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Thread: Rumor going around about only two heats at prelims?

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Rumor going around about only two heats at prelims?

    Can anyone confirm a rumor I have heard about CIF only running two heats in each division for CIF prelims this year?

    Please tell me this is not true! I don't understand the logic of it? The goal at prelims is to qualify to finals... it would seem with two heats that teams would have to put out a big effort to guarantee themselves a spot at finals... If this is really happening, I would have liked to know ahead of time since I like many other teams may sit some potentially scorers for prelims!!!

    Is this really what's best for the SS? We eliminated prelims at SAC to allow our kids to not have to bring it every weekend leading up to the state meet... now, it doesn't matter anymore because everyone will have to run an all-out effort to guarantee themselves a spot? What's the point of running finals if we are running two heats? You could in theory have the two top teams in the same heat at prelims... what about the seeding of these two heats? I can't believe for a moment that seeding two heats is easier than 3 or 4? Will this lead to deserving teams not qualifying to finals?

    I can't think of one reason why this would be in the best interest of the teams competing!! More room on the starting line since it's not Sac, meet over sooner? Not sure what other reasons would exist? How does that outweigh the benefits of more heats which allow teams to rest key runners, or not have to put out an "A" effort? It would also seem like this would force more people and cars onto the site... I can't believe for a minute that this is a good idea as there is not enough parking for the amount of people and vehicles that will be present on a normal prelim day let alone a schedule that would be created based on two heats per division! Larger fields on this course potentially mean more dust which would be a hazard to athletes with asthma unless CIF is going to water down the course throughout the day? Would a larger field per heat lead to more potential starting line falls and injuries?

    I hope that what I have been hearing is just a rumor!! Please confirm Hal or Rich or anyone with knowledge of any decisions that may have been decided without our knowledge!

    If this is something that is being discussed, I vote NO! I think it is a terrible idea especially since this is the first year of running at Riverside! Too many variables that need to be addressed before major changes to our qualifying can be made!!!

    Thanks!

    Tony

  2. #2
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    It's true, approved by the Cross Country Advisory Committee in September 15.

  3. #3
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    If the decision was made 2 months ago, why are we just now hearing about it? Why not give coaches a chance to prepare in a timely manner? Why not have transparency in decisions affecting hundreds of schools and thousands of athletes?

  4. #4
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    You are serious? Rich Ede, Rich Gonzales and I want to know what you do to "prepare"?

  5. #5
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    I highly recommend anyone that doesn't care about the teams, athletes, and coaches immediately step down from this committee. ALL of you should know and care what we as coaches think as a community, and have the compassion and professionalism enough to share these rule changes as they occur. This is not the first change that was made and hidden from the coaches this season.

    Coaches, it is time for us to bring back the coaches alliance and get our voice back! Right now we are being shown first hand what Mr. Harkness thinks of all of us as coaches and it isn't a whole lot.

    Appalled,

    Doug Soles

  6. #6
    2 years ago 4 heats.
    Last year 3 heats.
    This year 2 heats.
    Next year???

  7. #7
    There were strong concerns (on multiple fronts) that I did express regarding a proposal to move to two heats. After discussion, the committee did vote and that resulted in a decision for two heats for this year.

    Am hoping this issue will be reviewed and discussed again for next year.

    Keeping fingers crossed that we have a great prelims and finals. Teams are really starting to crank right now!
    "Cross-country is an individual sport. Succeeding in cross-country is a team sport!"

  8. #8
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    I do not mean this as a personal attack on any one person. I'm merely asking the question of why aren't these decisions made public when they happen?

    As Tony pointed out, the bigger concerns and questions here are the health risks. What do these larger field sizes do to the starts? How will this many runners affect the amount of dust that gets kicked up, on a course that already produces a lot of dust?

    In regards to focusing solely on my question of preparation, there are tons of ways these new changes affect preparation. Ability to get into position during the start. Ability to move up in the field given larger amounts of bodies and a narrow road to do it on. How to deal with the extra amount dust that is likely to get kicked up. I'm not saying that these items cannot be dealt with in just a week, but why limit us to only preparing for this in one week when the decision was made 2 months ago?
    Brian Brierly
    Edison HS (SS)
    Head Cross Country Coach
    Track Distance Coach

  9. #9
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    For many years, the number of heats at prelims has been determined by the number of entries. Almost always, at least one division has had only two heats (8 to advance), with others 3 (requiring a "fastest 6th determination", and others 4 (top 4 advance). The math this year is simple for all divisions: finish in the top 8.

  10. #10
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    I do not understand why the bulletin was never updated to show that two heats would be run at Prelims. The bulletin still says the same thing it has said forever. Also, now that heat sheets are out, the race schedule has been changed so that boys are first. I do not have a big problem with that, but it should be in the bulletin that way. Why publish a bulletin if no one is going to stick to it?

    I agree with every point Tony made in the first post. I am angered by the continual lack of respect afforded to coaches. There is a big difference between running in a race with 14-15 teams and one with 29! In fact, it's twice as big! For the team that planned to have its pack sit back a little until the half way point, sorry, you can't do that anymore. If your team is comprised of good pacers who start a little slower than the kids who sprint for 400m and then die.. have fun eating dust for the whole race and watching your kids do more sidewinding than racing.

    I am just glad that all of the coaches were surveyed for their opinions before this was put to a vote... oh wait, that would make too much sense.
    Liam Clemons
    Director of Cross Country
    Head Distance Coach
    Trabuco Hills High School
    D-1

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