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February 1, 2010

While ACCs, Joint Summit, Big D in Little D, the Santa Barbara Invite, and Charlottesville Winter League have fallen both full and partial victim to crappy weather, the 2010 College Season is upon us.


It’s hard to believe, but Virginia leaves for Vegas on Thursday. Last year, ACCs provided us with the benefit of a tournament (a volatile and trying one, at that) under our belts before heading to Nevada. This year, no such luck. Like a lot of teams, this will be our first tournament since the Fall, and whether we like it or not, some part of it will be devoted to shaking off some rust. That said, Night Train is quite ready to go.

Which brings me to the competition. The top 8 teams, 6 of which were at Nationals in May and the others being Florida and Oregon, are seeded into what is more or less a power pool, with that being sub-divided into two pools of 4. After each team has played 5 of the other 7 by Saturday afternoon, the two smaller pools will be re-seeded and all 8 teams will be placed into a Quarterfinals pre-Quarters spot.

For teams in the top 8, this is a sweet format: 5 scheduled games against some of the top teams in the country, along with a guaranteed spot in the Championship bracket. For those not in the top 8, not so much. A lot of quality teams (too many to list, really, but a few of them were also in Columbus last year) will have a tougher road to the Quarters pre-Quarters, and since getting out to Vegas is such an ordeal, I can imagine that to be rather disappointing. Still, I don’t think Cultimate has completely blown it, and unless one of the top 8 completely tanks, I think this year’s Vegas set-up will show itself to be a good one. Tiered competition sucks for a lot of people, but it’s gotta have time to grow, and ultimately I think it’s good for the game.

Personally, I’m just stoked to get a look at so many teams from across the country. I want to check out what a lot of teams are up to, how they match up against each other, how we match up against them and, hopefully, take away a few things that will help us get where we want to be when the Series starts.

College 2010

Speaking of the Series, it’s worth stopping to think about the big picture in 2010. 2009 was a big year for college Ultimate: C1, Florida and Oregon, lots of parity and a cool new format at Nationals, and lots of club Nationals exposure for some of College’s best players and teams are only some of the highlights that leave 2010 standing to gain quite a bit. For a couple of years, I think that sheer athleticism had its turn at the top of the game because the best teams were far and away better than the rest. With enthusiasm for Ultimate growing across the country (not just through Juniors players, but also former athletes who are seeing the game as a much more serious sport than in the past, along with more awareness of the importance of fitness in high-level Ultimate), I think other teams are catching up, and we’re seeing a swinging of the pendulum back toward teams that are most strategically sound.

Still, I expect to see a lot of the same faces at the top because the best teams understand the need for growth in both areas. I just think that athleticism and fitness-wise, the entire Division is rising, and this year’s winners will be those that can best put their abilities to use. Sort of a chicken and egg cycle.


I think it’s lame that the UPA is trying to strong arm the UOA. I also think it’s lame not to send a team, even an informal one, to the U23 World Championships. I understand their reasoning behind both, but I still don’t support either decision. Oh well.


2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 9, 2010 6:09 pm

    This blog is excellent. Keep up the good work, inspires me to keep building mine on charity for cars to help people.


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