How long should a middle school tournament run?

Dormant threads from the high school sections are preserved here.
User avatar
the return of AHAN
Posts: 1942
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2007 10:40 pm

How long should a middle school tournament run?

Post by the return of AHAN » Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:28 am

This is a question I'm wrestling with for my upcoming middle school tournament wherein we mirror the HSQB collaborative set.

In previous years, I always had pools of 6 where teams played 5 guaranteed matches. Only the top 8 advanced to the championship playoffs, while seeds 9-12 had a small consolation bracket. All else went home and no one ever complained about playing too few matches.

Then last year, I had 32 teams in the 'A' level of the tournament. We played 8 pools of 4 teams, took a break and seeded everyone from 1-32. From this point, I had brackets set up where the the bottom 16 played in a consolation bracket, while the top 16 played in a championship. In round 5, I began eliminating teams from the consolation bracket, while losing in round 5 of the champions bracket pushed them into the consolation bracket, which became two-tiered. Long story short; round 6 had 12 games, round 7 had 6 matches, and round 8 had 4 matches (where we awarded 2 consolation trophies, as well as 1st-4th).

So, this year, if I can pull 32 teams again, I was thinking I could do the same sort of thing, except pool the top 16 into 4 more pools, arranged as: 1-8-9-16, 2-7-10-15, 3-6-11-14, and 4-5-12-13. While the lower ones could be seeded as 17-20; 21-24; 25-28; 29-32 for 3 more games. This gives them 1 more than they've been guaranteed in years past... maybe even give a small “pool winner” trophy to the winners of those pools (everyone likes to play for something, right?). As for those top 4 pools, I’d have the winners of those 4 pools play in a final, championship pool for 1st-4th place, and the 2nd place finishers of each pool play in a consolation pool.

In sum, this would give me 16 ‘A’ matches up through round 6, and 6 in rounds 7 and 8, plus 6 more in a brand-new round 9; for a total of 9 more ‘A’ matches than we had before.

Thoughts? Suggestions? Is this too much re-bracketing in one day? If I budget for 35 minutes between games, a schedule might look like this:
Round 1: 9 AM
Round 2: 9:35 AM
Round 3: 10:10 AM
Lunch: 10:45 AM
Round 4: Noon
Round 5: 12:35 PM
Round 6: 1:10 PM
Round 7: 2 PM
Round 8: 2:35 PM
Round 9: 3:10 PM (finished before 4 PM)

A 40 minute interval would look like…
Round 1: 9 AM
Round 2: 9:40 AM
Round 3: 10:20 AM
Lunch: 11 AM
Round 4: 12:15 PM
Round 5: 12:55 PM
Round 6: 1:35 PM
Round 7: 2:25 PM
Round 8: 3:05 PM
Round 9: 3:45 PM (finished around 4:30 PM)
Jeff Price
Barrington High School Coach
Barrington Station Middle School Coach (2013 MSNCT Champions, 2013 & 2017 Illinois Class AA State Champions)

Posts: 109
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2008 5:45 pm
Location: Dunbar High Lexington KY

Re: How long should a middle school tournament run?

Post by dbarman » Mon Feb 01, 2010 6:35 pm

If you can make sure the there are no delays, I doubt many people will complain. There will always be a couple of kids who can't do the same thing over 3 hours, but finishing by 4 or 4:30 should be acceptable to most. I mean it's just like an average school day with an after school activity.
Ping @Dunbar