Monday, June 18, 2007

Now that the UPA has finally bent to our deafening clamor for numbers on shorts, I can peruse the various galleries of Nationals pictures and know without hesitation the players involved in the plays captured by our talented photographers. Amazing, and a uniform requirement long overdue.

But then, as I made me way through the pictorials, another problem began to present itself, no less annoying than lacking numbers on shorts but just as easily fixable.

I found that for most of the pictures that captures the play in its dynamic intensity, it's very difficult to discern who is on offense and who is on defense.

Incredible bid to maintain possession? Errant throw directly to defender? Wrap-around layout block? Who is the one getting shat on? Whom deserves praise and who deserves my deriding laughter? Without knowing who was on O and D, I risk getting the two switched.

So I propose that with the other, currently unused shorts leg, we add a patch. I'm envisioning a square patch sewn to the shorts on one edge, and on either side is a big "O" or "D" and velcro along the edges, so that when you switch from offense to defense you can quickly flip the patch to reflect your current status on the field. That way, as I look at these pics, I know who's the one getting tooled and who's doing the tooling.

I commend the UPA for finally listening to the players and having the numbered shorts requirement finally echo the will of the membership. But let's not stop there, let's finish the job. Let's put adjustable O/D patches on the shorts as well.

Who knows? Once the benefits of the adjustable patch come to full light, we can continue with the adjustable "poacher" patch on the jerseys, and so on.

The sport will be better for it.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

In my mere eight years of competitive ultimate I have noticed significant change in the way tournaments are operated and organized. "Ultimate Time" is an unknown phrase for the youngest current players, while tournament directors (and therefore tournaments) are increasingly professional. In the last few years we've seen the first private company whose product is a top-notch tournament as well as a moderate increase in the corporate sponsorship, the darling of which is clearly Chicago's Sandblast.

I don't know if other tournaments have begun partnering with commercial airlines, but they should. Attention Wiggins, Idris, Akira, Dave Branick, and the rest of you: get an airline on board with your tournament. Colorado Cup is pleased to partner with Frontier, a small, Denver-based airline. Every player who books through Frontier using our specific discount code will get 10% off their roundtrip airfare. And while 10% isn't a huge sum, anything helps. Most airlines have a groups and meetings office that will set up a discount code for your tournament. Check out examples at United, Frontier and Continental.

Perhaps your TD hasn't set up an airline discount. You're still okay. Most airlines offer 10% off roundtrip airfares for groups of 10 or more traveling on the same itinerary. Again, check the examples on United and Frontier.

Want the best teams at your tournament? Want your team to travel for less? Let's make airfares cheaper.