September 28, 2018
Over the last month, the Simulation Football League’s Competition Committee was tasked with improving the user experience plus developing and taking an in-depth look at a proposed advanced rookie showcase, that would allow rookies to gain more draft stock through playing against other rookies prior to the draft, at the position they are most likely or most want to play in the following season. Overall improvements to rookie education, which will help cultivate a more competitive and educated user base, were approved 7-0 while the new Rookie Showcase was approved 5-2.
“This whole experience has been an education on what it means to work together,” said Commissioner Cameron Irvine. “The Competition Committee has worked incredibly hard to ensure that they are in the best position to serve the SFL community. In approval or rejection of any league initiative or need for a ruling, the league fully stands behind Committee decisions and never wants to be in a position where the Committee feels like we will not back a rejection – it’s why they were put in charge of crucial time-sensitive decisions, that most importantly relate to the direct competition – and overall health of competition – in the SFL.”
The Rookie development mission is: to create a more intensive way to evaluate “talent” before the draft, to create a more enjoyable and immersive experience for rookies leading up to the draft, to keep rookies engaged so they are less likely to drop out of the draft, and above all to create the most simulation rookie experience. Simulating a season with rookies across four different teams, players will receive .5 added to their overall value for leading a team in a statistical category or the entire rookie base in a statistical category.
Players will be able to possibly make up missed check ins (like a player that shows up in Week 5 of 8) and be able to make up some that value. A player that is fully committed in check-ins and with bits could see their value increase even more through on the field achievements that are out of their control, providing a more simulation product. A player will only be eligible for these bonuses at the position they played in the showcase games. If they sign at a different position for the team that drafts them, then they do not receive bonuses, but can still sign at the accrued Rookie Value through check-ins, chat and bits cheered. Players that have achieved a max silver value cannot achieve any more value through the showcase.
Bonuses would also be given to players who advance past the semifinals (1.0 overall value) and to those who win the championship (1.0 overall value). The Championship Game MVP can also gain an additional 1.0 overall value boost.
The full document that was submitted to, and approved by the Competition Committee can be viewed below:
The Competition Committee’s sweeping recommendations of a new Rookie Development Program are a major step in the right direction for the SFL, and have been in the works since the approval. Included in these recommendations are:
- The Committee recommends that the League advertise the new rookie program using Youtube spots on league broadcasts. A concise 30-60 second video describing what the league is and how to join which can be run at appropriate points in a game. (A.J. Francis/Steven Mullenax)
- The League is encouraged to interview rookies about rookie process and their experience to educate/motivate new rookies to learn and to also join so they can have a similar experience. (Trevor Ferrill)
- The League is encouraged to continue its work on website ease of use and accessibility to make it easier to sign up on the website (Liam Crowter)
- The Committee recommends that a short and to the point Beginners guide be created that is easy to understand as soon as new people join (AJ Francis, will be worked on with DPP in the future)
- The Committee would like the League to aid in publicizing and making our “culture” more accessible. Providing more context of the games given by announcers (ie standings, rivalries, interesting tidbits about the game, former players, former coaches) to make it more immersive to the first time viewer and pull them in. (AJ Francis)
- The best interest of the league in my opinion would be to err on the side of doing too few games as opposed to delaying the regular season to add these games at all, referring to the Rookie Showcase.
“The amount of work and research the Committee put into this was extensive and well-thought out, when the mass majority of the league would not have devoted the time or energy to put their heads together on critical issues and places of improvement around our landscape,” Irvine said. “I commend the Committee for taking stands for what they believe in and ensuring that the league is in caring and protective hands.”
The league will be developing the Beginners Guide in the off-season after a new league staff position – Assistant Director of Player Personnel – is filled. The SFL production team is working on a five-part video series that will simply and concisely explain different elements of the league to further help newcomers understand our model of simulation. The first part of that five-part series will be ready prior to the playoffs, and the shortened version of that – at the recommendation of the Committee – will be played during the Front Page broadcasts in the playoffs, as other parts to the series are developed. The SFL will work with its beat writing team to establish a dedicated column to rookie interviews to improve engagement and will continue to work with the broadcast teams to create an immersive atmosphere within the game calls.
The Committee also worked with the league to re-align the committee back to its original purpose, which is to make ultimate decisions on time-sensitive material presented, rather than be tasked to think-tank ideas not yet fully developed and address that in Topic A of the second document shared below.
The Competition Committee serves those who elected them, and the different sectors of the league they represent, and therefore are transparent about all conversations that take place and proposals and documents as they were voted on. Thus, why documents are shared in the form they were voted on. Full conversations from start to finish of these tasks will be posted at a later date, upon request for full transcripts, as they are pages in length.