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Sunday, September 25, 2022


Recent News


by Kerm Helmer
Collegiate Fever


Kerm Helmer
September 9, 1999

by Kerm Helmer

Back to the Future

The ABC/WIBC Collegiate Committee acting on the recommendation of the National Collegiate Bowling Coaches Association went "Back To the Future" for the 1999-2000 format for qualifying teams to the College Bowling USA Championships. The committee voted to replace the format utilizing nine at-large berth tournaments and three season ending National Qualifying tournaments with four season ending National Qualifying tournaments.

During the regular season teams will compete to earn one of the 16 available slots in each of the four qualifying tournaments. Conference Champions and ACUI Regional Champions will receive automatic berths into the qualifiers. The remaining positions will be determined by the "Power Rankings" of the entire season. The National Qualifiers to be held the third weekend of March will qualify four men's and four women's teams from each qualifier for the National Collegiate Championships. Teams will be placed into the National Qualifier in a seeding process. The basic rule is no more than two of the top 8 teams in the power rankings can be assigned to any one qualifier.

The "new" qualifying format is in reality a change back to a qualifying system utilized for years.. The differences are: (1) In the past anywhere from 6-12 qualifiers were held. (2) At one point teams were locked into geographical areas and had to go to the qualifier in their area. (3) There were not power rankings to assist the selection committee. The change in the early 90's to the automatic berth tournaments was right for the time and the reversal now is right for the time. Conference play, the back bone of all other sports has a chance to return with the added importance. Qualifying at the end of the season for the National Championships is consistent with all other sports. The regular season now is important from day one all the way through.

One concern voiced was the possible effect the process would have on the nine tournaments designated as automatic berth tournaments. I sincerely believe it will be minimal. Teams need tournaments to compete in. The nine tournaments carry more point production than smaller tournament, teams still want to compete against the best and for scholarship money and bottom line most of these were real healthy before automatic berth came about. I have a difficult time believing any team will not go to St. Louis, Las Vegas or New Jersey because they are not automatic berth tournaments this season.

The National Collegiate Bowling Coaches Association and the members attending the Coaches Summit this past summer have requested the committee also take a look at the format for the CBUSA Championships. The areas of concern were the first day qualifying, schedule and television finals. The committee will address all of these concerns at the next meeting. Everyone agrees the basic concept of the double elimination format was real winner, bringing a lot of excitement to the tournament for both players and spectators, but the nuts and bolts may need to be twinked a little bit.

Where will the 2000 CBUSA Championships be held? The two front runners are Wichita and Grand Rapids. The decision on one or the other will be made hopefully by October 1st. The bids are being finalized and getting prepared for the Committee to review and select.


This article originally appeared in Spares & Strikes, a bowling newspaper serving the Greater Buffalo/  Western New York Area. It is reprinted here with the permission of the author.