[eDebate] 8 prelim model

travis neal neal.travis
Wed Oct 28 09:42:19 CDT 2009

Maybe the solution to the time problem is more debating and not less.  Why
does everyone's proposal show such fidelity to the elim system?  What if
instead we just expanded the number of prelim rounds, so everyone is
guaranteed to debate more, and shrunk the elim portion of the tournaments?
Break the top four teams, surely after 10 prelim rounds we could come to a
reasonable determination of whom those four teams would be.  Why clear any
teams at any tournament save the final championship tournaments?  If
intra-year rankings are based on top vs top matchups then large prelim
rounded tournaments would still provide quality data sets for comparison.

We could easily do 10 prelim rounds within a shorter time frame than it
takes to do a 7 round plus 4 elims tournament.

On Mon, Oct 19, 2009 at 2:39 PM, Josh <jbhdb8 at gmail.com> wrote:

> I agree with all of this except:
> 1. 4 prelims sat, 4 prelims sunday  doubles on out-round day (let people
> get as many rounds as possible and make the hard day a hard day for the host
> not the travelers - teams that stay will get a room, teams that lose will
> leave and be more rested when they do because the prelims didnt wear them
> out.
> 2. Opp wins is a poor substitute because you cannot control who you
> debate.  Not saying its any less arbitrary than the speaker point
> system...Just suggesting some stat head has to be able to come up with a
> more reliable meaningful substitute.
> Josh
> On Thu, Oct 15, 2009 at 12:10 PM, Scott Phillips <scottyp431 at gmail.com>wrote:
>> Basic outline: 8 preliminary rounds. 5 rounds take place on Saturday.
>> Rounds 1-4 are preset and released by 5pm the Friday beforehand. Round 5 is
>> high high and paired off of only rounds 1-3, the pairing for round 5 would
>> be released during round 4.
>> Some basic assumptions of my model
>> 1. There are not enough high high debates at tournaments. More high high
>> debates would
>> -produce more of the top level head to head matches that determine bid
>> sheets and drive innovation by forcing teams to bust strategies and research
>> new ones
>> -give on the cusp teams a bit of breathing room - if you speak poorly some
>> high high rounds give you a reprieve from a constant beat down- the current
>> system is too one sided
>> -eliminate some of the damage that having a large number of presets has on
>> borderline teams by reducing the likelihood of getting jacked by having to
>> debate a few top level teams in the presets and then win several break
>> rounds in a row that are high low in your bracket.
>> 2. Debaters are given way to much pre round prep- everyone goes for the
>> same crap anyway- the health care disad and cap K are highlighted already,
>> you don't need an hour to get ready for them. Also releasing pairings
>> earlier allows debaters to take advantage of the post round dead time
>> waiting for a decision to prep more for later debates.
>> 3. More prelims are better- people get more practice, who should clear
>> becomes "clearer" etc.
>> 4. Opponent wins should be more important in deciding who clears than
>> speaker points- there I said it. The speaker point system is broken. This is
>> a team activity.  Especially with more high high debates which I have
>> already conclusively proven is a moral obligation.
>> 5. Judges need to run a tighter ship- stop prep stealing and time wasting,
>> enforce start times etc. Debaters waste time because they are allowed too.
>> If the choice is between losing a debate or punishing teams who are too lazy
>> and stupid to be efficient it is ridiculous to take away a debate. A strict
>> schedule creates incentives for efficiency by rewarding teams who are well
>> organized and work hard.
>> How long does a round take? 92 minutes. Assume at least 10 minutes for
>> screwing around brings us to 102. If each round is given 2:15 that is 135
>> minutes, leaving over 1/2 an hour for making a decision. You could even add
>> another 15 minutes on there and that would only lengthen the day by an hour.
>> This would mean the schedule would/could look like (I have added an extra 10
>> minutes for travel time, and extra time for lunch and dinner, discussed
>> below)
>> Round 1: 7:45
>> Round 2: 10:10
>> Round 3: 1:15
>> Round 4: 3:40
>> Round 5: 6:45
>> This gets everyone out around 9.
>> Day 2:
>> Round 6: 8:00
>> Round 7: 10:30
>> Round 8: 2:30
>> Doubles: 6:00
>> Round 6 and 7 should be paired off round 5 and have one high low and one
>> high high. The pairing should be released at 6am. Since you get out at
>> roughly 9, you should be able to eat and get to sleep by 10 or 11 giving you
>> 7-8 hours of sleep if you decide to get up at 6 and start prepping. If you
>> want to sleep in you can obviously get more sleep but this is a pretty good
>> amount to get considering you would get 2 hours to prep for rounds 6 and 7.
>> Round 8 is obviously important, so there is a lot of extra prep built in for
>> this. If a strict decision time is enforced all the round 7 ballots should
>> be in by 12:45. Giving people 1/2 hour for lunch that means they will still
>> get about an hour to prep for potential break rounds.
>> Finally- opp wins should be more important than speaker points in
>> determining who clears. The main objection to pairing more rounds ahead of
>> time is "we'll get screwed". Using opponent wins helps take the bite out of
>> this argument and opposition to high high rounds. It also allows time to
>> figure out the 100 point scale while only speaker awards are affected.
>> Some of this may seem pretty radical/unworkable but a fundamental
>> assumption is that time is wasted because there are no incentives to not
>> waste it. A strict schedule forces debaters to chose between focusing on
>> competitive gain or other aspects of debate like socializing etc true, but
>> this is already a trade off in many other ways.
>> Top ways time is wasted at tournaments now that would be pressured to
>> reform by judges and debaters
>> 1. Cleaning up- people don't do it until after the decision, throw
>> evidence all over the room during debates so they are later unable to find
>> it etc.
>> 2. Moving- teams mosey around chit chatting
>> 3. Water/bathroom breaks- you're an adult- get a bottle and learn to hold
>> it
>> 4. Being out of the room during decision making
>> Teams who want more prep time can eliminate all of these things to get it.
>> Answers to obvious objections
>> Long decision making/oral critiques are good
>> It shouldn't take that long to figure out most of these prelims. A wise
>> old sage once told me that most debates are hard to decide because the
>> debaters didn't do their job, not because the debates were very good and
>> close. Some judges take a ton of time and vote neg, some take a ton of time
>> and vote aff, some take a ton of time, realize they can't sit out since
>> there is only 1 judge and then flip a coin. Point being- just like debaters
>> do speed drills, some judges should work on figuring things out faster.
>> Each debate should be power matched individually/blah blah blah
>> The value of having more debates outweighs any risk of a negative from
>> pairing 6 and 7 together. The warrant for pairing them together being bad is
>> it will affect clearing- which at its core relies on the idea that more
>> debates are good. Everyone gets a round 8 in this model so its as if you all
>> cleared and this was CEDA. This is also a random element- it will not affect
>> anyone disproportionately where as going to 7 or 6 prelims is a regressive
>> policy- it hurts those at the bottom the most.
>> Days are long/this will take too long etc
>> If MBA and CFL's can make an even more radical version of this schedule
>> work, I'm sure the minds that run college tournaments will be able to handle
>> it.
>> Blah blah blah other objection
>> I wrote way more about this but most have probably stopped reading already
>> so I will leave it here, but will clarify/respond to objections if the need
>> exists.
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