NMAA to take over seeding

Some interesting news from the NMAA. Hopefully this will even the playing fields for all the teams.

Albuquerque Journal
James Yodice/Journa Reporter

As expected, the New Mexico Activities Association will take over the postseason seeding and selecting process in the major team sports starting with the 2010-11 school year.

The NMAA board of directors Thursday morning voted unanimously in favor of the proposal. It takes the power out of the hands of district representatives who previously were tasked with choosing and seeding playoff teams.

“It has been very political to this point,” NMAA board president Mike Phipps said. “I’m hoping that we eliminate a lot of (that).”

A group of NMAA staffers will handle the seeding. It hasn’t been determined how many.

Phipps said the aforementioned political concerns had less to do with the selection meetings themselves than choosing the right people to serve as unbiased representatives. The old committees also included an at-large member and an NMAA staff member who served as a facilitator.

The new format may require NMAA reps to log some serious miles next season, since so much of the seeding process is based on visual examinations.

“This puts the pressure in this building,” Phipps said, “and I hope there won’t be any biases.”

The NMAA plans to solicit feedback from various coaches and district reps, and the NMAA also will use a sport’s final regular-season coaches’ poll as part of the criteria.

“Whatever system you use will draw criticism,” said Las Cruces Public Schools Superintendent Stan Rounds. “There’s no perfect process in seeding.”

Based on a survey, the NMAA said about 60 to 65 percent of the feedback was positive in terms of the seeding changes. More administrators than coaches were in favor of the change, according to the NMAA.