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Coach_Al

Bracket system - FILA World Championships

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an Elo based rating system perhaps? again, i totally agree with the idea. but is it possible to create a meaningful metric with the meager amount of data produced by number of competitive international matches held every year? i honestly don't know. i hope so, cause that means even if UWW won't, somebody else could still create one. 

1. Give seeds based on national (not individual) performance by weight class at the last 4 world/olympic/continental championship events (i.e. individual earns ranking for his country's next event at 65kg, even if he's not there)

 

2. Use simple elo system for all matches wrestled in those last 4 cycles (again, world/olympic/continental championships)

 

3. Seed 4 or 8 nations' representative wrestlers (only nations who had a guy at all 4 world events considered)

 

4. Assign byes randomly, not grouped

 

5. Wrestle 6 or 8 weights over 2 days instead of 3 or 4 on one day each, to allow for proper rest

 

Bing, bang, boom we separate some top guys and have a little logic.  It all makes sense from the U.S. systems we come from--it's just not a part of the international mindset to go into such detail and "muddy the waters" of "random fairness."

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1. Give seeds based on national (not individual) performance by weight class at the last 4 world/olympic/continental championship events (i.e. individual earns ranking for his country's next event at 65kg, even if he's not there)

 

2. Use simple elo system for all matches wrestled in those last 4 cycles (again, world/olympic/continental championships)

 

3. Seed 4 or 8 nations' representative wrestlers (only nations who had a guy at all 4 world events considered)

 

4. Assign byes randomly, not grouped

 

5. Wrestle 6 or 8 weights over 2 days instead of 3 or 4 on one day each, to allow for proper rest

 

Bing, bang, boom we separate some top guys and have a little logic.  It all makes sense from the U.S. systems we come from--it's just not a part of the international mindset to go into such detail and "muddy the waters" of "random fairness."

From FILA/UWW's point of view, I think it would probably make more sense to keep the random brackets and do away with wrestle backs entirely - semifinal losers each get bronze.  This would distribute more medals to more countries.

 

No matter how you devise the bracket, the top guys will dominate, and there will also be some unfairness.

 

A complete round robin would be the fairest system, but FILA had to get rid of it because countries were colluding with one another (throwing matches) to produce medal results.

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From FILA/UWW's point of view, I think it would probably make more sense to keep the random brackets and do away with wrestle backs entirely - semifinal losers each get bronze.  This would distribute more medals to more countries.

 

No matter how you devise the bracket, the top guys will dominate, and there will also be some unfairness.

 

A complete round robin would be the fairest system, but FILA had to get rid of it because countries were colluding with one another (throwing matches) to produce medal results.

Great ideas! The championship finals should be all weight groups in one setting. FILA needs to do a better job showcasing our finalist...put on a showcase for the finals; music, entertainment, etc.

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Great ideas! The championship finals should be all weight groups in one setting. FILA needs to do a better job showcasing our finalist...put on a showcase for the finals; music, entertainment, etc.

Absolutely.  I hope they are moving in this direction.  Each weight class needs to be spread out over multiple days so that the finals are all bunched together into a two-hour made-for-television event.

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This goes back to the question of is a tournament to decide the best wrestler or the wrestler who has the best day?  Upsets happen, wrestling people tend to not want upsets unless it is "there" guy.  It does not really bother me if the "best" wrestler in the world does not medal.  I want the wrestler who has the best day to win the tournament.

 

 

The guy who has the best day already receives his just due, he wins the tournament.  It's the other guys who get knocked off along the way and eliminated who don't have a shot at placing or finishing where they truly are capable of, were they given the chance.   

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I'm so impressed with how much a few of you know about the international stars.  Pretty well know before the tournament which weights have the top 3 on one side of the bracket, etc.  It seems to me that as a group, you are digesting the possible information and ranking them fairly successfully.  It could be done with subjective criteria.  Once the criteria is known many countries will build their season around seeing relative competitions.

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This was my chart from last year when I wrote a column about the bracketing. This doesn't install a full repechage, but fills out based on wrestlers who lose to opponents that make the semifinals. This isn't perfect, though. 

 

http://news.internationalwrestling.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/BRACKETING_FILA.pdf

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This was my chart from last year when I wrote a column about the bracketing. This doesn't install a full repechage, but fills out based on wrestlers who lose to opponents that make the semifinals. This isn't perfect, though. 

 

http://news.internationalwrestling.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/BRACKETING_FILA.pdf

Jason,

 

Your idea is a good start, but something needs to change and soon. FILA's disconnection from what is good for the well-being and growth of our sport is going to place us right back where we were prior to the IOC threatening to drop wrestling from the Olympics. Granted, there has been some positive changes to the rules since the scare, but it's not enough. In short, The elite wrestlers of the world work too hard to be eliminated after just one loss.

 

What is the logic behind having two bronze medals? Is it to provide more opportunity for the non-traditional powers to medal?

 

If we're going to attract more wrestling fans, continued change is a must. IMO, reformatting the brackets to a double elimination would generate a stronger representation of the top 6 (Some wrestlers start slow, but finish strong, if provided the opportunity to do so). In addition, eliminate the double bronze medal round. A wrestlers should have to wrestle for 5th place, not default to after losing the bronze medal match. What's your thoughts?

 

A

Edited by Coach_Al

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What do other countries think about a full repechage? I mean outside of Russia and Iran, who tend to have tons of guys in the medal rounds in the current scenario as it stands.

 

Does UWW/FILA ever do crowd sourcing? My guess is a big "no," but I don't think it would hurt to have their own fans, most of whom are former wrestlers themselves, supply ideas to improve the competition.

 

One thing I wasn't a fan of reading was about mat count on page 13, Article 9 - Competition Programme, second paragraph: http://unitedworldwrestling.org/sites/default/files/1-wrestling_rules_july_2014_eng.pdf. Why only three mats?

 

Personally, I like the one day competition per weight, but when the Olympics come around, I would be opposed to all six weight being contested across two days. Either way, I'd like to see as many as eight mats in use before the semis. When the semis roll around, break down to four mats.

 

The elo system sounds great! As an American, seeding guys just makes sense. It doesn't change the fact that to be the champ you have to be the only undefeated guy in your weight that day.

 

I have to wonder that if Americans were more financially invested in to Freestyle and Greco, would USAW have more leverage for change?

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A few thoughts...

 

The double bronze is dumb but its pretty harmless and helps spread medals around. Making a world class wrestler compete for 5th is just cruel. Half of the, look like they want to cry in a bronze medal match.

 

One reason to have same day tournaments is that it controls weight cutting. If you such a ton of weight you'll struggle in the meat grinder. Having multiple day tournaments, especially seeded ones, is asking for UFC level weight sucking. Of course you could have multiple day weigh in also but I bet a lot of athletes would lose their minds at the prospect. Not saying the current system is perfect (it clearly isnt) but there are disadvantages to alternatives as well.

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The system wasn't near as broken back in the 80's and and early 90's under the old "good mark" two pool system.  Create a true semifinal by having the number 1 of Pool A meet number 2 of Pool B  and do the same with the number 2 of Pool A vs number 1 Pool B.  The only place under the current system that is legitimate is the gold medal winner.   The silver medalist isn't necessarily the second best, and the two bronze could also be called two fourth place finishes.  Neither fila (call them wwu, but they are still the same old fila) nor the ioc is really concerned with produced true place finishes or level playing fields.  The only thing that matters to governing bodies is limiting the number of participants and keeping the tournament as short as possible.  Do not expect any changes that make sense, this is the new normal.

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This sort of debate goes on all the way down to the youth level. Here in Illinois, the Illinois High School Association states somewhere in their official documents is that their goal is to crown a champion (per class). They say nothing about everyone else and, frankly, it's clear that 2-whatever don't really matter to them. I've looked but couldn't find anything that says FILA/UWW's goal is to find the four best guys at each weight class. I'm not saying it isn't there, just that I've yet to find it. That said, could it be that FILA/UWW is more interested in finding the gold and everything else is just cool?

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fila/uww's only goal is ensuring it's own existence.  They operate under a model where graft and corruption are not only prevalent, but is tacitly encouraged.  They probably are not the worst sport governing body (boxing is even more corrupt), but they certainly are not clean and transparent.  

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 The only place under the current system that is legitimate is the gold medal winner. 

 

Even this statement is sketchy when you have a guy who got a 45-second tech against a pushover, followed by 30 minutes of rest, wrestling a semi-final against a guy who won 10-9 against a beast, followed by only 15 minutes of rest.  I will never take those types of matches at face value.  I don't believe the best guy--or even the guy who had the best day--always wins these tournaments.  There is just too much luck involved at every single step of the way.

Edited by maligned

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