Northern Wyoming Daily News - Serving the Big Horn Basin for over 100 years

By Alex Kuhn
Sports Editor 

Hear me out...It all comes down to this...a coin toss?


October 29, 2016

As random as the postseason can be, it makes seeding very important. Sure, everyone wants to play the best but you also want the path of least resistance. So if you can avoid the team that’s had your number all year, until the championship game, you do so.

But with parity and strong competition there’s a possibility of ties at the end of the regular season. To break those ties, tiebreakers are put into place, at times they can be confusing, especially when you add more teams to the mix, but for the most part they’re quite straightforward. 

For Wyoming sports the tiebreakers go, head-to-head, records vs. common opponents and then if a tie still remains a coin toss will be the deciding factor. 

That’s right, after a season’s worth of work, a team’s playoff seeding can come down to a coin toss. Instead of a coin toss why not have a write out of a team’s regular season accomplishments then light it on fire, because what’s the point if you’re going to determine the winner with a flip of the coin so soon.

The tiebreakers are agreed upon by the conferences themselves, so it would be very easy to add a few more buffers before the coin toss. 

With a few more tiebreakers Powell would not be the No.1 seed in the 3A West. This is not a slight toward Powell, they’re one of the better teams in the state but they’re 5-3 on the year. Star Valley and Green River who were both 7-1 are the No.2 and No. 3 seeds. Yes they all had one conference loss, with Powell beating Star Valley, Green River beating Powell and Star Valley beating Green River, but why not reward the best team. 

Or there’s this scenario that also happened in 3A football but on the East side. There was Buffalo 1-4 in conference 3-5 overall, Rawlins 1-4 in conference 3-5 overall and Lander 1-4 in conference 1–7 overall. Guess who made the playoffs because of a coin toss? If you said Lander pat yourself on the back because you are correct. 

This is an easy fix, adding a few more tiebreakers would take at maximum 10 minutes to discuss and agree upon. So just like Mini-Me in “Austin Powers: Goldmember,” the coin toss needs to be told to move down the bench. 

The seed a team earns during the season doesn’t mean they’re penciled in for a championship or to lose. It’s supposed to be a reflection of the work by the regular season’s best teams. Resorting to a coin toss so quickly is a disservice to the better teams.


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