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Small league format idea

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I golf in a work league that has seen it's numbers from 40 golfers 10 years ago to down to only 14 this season and the trend is going in the direction of losing even more. The format is two  person teams and you would get team points and some low amount of individual points. So this year the guy who runs it changed from a team based point system to a more individual emphasis. You still get team points by adding yours and your partners individual points together. This is a pretty laid back "fun" league but it is handicapped to give everyone a fair chance at winning it.

Another issue we run into is that some people in the league travel as part of their job and miss some weeks. If they get a sub, they still a single point but lose out on getting the full 3. The person leading the league hasn't missed a night yet (that would be me) but I have also only lost 1 match out of 10, so I should be leading regardless at this point. A person that is 1 point behind me complained that he has to travel in 2 weeks and doesn't think it's fair and people said I should "skip" a night to level it off. Why should I be penalized for being there every week? It appears that I may be taking the league over next year and was trying to think of ways to set it up to be fair across the board as best I can.

The format I was thinking was running a pure individual league like the Fedex Cup points. Each week is worth X points and the points are distributed by where you finished in standings for the week. Our league is 14 weeks and we can designate 2 weeks as "majors" weeks and increase the point value for those weeks. This way, if you have to miss weeks you can still make up ground by finishing better in the coming up weeks or at one of the "majors". You could still do the team points by adding the two partners together. The "champion" would be the person with the highest number of points at the end of the year.

Let me know your thoughts and please offer suggestions.


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I've never played in a league - but here goes:

1. I'd hate it if I got less points because I had to travel more for work - in a work league.

2. I'd doubly hate it if I had to miss one of the Major weeks - double the missing points.  Unless you are saying that it can be a major week for me, but not for you as you will be picking your own. In which case, I'd throw the major thing out as it is less fun if it isn't a major for everyone.

If your league runs 14 weeks - maybe just say that out of the 14 weeks, you can play all you want but only turn in 10 scores (or tailor it to however many weeks you think will be missed by the guy who has to travel the most).  And that you have to declare it a 'scoring' week for you before you tee off.  That way someone can't play all 14 and then cherry pick the best 10.


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As a fellow golf league commissioner, let me welcome you to the club! As you mentioned above, you now get to deal with adults acting like kids and complaining about BS that really shouldn't matter. Before getting into suggestions on format, be sure that you set the rules and expectations at the beginning of the year and stick by them.  If guys complain, refer them to the rules and move on.

How long is your season?  If it's long enough to accommodate, I would suggest splitting it into two "halves."  The first half would be a round-robin style format and the second half would be a little tournament (usually 4 weeks or so, depending on how big your bracket would be).  We split out money evenly between halves, which gives teams/guys that end up at the bottom of standings in the round-robin a chance to rally and win money.  We have 12 teams in our league, so what we do is this:

11 weeks of Round robin, payouts for 1st - 4th place (first 4 teams get a bye in the first round of the tournament

4 weeks of tournament, teams get payouts for each win, which escalate each round ($25, $40, $80, $160 per team in each round)

3 weeks of Ryder cup, winning team all get a payout

I agree you should be incentivized to show up every week, but if the average guy misses 2 weeks a year, maybe you could implement something like no penalty the first 2 times you miss.


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I created a format a few years back for our league which was very fun and successful, which allows players who can not participate weekly.

It is a "Blind Draw - Match Play Bracket"

We are a Saturday,18 hole event which runs through the summer for 20 weekends / 5 months.

It was open to the first 64 players who signed up, and we had four brackets.

Each player would play a 6 hole match against an opponent and One 6 hole match against PAR.

Full handicaps are used, similar to a Nassau format.

I would draw players names out of a hat to place the players within the bracket.

Then after the first month, we used the scores of the first round played by players that month.

For the next two months, again use one score against the other opponents.

Now each player has played all opponents in their bracket.

2 points were awarded for a Win, 1 point for a Tie, 0 for a lose.

Top eight players would advance in each bracket to the next round.

Losers would compete in a new bracket, setup by blind draw.

We had a $20 entry, and paid top four places in both brackets.

In the next round, any player who had their second loss would be eliminated.

On the final day, players would play head to head in a foursome, then 6 hole scores were used random for the match's.

Using this format allowed us to play our weekly game - Skins/Partner format for those who are able to play.

We had a big party on the final day when scores would be figured and Winners were determined.

It basically was a "Game within a Game" though the season.

Scores were posted at the end of each month, along with the blind draw match ups to display the results.

The only requirement was on the final weekend, all players who were still in the brackets were required to play.

Club Rat


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Thanks for the advice and suggestions.... I am kind of liking the 14 week only 10-12 weeks count format. I think that would be accepted by the majority.

I was also thinking maybe do something like in bowling... If you miss we add 10-20% to your average for that round. Say you can earn 3 point a night by being there and winning your match, if you get a sub you can still earn 3 points but if you miss and no sub the best you can get is 1 or 2 if the opponent doesn't beat your "average". Would have to figure out how to prevent sandbagging.....


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