc, for matches, is that for the individuals or for the team? It's a team sport and the team wins when they get to 4, pretty simple.
 
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#49
It really is all depending on what the coaches want. Last night Texas A&M and Tulsa played out their match with 2 matches going to 10 point breakers after the A&M win was already confirmed even though they had to travel to Waco to play indoors and it was past 10pm on a Tuesday night. Meanwhile UCLA and Grand Canyon decided to stop the match when UCLA clinched at 4-2 even though the only thing left to be completed was a 10 point breaker after split sets on court 4.
 
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