At Large Process Correction & Responce (below) by Roger Blake (CIF)

At-Large Process Corrections in Figures - Doug Speck

It is with kind of a heavy heart that we report that there are some problems with the information used in figuring the State At-Large entries for the California State High School Cross-Country Meet. It appears that there were some incorrect section affiliations used in the figuring of schools in a chart used over the last four years to determine extra entrants to the State Meet that could affect participation in the 2002 State affair. Coach Ernest Lee of Gunn HS in Palo Alto first noted early this week that there appeared to be a mis-affiliation of a school from the Central Coast Section, Los Gatos, assigning that institution to the Central Section instead of the CCS from the 2000 Girls State Meet (they finished ninth place there and were assigned the letter designation “CS” instead of “CCS” that affected the number of placements among the top ten over the last four years for the two sections, thus affecting the “at-large” process for 2002 entrants to Fresno). Ernest, in all sincerity, reported that he may have found another such mistake, and, therefore, it was time to pull out all the old records and do some further research summarized below. Before you cast stones at anyone else, include the author of this piece in your efforts, as I (Doug Speck) was a member of the committee that helped to affect the changes in the at-large system as a member of the State Track and Cross-Country Advisory Committee, but deferred to others at a final important meeting with the job of playing Athletic Director at a high school of 3500 and a ton of teams operating at any one time. If affected, please address a big rock to me. Below is the information that was gathered the evening of November 19, 2002.

The information:
Peter Brewer was good enough to pass on charts that were used to place the teams in the State competition over the last four years (1998-1999-2000-2001), with the placement of section teams among the top ten in their division charted and the totals counted to determine if an area of the state deserved extra participation in Fresno at the State Meet. Each section had a “baseline” level of participation, with the total of “top ten” finishes by that section’s teams added to that baseline level to determine what percent of the total top tens over the years that area had achieved. From that figure for each area, openings in the State Meet (23 were allowed in each race at the Championships), were allocated based upon a section’s strength in the previous four years. Obviously, a misplacement of a school section-wise in the top ten team scorings for any of the four year period 1998-1999-2000-2001 would affect the number of squads from an area who were used in the above calculations, thus possibly affecting extra spots awarded at the starting line for the state meet.

Below are the misplacements that we believe took place in the divisions of the state meet top ten team results from 1998-2001.

Girls Division I
- none

Boys Division I
-West Hills (Santee) sixth in 1998 was placed in the Southern Section instead of San Diego (San Diego total over the 4 years should be 6 instead of 5)
-Bellarmine Prep (San Jose) seventh in 1998 was placed in the Sac Joaquin instead of Central Coast (Central Coast Total should be 3 over the four years period instead of 2)
-Clovis ninth in 1998 was placed in the San Diego instead of Central (Central should have 6 instead of 5 for a total over the 4 year period)
Southern Section total should be 15 over the years - Sac Joaquin should be 5 - North Coast Section stays at 2 as originally figured, as does Los Angeles at 4

Girls Division II
-Los Gatos ninth in 2000 was placed in the Central Section instead of Central Coast Section (CCS count is one, should be two over the years, with Central two and should be reduced by one)

Boys Division II
-Newport Harbor (Newport Beach) sixth in 1998 was placed in the Central Section instead of Southern Section (SS count of 15 appears correct, the Central Section count of 3 appears one too high)

Girls Division III

Boys Division IV
- Granada (Livermore) second in 1999 is placed in Northern Section instead of North Coast Section (but total counts for North Coast and Northern Section appear correct for the 4 year period)

Girls Division IV
- none (Valley Center identified with affiliation “S” in 1998 sixth place, but total count of four years for San Diego section of two appears correct)

Boys Division IV
- none

Girls Division V
- none

Boys Division V
-1998 - it appears the Division IV was transposed over to Division V for this year’s figures with section affiliations of the top ten schools Division V reflecting section affiliations from Division IV (However all the figures for involved schools seem to have totaled correctly for the number from each section over four years).

- Tranquility 1999 was listed eighth place from Northern Section instead of the Central Section. (total for Central Section should be 4 for the four year period, with the Northern Section reduced from 1 to zero)

Where do we go from here--
1) the above information should be checked by someone at the State CIF office. Anytime one person does the figuring there are chances for errors. The above was done voluntarily and it needs some checking.
2) Allocation of participation to the state meet in the affected divisions needs to be refigured.
3) While the procedure to causally add teams to the state meet does not seem proper, it would not seem correct to take the opportunity away from a squad from an already held section finals competition who felt they had earned a spot on the starting line in Fresno off the previously figured at-large information given to Sections. Further, should there be any mistakes in figures based upon the above information, it would seem prudent to add those squads (which we are sure is miniscule in number) who have earned a spot in an already held Section Finals competition, but were not informed of same due to incorrect figures in the past that set up the formulas. There are 23 teams scheduled for the start of the races in Fresno, and another one or two would not appear to cause massive problems. We have observed races with many more than that taking place on the Woodward Park course.

The next step must come from the State office, with our sense of an attempt from that group to do what is right for the student/athletes of the state one we have great faith in recently. They know how to get in touch with me for any more information on the above or any assistance - Doug Speck.

DyeStatCal News


Roger Blake (CIF) Response

Roger Blake conversation on the "At-Large" situation for the 2002 California State CC Meet - Doug Speck

Roger Blake, Assistant Executive Director for the State CIF, gave us a phone call the afternoon of Wednesday, November 20th, in the midst of a busy travel schedule to discuss the At-Large situation as it currently exists statewide. Roger has become a great ally of the Sports of Cross-Country and Track and Field in recent years, supervising the Track and Cross-Country Advisory Committees, and closely observing those Championship competitions. Roger always has the sense that "what is best for kids" comes first, with his response to the situation we described earlier today typical. He had not had the time to thoroughly digest the information that we placed in the article on the situation, where it appeared that some teams had been placed in the wrong divisions, affecting the extra at-large teams that would be invited to the state meet in some divisions. Roger indicated that his quick figuring thus far had shown that there should be one more addition to the State Meet from Girls Division II, and that he was contacting the Central Coast Section to involve them in righting that situation. He further added that it was not his intention to take any spots away from teams that may have been informed that they were going to attend the state meet as an at-large squad, even though there may have been a mistake in some historical figures, with again, it appearing at most one school involved thus far in that situation.

Roger brings a positive optimism to situations, and appears to be moving towards a quick resolution of this issue in a manner that will be best for all involved here, so that we can move on ahead and enjoy the last week and a half of our Championship prep season in its usual grand style.

Someone just turn off the fog machine in Fresno and let me read the weather reports so I can leave my umbrella at home!!!

Doug Speck

DyeStatCal News



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Editor: Doug Speck
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