NTRP guidelines, are they strictly just guidelines?

brettatk

Semi-Pro
Played against a guy this past weekend in 18+ 4.0 that was very strong. Googled him and found out he went to an NAIA school on a tennis scholarship about 8 years ago. He's in his late 20's now. USTA guidelines show that playing for an unranked NAIA school (I'm assuming it was unranked, but I do not know for sure) if you are between the ages of 26-35 you should be playing 4.5. Then at 36 I guess you'd be able to appeal down to 4.0. Now I guess my question is, are these strictly guidelines? It looks like he did play 4.5 for a little while after college but then stopped playing for about 4 years. He shows up as a 4.0 self rate now. If someone reported him would he be subject to a DQ or would a grievance have to be submitted? Just curious, I will not be filing anything but I wouldn't be surprised if someone from another team did.
 

J_R_B

Hall of Fame
Played against a guy this past weekend in 18+ 4.0 that was very strong. Googled him and found out he went to an NAIA school on a tennis scholarship about 8 years ago. He's in his late 20's now. USTA guidelines show that playing for an unranked NAIA school (I'm assuming it was unranked, but I do not know for sure) if you are between the ages of 26-35 you should be playing 4.5. Then at 36 I guess you'd be able to appeal down to 4.0. Now I guess my question is, are these strictly guidelines? It looks like he did play 4.5 for a little while after college but then stopped playing for about 4 years. He shows up as a 4.0 self rate now. If someone reported him would he be subject to a DQ or would a grievance have to be submitted? Just curious, I will not be filing anything but I wouldn't be surprised if someone from another team did.
If he had an expired rating and self-rated, the system would have forced him to re-rate at the same level (i.e. 4.5), although he would have the opportunity to submit a self-rating appeal to get down to 4.0. The sectional self-rating appeal committee has to make that decision.

That is the "by the book" way for him to have a legitimate 4.0 rating. Anything else and he would probably lose if anyone filed a self-rating grievance.

Also, as with any self-rate, he is subject to dynamic DQ if his results are too strong.
 

brettatk

Semi-Pro
Yeah, it might be a 100% legit rating. It was a good, hard match. If he keeps playing like that he'll be back at 4.5 soon enough.
 

GatorTennis

Rookie
The Florida Section will typically allow you to appeal down a level from the guidelines. By typically, I mean even if you are caught lying on a questionnaire, they'll still let you appeal down a level from where you're supposed to be.
 

brettatk

Semi-Pro
Maybe


Maybe his last season of 4.5 he got bumped down to 4.0 and thus did Self Rate at his last rating.
You probably nailed it (wink wink)
Yeah, I went in and looked at his results when he played 4.5 and they weren't that stellar. So I'm assuming he was bumped down. Just surprised he stopped playing USTA once he was bumped down but perhaps he didn't know of a 4.0 team to play for back then.
 

ShaunS

Semi-Pro
Yeah, I went in and looked at his results when he played 4.5 and they weren't that stellar. So I'm assuming he was bumped down. Just surprised he stopped playing USTA once he was bumped down but perhaps he didn't know of a 4.0 team to play for back then.
I'm surprised by your surprise.

Young people in their early 20s often have many significant changes happening in their lives that can change their time for tennis. Not to mention he might've been bummed out from failing to compete at 4.5 and decided to take some time off.
 

brettatk

Semi-Pro
I'm surprised by your surprise.

Young people in their early 20s often have many significant changes happening in their lives that can change their time for tennis. Not to mention he might've been bummed out from failing to compete at 4.5 and decided to take some time off.
That could be true as well. I just meant that these days when someone gets bumped down from 4.5 they are almost immediately swallowed up by a 4.0 team.
 

ShaunS

Semi-Pro
I just meant that these days when someone gets bumped down from 4.5 they are almost immediately swallowed up by a 4.0 team.
True, I know I always check to see if anyone's been bumped down.

It just seems like locally we lose way more than half the guys who "start" 4.0 in their 20s before they even make it three years.
 

JLyon

Hall of Fame
they are just guidelines, I have seen many current D2 players playing 4.5 all the time now, when guidelines show 5.0, but whatever works in the 18's, thankful I can play 40's now and not have have to wash out the sand after ever league match.
 

brettatk

Semi-Pro
they are just guidelines, I have seen many current D2 players playing 4.5 all the time now, when guidelines show 5.0, but whatever works in the 18's, thankful I can play 40's now and not have have to wash out the sand after ever league match.
Ha! I saw on another team that we don't play this season, there is a guy who played Div 2 tennis playing 4.0. I looked him up and he seemed to have good results while there. Seems like cases like this are starting to run rampant but I guess no way for USTA to police this, just too many members.
 

J_R_B

Hall of Fame
Ha! I saw on another team that we don't play this season, there is a guy who played Div 2 tennis playing 4.0. I looked him up and he seemed to have good results while there. Seems like cases like this are starting to run rampant but I guess no way for USTA to police this, just too many members.
Unless he self-rated while still in high school, he would have a 5.0 minimum until age 26 (then 4.5 afterwards) if he indicated that he played in college and would have to appeal down to play lower. In practice, though, the "guidelines" are really minimums set up so that no higher level player can rate themselves too low without prior approval. It's not a standard that is meant to serve as a minimum for anyone who plays in college at all. As we all know, there are legit 4.5 and even 4.0 level college players. It's just that there are also too many legit 5.0 level players to let everyone in college rate lower than that, so the USTA has to set the minimum at 5.0 so that the 5.0s can't rate themselves lower than that without approval. At the same time, approval should be granted for players who actually are lower level players so that they can play at the right level. I think in Middle States, they do take that approach and grant appeals where it is clearly reasonable, and I hope other sections do the same.
 

Issya

New User
Why is it that I see a ton of players at the lower end of the ratings but they still somehow keep that rating? It seems like quite a few people in my league are either a 3.0 or 3.5 but have done nothing but lose matches the past couple of years. I honestly don’t see the wins for them to have gotten to that level in the first place.
 

Matthew ATX

Semi-Pro
Why is it that I see a ton of players at the lower end of the ratings but they still somehow keep that rating? It seems like quite a few people in my league are either a 3.0 or 3.5 but have done nothing but lose matches the past couple of years. I honestly don’t see the wins for them to have gotten to that level in the first place.
I mean, no matter the level there are always going to be people at the top and bottom of it. Someone has to be the worst 3.5 in the world. And I'm sure you hear plenty about the best 3.5 in the world. That's just how levels work.
 

Issya

New User
I mean, no matter the level there are always going to be people at the top and bottom of it. Someone has to be the worst 3.5 in the world. And I'm sure you hear plenty about the best 3.5 in the world. That's just how levels work.
There will always be people at the bottom but my question is how are some people not bumped down? The trend seems to be lots of people losing matches but keeping their rating.

I also understand that winning matches isn’t necessarily the deciding factor on ratings. It depends on the outcome of the match compared to what the computer calculated. Looking at the matches though, one person lost 44 matches and won 4 in the past 3 years but somehow they keep a 3.5 rating. That’s one example but I can find many similar cases.

It seems like it’s more difficult to go down than go up.
 

Vox Rationis

Semi-Pro
I also understand that winning matches isn’t necessarily the deciding factor on ratings. It depends on the outcome of the match compared to what the computer calculated. Looking at the matches though, one person lost 44 matches and won 4 in the past 3 years but somehow they keep a 3.5 rating. That’s one example but I can find many similar cases.
You're answering your own question. You say you understand but then contradict yourself by focusing on their 4-44 record. Their 44 losses were within the expected results of their rating level. They're good enough to avoid getting crushed by the weaker players within their rating level but not good enough to win any of those matches. It's possible they had terrible luck and mostly played people at the top of their rating level, but they also could have brought this on themselves by playing up a level. If they do well enough while playing up it will definitely keep them from getting bumped down.

Above all else you have to look at WHO she played and HOW closely she competed. Not just the win/loss record.
 
they are just guidelines, I have seen many current D2 players playing 4.5 all the time now, when guidelines show 5.0, but whatever works in the 18's, thankful I can play 40's now and not have have to wash out the sand after ever league match.
You're saying every match is against a sandbagger? Or just occasionally?

I'd embrace the opportunity: where else am I going to get the chance to play up? [Yes, I could enter the Open division in a tournament and get my clock cleaned in the first round but there goes $50, whereas in league I get multiple matches.]

This is exactly what I look forward to in the 18+ league.
 
There will always be people at the bottom but my question is how are some people not bumped down? The trend seems to be lots of people losing matches but keeping their rating.

I also understand that winning matches isn’t necessarily the deciding factor on ratings. It depends on the outcome of the match compared to what the computer calculated. Looking at the matches though, one person lost 44 matches and won 4 in the past 3 years but somehow they keep a 3.5 rating. That’s one example but I can find many similar cases.

It seems like it’s more difficult to go down than go up.
Perhaps some got bumped down but successfully appealed back up. Appeals up are much more easily granted than down, from what I've heard.

@Vox Rationis is spot on. Here's another way of looking at it: if you look in TR, it will show not only the match breakdown but the set and game breakdowns as well. Notice that there tends to be convergence towards 50% regardless if one's W/L % is above or below. Someone might have an 80% match record but only a 70% set and 55% game percentage. Or they have a 20% match record but a 30% set and 40% game percentage.

So while 4-44 is < 10%, what are their set and game %s? Maybe they're winning 35% of games. If that was the case, would you still find it surprising that they are still at the same level?
 
Good points @Vox Rationis and @S&V-not_dead_yet. The game win thresholds are around 35% for several of these people. I thought it would have taken more than that to stay at level but I guess that’s what it take to stay at the bottom.
Note that my idea is a rough estimate. To get into the weeds, you'd have to come up with an estimated dynamic rating based on opponent strength. If you're really interested, contact @schmke for some scouting reports [I have no idea what he charges].
 
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