Wildcard Wednesday: Week 3

by | August 15, 2012, 5:28pm 0

Fresh results!  New rankings.  Plenty to discuss here in the third week of Wildcard Wednesday.  We’re officially three weeks, give or take a day, from knowing how many bids each of the eight regions will have to the 2012 Club Championships.  Between now and then we have Heavyweights, Chesapeake Invite and Labor Day as major sanctioned tournaments, though none are this weekend.

ECC has a bevy of interesting results to dissect both on the field and in their effect on these rankings.  Rhino won six games by a total of six points before losing to Ironside in the finals 15-7.  PoNY and GOAT went a combined 2-12 for the Northeast.   Since we won’t discuss Machine as they are the top ranked team within their region, I’ll say that they offered very impressive results, losing only to Rhino and Ironside and beat both Doublewide and Furious on double game point.

Let’s remember that while these results are important for wildcards, they don’t tell us too much about what to expect in Sarasota.  Between players who didn’t make the trip or rust from July breaks, it’s a good idea to take the ECC results with a grain of salt.  In Seattle this past weekend, 22 of the 42 games played were decided by two points or less, a rate of 52%.  Compare that to the 2011 Club Championships where 16 of the 69 were decided by two or one, a lowly 23%.  Early season tournaments are more susceptible to variation, and the pecking order will sort itself out in the next month.

With all of that accounted for, let’s check out who’s leading the wildcard race.  Because we have new USAU rankings to go on, I’ll break the teams down in order of their USAU Top-25 Rank, instead of by region.  Enjoy.

Highest-ranked teams in each region (these are the teams that hold the place for their respective region’s automatic bid)-

1. Ironside (NE)  2. Johnny Bravo (SC)  3. Revolver (SW)  4. Rhino (NW)  5. Machine (GL)  6. Chain Lightning (SE)  13. Truck Stop (MA)  15. Sub Zero (NC)

Sanctioned Tournaments this Weekend:

NUTC Invite- Amherst, MA

Cooler Classic- North Lake, WI

Overall rank:  Team, Region, Rankings Point Total

*7. Doublewide, SC 1534 – Much has been made of the players Texas didn’t have at ECC, but their results are still good enough to have them leading the wildcard rankings.  Unless they have a terrible Labor Day, they will easily earn the South Central a second bid.

*8. Sockeye, NW 1526 – The Fish fall behind Rhino, but not by much.  The loses to Truck, Revolver and Ironside at ECC came by a combined 8 points.  They’ll rest up until Labor Day where they and Rhino should guarantee the NW at least two bids even with only average play.

*9. Boost Mobile, SW 1464 – Still riding their 5-0 record from July’s SoCal Slammer to a high ranking.  They’ll test those results at both Chesapeake and Labor Day with games against highly ranked opponents.

*10.  Ring of Fire, SE 1455 – A rainy NexGen game not withstanding, North Carolina still hasn’t suited up since the U.S. Open.  Ring will attend both Chesapeake Invite and Labor Day.

*11. Condors, SW 1437 –  Santa Barbara is 4-1 in sanctioned games from SoCal Slammer, losing only to 9th-ranked Boost.  They’ll play at Chesapeake Invite and attempt to do well enough to keep the Southwest rolling in bids.

*12. Furious George, NW 1429 – At 3-4 it appears quality of competition is keeping the Monkey highly ranked more than positive results. Furious will regroup and lick their wounds before Labor Day.

*14. PoNY, NE 1383 – New York had a rough ECC, losing 6 games by 3 points or less, but did get a major rankings boost when their Boston Invite game against Ironside became sanctioned after the fact.  They lost to Boston by 1 in the BI final, a score that will help their ranking greatly.  Better results in close games at Chesapeake could all but sew up the Northeast’s 2nd bid.

*16. GOAT, NE 1293 – Since PoNY and GOAT have proven to be long shots to beat Ironside at Regionals, they are playing the regular season to earn their own bids.  A 1-6 record at ECC is just good enough to give Toronto a tenuous 27-point lead for the final wildcard.  We’ll see where they sit after Chesapeake.

17.  Streetgang, SW 1266 – San Diego is still 5-5 from SoCal Slammer and Colorado Cup results.  Their win over Madison Club will carry more weight if Madison puts up good results to end the season. Chesapeake Invite will be their final sanctioned tournament to notch big wins and improve their ranking.

19.  Prairie Fire, NC 1242 – Kansas City has a 4-1 record in sanctioned games from Colorado Cup with the one loss to Madison Club.  If the new Heavyweights schedule is to be believed, it may be hard for them to get more than 2 games against top 20 opponents at the Chicago tournament, 3 at the most.

22. Cash Crop, SE 1202 – The Chesapeake Open champs still have the Invite to improve on their 10-1 record, which has largely come against low ranked opponents.  As an underdog to Ring and Chain at Regionals, they’ll need a third bid to have something to play for.

24. Voodoo, NW 1095 – Finally, Seattle’s Voodoo took their lumps at ECC posting an 0-7 record. Lesser competition at Heavyweights will certainly add some W’s to their record, but will it be enough to improve their ranking?  They sit almost 200 points behind the final wildcard spot.

Un-Ranked: Madison Club, NC – With a relatively high RRI, Madison is still a sanctioned game short of qualifying for the rankings.  They’ll get those games at Heavyweights and Labor Day.

Un-Ranked: Southpaw, MA – Still no sanctioned games yet for Philadelphia, who are scheduled to play Chesapeake Invite and Labor Day.  Hopefully the AUDL season left them in shape to hit the ground running in two weeks.  They’ll need good results.

Un-Ranked: Madcow, GL – See Southpaw.  AUDL overlap has left them without any early season sanctioned results, so they’ll be counting on good finishes at Chesapeake and Labor Day.  That’s two consecutive tournaments on either ends of the country, by the way.

Un-Ranked: Oakland, MA – Pittsburgh still has no sanctioned games.  They’ll be at Chesapeake Invite but I’ve yet to hear where the rest of their 10 sanctioned games will come from. It could be that they’re just planning to show up at Regionals and beating Truck Stop or Southpaw.  I suppose that could be the plan for a team full of Swagger…

*- Current wildcard regions.


If the season ended today bids would be:

GL- 1 SC- 2 SW- 3 NW- 3 NE- 3 SE- 2 MA- 1 NC- 1

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