Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

USA Water Polo's Mens National Teams

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madone
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Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby madone » Wed Aug 04, 2021 5:52 pm

What are realistic expectations for the men's team?

We do not have a significant history of winning medals in the Olympics. Great Britain, France and Germany have won more gold medals than the United States. We have won Bronze: 1924, 1932 ,1972; Silver: 1984, 1988, 2008.

We also don't have a significant history of sending large numbers of players to play professionally, nor do we have a professional league. Our high-level development opportunity is with 6 NCAA programs (Cal, UCLA, USC, Stanford, UCI, CSULB), who are not actually responsible for developing Olympians. ODP is primarily an entry to mid-level opportunity.

Curious as to what people think. The links posted below have lots of interesting facts.

For Reference:
Lists of Olympic Champions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_O ... water_polo
List of Olympic Medalists: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_O ... polo_(men)

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2plyBathingSuit
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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby 2plyBathingSuit » Wed Aug 04, 2021 6:15 pm

madone wrote:What are realistic expectations for the men's team?

We do not have a significant history of winning medals in the Olympics. Great Britain, France and Germany have won more gold medals than the United States. We have won Bronze: 1924, 1932 ,1972; Silver: 1984, 1988, 2008.

We also don't have a significant history of sending large numbers of players to play professionally, nor do we have a professional league. Our high-level development opportunity is with 6 NCAA programs (Cal, UCLA, USC, Stanford, UCI, CSULB), who are not actually responsible for developing Olympians. ODP is primarily an entry to mid-level opportunity.

Curious as to what people think. The links posted below have lots of interesting facts.

For Reference:
Lists of Olympic Champions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_O ... water_polo
List of Olympic Medalists: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_O ... polo_(men)
Well, we've been down this road so many times before that the pavement is wearing out. But to answer your question;[for the foreseeable future], the realistic expectation is no better than 5th. I think that's fair.

retiredguy
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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby retiredguy » Wed Aug 04, 2021 7:07 pm

I’m the eternal optimist here, but when we have a one goal game headed into the 4th quarter with Spain, who has dominated this tournament so far, my thought is that the right group of players and coach could find a way to win an Olympic Gold Medal. That’s why there is always so much discussion about what it would take because it does feel like we have the talent available in this country to make it happen, but it would take a group dedicated to playing after college and a coach that could motivate them to continue.

By the way, leaving Pepperdine and Pacific off of your list of “6 NCAA programs” is kinda odd considering those 2 schools had 3 players on this years team while UCI and LB had none. Also, Pepperdine might have arguably the 3 greatest Olympians of any school ever with Terry Schroeder, Merrill Moses, and Jesse Smith.

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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby SwimCoach » Wed Aug 04, 2021 7:17 pm

madone wrote:Our high-level development opportunity is with 6 NCAA programs (Cal, UCLA, USC, Stanford, UCI, CSULB), who are not actually responsible for developing Olympians. ODP is primarily an entry to mid-level opportunity.
Why are you so specific with these six schools?
Last edited by SwimCoach on Wed Aug 04, 2021 9:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Justafan22
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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby Justafan22 » Wed Aug 04, 2021 9:09 pm

madone wrote:What are realistic expectations for the men's team?

We do not have a significant history of winning medals in the Olympics. Great Britain, France and Germany have won more gold medals than the United States. We have won Bronze: 1924, 1932 ,1972; Silver: 1984, 1988, 2008.

We also don't have a significant history of sending large numbers of players to play professionally, nor do we have a professional league. Our high-level development opportunity is with 6 NCAA programs (Cal, UCLA, USC, Stanford, UCI, CSULB), who are not actually responsible for developing Olympians. ODP is primarily an entry to mid-level opportunity.

Curious as to what people think. The links posted below have lots of interesting facts.

For Reference:
Lists of Olympic Champions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_O ... water_polo
List of Olympic Medalists: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_O ... polo_(men)
I don't think anybody expected the US Men to win GOld, but a medal was well within reach. We played toe to toe with Spain for three quarters, and then maybe some mistakes made under pressure by a young team doomed us.

NCAA programs is what we will have to rely on, just like track and field, swimming, and other sports do. (however those are individual sports)
ODP is as you mention, entry level training to get into NCAA training. ODP is a fundraising operation for the National teams.

What it will take is money. Money to keep a team playing together, after college, and go play tournmanets in Europe for example, otherwise, the current Olympic team players, need to move on and embark on their careers, for what they studied in college. The current USA team players will find opportunities to play in Europe, for just enough money to make a living and play for 4 years, on different teams, but I think, as a whole the entire team, needs to tour together and have more opportunities to play and stay together, until the next Olympics.

Women's US soccer developed the best women's teams in the world for many years. NObody was even close, until other teams started following the model and caught up, or are catching up. We have had pro leagues for women in the US, but girls soccer is the most played sport in the US for young girls, so obviously you will come up with great players, that go into the many NCAA programs we have and so on and so on. Waterpolo does not have those types of number of kids playing the sport

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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby caliwaterpolo » Thu Aug 05, 2021 11:54 pm

There are more USA water polo-registered players in California than LEN-registered players in the whole of Europe. Numbers are not the issue.

Comparing men’s and women’s sports is apples and oranges.

If you want the US to be a consistent top 4 mens water polo nation, you need to encourage players to leave for Europe at the age of 16 or 18. Or you just need to hope for lightening in a bottle (like 2008) where we stumble into a team full of 30-somethings with international experience.

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2plyBathingSuit
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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby 2plyBathingSuit » Fri Aug 06, 2021 1:32 am

caliwaterpolo wrote:There are more USA water polo-registered players in California than LEN-registered players in the whole of Europe. Numbers are not the issue.

Comparing men’s and women’s sports is apples and oranges.

If you want the US to be a consistent top 4 mens water polo nation, you need to encourage players to leave for Europe at the age of 16 or 18. Or you just need to hope for lightening in a bottle (like 2008) where we stumble into a team full of 30-somethings with international experience.
Couldn't agree more. You nailed it. On the other thread my suggestion was that they should start a GoFundMe page for the MSNT.

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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby wpviewer » Fri Aug 06, 2021 9:28 am

caliwaterpolo wrote:There are more USA water polo-registered players in California than LEN-registered players in the whole of Europe. Numbers are not the issue.

Comparing men’s and women’s sports is apples and oranges.

If you want the US to be a consistent top 4 mens water polo nation, you need to encourage players to leave for Europe at the age of 16 or 18. Or you just need to hope for lightening in a bottle (like 2008) where we stumble into a team full of 30-somethings with international experience.
It’s economics right? Big 4 grad with a degree can launch a post college career with decent money vs making subsistence? Wages in Europe. They are placing a bet on being picked as 1 of 13 - all subject to the coaches pick, not getting injured and very position specific. This is emphasized when you read the last man cut posts. It’s opportunity costs vs the great honor of representing your country and having Olympic Rings forever. But that’s if everything falls right into place for those 13.

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Re: Unrealistic Expectations based on reality?

Postby UberPolo » Fri Aug 06, 2021 2:13 pm

2plyBathingSuit wrote:
caliwaterpolo wrote:There are more USA water polo-registered players in California than LEN-registered players in the whole of Europe. Numbers are not the issue.

Comparing men’s and women’s sports is apples and oranges.

If you want the US to be a consistent top 4 mens water polo nation, you need to encourage players to leave for Europe at the age of 16 or 18. Or you just need to hope for lightening in a bottle (like 2008) where we stumble into a team full of 30-somethings with international experience.
Couldn't agree more. You nailed it. On the other thread my suggestion was that they should start a GoFundMe page for the MSNT.
A GoFundMe page is a great idea. Some countries pay their Olympic players to train, we don't so we have players that have to work in order to support themselves and train when they can.
Also, the lack of a professional league is a huge problem for the U.S. whereas European players get to be part of a league without having to travel halfway across the globe, make an (albeit poor by U.S. standards) living, and play WP all day long.

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