Starting a SE Michigan Catholic League

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MagisterBreen
Kimahri
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Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 10:06 am

Starting a SE Michigan Catholic League

Post by MagisterBreen »

I coach Divine Child HS in Dearborn, MI, and a couple other coaches (Cabrini, DCC, Notre Dame Prep, possibly others) and I are starting a Catholic league for SE Michigan teams. Our goal is to provide resources for teams to improve and for new teams to get off the ground and to increase the amount of competition available to Catholic schools in the area. Please let me know if you're interested--or if you have any advice about starting conferences.
John Breen <><
Divine Child High School (Dearborn, MI)
alexdz
Rikku
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Re: Starting a SE Michigan Catholic League

Post by alexdz »

Coming from a state where conferences have been (and still are) very active in organizing quizbowl, I have a few pieces of advice for you to consider.

Ideally, we would like to see new teams joining their local, state and regional circuits to increase competition for everyone. If your conference plans too many events, it makes it difficult for new teams to devote even more time to attending regional tournaments. If these schools mostly have established teams, I'd at most host some kind of conference tournament, either on a Saturday or a series of 2-3 weeknights, to crown a conference champion. If most of the teams are starting from scratch, you could perhaps have a "pre-season" and a "post-season" conference tournament. Basically, I'd like to see you use the conference as a spark to start a team and as a means to incentivize teams getting better (to try and win a conference championship), rather than as a body to organize every competition for the member teams.

Whatever you do, please do not try and host home-and-away dual matches. To ask a team to drive all the way to another school to play one match (or maybe two, if you do a varsity match and a JV match) is pretty ridiculous in the grand scheme of things. That travel money would be better spent getting a team to a regional event (likely just as long of a trip) where they can play 8-10 matches instead. If coaches or activities directors insist on some kind of regular-season matchups, something like six-team mini-tournaments over the course of an evening are a much smarter use of limited travel dollars. Hosting two or three of these over the course of a few months could be a fruitful way to establish participation and encourage attendance at Saturday events.
Alex Dzurick
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Owner/Editor, SAGES Quizbowl Questions
Coach, French International School of Philadelphia
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Former midwesterner (South Callaway - Mizzou - UIUC) coping with life on the east coast.
MagisterBreen
Kimahri
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Joined: Fri Aug 26, 2011 10:06 am

Re: Starting a SE Michigan Catholic League

Post by MagisterBreen »

Thanks for the advice! I definitely wouldn't want to try to be the be-all for the participating teams; it would be more an issue of providing resources to teams that want to get better and hosting a couple tournaments a year to get teams more opportunities to play.
John Breen <><
Divine Child High School (Dearborn, MI)
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