Tag Archives: Association

Leagues & Associations – Why Serve – by David Charron

I have bowled in many different States and in many different Associations within the State of Maine. I have been in every imaginable League Officer Position over the years on various leagues, and recently have become a Board Member on one of my Local Association Boards. There are many bowlers out there who both have been bowling for many years and even some who are very new to the sport of bowling but love it dearly, ask yourself this question, why serve.

For me this answer is easy, I wish for the sport to be on a fair and competitive level and for the rules to be enforced on a consistent basis for all bowlers, all of the time. This is why I have served for many years as a League Officer. Just recently I have made the move into the “politics” of the Local Association Board. Now again for me the answer to why is an easy one, I wish to effect change, I wish to make my Local Association Board be more about the Bowlers it is in place to serve and less about all the other things that make up the “political” side of my local association. The only way I see to effect the change that I feel is so desperately needed is to become involved, now this holds true not only for bowling, but for anything if you really sit and think about it.

Now, I know this opinion is not going to be popular with many people, but it is my opinion. If you are currently a member of you Local or State Association Board, a Committee Member, or a League Officer for any of the following reasons

  • It looks better on your Hall Of Fame Resume
  • You have a Personal Agenda or Personal Vendettas
  • You wish to have Power over your fellow Bowlers
  • Financial Gain – Pay from the League or Board; or other Financial Gain

RESIGN – Resign immediately. You are not serving the Bowler’s, you are serving yourself and frankly that is not what being a League Officer or an Association Board Member is suppose to be about.

Now with that said, these are Voluntary Positions, how do we fill the seats of those who have departed recently, or those with terms that are expiring. Recruit, Recruit, Recruit. If you are a bowler reading this Blog and have always wanted to get involved but didn’t know where to begin. Ask current board members when and where the next board meeting is; you don’t have to be a member to attend these meetings. You will be both surprised and inspired by what goes on during these proceedings. Get involved attend meetings, run for office, become a board member, or even the Member of a Committee (you do not have to be a member of the Board to be on a committee). However with that being said if you are going to serve your fellow bowlers in this capacity, make sure you are doing it for the right reasons.

  • DON’T become the Secretary / Treasurer of your League only because the position pays for your bowling, or for other financial gain. DO take on this position because you have the skills and ability to do a great job at it, do it right, and provide a valuable service to your league.  
  • DON’T become a League Officer on your League only because you don’t like the rules and want to try to change them for your own benefit or for your team’s benefit. DO run for these positions if you’re doing so to make sure that everything runs smoothly and that all USBC Rules and regulations are applied fairly and evenly to all bowlers on all teams.
  • DON’T chair a Tournament Committee only because there is pay involved, or only because you wish to control certain aspect of the Tournament (Lane Assignment, Who bowls with who, or what lanes they bowl on, Oil Patterns or Oiling Schedule, etc.) DO chair this committee if you have the time, expertise, and organizational skills to run a successful event for all of the bowlers who choose to enter.
  • DON’T chair or become a member of your Association Board or of any committee simply because you wish to control outcomes with your own personal agenda or wage personal vendettas. DO become members of these very important committees because you wish to serve all bowlers in a fair and consistent manner and have the time to do so.
  • DON’T volunteer to do anything for which you do not have the skills or time to do. It does your fellow board or league members no good for you to volunteer your time to do a job and then not do it, only to have others have to pick up the slack at the last minute. This behavior is counterproductive and not in the best interest of the bowlers you wish to serve. DO volunteer as much as you can, without overextending yourself, your service is needed and greatly appreciated.

In Closing, I urge all bowlers who truly care about this sport to become involved. Go to League Meetings; go to Local and State Association Meetings. If you possibly can, run for office (League or Association) volunteer the time and the energy to keep our sport alive. Please do it and do it for the right reason, your local association needs more people to become involved.

Opinions expressed in this post are solely mine and may not reflect the opinions held by MSUSBC or any other Local Association. As always your comments and opinions are welcome and encouraged. Please post your responses and thank you for reading the Bowler 2 Bowler Blog. Good Luck and hopefully I will see all of you on the lanes or even better at your next Local or State Association Meeting.

If the PBA folds, does it really matter? by James Goulding III

If the PBA folds, does it really matter?
by James Goulding III

 

This has been a subject that I had hoped to never write about, and that is the VERY real possibility that we are seeing the last days of the Professional Bowler’s Association (PBA) as we know it.  With the recent confirmation that the tour stop in Medford was cancelled due to lack of sponsorship dollars and the hard economy, it brings once again to the forefront the possibility that the PBA may not last another season.  I wonder, though, how many bowlers out there even care if the PBA exists?  How many recreational bowlers have even HEARD of the PBA, nevermind catch a show on Sunday afternoon.  Either way, I feel the if the PBA folds, it would be very bad for the long-term future of bowling as a competitive sport.

For one, there are far-reaching ramifications for the economy if there is no PBA.  From bowling ball sales that would suffer because the players wouldn’t be visible to promote them on TV every week, to bowling shoes and accessories, there are MANY companies that make those products who stand to lose business from the lack of product recognition that the PBA tour provides every week.  Also, the network stands to lose viewers who tune in to the PBA each and every Sunday, as well as losing the money that the PBA pays for the airtime.  There would be many professional players looking for jobs, which adds to the unemployment numbers, and hurts the economy.  Also, think about all the people on staff for the ball companies, coaches, ball rep’s, ball drillers, etc. that would be out of work if the PBA closed it’s doors.  Like I said, there are very many factors outside of the fact that we  (as bowlers) like to see the best players in the world compete week in and week out.

There are a few hurdles that hurt the PBA and it’s prize funds.  One of them is the fact that the PBA pays for its airtime.  Many other sports get paid by the network(s) to have their games broadcast at certain times.  The PBA pays ESPN, CBS, whomever, to air the telecast every week.  Plus, the rate that the PBA gets money for commercial time from sponsors, is lower than any other professional sports organization.  It’s even lower than what hockey gets, and for a sport like bowling that is THE highest participation sport in the U.S., that is just unacceptable.  The PBA has been branded as an organization that just doesn’t sell, for whatever that reason is, I don’t know, it just is.  There needs to be a complete re-evaluation of what and how the PBA is marketed, who it gets marketed to, and how to more efficiently use the dollars that the PBA gets to turn it into a viable product for the consumer to view.

I also feel that the time slot the PBA gets shoved into hurts the product, and BADLY.  The NFL is the most watched sporting event week in and week out, hands down.  To have the PBA on at a time where most of america would rather watch the NFL at 1 or 2 PM on a Sunday afternoon is committing Nielsen ratings suicide.  I feel that the PBA (since it pays for its airtime anyway) should try and get the tour either back in its original Saturday afternoon spot (which would compete with college football), or, try and get into a weeknight spot, like a Monday or Tuesday night.  I think that Tuesday would be the perfect spot, especially if the PBA could get into a 7 PM slot, before the prime time shows begin.  They could avoid the NFL altogether, plus maybe pull in some new viewers who may tune into their favorite shows early and catch the telecast.  Those are just a few ideas, but at this point I feel that anything is worth a try.

Lastly, the PBA (if it survives) needs to find a way to creat revenue and get the prize funds respectable for the best players in the world.  There are tournaments now that pay the same for 1st place as they did 20 years ago, and that is just unacceptable.  If the PBA could find a way to get prized funds to the point where 1st place pays consistently 50,000 (+), many more people may be interested in checking out the telecast, and there would be more buzz around each tournament stop.  It could also bring in more money to the TQR by creating an environment that would  make more sense for those players to drop some cash to compete for a chance to make a bigger pay-day.  This is where the USBC could step in, which I think would be a good idea.  For years, the USBC has been cutting down on awards without decreasing costs.  I would like to see the USBC commit $1 from every member that certifies, and put that money into the PBA prize fund directly.  That could add millions to the prize fund, and make the PBA a marketable and viable organization again.  I know as a USBC sanctioned bowler myself, this is one thing the USBC could do to give back to bowling, and at the cost of only $1 more, I wouldn’t even notice the cost difference out of my pocket.

Those are a few of my thoughts on the PBA, and my hope that it will continue to thrive and survive this tough economic time.  There is no better honor than to be considered one of the elite athletes of your sport, and the PBA players are no different in that aspect.  They deserve to be recognized and paid on a level more consistent with the best in other sports.  It would be a great travesty if the PBA had to fold, and have devastating effect not only on the economy but on amateur and professional bowling as a whole.  If there are no heros left to look up to, than where do we look?

As always, the opinions expressed in this blog entry are my own, and in no way reflect the opinion of the MSUSBC or their members.  Thank you for reading, and please feel free to comment on anything you read here today.  Take care!!!

-James Goulding III

www.lausbca.org

www.msusbc-maine.org

League Prize Funds – By David Charron

I have bowled in Leagues for the last 30 Years in many different Associations in Numerous States. I have also prepared Prize Fund Proposals for a majority of the leagues I have bowled on. So I pose the question, what makes a good Prize Fund?

First, the rules pertaining to League Prize Funds. Prize Funds should be presented to the league as soon as possible USBC Rules mandate by week 5. Remember a Prize Fund must have the MAJORITY vote in order to be accepted. What this means is that if you have 16 Teams and you distribute 3 Prize Lists, in order to be accepted one must receive at least 9 Votes. Otherwise, you must drop the list(s) with the least votes and re-vote on the 2 Lists which received the most votes.

Now, you’re preparing a list, what should you include. Most leagues in Maine bowl a split season. Halves, Quarters, or even Thirds. For the sake of this discussion we are going to assume your league has 16 teams and bowls a split season in 2 halves. Your prize fund should pay every team based on standings each half. And then pay the top 2 or 4 teams in a roll-off at the end of the year. Additionally you should pay Team Awards for High Series Scratch, High Series Handicap, High Game Scratch, and High Game Handicap. The awards should be of equal value, and you should pay 2 place in each so that half of the teams in this league will get some Team Award Money. Also, you will pay Individual Awards for the same, High Series Scratch, High Series Handicap, High Game Scratch, and High Game Handicap. Again these awards should be of equal Value, except I would pay 3 Places in each, so that 12 different bowlers will get individual Award Money. There will also be awards for High Average 3 Places, and Most Improved 2-3 Places. Finally, let’s talk Point Money. For those of you who don’t know what Point Money is – it is an amount of money that each team will receive for each point it wins during the regular bowling season – not including Roll-Offs. The reason to include Point Money in your prize fund is for 2 very important reasons. First Point Money will give some of the bottom teams a little extra money which is more evenly distributed than your overall league prizes, because there will just not be as much disparity between first and last place monetarily where point money is concerned. For instance is point money is worth $1 per point, then the first place team may get $160 in point money and the last place team is going to get around $75 in point money as opposed to the $600 For first and $100 for last they are also going to get. The second reason is Point Money is easily adjusted to account for variation in Actual Prize Fund Dollars at the end of the year. As you know most leagues have 50/50, which provides a unknown amount to the prize fund, and therefore you could have a “budget Shortfall or Windfall” at the end of the year, which without point money leaves you with a problem of what to do. With Point Money you have a way to easily adjust the point money to the Actual Amount in the Prize Fund at the end of the year.

Let’s Assume your League has 16 Teams and a Prize Fund of $10,000. This is exactly what I would submit for a Prize Fund

Team Place Awards

First Half                          Second Half                         Roll-Offs

1st $ 500.00                  1st $ 500.00                      1st $ 500.00

2nd $ 300.00                2nd $ 300.00                    2nd $ 300.00

3rd $ 200.00                3rd $ 200.00                     3rd $ 200.00

4th $ 175.00                4th $ 175.00                       4th $ 100.00

5th $ 150.00                5th $ 150.00                      

6th $ 125.00                6th $ 125.00

7th $ 100.00               7th $ 100.00

8th $ 100.00               8th $ 100.00

9th $ 75.00                 9th $ 75.00

10th $ 75.00              10th $ 75.00

11th $ 50.00              11th $ 50.00

12th $ 50.00             12th $ 50.00

13th $ 50.00             13th $ 50.00

14th $ 50.00             14th $ 50.00

15th $ 50.00             15th $ 50.00

16th $ 50.00             16th $ 50.00

Team Awards

High Series Scratch – High Game Scratch – High Series Handicap – High Game Handicap

1st $ 150.00  2nd $ 100.00 

Individual Awards

High Series Scratch – High Game Scratch – High Series Handicap – High Game Handicap

1st $ 100.00  2nd $ 60.00  3rd $40.00

High Average

1st $ 125.00  2nd $ 75.00  3rd $50.00

Most Improved

1st $ 75.00  2nd $ 50.00  

Point Money Estimated Point Money $0.82 Approx Per Point $ 2,525.00

Actual Point Money Adjusted to Reflect Actual Total Prize Fund

Total Prize Fund $ 10,000.00  

I hope this post has been thought provoking, I am sure Some bowler would not vote for this prize fund and others would, but it is meant to be the start of topic conversation. Opinions expressed in this post are solely mine and may not reflect the opinions held by MSUSBC. As always your comments and opinions are welcome and encouraged. Please post your responses and thank you for reading the Bowler 2 Bowler Blog. Good luck and good bowling I hope everyone is having a great Start to the Fall League Season. I’m sure I will see you on the Lanes.