Change the Format of the NCAA Track and Field Championships
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The current method of selecting NCAA team champions is conspicuously skewed toward schools that may have no more than a few elite athletes and ignores the fundamental concept of "team" as programs with highly competitive athletes may have to be left behind in the championship competition. This system is not equitable to programs that work diligently to develop squads that can legitimately compete in many or all disciplines of the sport.
Fortunately, there is a relatively simple, common sense fix for this issue that accommodates both the sport's individual superstars and the complete teams that deserve a better opportunity to prove their worth. This fix is laid out eloquently by Gordon Mack of Flosports.
"Every year, the NCAA crowns its track and field team champion based on which school scores the most points at the NCAA track and field championship meet. This system is poorly formulated and should be changed. Here's why:
1) No one qualifies for NCAAs as a track team. They qualify as individuals. Thus, this meet should be for individual titles only, not team titles.
2) Rarely do deep, broad-based teams succeed in this system."
Weekend 1 March 3-4: Hold the DI NCAA Indoor Track and Field Team Championships (Top eight teams only)
Weekend 2 March 10-11: Hold the DI NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships (Current system without the team scoring)
How To Pick The Top 8 Teams:
At the end of the regular season, teams will submit a roster to the NCAA.
Team Championship Roster Guidelines:
- One athlete per event (This forces teams to not rely on one discipline)
- One relay team per relay event
- An athlete can only compete in a maximum of two individual running events (This forces teams to not rely on one superstar)
- An athlete can only compete in a maximum of two field events (This forces teams to not rely on one superstar)
The teams' rosters are submitted with each athlete's qualifying mark based on his or her season's personal best. Once all the rosters are submitted, descending order lists will be created for each event. The eight lowest "total ranks" schools will then qualify for the NCAA team championship meet.
This system will ensure we select the eight best teams with strong athletes across all events. No team will be able to stack one event, and it will create an exciting championship meet in which every event is a final and treated equally."
An investment in this change will do nothing but increase the value of the championships, the equity the teams deserve, and the interest of us that love the sport and others who haven't yet become fans. Those of us who have signed this petition strongly encourage you to consider making this change to the championship structure of both indoor and outdoor championships. We appreciate your time and consideration.
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