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Date Posted: 16:27:20 02/26/17 Sun
Wow, I can't believe how rapidly I'm having great ideas to revolutionize conference tournaments. I feel like Albert Einstein in 1905, where in a span of four months, he revolutionized modern physics, publishing his papers on special relativity and E = mc^2. That was in Switzerland, before he took up residence at Dillon Gym to cheer on the Tigers.
Okay, here's my second breakthrough idea within a few days.
This year highlights the inevitable problem we would have had at some point in time regardless. Penn might be hosting the men's tournament as a #4 seed, facing a semifinal opponent which might have run through the regular season undefeated. In the words of Einstein, "That ain't right."
The Palestra is without question our conference's "best" facility, but we can't seriously considering having it as the permanent home for the tournament because Penn is a perennial contender.
Some conferences put their tournaments at the site of the highest seed. That's the fairest and most logical option but it creates logistical problems for ESPN and other administrative details.
How about this? We ask ESPN, "When is the latest in the regular season we can give you the site of the season-end tournament without creating problems for you?" They will probably want a two- or three-week headstart at the longest.
Here's my insight: We hold the tournament at the school which is leading the regular season standings **AT THE DATE** which ESPN gives us. Say it's February 18 or 25. That's when we lock the location.
It still gives ESPN two or three weeks to plan their trucks and cameras. The league office has that window to reserve hotel rooms and so forth. But it puts more value on earning the top seed so you can host.
Now what of the fact that, at this point, the league wants to combine the men's and women's tournaments into one event? Here's my E = mc^2 contribution after my theory of special relativity above:
The site is determined on February 18 or 25 based upon the **COMBINED** records of the men's and women's teams. Penn fans should love this, given how dominant Mike McLaughlin's machine looks in West Philly.
So the regular season will have a great natural rhythm. The first division teams will be fighting like crazy to be on top of the mountain by February 18 or 25. Once that's set, everybody else will focus on who will earn the their way into the tournament itself.
My idea mitigates the phenomenon we had this year when too much attention is being paid to 4-8 or 5-7 teams compared to a 12-0 Princeton or 10-2 Harvard. Prior to February 18 or 25, everybody will be talking about whether Harvard can catch Princeton to host the tournament, while keeping an eye on the women's side as well.
The eight women's coaches should **LOVE** my idea because their programs will be treated pari passu with the men, increasing their exposure and the attention they receive.
Once again, I have revolutionized conference tournaments. Your reaction?
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