Combining High School State Meets

Posted on November 18, 2010


After this past weekend’s long Thursday, Friday, Saturday of 1A, 2A, and 3A State Swimming Championships, I thought to myself, this is ridiculous.  Why have three separate state meets?  I mean come on, really? 

Florida has one of the fastest, if not the absolute fastest, swimmers aged 14-18 in the United States. So, when you throw them in high school season, wow, this could be one of the fastest meets in the nation!  But no, wait a minute, we have to separate the 3 classifications and have 3 different meets over a 3 week period of districts, regions, then the state meets.  Am I the only one that thinks this is silly?  Wouldn’t you think the fastest kids in each classification would like to race each other and perhaps going faster than they already did……uhh, yeah! Dumb question. 

You mean to tell me 3A Champion Jason Coombs wouldn’t rise to the challenge of racing the two boys that went faster than him from 1A?  No brainer.  How about the girls 200 freestyle?  Major competition!  100 Freestyles in all classes would be amazing!  And then we really would have a state champion, rather than several state champions!

So, how could this be fixed yet still maintain the fairness of dividing school by size for the team competition? Here’s my idea to revamp the high school state swim competition.

Pre-State Meet

All districts and region meets would be the same as they currently are, which would continue to funnel the same amount of kids to the big State Championship.  All the scoring would remain the same so teams that compete for those titles can continue to do so.  The State Meet is short already, let’s get more kids there….more heats. 

State Meet Team Scoring

A coach told me the other day, “Why should a 3A school compete against a 1A boarding school?”  He posed a valid argument.  Answer: They don’t for points.  Instead keep the team scoring just the same, so swimmers still score points for their teams in their respective classes. Still have a ‘State Champion School” in the 1A, 2A and 3A. However, the individual events could have a single winner, therefore making the entire meet extremely fast and very, very competitive. Even if the fastest 1A swimmer was 5th, he would still get the amount of points a 1st place would get for his 1A classification. Work with me.

Side note–college coach recruiting in Florida?  That would be the place to go!  


Currently there are two heats for finals, a championship and a consolation.  Then the times drop off more than country club “B” meet.  This is a little crazy, I think.  Why not add two more heats, basically a C and D final, so they can be scored and the kids can get a second swim.  Now that’s a real championship meet and it really wouldn’t take too much longer.  I bet the kids would enjoy their championship even more, as well as their better times they will achieve.  Also seeing all there buddies from all classifications makes for an even better “social” meet! 

So FHSSA, create the big one, I mean the BIG ONE!  Create the fastest meet in the nation for 14-18 year olds. Create better competition, better entertainment, and an even better social environment for the swimmers.  Let’s find out who the real state champions are!

Click for results, yes ALL the results, from ALL the classes 1A, 2A and 3A.  Geez!

Posted in: Raising the bar