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Association of Water Volleyball Professionals
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 9:44 pm 
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Gentlemen and ladies,

We have met your ambassadors, Wes and Mrs. Wes. Things went well overall. They will no doubt return with tales of the strange sights they saw up north, and the different technologies in play up here. Some of them, I told, may be fairly new to you. All I ask is that you give them a fair hearing.

Every crew thinks that the way they play is the best, and there are slightly different rules at every experienced venue. We've traveled a bit, both inside Austin and out, so we know of which we speak.

I ran a pool for 19 years where jungle was the name of the game. Even though I knew it's not ideal. But I couldn't change it. And here's why. I didn't want to be the ref guy calling people in the net basically every time and invalidating good plays. That's no fun. You kind of have to have an overall agreement net is a no go, or it won't work. We haven't had that until recently, and the change was somewhat difficult. But it's happened, and game and attendance has actually improved.

As we saw with scrubs today at Riata, getting tangled up in the net is a sign of inexperience. And sure, it may cramp people's style in the beginning to not be able to get that net stuck under your armpit when spiking, but it might just be worth it to consider another way. Here's why:

When we raided one venue in Williamson County for a bit of game, Monkey/Ronin Steve jungled the net and snapped both the poles after like 3 plays. Game over. Run!

Second, injuries. I don't know how deep your roster is, but getting people jacked and losing them for the season, or, as we get older, their career, isn't smart. Good players have no fear and will go up and get hammered even if they're beat on the play. Getting them hurt in the process is less likely with no jungle.

But if jungle has to stay, raise the net I say. Did it at the Arogsy, and TBone did the same thing at Riata. It's a start. Dallas has a lower net than Riata, which makes it a banger's paradise. Buy no touchy the net. Conversely, things could be played still jungly, but with a higher net you'll avoid a bunch of major contact that risks injury. Because that's where we were before we went up there.

We also get more than a few sand ball players. They've traditionally disrespected the game and think watervolleyball is clown college, even though they lost at it almost every time until recently (LJ, gotta tell you, your persistence finally paid off). Their main complaint is jungle on the net. Fix that, and you've got a whole new level of talent who will still be bitchy (their version of "carries" and water's view of 3 second holdie sand sets have been discussed, and never the twain shall meet), but will be willing to give water a try.

Sadly, what it often takes is getting your ass kicked by someone with different technologies for things to change. Basically every place I've played had a "win and stay in" all day policy, and their own elite squad who won all day. Until the AWVP showed up. A win and stay in policy doesn't make much sense if you lose, and you have to consider that possibility. It's what Argosy brought to Riata, which is hard to accept in the beginning, but it makes sense. So me and mine beat you in your own pool. Hate to hoist you on your own rules, but it's our pool now, and you can just sit while we beat you and other teams again, and again, and again. But I've got a better idea--why don't we just say 3 in a row = "dynasty" and mix it up after that?

Because we played at a smaller pool, and, in our heyday, were getting a lot of attention, like 40 people showing up, you've gotta focus on participation--win your 3 in a row and get out, or mix it up and let the dry people play. It's the only way dry people will learn and get better. And finding talent that can get better is the only way to keep a league alive.

The middle ground on this is what we call BBGs--Big Boy Games. Where the best fights the best. You can either make these invite only show up early, or kind of square the circle by telling eager scrubs they probably don't want a piece of this--let the dogs have their meat for one game.

I'm also told you have situations where your best players can't play on the same team because it wouldn't be fair. That's exactly where we started, way back in the day. Me and Mikey, who both lived at the Arogsy, weren't allowed to play on the same team, and so fought against each other for a couple years. I'd have to day whoever got him had the advantage, since he's 10 years younger and 4 inches taller, but I'm a scrappy little bastard. Since we played in a bathtub compared to Riata, that allowed 2 on 2 games, eventually we two went on a 10 year undefeated in best of 3 legacy as a 2s squad.

There is method to the madness of which I'm telling you. Riata is a public pool, and so you will get people who think they can do what takes like 5 years at the minimum for most people to perfect, because we make it look easy : ) Well, on a normal day, if they want to come in to challenge en masse, slaughter them. But if there are 1 or two who know what they're doing, invite them to drop the zeroes and play with the heroes.

For the big change to happen in Austin game, it took us getting killed in Dallas last year. Finally, it all made sense! More or less. I'm still not a fan of changing big pool Riata rules entirely on "lift" when I won't be met in the middle by sand setters not deep dishing.

So everything is a negotiation. And watch the game film on AWVP you tube, to see the difference a year of practicing with new technologies can make in your game. We played better, and beat these guys on their home court.

Something to think about. I'm willing to come down and mix it up with whatever rules you have in place. But y'all ought to come up as well, and see that there's another way.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4Bq69HfR0Y

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2016 11:58 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 1:15 am
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Location: AWVP World Headquarters
Addendum: Jungle Protocol

With limited data to consider, it would appear that there's a quotient out there to be studied that combines net height and no jungle when it comes to injuries.

Once the net was raised at Riata, but we were still allowed to crash it (just became harder, because no one is 7 ft tall), injuries dropped to basically zero.

Dallas has a lower net that you can't touch, and I haven't heard of any major injuries occurring up there.

Thus, if you combine both high net you can't touch, chances of contact injury go way down. Make sense?

Doesn't mean you still can't hit hard. Watch the game film. Just something to consider...

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