BSD Frequently Asked Questions
(Last Updated: May 30, 2008)
more important aspects of running a business is soliciting and
customer feedback. Over the course of
the last few seasons, the following questions have come up as either
questions or “scuttlebutt” that makes the rounds. Without
any additional fanfare, here are some
common questions going around with our best attempts to answer
the BSD league seem so
expensive compared to other leagues?
right to it! We have heard this question
in a variety of forms, so let’s take a quick survey of local volleyball
and see where we stand.
(Av. = 12)
(Av. = 12)
(Av. = 10)
(Av. = 8)
first glance, the answer appears simple. BSD seems like a more
expensive league because the total cost for each season is more than
other leagues surveyed. However, BSD also has a longer season
then every one of those leagues. The BSD league operates under
the assumption that volleyball players want to play more volleyball,
rather than shorten the season to reduce the total cost.
When you look closer and consider the cost per match, you see that BSD
(early registration) is the least expensive league that
registers individual players. Only the Gaithersburg City league
(assuming an 8 player roster) provides a significantly cheaper option,
primarily due to the fact that they own their own building. The
BSD League Directors operate each season with the goal to break even
finanically. Each BSD League Director has invested their own
money into running this business, yet none of us is looking to make a
profit. We would rather make friends than profit from our friends.
So the bottom line is: BSD provides more volleyball for the
2. Why does the BSD draft
process seem more like an evaluation of "who you know" then "how you
tackle the big issues right away, shall we? First, some
background information. BSD is the only league in the area that guarantees
all individuals signing up before the registration deadline the
opportunity to play. The league uses a draft system where
captains select their teams starting from the highest-skilled divisions
to the beginning player divisions. The system has generally
worked very well over the years in providing payers the opportunity to
play with other players of similar skill levels.
Of course, it's competitive human nature that everyone wants to play at
the highest level possible. But the division lines have to be
drawn somewhere. Every season there are players who feel like
they are better than the bottom few players of the next higher
league. And, therefore, they got screwed!!! And that's
where the darker side of human nature takes over. Rather than
look inward towards improving their game (or losing those endearing
"F-bombs" they emit when things don't go their way), some people prefer
to look for excuses. Some popular excuses over the years include:
Look, I would love to
tell you that the process is perfect. But life is not like
that. This is not the Olympic Trials, it is a social volleyball
league. (By the way, how many times have you read about
personalities or "coaches favorities" factoring into Olympic or
National Team trials. It happens alot, even at that level).
- Some captain
always picks his friends (and I am better than one of his friends)
- Some long-time
player seems "favored" by the league and always get saved at the end of
the draft (rather than picking me)
- Some captains
don't seem to notice that I have drastically improved my game (even if
I didn't make it to tryouts, but I was THE MAN in week 5 last
season!!! Surely they remember...)
- I am good enough
to play up, but some people don't like my personality (they should just
learn that I need the ball every fricken point or they will hear about
it. And don't get me started about that fricken net-call, the ref
is such a hater!!!)
I am sure that if you look hard enough, you can all find examples that
seem like the excuses mentioned above. BSD does have some
safeguards built in to address some of these issues. We are
always looking for new captains and each season new players try their
hand at it. The league provides them with advice on how to draft,
but if they choose to draft only their friends (or some other
non-competitive behavior) then we'll look for other captains to replace
them the following season.
I think most captains make a good attempt to draft competitive teams
and include players who should be playing at that level. It's not
as simple as getting the best 48 players (for a 6 team draft).
Near the end of a draft, good captains assess their teams and see what
needs they have. Sometimes it's the best hitter available (ever
if he/she can't play defense worth a lick), sometimes it's a good
defensive player (even if he/she can't play the net at all), sometimes
it may be someone with an even-keeled personality (especially if the
captain has already drafted a few hotheads). After the fact, you
may look at the results and think that you are a better player than
someone else who was picked... but better in what way? And is
that what the captain was looking for?
The bottom line is... lines have to drawn somewhere or we would have 22
BB teams! I realize people have their egos, but once you get over
that is it really such a bad
outcome to be the best player in a lower division rather then the worst
player in a higher division? Somewhere along the way you played
with better players and that experience made you better. Is it so
bad to be that better player for others and be the leader or "go-to
guy" for your team?
I know this is not the answer most
people want to hear. Who wants to do the hard work of realizing
that your physical skills may be slipping (or not there yet) or that
people may not want to share your spicy personality for 11 weeks?
3. Why should I continue
to play volleyball in the BSD league?
have tackled the tough questions. We feel that we're entitled to
end with an easy question! We could make an endless list of the
strengths of the league. Here are just a few of the reasons why
our players tell us they return to BSD each season:
We could go on and on
about the virtues of our league. But we'll stop here and thank
you for reading this long Q&A session. We care about what you
think. If there are other questions you would like answered or
unsolicited feedback you would like to provide, please direct them to the Webmaster. In fact,
we'll make it even easier for you. In the next two weeks, we'll
send out a short electronic survey. We hope you will take the
time to tell us what you think about BSD this season: what we have done
right and how we can improve next season.
- BSD provides
each player a level playing field every season. Most local
rec leagues register teams, not individual players. The teams
that do well under this format are the teams who assemble the most
talent... and very often "sandbag" a bit so they can roll their
competition in whichever level they sign up for. Once that talent
is assembled, the same group of players sit at that level and roll up
the wins season after season. It's great for those 8 players...
not so much for the 40 other people trying to compete.
The BSD draft system "shuffles the deck" every season. The
championship teams never stay together. Teams within each
division are drafted with roughly equal ability. Sure, there are
competitive differences within each division at BSD... but it's nothing
like what you see in leagues without a draft system.
- BSD players
meet new friends every season. The social advantage of the
draft system is that each season you have the opportunity to play with
players you have never played with before. Think about how many
players you have met over the years in this league... how many weekend
tournament teams formed... how many teams formed to register in other
leagues for that matter.
- The best
playoff system ever. Not only does BSD run the longest season
for local leagues, we also run the longest and most competitive playoff
season. Long time players will tell you that the 3-week
double-elimination playoff system is the competitive heart of the BSD
league. Take it from someone who knows, there is nothing in any
other league that can match winning 3 consecutive playoff matches on
the final night coming out of the loser's bracket to win the
championship. All for the glory of a t-shirt and website Hall of
For comparison, Rockville Sportsplex run a single elmination tournament
where most teams play only one playoff match. Montgomery County invites
only the first and second place teams to a single-elimination
playoff. Gaithersburg City does not even run a playoff, which
usually results with the sandbagging teams wrapping up the title in
- Free Pickup!!!
No, this is not a dating service. (Now that I think about it,
there are many lasting relationships that have formed in BSD. See
what happens when you get to know new people?) Moving on...
What I mean is, BSD provides for open courts each week that can be used
to play pickup volleyball at no additional charge. No other local
league has that option. None!!! It may seem like a little
thing... but many players rack up alot of free volleyball this way.
guarantees equal play for every individual who signs up before the
registration deadline. Regardless of skill level.
Whether you're an open player (in your mind) or a rank beginnner (in
reality), we have a competitive level of play for you. We will
match you with players of similar ability. We will place you on a
team where you can meet other players of similar ability (and play
pickup with players of different abilities). Once your team is
formed, you will play every game. BSD is not like other leagues
where captains have to sit out players when 7 or 8 people show
up. We do not rotate in liberos (defensive specialists) or
front-row only hitters or setters. Every player plays every game
and rotates completely around. That's what you pay your money
for... to play!
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