10% of events give 50% of DQs

It’s a tradition to complain about number of cards awarded every year, so I thought I’d pull some data on recent years to see if it’s actually worse this year. All data below includes only regionals and district events.

Year % quals matches with dqs % elims matches with dqs % events with quals dqs % events with elims dqs
2017 5.49% 0.92% 85.2% 14.8%
2018 2.16% 0.48% 59.5% 6.76%
2019 2.25% 1.45% 61.7% 20.4%
2022 2.17% 1.44% 51.9% 19.0%
2023* 2.29% 1.10% 55.2% 10.3%

*As of 3/5/2023, ~3PM PST

Note that quals DQs include no shows as well as cards, and bypasses don’t show up in elims DQs. A couple of interesting stats:

  • Since 2018, 10% of events account for around 50% of all DQs in quals
  • Since 2018, only 50-60% gave DQd teams in quals, but at those events it happened an average of 2.6-2.9 times per event
  • In 2022 and 2019, those same events accounted for 2/3 of elims DQs

Some areas are consistently giving out more DQs than average:

  • NY - above avg in both quals and elims all 5 years, and 3-4x more than expected in elims
  • Israel - 1.5-2x more than expected for both quals and elims, except for 2023
  • VA - 2-3x more than expected in quals, every year except 2023
  • GA - 2-3x more than expected in quals (6x higher in 2018), except 2023
  • NC - 1.5-3x more than expected in quals
  • CA - more than expected in elims, except 2018

Consistently lower than avg: FL, MA, NH, Ontario, Michigan
(Note: excluded states with only one event)

These 3 areas stood out as having at least one event each year with many more quals DQs than expected:

  • 2018gadal - 36, 2018gagai - 9, 2018gacol - 7, 2019gagai - 12, 2019gaalb - 8, 2022gacar - 9
  • 2018vagle - 16, 2019vagle - 13, 2022va305 - 8
  • 2018ncash - 9, 2018ncwin - 6, 2019ncgui - 14, 2019ncwak - 6, 2022ncgre - 8

Without going through and watching a lot of match videos I can’t tell the reasons for DQs, but some thoughts:

  • I think the absurd number of quals DQs in those 3 states are due to no-shows.
  • Data agrees with people’s consistent observations that some events card very aggressively. There’s slight trends for regions (NY, Israel, CA), but it seems more highly tied to the event, and presumably the specific ref(s). It’s possible these events just have more defense, but I’d expect teams to adjust by elims.
  • This has been debated a lot in other threads, but I strongly believe cards are used too often, especially in elims. It may not be higher than average this year, but the effects will be felt more directly with double elims. Video review, or tech fouls / disabling instead of cards, would greatly help team experience.

At the end of the day refs are in control of game play. Like it or not.

FWIW 2017 had a lot of yellow cards for human hands outside the airship in early week(s), these were later ajusted mid comp by HQ, no idea how that reflects in TBA data.

Edit: Also how is “as expected” defined? Just more than average (as noted) or are we looking at actual distributions and comparing measures of central tendency? My guess is if we look at statistical significance we won’t see anything.



I find this odd, given the data. At a rate of 1.1% of Elim matches with DQs, and 15-16 Elim matches per event, that’s one DQ per ~6 events. While it would be great to have no DQs at all, we all know that occasionally things like an impact inside the frame perimeter breaks something and has a significant impact on the game. Unless we want this to become battle bots, I think we need to accept that, at times, cards are warranted.

For reference, Major League Soccer averages 0.16 red cards per game - that’s one for every ~6 games, and is pretty close to the rate we have for events (Elims) in FRC.

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It just means it’s higher than if you distributed the number of DQs across all events equally.

(% of DQs given in the state vs all events) / (% of events in the state vs all events)


The consequences in FRC would be more comparable to those in MLS if the result (in elims) was that a team had to be replaced by a backup team.

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These events were week 2, week 1, week 1 AND a single day event respectively, the DQs are almost exclusively from no-shows who hadn’t passed inspection yet.

I know it may not be the main point of the thread but I do think these examples show that my district could benefit from concerted efforts to check in on teams through build and help get them event ready.


I’d be curious to see a comparison of regionals vs districts. As @pchild said District events have the disadvantage of not having that extra time during practice matches to build and get inspected. Also, You have to consider that Pre-2020 you still had Bag and Tag. As an example: 1771 in 2018 at PCH Dalton missed their first 8 matches, but went on to be on the alliance that won the event. Some teams used their first event for extra out of bag time.

Id also be curious to see if its trending down, since it seems to be with the % of quals matches with DQs.

This is a lot of data, but i don’t think any significance can be pulled from it without data about yellow/red cards.