Welcome to the Thursday rankings and mailbag. I first want to thank you guys for all your suggestions and ideas regarding the future structure of the league. I didn’t think I’d start a discussion just by one little comment, but it’s a big and complicated subject, that’s for sure! But first let’s begin with the rankings.
1 – Waterloo Warriors + 26.0
2 – Gent Gators + 24.6
3 – Ostend Pirates + 23.0
4 – Brussels Tigers + 21.8
5 – Brussels Bulls + 14.8
6 – MSG Fighting Turtles + 9.5
7 – Brussels Black Angels + 6.9
8 – Izegem Tribes + 2.6
9 – Liege Monarchs – 4.9
10 – Puurs Titans – 10.0
11 – Leuven Lions – 11.0
12 – Limburg Shotguns – 19.9
13 – Wapi Phoenix – 27.0
14 – Antwerp Diamonds – 28.0
15 – Charleroi Coal Miners – 28.2
The Brussels Tigers big win moves them immediately up to number four.
1 (=) Gent Gators (3-0)
2 (=) Brussels Tigers (1-0)
3 (=) Brussels Black Angels (2-1)
4 (=) Brussels Bulls (1-1)
5 (=) Ostend Pirates (1-0)
6 (=) Waterloo Warriors (1-0)
7 (=) MSG Fighting Turtles (2-0)
8 (=) Leuven Lions (1-1)
9 (+1) Liege Monarchs (1-1)
10 (-1) Puurs Titans (1-1)
11 (=) Izegem Tribes (0-1)
12 (=) Limburg Shotguns (1-2)
13 (=) Antwerp Diamonds (0-3)
14 (=) Charleroi Coal Miners (0-3)
15 (=) Wapi Phoenix (0-1)
I said a few times during the game that Liege were definitely better than I’d suspected, so I rewarded them with a slight move up the Power Rankings. At the top I left Gent number one – we’ll learn more about the Tigers after their next game, when they play the Turtles.
Francis Njufom, Brussels
“Really disagree with you about the mercy rule. That shouldn’t exist! We just need 2 divisions. No teams on either division would make a 50-00! Some people are just make a “trip” to watch a football game. What are you saying to people coming to watch a football game and ending in the middle of the third quarter? We are discussing again and again every season about making two division. Making 2 divisions would provide a higher level for ALL teams. That would let new team to go to a full championship without any forfeit.”
You’re forgetting that I made a trip from Izegem to Liege and would have been happy to have had the game terminated early! On the other hand I agree though, having two divisions would eliminate the need to have the mercy rule at all.
Bart Killens, Gent
“The FAFL now has 9 teams while LFFAB has only 6 this season. Do you think if this remains next year, we should send the top 4 FAFL and top 2 LFFAB to the playoffs? Or do you think LFFAB has just enough quality in the top 3 to be better than FAFL nr 4 ?”
If it remains like that (I don’t think it will, but that’s another story) then I think it should be changed. Last year the LFFAB had a “final four” which was after their regular season and before the BFL playoffs. I guess what I mean is that it doesn’t matter if the LFFAB #3 is better than the FAFL #4 because there should be 4 FAFL teams in the playoffs anyway (and 3 LFFAB teams). Maybe have a play-in game between FAFL #3 and FAFL #4 before the cross-over. Of course this would take an extra week, but I think that 4 out of 9 in the playoffs is fairer than 3 out of 9.
Now I recommend you go back to Monday’s blog (https://dalehousden.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/0418-bfl-week-6/) and scroll down to the bottom where you can read the comments and ideas that people had about the structure of the league.
So here’s what I think about league restructure:
I do think that there should be two divisions, but I don’t think you should just take the top four from the FAFL and the top four from the LFFAB. It shouldn’t just be about results – if you did this, you’d have well established teams like Leuven, Puurs and Izegem in division two, and I don’t feel that that is right.
There should be a list of criteria that a team should have to satisfy to be allowed to play in division one. For example
– at least 30 players on the senior roster (or some other number, not sure exactly)
– a non-playing head coach
– a working junior program
– and so on
New teams would have to play at least one year in division two, as would teams who are in financial problems.
I also wouldn’t relegate teams just because they finished last in division one. Each year you’d just look at the criteria again and see which teams qualify and which do not. One year you might have 12 teams, the next year 16, and the year after 14, it would depend.
I think a problem with two divisions is that players who are in a team in division two might want to leave their team and join a team in division one though, so there could perhaps be some sort of mechanism to stop this.
But having said all this, I still don’t see it happening. This would require the LFFAB and the FAFL to join forces with all the teams and the BFL to make one large competition (whatever the structure might end up being), and if you ask me then that’s a pipe dream.
I also liked the competition proposal from Mr Anonymous. If you had 20 teams who played on a similar level then I think that that’s a good one (I would do a different final 8 though, the same one that they do in Australian Football. It would take one more week than your proposal, however). I also like very much that you have included the Barbarians Combine too!
If you want to get the attention of the people in control of American Football in Belgium, then you shouldn’t go through me. I’m just this guy, you know? The BFL has a facebook page (Belgian Football League), as does the FAFL and they have a website too. If you want your suggestions heard, then the best thing you can do is tell the BFL, FAFL and LFFAB directly.
And one more thing – I must be totally out of the loop, because I have never heard of the Verviers Mustangs nor the Zemst Rats!
Stijn De Backer, Brussels
“That Sarah scored on a 2 point conversion is just great, this young lady was joined this past Saturday by 2 girls from the Puurs Titans Cadets that suited up to play tackle. With 1 girl playing Quarterback and the other one a Center it was fun to see these girls hold their own and even do better than some of their peers. The Titans cadet center managed to keep the Tigers Nose Tackle in check despite the Tigers boy being bigger. If you like cadet tackle football, we’ll be in competition every other saturday till the end of May.”
It’s just great that so many young people want to play this game, boys or girls. Sarah’s conversion got a lot more of a cheer than the Tigers’ touchdowns, so people are definitely aware that she’s out there. Girls can be pretty determined to achieve something (believe me, I know, I have a daughter) and if they set their sights on playing football then they can get that done too.
As for your second point, I would like to see some cadet football some time. I’ll have to check out a schedule.
12pm, Sint-Agatha : #1 Gent Gators (3-0) vs #12 Limburg Shotguns (1-2)
I said : Gators by 46. Computer says : Gators by 45
3pm, Sint-Agatha : #4 Brussels Bulls (1-1) vs #10 Puurs Titans (1-1)
I said : Bulls by 16. Computer says : Bulls by 25
12pm, Leuven : #3 Brussels Black Angels (2-1) vs #5 Ostend Pirates (1-0) – GAME OF THE WEEK
I said : Black Angels by 13. Computer says : Pirates by 16
3pm, Leuven : #11 Izegem Tribes (0-1) vs #8 Leuven Lions (1-1)
I said : Lions by 12. Computer says : Tribes by 14
So thanks again for your ideas and suggestions, just don’t forget that this isn’t any sort of official forum. It’s a nice place to share ideas but don’t assume that the people who run football in this country read this! Until next time