Girls 5k in Texas, survey says!
08/26/2018 3:02:45 PM
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I was often the minority around here a few years ago in arguing against the move of Texas high school girls cross country from the distance of 2 miles to 5K and time has shown the following adverse negative impacts on the sport: - Lower participation by female athletes in the sport of cross country in Texas. - Less success on the "National Level" by Texas qualifiers and teams. - Less interest in the sport on a broad/mainstream Texas scale, due to lower participation. During the MLB all-star break, while eating at Gattis pizza, I was amazed that ESPN had the American Cornhole Championships on TV. What an intense and fun competition they were airing. Other sports are growing, cross country, at one time in a state that boasted the highest numbers of participation in the country, is on the decline in the State of Texas. In 2011, Texas girls ran their last 2 mile race at the UIL State Cross Country Meet. I can remember many coaches making the argument for transitioning to 5K. The biggest argument being, our girls can't compete on the national level because we're one of only two states still running two miles (Oklahoma being the other). Fast-forward six years since the beginning of the girls 5K in Texas, and now we have data. The data suggests that transitioning hasn't captured the desired outcome, and has left the claims of those coaches in Texas that supported this nonsense, completely unsubstantiated. For example, at the NXN National Meet, Texas has boasted a girls team on the podium 3 times. 2005, 2006, and 2012. The latter being the only time a girls team made it onto the National podium, since making the transition... funny enough that was a team of girls that was loaded with upper classmen, meaning most of their careers were spent running the two mile in cross country. That's interesting... thinking back to this big debate... one of my key arguments was that we would have a lot of girls that were superior athletes willing to run 2 miles, but they were going to choose other sports if we moved to 5K. We have more than 5,000 less girls participating in cross country now, as compared with 2011, even though we have nearly 200 more total high schools competing (data from NFHS, not hard to find). Many good athletes that would have competed in the sport and given it a chance, have clearly opted against it because they've instead chosen other interests. Guys meanwhile aren’t even down a thousand... so before we hear the argument that it’s because kids are getting lazier, blah blah,, that’s not it. It’s the move to 5K because the steep decline only exists on the girls side. Additionally, Texas produced the individual National High School Champions in the girls race in 2008 and 2010 (gasp... while running the 2 mile?). We've had ZERO since we moved our girls to 5K. We’ve also had less individual girls in the top ten. Isn't that interesting... The other critical argument made by 5K proponents was a completely ridiculous notion that the UIL (in terms of cross country) was discriminating against girls by not having them run an equal distance to boys. I don't particularly care to get into gender rights, but I'll again point to the decline in participation, and decline in "National success", as the only key points really needed. I'll again argue that if we see equal distance as such a factor of importance, move the high school guys distance down. Again, it will help you recruit more runners and GET MORE YOUNG PEOPLE INTERESTED IN THE SPORT! A major point between the two divisions being separated that I often made, was the fact that the NCAA has women running 5-6K and men running 8-10K, depending on the point of the season. While others screamed, "colleges aren't recruiting our kids because they don't run 5K at the high school level!" UGH! If you bought that narrative, you were sold a bill of goods. If the NCAA made a change, I think Texas would then be smart to reciprocate that change. No change has been made by the NCAA, and I think they’ve been smart to not make a change that makes the girls distance go up. Again, I could live with the guys distance going down. We need to attract athletes and spectators to our sport. Texas was once the microcosm example of how good this sport could be and we could be that again if we would go back to doing things in a logical fashion... even if we go alone. Consider this... In 2014, Texas added an entirely new classification and increased the number of teams that qualify for the UIL State Meet. They also increased the number of individuals that qualified from region to state. Yet, even with approximately 50 more kids running in each gender group, in each classification, AND an added classfication (6A, or the split of 1A, however you wish to view it), approximately 800 additional kids began qualifying for the UIL State Meet in 2014, and yet... You have thousands less participating? And 200 more schools running? How is that even possible? If more people won the Showcase on the Price is Right each day, I bet participation would go up... but somehow in Texas cross country, we figured out how to have more winners and less people showing up... at the same time! That's gotta be some kind of a record? If you’re a 5A/6A coach in Texas that would support an effort directed at reinstating the two mile for 5A/6A girls cross country, please email me at erikforbisd@yahoo.com. Look at the number of meets not even offering a 5K for girls as the season goes on... this has got to be frustrating for other 5A/6A coaches. Please share this post and my contact info with any 5A/6A girls coaches you know at these two levels that see what I see, and let’s get a petition and some support in front of the UIL, and get some changes made that could take place by next alignment (2020).. It’s time for logic to have a voice.
I was often the minority around here a few years ago in arguing against the move of Texas high school girls cross country from the distance of 2 miles to 5K and time has shown the following adverse negative impacts on the sport:

* Lower participation by female athletes in the sport of cross country in Texas.


* Less success on the "National Level" by Texas qualifiers and teams.


* Less interest in the sport on a broad/mainstream Texas scale, due to lower participation.


During the MLB all-star break, while eating at Gattis pizza, I was amazed that ESPN had the American Cornhole Championships on TV. What an intense and fun competition they were airing. Other sports are growing, cross country, at one time in a state that boasted the highest numbers of participation in the country, is on the decline in the State of Texas.

In 2011, Texas girls ran their last 2 mile race at the UIL State Cross Country Meet. I can remember many coaches making the argument for transitioning to 5K. The biggest argument being, our girls can't compete on the national level because we're one of only two states still running two miles (Oklahoma being the other).

Fast-forward six years since the beginning of the girls 5K in Texas, and now we have data. The data suggests that transitioning hasn't captured the desired outcome, and has left the claims of those coaches in Texas that supported this nonsense, completely unsubstantiated. For example, at the NXN National Meet, Texas has boasted a girls team on the podium 3 times. 2005, 2006, and 2012. The latter being the only time a girls team made it onto the National podium, since making the transition... funny enough that was a team of girls that was loaded with upper classmen, meaning most of their careers were spent running the two mile in cross country. That's interesting... thinking back to this big debate... one of my key arguments was that we would have a lot of girls that were superior athletes willing to run 2 miles, but they were going to choose other sports if we moved to 5K. We have more than 5,000 less girls participating in cross country now, as compared with 2011, even though we have nearly 200 more total high schools competing (data from NFHS, not hard to find). Many good athletes that would have competed in the sport and given it a chance, have clearly opted against it because they've instead chosen other interests. Guys meanwhile aren't even down a thousand... so before we hear the argument that it's because kids are getting lazier, blah blah,, that's not it. It's the move to 5K because the steep decline only exists on the girls side.

Additionally, Texas produced the individual National High School Champions in the girls race in 2008 and 2010 (gasp... while running the 2 mile?). We've had ZERO since we moved our girls to 5K. We've also had less individual girls in the top ten.

Isn't that interesting...

The other critical argument made by 5K proponents was a completely ridiculous notion that the UIL (in terms of cross country) was discriminating against girls by not having them run an equal distance to boys. I don't particularly care to get into gender rights, but I'll again point to the decline in participation, and decline in "National success", as the only key points really needed. I'll again argue that if we see equal distance as such a factor of importance, move the high school guys distance down. Again, it will help you recruit more runners and GET MORE YOUNG PEOPLE INTERESTED IN THE SPORT!

A major point between the two divisions being separated that I often made, was the fact that the NCAA has women running 5-6K and men running 8-10K, depending on the point of the season. While others screamed, "colleges aren't recruiting our kids because they don't run 5K at the high school level!" UGH! If you bought that narrative, you were sold a bill of goods. If the NCAA made a change, I think Texas would then be smart to reciprocate that change. No change has been made by the NCAA, and I think they've been smart to not make a change that makes the girls distance go up. Again, I could live with the guys distance going down. We need to attract athletes and spectators to our sport.

Texas was once the microcosm example of how good this sport could be and we could be that again if we would go back to doing things in a logical fashion... even if we go alone.

Consider this... In 2014, Texas added an entirely new classification and increased the number of teams that qualify for the UIL State Meet. They also increased the number of individuals that qualified from region to state. Yet, even with approximately 50 more kids running in each gender group, in each classification, AND an added classfication (6A, or the split of 1A, however you wish to view it), approximately 800 additional kids began qualifying for the UIL State Meet in 2014, and yet... You have thousands less participating? And 200 more schools running? How is that even possible?

If more people won the Showcase on the Price is Right each day, I bet participation would go up... but somehow in Texas cross country, we figured out how to have more winners and less people showing up... at the same time! That's gotta be some kind of a record?

If you're a 5A/6A coach in Texas that would support an effort directed at reinstating the two mile for 5A/6A girls cross country, please email me at erikforbisd@yahoo.com. Look at the number of meets not even offering a 5K for girls as the season goes on... this has got to be frustrating for other 5A/6A coaches. Please share this post and my contact info with any 5A/6A girls coaches you know at these two levels that see what I see, and let's get a petition and some support in front of the UIL, and get some changes made that could take place by next alignment (2020).. It's time for logic to have a voice.
08/26/2018 4:30:40 PM
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Erik... good to see ya man. Where you at these days ?
Erik... good to see ya man. Where you at these days ?
08/26/2018 9:06:44 PM
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How do you know the decline in Texas participation is not at the 1A-4A level?
How do you know the decline in Texas participation is not at the 1A-4A level?
08/26/2018 9:26:40 PM
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Re: panhandlerunner... Friendswood... which is real bad for Coach Hall. How about you? Re: sofamiler... I don’t know Trenton, what changed for them? I guess I look at the change in boys and the change in girls. I see an irregular change and so I look at what changes were made in a sport. I guess I use a thing called common sense to figure it out. Perhaps it’s not as common anymore. Statistics suck though, eh? Why don’t you respond to the lack of success at the national level that was so guaranteed by the change to 5k? How about that? Appreciate the substantive reply though... Also, how many of the new 200 schools do you think were at the 1a through 4a level? They’re just opening those things right up!
Re: panhandlerunner... Friendswood... which is real bad for Coach Hall. How about you?

Re: sofamiler... I don't know Trenton, what changed for them? I guess I look at the change in boys and the change in girls. I see an irregular change and so I look at what changes were made in a sport. I guess I use a thing called common sense to figure it out. Perhaps it's not as common anymore. Statistics suck though, eh?

Why don't you respond to the lack of success at the national level that was so guaranteed by the change to 5k? How about that? Appreciate the substantive reply though...

Also, how many of the new 200 schools do you think were at the 1a through 4a level? They're just opening those things right up!
08/27/2018 12:52:49 PM
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Just my two cents, but I would think at least some of the drop in participation would be from the girls basketball teams and coaches who were using cross country as an offseason program opting not to bump up to the 5k distance. I could be wrong, though. On another note, I feel that female distance runners in Texas have improved dramatically over the course of the last 5-10 years.
Just my two cents, but I would think at least some of the drop in participation would be from the girls basketball teams and coaches who were using cross country as an offseason program opting not to bump up to the 5k distance. I could be wrong, though.

On another note, I feel that female distance runners in Texas have improved dramatically over the course of the last 5-10 years.
08/27/2018 2:01:27 PM
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08/27/2018 2:10:11 PM
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@ErikThormaehlen This has to be a joke. Girls distance running in Texas is better than ever. Don't look at the top team. Look at the number of quality teams and the number of great athletes that are out there now. Regarding participation - drop is inversely related to increase in the number of schools and athletes doing soccer. Soccer kids - particularly on the 5A and 6A level - don't want to run. Their parents invest in club soccer and HS soccer is a cush gig...prestige and you don't need to be 17:00 fit to do it. Sub-11:00 3200s: 29 in 2018 vs 18 in 2012. Sub-5:00 1600s: 14 in 2018 vs 9 in 2012. Sub-11:30 3200s: 116 in 2018 vs. 66 in 2012. Sub-5:20 1600s: 157 in 2018 vs. 95 in 2012. National level - 3 girls under 17 in the track 5k this year. None in 2012. McLellan was the closest with 17:06. The girls are just so much faster now.
@ErikThormaehlen This has to be a joke. Girls distance running in Texas is better than ever. Don't look at the top team. Look at the number of quality teams and the number of great athletes that are out there now.

Regarding participation - drop is inversely related to increase in the number of schools and athletes doing soccer. Soccer kids - particularly on the 5A and 6A level - don't want to run. Their parents invest in club soccer and HS soccer is a cush gig...prestige and you don't need to be 17:00 fit to do it.

Sub-11:00 3200s:

29 in 2018 vs 18 in 2012.

Sub-5:00 1600s:

14 in 2018 vs 9 in 2012.

Sub-11:30 3200s:

116 in 2018 vs. 66 in 2012.

Sub-5:20 1600s:

157 in 2018 vs. 95 in 2012.

National level - 3 girls under 17 in the track 5k this year. None in 2012. McLellan was the closest with 17:06.

The girls are just so much faster now.
08/27/2018 2:39:08 PM
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@Aggietom Tom, Well said.
@Aggietom

Tom,

Well said.
08/27/2018 4:04:24 PM
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AggieTom and Coach Hall, using your methods for collecting data will even prove that the girls moving to 5K has helped the boys! Boys under 9:30: 2012 – 31 2018 – 57 Who’d have guessed that the girls move to 5K would have even improved the boys? Oh wait… that’s not what happened is it? What happened is, y’all are using results (like I just did on the boy side) and lists from a database that has only recently become the top place in Texas to analyze results. There are thousands of meets missing from this database from 2000-2014. This database is awesome and a great new tool that provides coaches, athletes, parents, and fans of the sport an innovative method to analyze results, but it’s historically incomplete! It’s a great tool, but I’ll give you an example… Jon Birt shows up in the 3200 rankings from 2000 and the best time shown for that individual is a 9:38… yet he ran around 9:20 that season at a meet that’s not in this database. So when you consider over the course of many years leading up to the implementation of the 5K, milesplit was not the hub for results, (texastrack.com, txrunning.com, and ttfca were), it’s pretty obvious that your data is skewed. My example of the incredible improvement shown by boys in the 3200 from 2012 to 2018 (as well as the Jon Birt example) clearly demonstrates this point. Boys and girls are going to run faster. That’s what coaches and athletes aim to do every year, to break records. Do you guys also think that when Texas moved to 5K for girls cross country that it helped the girls in every other state as well? I mean, since the move to 5K in the girls division we’ve medaled only once (as a team) at NXN, we’ve had zero individual champions since that time, and less girls in the top 10… am I crazy to not use your logic and see that this has even helped girls in other states run faster? Please come back to reality... So aggietom… No, I’m not joking. What was said about basketball players and soccer players by a few of you guys are great points as to why we’re losing kids... and more importantly, athletes! Having the distance at two miles kept a lot of girls in this sport at the high school level because we could share them. Those kids are choosing the sports they see on TV because some within our sport pushed for a decision to make our sport more exclusive. They used to run and play that sport, and by the time they were a senior they realized they were actually a better runner and would possibly even go on to run in college. Those kids are now opting not to run, because very few kids enter high school with the mindset that they want to be a distance runner. I’d love for someone on the other side of this argument to use some real data to support the argument that this move has helped girls cross country in Texas. The fact is, cross country meets are now way more messed up because of the difference in distance between big schools and mid-size/small schools, and our girls will run only about 3 total 5Ks before district. The Kingwood meet (in mid-September is not even running a 5K in the girls division, but will be running 5K in the boys division). There seems to be a really large collection of people in this sport that don’t want to see it grow, and I’ll never figure that out. I hear people complain all the time that cross country gets far less notoriety than football, or band, or whatever… and they’re right. In those activities they find ways to reach across the table and interest people outside of their niche. We seem to want more from our schools and communities but we aren’t smart enough to figure out how we incorporate certain things, or make concessions in areas that could potentially grow the sport. Our words say one thing and our actions another. The words used to describe the desired outcomes by those that pushed for the 5K change, have not come to pass. We’re not more competitive at the National meet and we’ve attracted less people to our sport and pushed them to exclusively go towards soccer, basketball, etc. But keep posting incomplete spreadsheets and incomplete data. I’ll keep pointing to actual results and facts. If nothing else, at least this board has some activity on it for the first time in a while. Edited for a point of clarification: Added (as a team) in parentheses.
AggieTom and Coach Hall, using your methods for collecting data will even prove that the girls moving to 5K has helped the boys!

Boys under 9:30:
2012 -- 31
2018 -- 57

Who'd have guessed that the girls move to 5K would have even improved the boys? Oh wait… that's not what happened is it? What happened is, y'all are using results (like I just did on the boy side) and lists from a database that has only recently become the top place in Texas to analyze results. There are thousands of meets missing from this database from 2000-2014. This database is awesome and a great new tool that provides coaches, athletes, parents, and fans of the sport an innovative method to analyze results, but it's historically incomplete!

It's a great tool, but I'll give you an example… Jon Birt shows up in the 3200 rankings from 2000 and the best time shown for that individual is a 9:38… yet he ran around 9:20 that season at a meet that's not in this database. So when you consider over the course of many years leading up to the implementation of the 5K, milesplit was not the hub for results, (texastrack.com, txrunning.com, and ttfca were), it's pretty obvious that your data is skewed. My example of the incredible improvement shown by boys in the 3200 from 2012 to 2018 (as well as the Jon Birt example) clearly demonstrates this point.

Boys and girls are going to run faster. That's what coaches and athletes aim to do every year, to break records. Do you guys also think that when Texas moved to 5K for girls cross country that it helped the girls in every other state as well? I mean, since the move to 5K in the girls division we've medaled only once (as a team) at NXN, we've had zero individual champions since that time, and less girls in the top 10… am I crazy to not use your logic and see that this has even helped girls in other states run faster? Please come back to reality...

So aggietom… No, I'm not joking. What was said about basketball players and soccer players by a few of you guys are great points as to why we're losing kids... and more importantly, athletes! Having the distance at two miles kept a lot of girls in this sport at the high school level because we could share them. Those kids are choosing the sports they see on TV because some within our sport pushed for a decision to make our sport more exclusive. They used to run and play that sport, and by the time they were a senior they realized they were actually a better runner and would possibly even go on to run in college. Those kids are now opting not to run, because very few kids enter high school with the mindset that they want to be a distance runner.

I'd love for someone on the other side of this argument to use some real data to support the argument that this move has helped girls cross country in Texas. The fact is, cross country meets are now way more messed up because of the difference in distance between big schools and mid-size/small schools, and our girls will run only about 3 total 5Ks before district. The Kingwood meet (in mid-September is not even running a 5K in the girls division, but will be running 5K in the boys division). There seems to be a really large collection of people in this sport that don't want to see it grow, and I'll never figure that out.

I hear people complain all the time that cross country gets far less notoriety than football, or band, or whatever… and they're right. In those activities they find ways to reach across the table and interest people outside of their niche. We seem to want more from our schools and communities but we aren't smart enough to figure out how we incorporate certain things, or make concessions in areas that could potentially grow the sport. Our words say one thing and our actions another. The words used to describe the desired outcomes by those that pushed for the 5K change, have not come to pass. We're not more competitive at the National meet and we've attracted less people to our sport and pushed them to exclusively go towards soccer, basketball, etc.

But keep posting incomplete spreadsheets and incomplete data. I'll keep pointing to actual results and facts. If nothing else, at least this board has some activity on it for the first time in a while.

Edited for a point of clarification: Added (as a team) in parentheses.
08/27/2018 7:03:37 PM
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Erik, I like a lot of what you said (about distances). I've coached from 1A to 5A and, even as a 5A coach, I wish it was still 2 miles for girls. That being said, Coach Kennedy and Coach Hall are both great, respectable men and coaches. They are using data provided, just like you are, to make their point. It happens to contradict yours, but that's okay. We can disagree and still attempt to be nice about it. Again, I agree about the girls running 2 mile (heck, maybe even boys). I had football (boys), soccer, basketball, etc not wanting to do cross country because of the amount of work it took to run 5k and be successful at it. Big schools (I can speak for Houston area only) do a great job of only running freshmen boys in 2 mile cc races. This is something I wish the smaller school boys would adopt. I get it though, there just aren't enough numbers at each small school to separate your 10th-12th graders from your 9th graders. It'd be a nice option though. All that being said, losing my 'track' girls probably hurt the most. BUT, I think that's actually why a lot of coaches wanted the move from 2 miles to 5k. No longer can a stud 200/400 girl compete on the state level. Used to a 60 second 400m runner could train 2-3 days per week, getting in about 8-10 miles total and still run 12:00-13:00 2 mile cc races. Now, if you train that kid the same way, but race 5k, she may run 22:00+. Depends on the kid, but that's a big difference. I think it goes back to your point that we are losing "athletes", which is true, and it sucks! You don't have to be a good athlete to be a good runner, but if you have a good athlete, they're usually a better runner. We need those freshmen boys and girls who play volleyball and football to come run cross country as well. I do think the 2 mile would help with that. I appreciate all the comments and the good discussion. Thanks for posting! Next topic up, 800m qualifying and start. Have a great day.
Erik,
I like a lot of what you said (about distances). I've coached from 1A to 5A and, even as a 5A coach, I wish it was still 2 miles for girls. That being said, Coach Kennedy and Coach Hall are both great, respectable men and coaches. They are using data provided, just like you are, to make their point. It happens to contradict yours, but that's okay. We can disagree and still attempt to be nice about it.
Again, I agree about the girls running 2 mile (heck, maybe even boys). I had football (boys), soccer, basketball, etc not wanting to do cross country because of the amount of work it took to run 5k and be successful at it. Big schools (I can speak for Houston area only) do a great job of only running freshmen boys in 2 mile cc races. This is something I wish the smaller school boys would adopt. I get it though, there just aren't enough numbers at each small school to separate your 10th-12th graders from your 9th graders. It'd be a nice option though.
All that being said, losing my 'track' girls probably hurt the most. BUT, I think that's actually why a lot of coaches wanted the move from 2 miles to 5k. No longer can a stud 200/400 girl compete on the state level. Used to a 60 second 400m runner could train 2-3 days per week, getting in about 8-10 miles total and still run 12:00-13:00 2 mile cc races. Now, if you train that kid the same way, but race 5k, she may run 22:00+. Depends on the kid, but that's a big difference. I think it goes back to your point that we are losing "athletes", which is true, and it sucks! You don't have to be a good athlete to be a good runner, but if you have a good athlete, they're usually a better runner.
We need those freshmen boys and girls who play volleyball and football to come run cross country as well. I do think the 2 mile would help with that.
I appreciate all the comments and the good discussion. Thanks for posting!

Next topic up, 800m qualifying and start. Have a great day.
08/27/2018 7:36:38 PM
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Coach hall and coach Kennedy have been around long enough to know they’re using skewed data... I spent some time talking to coach hall on aol instant messenger back in the day (when we were both using texastrack.com), enough to know he’s completely aware that milesplit has about 10% of track meet results prior to 2014. So, why he would use that chart to make it seem like that’s legit data is a mystery to me. We’ve had this disagreement for about 8 years now and with less successful results at the national level in terms of Texas girls improving competitively, it’s time for some people to evaluate the overall damage they’ve done to the sport at the state level, take a step back, and as you said... it might be time to consider whether or not moving the boys race back down to two miles is something that makes sense for kids and growing the sport. My guess is the boys distance initially went to 5k because there’s a gap in distances run at the collegiate level... again, something that was clearly lost on many of the big school, established program coaches, that pushed for this change several years back. All I ask is... if you’re still going to defend this, don’t do it with skewed data. Just come clean and admit that you’ve been burned by programs that went out and picked up an athlete late in the game, or whatever the real reason is.
Coach hall and coach Kennedy have been around long enough to know they're using skewed data... I spent some time talking to coach hall on aol instant messenger back in the day (when we were both using texastrack.com), enough to know he's completely aware that milesplit has about 10% of track meet results prior to 2014. So, why he would use that chart to make it seem like that's legit data is a mystery to me. We've had this disagreement for about 8 years now and with less successful results at the national level in terms of Texas girls improving competitively, it's time for some people to evaluate the overall damage they've done to the sport at the state level, take a step back, and as you said... it might be time to consider whether or not moving the boys race back down to two miles is something that makes sense for kids and growing the sport. My guess is the boys distance initially went to 5k because there's a gap in distances run at the collegiate level... again, something that was clearly lost on many of the big school, established program coaches, that pushed for this change several years back.

All I ask is... if you're still going to defend this, don't do it with skewed data. Just come clean and admit that you've been burned by programs that went out and picked up an athlete late in the game, or whatever the real reason is.
08/27/2018 8:30:04 PM
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@ErikThormaehlen I do agree that not all meets make it into the database. That being said, any performances with girls running sub-11 DID make it into the database because it took a substantial state-level field to run that off - either Texas Relays, Rice, Texas Distance Festival, or something of the like. The top times aren't missing from 2012. Maybe some 11:50s. Nobody accidentally omitted a 10:34 or 5:01. I really don't know what to tell you other than I know what I see. Texas 6A XC and distance is deeper than ever. I can't even believe that you're suggesting that Trenton or I damaged the sport. You've got to be kidding. If anything, it has been brought up to the level of the rest of the nation. We're now running at the same distance as everyone else. XC is 5k. That is what people run. Why don't you prove why everyone should run 2-mile? Would it help the Fay-Man's and Great Oak's to run 2-mile instead? Would Cali or NY be better doing that? I doubt it.
@ErikThormaehlen I do agree that not all meets make it into the database.

That being said, any performances with girls running sub-11 DID make it into the database because it took a substantial state-level field to run that off - either Texas Relays, Rice, Texas Distance Festival, or something of the like.

The top times aren't missing from 2012. Maybe some 11:50s. Nobody accidentally omitted a 10:34 or 5:01.

I really don't know what to tell you other than I know what I see. Texas 6A XC and distance is deeper than ever.

I can't even believe that you're suggesting that Trenton or I damaged the sport. You've got to be kidding. If anything, it has been brought up to the level of the rest of the nation. We're now running at the same distance as everyone else. XC is 5k. That is what people run.

Why don't you prove why everyone should run 2-mile? Would it help the Fay-Man's and Great Oak's to run 2-mile instead?

Would Cali or NY be better doing that? I doubt it.
08/27/2018 8:32:24 PM
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btw Rachel Johnson - our national champ from Texas - was running significant mileage when she won NXN. She was trained for 5k and excelled at it. But as anyone knows, a great 5k girl will also crush a 3k.
btw Rachel Johnson - our national champ from Texas - was running significant mileage when she won NXN. She was trained for 5k and excelled at it. But as anyone knows, a great 5k girl will also crush a 3k.
08/27/2018 9:56:54 PM
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Aggie Tom I didn’t say you damaged the sport. I said you used skewed data... and you did. You and I both know that there’s way more data being reported now to milesplit than previously... which I think is great. My point is, and I’m allowed to have my opinion, the move to 5k damaged the sport. I’ve made my points clear on why that is, it’s a train wreck to find a 5k because only the running elitists want it. Only a few loud people made this happen, some ain’t around anymore. I didn’t say y’all particularly damaged the sport. I said y’all have supported a change that has damaged the sport and I said y’all used skewed data. I stand by both statements. Keep the context in perspective and maintain a fair debate. My argument is that we’ve had less success at the national level. You can’t refute that... I don’t care how many miles you say Rachel ran. Irrelevant. The fact is, she raced all year long in Texas... where at district, regionals, and state, she ran a two mile. So did most of the teams that have ever medaled in the girls side and the other national champion we’ve produced and higher numbers of top ten qualifiers. Don’t put words in my mouth just because the ones coming out of yours ain’t getting the job done.
Aggie Tom I didn't say you damaged the sport. I said you used skewed data... and you did. You and I both know that there's way more data being reported now to milesplit than previously... which I think is great. My point is, and I'm allowed to have my opinion, the move to 5k damaged the sport. I've made my points clear on why that is, it's a train wreck to find a 5k because only the running elitists want it. Only a few loud people made this happen, some ain't around anymore.

I didn't say y'all particularly damaged the sport. I said y'all have supported a change that has damaged the sport and I said y'all used skewed data. I stand by both statements. Keep the context in perspective and maintain a fair debate. My argument is that we've had less success at the national level. You can't refute that... I don't care how many miles you say Rachel ran. Irrelevant. The fact is, she raced all year long in Texas... where at district, regionals, and state, she ran a two mile. So did most of the teams that have ever medaled in the girls side and the other national champion we've produced and higher numbers of top ten qualifiers. Don't put words in my mouth just because the ones coming out of yours ain't getting the job done.
08/29/2018 3:53:47 PM
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1. Our program has doubled in the past 4 years. 2. Just off the podium, we finished 4th at NXN. 4. Our fan base is huge!!! Just come to watch Marcus 1 this weekend and see for yourself. There will be thousands of spectators!!! 3. I don't see any of the teams who are running the 3200(either because they are from a different state or because they are a smaller school)coming to NXR and finishing in the Top 2 and advancing to NXN. If 3200 is better for girls, why aren't the teams used to running a 3200 in cross, killing it at NXR?
1. Our program has doubled in the past 4 years.
2. Just off the podium, we finished 4th at NXN.
4. Our fan base is huge!!! Just come to watch Marcus 1 this weekend and see for yourself. There will be thousands of spectators!!!
3. I don't see any of the teams who are running the 3200(either because they are from a different state or because they are a smaller school)coming to NXR and finishing in the Top 2 and advancing to NXN. If 3200 is better for girls, why aren't the teams used to running a 3200 in cross, killing it at NXR?
08/29/2018 5:26:39 PM
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I was thrilled to see UIL move up 5A & 6A to the 5k before my daughter started HS. It always bugged me explaining that boys ran longer distances for really no reason at all. And I don't buy how some folks in this thread can draw a conclusion that less participation is attributed to the uptick in distance. Keep in mind there are 4 other conferences that aren't running 5k's yet. There are other factors that could be affecting participation too. Running in general experienced a boom in the 2000's after a painfully bad decade in the 90's. The less numbers we see in 2010's could just be indicative of correction in participation levels. As for NXN, Milesplit has had some decent coverage about the lack of at-large bids due to the inability to compare Texas' best teams to those across our border. We need to have our teams address cross state competition to even get a chance competing at NXN national level. This was a great move for the sport. Over time, we'll have more reliable data. But for now, any time I go to the state meet, I can't find any parking.
I was thrilled to see UIL move up 5A & 6A to the 5k before my daughter started HS. It always bugged me explaining that boys ran longer distances for really no reason at all. And I don't buy how some folks in this thread can draw a conclusion that less participation is attributed to the uptick in distance. Keep in mind there are 4 other conferences that aren't running 5k's yet. There are other factors that could be affecting participation too. Running in general experienced a boom in the 2000's after a painfully bad decade in the 90's. The less numbers we see in 2010's could just be indicative of correction in participation levels.

As for NXN, Milesplit has had some decent coverage about the lack of at-large bids due to the inability to compare Texas' best teams to those across our border. We need to have our teams address cross state competition to even get a chance competing at NXN national level.

This was a great move for the sport. Over time, we'll have more reliable data. But for now, any time I go to the state meet, I can't find any parking.
08/29/2018 5:27:53 PM
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[quote=Aggietom]btw Rachel Johnson - our national champ from Texas - was running significant mileage when she won NXN. She was trained for 5k and excelled at it. But as anyone knows, a great 5k girl will also crush a 3k.[/quote] The Southlake Carroll team that took 2nd at NXN in 2012 was running significant mileage before the move to the 5k distance. They also had a freshman and sophomore in their scoring five. So if you say you have all the correct data, make sure you understand the data.
Aggietom wrote:
btw Rachel Johnson - our national champ from Texas - was running significant mileage when she won NXN. She was trained for 5k and excelled at it. But as anyone knows, a great 5k girl will also crush a 3k.


The Southlake Carroll team that took 2nd at NXN in 2012 was running significant mileage before the move to the 5k distance. They also had a freshman and sophomore in their scoring five.

So if you say you have all the correct data, make sure you understand the data.
08/29/2018 6:10:17 PM
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Erik: I was hoping you Could use the same database to illustrate participation numbers for all Texas girls high school sports during the same timeframe. Has there been an uptick in other sports as cross country has declined? Or, have all sports experienced a decline in participation? I think showing the numbers for other sports might give your argument some validity or no validity. Maybe other sports are down and we are just going through generation of kids who don’t want to do sports. BTW, I love the 5K. NCAA should ALL run 8K, too. Get rid of the 6K & 10K.
Erik:

I was hoping you Could use the same database to illustrate participation numbers for all Texas girls high school sports during the same timeframe.

Has there been an uptick in other sports as cross country has declined?

Or, have all sports experienced a decline in participation?

I think showing the numbers for other sports might give your argument some validity or no validity.

Maybe other sports are down and we are just going through generation of kids who don't want to do sports.

BTW, I love the 5K.

NCAA should ALL run 8K, too. Get rid of the 6K & 10K.
08/29/2018 6:18:51 PM
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[quote=burkebinning]Erik: I was hoping you Could use the same database to illustrate participation numbers for all Texas girls high school sports during the same timeframe. ... NCAA should ALL run 8K, too. Get rid of the 6K & 10K. [/quote] AMEN! I took a look at the NFHS data referenced above. Although there is a general increase in sports activity across the board, you do see a decline in cross country participation for girls from 2010 - 2015. But as other folks stated earlier, it doesn't show the reduction by conference. So you don't know if it's just the 5K conferences or if it's all of them seeing falling numbers.
burkebinning wrote:
Erik:

I was hoping you Could use the same database to illustrate participation numbers for all Texas girls high school sports during the same timeframe.
...

NCAA should ALL run 8K, too. Get rid of the 6K & 10K.


AMEN!

I took a look at the NFHS data referenced above. Although there is a general increase in sports activity across the board, you do see a decline in cross country participation for girls from 2010 - 2015. But as other folks stated earlier, it doesn't show the reduction by conference. So you don't know if it's just the 5K conferences or if it's all of them seeing falling numbers.
08/29/2018 9:38:40 PM
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@all of you... because there are a lot of replies on here. Aggietom... we had more teams that medaled, more individuals that medaled, and more individual champions, back when we raced 2 miles, than we have since we transitioned to 5k (when talking about the NXN meet). Period. No amount of shuffling on words you try to use can refute that. We’re not competing and finishing as high as we once did, that’s an indisputable fact. If it’s not, then dispute it with credible results that demonstrate the opposite in terms of placing and winning. You can’t, which is why you don’t. One piece of data you might want to know about the milesplit results (the milesplit discussion board won’t allow me to post a picture of the graphic I made) is that in the years 2000-2014 there’s an average of 234 meets per season in the system. 2015-2018 theres an average of 888 meet results per season. I’d say with quadruple the meets in the database for that big spike coach y’all showed us and you mentioned, regardless of Texas relays, state, etc.... 600 more meets per year, you’re bound to find the early season state champions in that second bracket that you won’t from years past. Jajmom, you should change your sign in name to “just off the podium”, thanks for proving my point. Usually a three goes before a four in numeric order. Your program is not a measurement of the state. The schools that are running 3200 have 3000-5000 less students in them... gee, I wonder why national teams aren’t coming from those small schools. That’s not the issue... the big schools performed better (INDISPUTABLE FACT) at nxn when they were running two miles. Your post is terrible and filled with nothing of substance, bless you. Nikepre- boys numbers are down less than a thousand. Girls are down by more than 5000 from the change in distance implemented in Texas girl in 2012 to 2018. What is a better comparison than this? You and Burke both can’t grasp that? I look at it like this... where were we? What did we change? Where are we? It’s really very simple. How’s your daughter going to feel when you drive her to college and then y’all are going to have to have the talk that disappoints her so much about why the boys got to run further... because the NCAA is what it is. Now, if it changed... I’d agree with us changing. It didn’t change. The talk you didn’t like having was inevitable. Burke- the fourth line of your post says it all. ‘It would either show some validity or no validity.’ Based on past experiences of the people on this board, I’m guessing if it yields more information that doesn’t support the idea that girls should run 5k, you would all line up behind the idea that it provides no validity. Lol... I’ve provided relevant numbers, that’s a lot different than you can say for just about anyone else in this conversation. If NCAA made both distances the same, I’d be all for it, regardless of which distance we go with. You can’t deny this split has caused meets to turn into circuses. This has been a mess. Nikepre - Do you know much about small schools? What reason would anyone think that this drop would have come from small schools? Much like the fact that nothing changed in the boys world, thus the boys participation number changed very little, the girls at small schools didn’t have a change... and they aren’t adding new sports at those small schools. It’s not the small schools. They aren’t opening new small schools... most additions of new schools are going to happen at the 5a-6a level, big districts. Do y’all live under a rock? I don’t mean to come off as rude, but this is not a hard thing to figure out. You don’t see school districts popping up between Ozona and Sonora TX... or mason and junction... you just don’t. But big districts like Katy open a school a year... figure it out! Also, the reason you see more people at the state meet, as I previously alluded to, is because they’ve added nearly a thousand runners at the meet since 2014 with a newly added classification, more teams advancing, and more individuals advancing... it’s not because of the popularity of the sport. The numbers are down in terms of overall participation in Texas in the sport of cross country... the data is clear and simple to understand.
@all of you... because there are a lot of replies on here.

Aggietom... we had more teams that medaled, more individuals that medaled, and more individual champions, back when we raced 2 miles, than we have since we transitioned to 5k (when talking about the NXN meet). Period. No amount of shuffling on words you try to use can refute that. We're not competing and finishing as high as we once did, that's an indisputable fact. If it's not, then dispute it with credible results that demonstrate the opposite in terms of placing and winning. You can't, which is why you don't. One piece of data you might want to know about the milesplit results (the milesplit discussion board won't allow me to post a picture of the graphic I made) is that in the years 2000-2014 there's an average of 234 meets per season in the system. 2015-2018 theres an average of 888 meet results per season. I'd say with quadruple the meets in the database for that big spike coach y'all showed us and you mentioned, regardless of Texas relays, state, etc.... 600 more meets per year, you're bound to find the early season state champions in that second bracket that you won't from years past.

Jajmom, you should change your sign in name to "just off the podium", thanks for proving my point. Usually a three goes before a four in numeric order. Your program is not a measurement of the state. The schools that are running 3200 have 3000-5000 less students in them... gee, I wonder why national teams aren't coming from those small schools. That's not the issue... the big schools performed better (INDISPUTABLE FACT) at nxn when they were running two miles. Your post is terrible and filled with nothing of substance, bless you.

Nikepre- boys numbers are down less than a thousand. Girls are down by more than 5000 from the change in distance implemented in Texas girl in 2012 to 2018. What is a better comparison than this? You and Burke both can't grasp that? I look at it like this... where were we? What did we change? Where are we? It's really very simple. How's your daughter going to feel when you drive her to college and then y'all are going to have to have the talk that disappoints her so much about why the boys got to run further... because the NCAA is what it is. Now, if it changed... I'd agree with us changing. It didn't change. The talk you didn't like having was inevitable.

Burke- the fourth line of your post says it all. 'It would either show some validity or no validity.' Based on past experiences of the people on this board, I'm guessing if it yields more information that doesn't support the idea that girls should run 5k, you would all line up behind the idea that it provides no validity. Lol... I've provided relevant numbers, that's a lot different than you can say for just about anyone else in this conversation. If NCAA made both distances the same, I'd be all for it, regardless of which distance we go with. You can't deny this split has caused meets to turn into circuses. This has been a mess.

Nikepre - Do you know much about small schools? What reason would anyone think that this drop would have come from small schools? Much like the fact that nothing changed in the boys world, thus the boys participation number changed very little, the girls at small schools didn't have a change... and they aren't adding new sports at those small schools. It's not the small schools. They aren't opening new small schools... most additions of new schools are going to happen at the 5a-6a level, big districts. Do y'all live under a rock? I don't mean to come off as rude, but this is not a hard thing to figure out. You don't see school districts popping up between Ozona and Sonora TX... or mason and junction... you just don't. But big districts like Katy open a school a year... figure it out!

Also, the reason you see more people at the state meet, as I previously alluded to, is because they've added nearly a thousand runners at the meet since 2014 with a newly added classification, more teams advancing, and more individuals advancing... it's not because of the popularity of the sport. The numbers are down in terms of overall participation in Texas in the sport of cross country... the data is clear and simple to understand.

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