There are 5 Michigan districts this week and I hope to do a preview for each event, as well as ranking each event. This is Rank 2 for 2023 Week 1, Kettering 1.
Kettering University 1 District
Last Year Winners (27-5460-5538)
Favorites: If there was one event to bet on this week, it would be Kettering University 1. There are two teams I am fairly certain will finish at the top, after qualifications, to become the 1 Seed, and those teams are 33-Killer Bees and 5460-Strike Zone. Starting off with the Killer Bees, Team 33 has been a top team in Michigan for as long as the team has been around. In fact the last time they didn’t win a district event, not counting 2020’s partial season, was 2010. A streak longer than most teams at Kettering 1 have seasons played. Not to mention that last season they won both their district events, and their division at MSC. Then of course right behind them is Strike Zone, 5460 who won last year’s Kettering 1 District, alongside 27-Team RUSH. Plus I imagine Strike Zone is going to go harder than ever in 2023, as the past 2 full seasons have had them finish as Finalist at Fimstein. I would like to think they want to put up a MSC Champion Banner back home to make up for it, and this is their starting point. Now these are far and above the best two teams at Kettering this week, but that doesn’t mean they will have an easy route to the finish, and that starts with Team 1701-RoboCubs. The RoboCubs had a fantastic season last year, that as would have it, was very much influenced by 33. As they would pair up to win the Detroit District in Week 1 of last season. However, the Killer Bees would then send them home in the Finals of Belleville and the Semifinals of MSC. The question will be if they can pair up to make it two week 1s in a row, or fall to mighty black and yellow.
Contenders: Looking at this next group, they should hope to disrupt the favorites or better yet join one if they hope to succeed. At the top of the list, looking to make some noise is team 70-More Martians. Team 70 makes their return to Kettering 1, as they have been scheduled for Kettering 2 for the last two seasons. They should hope to have better luck in the week 1 event due to finishing as Rank 1 in last year’s Kettering 2, but falling just short of the Blue Banner falling to the second seed, led by 3668 who is also attending this week’s event. Next is the home team, 1506-Metal Muscle. Now I will say, I have been out on Metal Muscle for a long time, they have always had superior build quality, but just couldn’t seem to get things rolling in the playoffs. However, last year they proved me wrong, putting together what I would say was their best season in their long history. I hope to see them continue this streak and come out swinging in their home event. Lastly is a team that shows just how competitive this event is, 4130-The Blue Devils. The Blue Devils had a strange season as they finished 5th and 6th in their districts for a solid performance in qualifications, but only managing to get as far as the Semifinals in one of those outings. Then came MSC where they finished at Rank 1 in their division, and sadly had two different invitations declined to join them on the 1 Seed. With this in mind they were overtaken by the 8 Seed, and sent home much earlier than expected. My hope is that they learned from this and put that anger and frustration they must have had into this year’s robot as they hope to return for another shot at the MSC title.
Outside Looking in:
894-The Power Chargers
Playoff Teams to Make a Jump:
5260-Owosso Operating System
1 Seed 33-5460 v 2 Seed 1701-70
Next up is Rank 1, Milford.