Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Womens College Water Polo
HawkinsPolo4
Posts: 299
Joined: Sun Nov 01, 2015 5:52 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: College water polo graduate, four-year high school player, and long time club player. Now coaching club year around and playing masters

Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby HawkinsPolo4 » Wed Jan 20, 2021 8:48 pm

Just saw on Instagram Monmouth is going to discontinue their men's and women's water polo program. Although members of the forum usually don't pay as much attention to Division III colleges outside of CA, this is a hit for the sport especially as the CWPA is trying to grow D3 water polo outside of CA.

A few friends of mine played for Monmouth so to see a program that gave them the opportunity to play cut is disheartening, given just a month ago they lost a longtime coach to Covid... the reasoning the school provides is hit or miss, but I think it's also a reminder for us as fan that to grow the sport of water polo, we have to support everyone. Of course this isn't the first program we lost to Covid, it's the first D3 one which for many of us we saw as the future for growing the sport.

I'll leave the link here in case anyone would like to read the press release from their website: https://monmouthscots.com/news/2021/1/19/monmouth-college-to-discontinue-mens-and-womens-water-polo-programs.aspx

DinsdalePiranha
Posts: 424
Joined: Sun Dec 13, 2009 1:27 am
How are you connected to water polo?: Fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby DinsdalePiranha » Thu Jan 21, 2021 11:49 am

Chalk up another “win” for the powers that be at USA WP, instead of being distracted by their own (possibly illegal coverup) negligence as well as building a grotesque edifice to their own egos, they should have had someone in the AD’s office finding out what it takes to save the program
he nailed your head to the floor? Wol, e ad to, I ad transgressed the unwritten law...

JackBurton
Posts: 456
Joined: Thu Feb 04, 2016 12:42 am
How are you connected to water polo?: Gold Standard of USA Water Polo

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby JackBurton » Thu Jan 21, 2021 2:06 pm

DinsdalePiranha wrote:Chalk up another “win” for the powers that be at USA WP, instead of being distracted by their own (possibly illegal coverup) negligence as well as building a grotesque edifice to their own egos, they should have had someone in the AD’s office finding out what it takes to save the program


Agreed - the press release talked about a decline in the number of teams in their state playing high school water polo. When I looked at their roster I can see why that is an issue as the majority of the players are from Illinois. The other issue was the lack of closer competition with only two DIII programs not located on the west and east coast. You almost get the feeling that John Abdou is the only one pushing for this type of growth.

-32H20polo
Posts: 118
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2019 3:13 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby -32H20polo » Fri Jan 22, 2021 11:20 am

Does USA waterpolo have an actual person or persons as lobbyist that check in with each college program especially the smaller programs. They need to be doing this yearly if not every semester to check on the health of the programs. I am disgusted by the way the USA waterpolo has supported these smaller programs. IT appears they only want to support and encourage the big name programs, USC, UCLA, Cal, Michigan ETC. They do not care about the DII's or DIII's that struggle both financially and places/teams to play. Without these schools we will loss the National and international spot light. If they truly care they will start doing this. Maybe start by hiring a person to this. Try a fresh out of college NOT from one of the big 5 schools to do this young blood in USA waterpolo office with refresh these people to start fighting and just take their paychecks.

Rational
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:14 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: Fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby Rational » Fri Jan 22, 2021 3:03 pm

We could probably sit down and identify criteria for schools where water polo is threatened, such as:

*Large number of sports offered - the min for D1 is 16, I don't know about D3, but Monmouth has 22 sports. That's 22 teams that need the trainers, the equipment guy, the SID, the academic advisors, etc. It's just too much for some departments.

*Little to no High School presence - Water polo is limited in the Midwest and East, places like Indiana, Carthage College, OUAZ, Austin College, VMI, the NY schools

*Distance to opponents - who wants to host a team that can never have a home game? or only has one home game each year. Big travel budget. Teams can pay $20k to travel to Southern Illinois to get one game, or spent $25k to travel to CA and get 4 games.

*Access to airport - Who wants to fly and then take a 2 hour bus ride to play at your pool - UOP, Santa Barbara, Austin College, Wittenburg, Salem U, VMI, Grove City, etc..... If you're outside of CA, this is additional travel cost as other sports may be able to bus/van to games but you have to fly, large budget by comparison.

*Facilities - Do they have a pool that supports the game? Ex: Hartwick, Wagner

*Past success / Opportunities to win / path to championship - tough to sponsor a team that is a perennial last place finisher or has no chance to succeed in their league (UC San Diego in the WWPA was a joke). Does league alignment / other member's budgets play a part? (looking at Michigan)

*Other sports not sponsored that are popular in the area - "let's cut water polo and add field hockey/lacrosse" says everyone East of the Mississippi River

*Do they have a swim team? - we can cut water polo and not have this multi-million dollar facility sit idle / go to waste.

*Does their conference sponsor water polo (SCIAC, Big West, MAAC) - there's no consequence from the Pac12/Big East/XYZ conference if you cut a non-sanctioned sport because the conference doesn't sponsor it.

There may be more criteria, but if you look at Bakersfield, Maryland, Colorado State, Hartwick, GW, Monmouth and others you can probably find quite a few similarities .... looking forward, we can identify places like VMI, Sienna, OUAZ, Macalaster, Carthage, Bucknell and others that check a lot of the above boxes.

**** So what can be done and who is responsible for doing it? The NCAA doesn't care about parity. There are things that could be done though, but it requires sacrifice:
** Write the rules to encourage an American audience - don't follow FINA - make the game attractive to college AD's and widen the fan base.
** Roster/dress limits
** Free competition date to travel East of Mississippi (similar to how Football travel to Hawaii doesn't "count" as a game). Encourage West coast teams to travel East.
** Re-align conferences - Get Bakersfield out of MPSF sooner (San Jose - looking at you), get Michigan out of the CWPA.
** Give NCAA Champs to more non-CA schools.
** Limit NCAA at-large field so all conference champs get in

The power to make these things happen doesn't rest with one person/entity/school. Michigan has a clear path to the NCAA tournament, why would they give that up just to save the GW program? (not saying this is why GW was cut - GW could have joined the MAAC.) Why should USC agree to voluntarily limit their roster? Their job is to beat Stanford and UCLA, if they can take on another stud, it stops that kid from going to UCLA. On the men's side, the USC roster is blowing back up after 2 losses to UoP last year. Why should Cal/UCLA agree to limiting the at-large field, they'd beat the MAAC champ by 20 goals.

I guess my point is there is no singular person to point the finger at. There is also no singular person that can "rescue" us.

-32H20polo
Posts: 118
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2019 3:13 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby -32H20polo » Tue Jan 26, 2021 11:33 am

Rational, to help stop this continued cutting program and programs struggling, how about creating a body group of people outside of USA Waterpolo to figure out and help these struggling programs and encourage the realignment of conferences. Football did it. When a program is far out sponsoring/financial ahead of the other programs in their conference move them. Encourage the playoffs to be widened and more play off games. It is just very sad this sport is struggling except in certain areas and it seems no one cares. Lots of flapping of the jaws but nothing being done. I understand and the issue if there is no other team using the pool. However, EVERY sport could condition in a pool. Has that ever been pointed out to the schools? Just a few small thoughts.

Rational
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:14 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: Fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby Rational » Tue Jan 26, 2021 4:00 pm

Good question - I guess the problem is so large, and there are so many involved parties, that it seems daunting. Have you tried to reach out to USAWP? Can you get anything done? - you can lay out the most cogent argument, explain the flaws of the current course and it falls on deaf ears.

In this case - Monmouth had 22 sports, if they're looking to cut because the trainers, advisors, SID, etc can't keep up, how do you convince them to keep water polo and instead cut Golf (or tennis)? Water polo has 20 kids, golf has 8 - if each team counts equally and you're trying to cut costs, which do you cut? Your boosters understand golf, golf is played by the local HS team, your conference sponsors golf, and there are other nearby Golf teams to play.

It's an unwinnable argument.

Water polo is trying to sell a product that just isn't very appealing to "outsiders"... the rules are convoluted and nearly impossible for anyone outside of the game to comprehend.

Any rules changes have to get approved by NCAA coaches. So for example, roster limits can't be imposed because while it may be good for the men, it makes the sport less appealing for the women who need big numbers to balance Title IX - To balance this - an idea was proposed last year to have a "dress limit" for NCAA games (how many athletes can dress for a game) - the thought being that while USC/Cal/UCLA may have a 40 athlete roster, if they couldn't dress everyone for home games, it would discourage some mid-range talent from going there and they'd hopefully look elsewhere, leading to more parity. Imagine if you're not a starter, when coach signs 4 athletes from the Junior team, you don't just see your minutes reduce, you don't even get to dress for the games - you're in the stands with the red-shirts. That was shot down by private schools who charge $50k/year who need to be able to give their 4th string center some playing time so her parents will continue to pay the tuition.

So now what, how do you control rosters or help the collective (socialism trigger word)! The NCAA doesn't have a mission to advance parity - they don't care. Do we rely on the informal handshake agreement between Cal, UCLA, and SC to limit their rosters? News flash, UOP men beat USC twice last year - USC promptly loaded up their roster to ensure that doesn't happen again.

Make the argument to me that Michigan should willingly give up their cakewalk to NCAAs (from Michigan's point of view). The teams are there to win, not hamper themselves to help their not-as-well-funded counterparts. The best chance of Michigan moving is the rest of the CWPA schools kick them out.

Football is falling into the non-parity wasteland water polo has been in - Every year, its Ohio State, Clemson, and Alabama or some combination of those - its BORING. Our sport is boring, its been a decade with the same 2 teams winning NCAA's. UC Irvine is the best poised to break thru, Dan is great, has Nat'l team members on staff - good conference, UC, in Orange County ... but talent like Nina Flynn comes to a place like UCI once every 4 years .... where Stanford and SC get 4 "Nina Flynn's" every year. How do you get Jewel Romer and Ryan Neushel to turn down Stanford? I don't know.

Until we create parity in the game and write the rules so a rube can understand what's going on - we're fighting a losing battle.

HawkinsPolo4
Posts: 299
Joined: Sun Nov 01, 2015 5:52 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: College water polo graduate, four-year high school player, and long time club player. Now coaching club year around and playing masters

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby HawkinsPolo4 » Fri Jan 29, 2021 10:05 pm

I think you bring up great points, but I think your comment on water polo vs golf in regards to roster size is interesting. It's interesting to me, because Division III schools don't necessarily care about whether or not you have a winning record but whether or not you're bringing kids to the college/university and they stay there.

Obviously for schools outside of CA enrollment is still a priority to some degree (idk if Michigan and Indiana are really in that boat given the nature of Big Ten schools), but for Division III that's especially the case because it's about education first and foremost. So when thinking about why schools add the sport one reason is opportunities to increase enrollment. Perhaps for Monmouth specifically they didn't see consistent numbers, but it's another thing to consider when we talk about how to grow Division III water polo.

Admittedly, I also agree that for smaller Division I or Division III schools can be hard if not almost near impossible (case in point, Kris Raney played for Pomona-Pitzer but how does his daughter turn down Stanford). It's a hard question but an important one to raise

Rational
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:14 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: Fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby Rational » Mon Feb 01, 2021 5:14 pm

If I could be dictator, here's what I would do:
1) Commission a panel to evaluate new sets of rules, have them used/evaluated at tournaments - settle upon a set of rules and test it with fans that have no idea what water polo is.
2) Give up on trying to get big power-5 schools like Oregon, Arizona, Ohio State, Notre Dame to add polo. Also figure that programs like Austin College, Carthage, OUAZ and others that are in water polo "deserts" are likely not sustainable.
3) Find former Nat'l team members that are interested in coaching and help them get jobs as ass't coaches
4) Identify schools like CSU Fullerton or Pepperdine (women) - water polo is played in their area & Conference and try to get them to add - offer Olympians from step 3 as ready to take the Head coach job - gives program instant credibility.
5) Identify conferences that have multiple members already playing and see if the conference will sponsor - Mountain West (3), Pac-West (4), NorthEast (5-women). Hopefully draw in more schools

There's probably more but these immediately come to mind

-32H20polo
Posts: 118
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2019 3:13 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby -32H20polo » Wed May 05, 2021 10:09 am

Rational wrote:If I could be dictator, here's what I would do:
1) Commission a panel to evaluate new sets of rules, have them used/evaluated at tournaments - settle upon a set of rules and test it with fans that have no idea what water polo is.
2) Give up on trying to get big power-5 schools like Oregon, Arizona, Ohio State, Notre Dame to add polo. Also figure that programs like Austin College, Carthage, OUAZ and others that are in water polo "deserts" are likely not sustainable.
3) Find former Nat'l team members that are interested in coaching and help them get jobs as ass't coaches
4) Identify schools like CSU Fullerton or Pepperdine (women) - water polo is played in their area & Conference and try to get them to add - offer Olympians from step 3 as ready to take the Head coach job - gives program instant credibility.
5) Identify conferences that have multiple members already playing and see if the conference will sponsor - Mountain West (3), Pac-West (4), NorthEast (5-women). Hopefully draw in more schools

There's probably more but these immediately come to mind

Why only offer coaching positions to Olympians?? There many great coaches that did not play for the National team or on the Olympic teams. There are also up and coming possible coaches that did not play for the National teams. And these non National team players do not have as big of egos demanding the high salaries, thus the new and smaller schools could afford to start a program.

Rational
Posts: 199
Joined: Thu Apr 27, 2017 2:14 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: Fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby Rational » Wed May 05, 2021 2:47 pm

-32H20polo wrote:Why only offer coaching positions to Olympians??


Because its my fanciful "dictatorship" scenario. Want parity now - going for instant credibility, don't have 5 years for coach to prove themselves with a startup program.

Rational wrote:If I could be dictator, here's what I would do:


Anyways, the schools have to WANT to succeed. For too many, water polo is just a check box, something they offer to draw kids in so they'll pay the school's $60k tuition. They don't put resources towards the teams enabling them to win. They claim to be D1 but won't even give the coaches the full allotment (8 women, 4.5 men) of athletic scholarships. For example, Villanova won the Men's Basketball crown in 2016. The same year Villanova reaped millions of dollars from that title run, they posted a job opening for an Assistant Water Polo coach, part-time for $10,000/year.

The sad part of this whole water polo saga is the schools that are trying to win have come to rely on the schools that have no interest in winning, - case in point: the MPSF men.

-32H20polo
Posts: 118
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2019 3:13 pm
How are you connected to water polo?: fan

Re: Monmouth to Eliminate Men's and Women's Water Polo

Postby -32H20polo » Mon May 10, 2021 10:14 am

Rational wrote:
-32H20polo wrote:Why only offer coaching positions to Olympians??


"going for instant credibility, don't have 5 years for coach to prove themselves with a startup program."
I have seen coaches that played on those teams and are not good coaches. Some can coach some cannot. The "5 years to prove themselves does not compute.

Return to “Womens Varsity Water Polo”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests