Darrell Moody: Should be at least .500 to make playoffs
May 2, 2018
The baseball and softball playoffs begin next week, so that means it's time to take a look at the current playoff systems for baseball and softball in the 4A.
When the teams were separated in two leagues, the top four teams on each side would make the playoffs. When it was decided to go to one league, which I was in favor of, the coaches voted to have eight of the 12 teams make the playoffs.
In my opinion, that number should have been dropped to six with the top two finishers getting a first-round bye. There should be some sort of reward for finishing first or second based on a 20 or 22-game schedule (Hug has baseball and not softball, thus the difference in the amount of games).
Carson and Douglas opened their two-game series last night. Carson was 8-12 going in and Douglas was 7-13. Not good, yet one of the two will get the final playoff spot. It's another case of rewarding teams when it's not deserved. Both teams have underachieved this year, and quite frankly neither deserves to make the playoffs.
Ditto for softball. There will be at least one team that makes the playoffs with less than a .500 record.
I have always felt, and I've had this discussion with many Carson coaches before, to make the playoffs you should be .500 or better. Period.
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And while we're on the subject of softball, Carson and Douglas have enjoyed good seasons under first-year head coaches Carlos Mendeguia and John Glover, respectively. Both would be good candidates for 4A Coach of the Year.
When it comes to football, I'd like to see 4A go top three on each side making the playoffs with league winners getting a bye.
I remember a football season when Carson and Douglas were 0-3 and 1-2, respectively, entering the final game of the four-game Sierra League season. Had Carson won it would've made the playoffs with a 1-3 record based on a head-to-head win over the Tigers. Douglas won the game and went 2-2.
The Sierra League will go back to a six-team league schedule with Wooster scheduled to come back to 4A for football this fall. The High Desert will have just five schools with North Valleys headed to the 3A.
Kudos to North Valleys and its administration for making the 3A move and allowing their student-athletes to have a better chance to enjoy some success.
I wish Hug and Wooster would follow suit. Not sure who's making the ultimate decisions at those schools, but they've obviously never looked at standings for ANY sport.
Wooster has a great boys soccer program, but that's been about it team-wise. The Colts have had some good golfers, boys and girls, over the years. They constantly play hard, but just don't have the win-loss success in the team sports.
I can't remember the last time Hug was competitive in any team sport. Football has struggled since Rollins Stallworth left as head coach. Basketball was at or near the bottom of the league for both boys and girls. Boys soccer is probably the most competitive team on the campus.
Just think the kind of 3A you could have if Wooster and Hug joined North Valleys in the 3A. You could have two 3A leagues, six teams in each. And, if you didn't cross over except for the playoffs, you could keep travel costs to a minimum. And, don't have any overnight stays for JV and freshmen teams. Work the schedule so those teams always play local.
I would have North Valleys, Hug, Wooster, Dayton, South Tahoe and Truckee in one league, and have Fernley, Fallon, Sparks, Lowry, Spring Creek and Elko in the other. Play a triple round-robin for all league play, and fill in your schedule with tournaments and non-league games.
And, if you want to be really politically correct, rotate three schools every realignment cycle to join Spring Creek, Elko and Lowry. That way not one particular school or district is always taking a financial hit. I like my first suggestion better because it is more geographical in nature.
Of course you have to have an open mind, and we already know that schools and/or principals in Washoe County have shown the inability to think outside the box. They are taking the easy way out; the simplest way.
The current system doesn't work, and it's time to put the student-athletes on a level playing field. They work hard and should have an opportunity to succeed once in a while. Who knows, it might increase participation.