Qualifying for CMP in the future

I am creating a new thread to discuss ideas for a new qualification system for the FRC Championship, because the thread discussing Bill’s post focuses mostly on field / pit layout.


As Bill says in his blog, eventually there will not be enough spots in the Championship to qualify six teams from every regional and 18 more from Michigan.

From the blog:
“This summer we’re going to be taking a long hard look at the future of Championship (CMP). At the current rate of growth for FRC, we are going to face a space crunch at CMP in a few years. Consider this. At each regional, six teams earn a space at CMP (the winning alliance, the Engineering Inspiration winner, the Chairman’s Award winner and the Rookie All Star team). This year we had 48 regionals. Add eighteen teams from the Michigan State CMP (When the District pilot began, the State CMP replaced three Regional events.) and you get a total of 306 teams. 352 teams competed this year. Not every team who qualifies to come to CMP can make it, so there are always a few empty slots, but as we continue to add new regionals each year, we are eventually going to run out of room. In the short run, there will be fewer and fewer spaces for non-qualifying teams at CMP. In the long run, we’re going to have to figure out a new system for determining which teams come to CMP.”


I know no one will like this but I say that competing teams should be those who win the Regionals and Rookie All-Star and then everyone else gets in the the MSC qualfying system. Chairman’s and EI go but do not compete unless they qualify by points or win a regional, otherwise they would just compete just as Website and Visualization teams do if they weren’t invited to CMP in the current format.

How about a second round of qualification for RCA, EI, and RAS? Sure, you won at your regional, but not every regional winner will be a real competitor at the Championship. I hate to leave people out, but it’s not the worst short-term solution I can think of. Michigan is already underrepresented (much, much larger than 2009, but still only 18 qualifiers).

Eventually, this could very well lead to a full two-stage qualification system (Regional Competition -> Regional Championship -> CMP).

I think they should increase the amount of teams that make it in Michigan. The number was based on the 3 regionals they had in 2008, but due to growth in Michigan they probably could have 4 regionals and thus more teams should get invited.

A points system based on performance along with awards (basically, the Michigan system) would be perfect.

a RCA doesn’t entitle you to a championship entry. your robot has to perform remotly well to qualify.
winning a regional as a 3rd alliance partner on the #1 alliance at a small regional won’t qualify you for championship
backing into a rookie all star because your the only rookie at the event won’t get you a spot at championship

… but of course, FIRST won’t fly with it. this program isn’t about the robots.

Well if we go that route: Regional Competitions > do a West Championship, Midwest Championship, Northeast Championship, Southeast Championship > all winners + finalists get into Worlds then RCA(From regional championships, dont have a specific number), RAS(from each regional competition), and EI(From regional championships, dont have a specific number) get to compete then MSC qualifying system for the rest.

(Based on Basel’s post)

*Or the extra slots could be given by best overall record

What about Hall of Fame teams? Shouldn’t they get an automatic invite?
How about the previous year’s champions?
Regarding the EI and RCA winners - wouldn’t those teams represent the ideals of FIRST - building inspirational teams and machines through the use of science and technology?
This is a tough one. It’s a good thing we’ve got a lot of smart people thinking about it.
Also, when we start splitting up into regions, we’ve got to remember - this isn’t Nationals. This is The World.

It’d be a shame if it came down to it, but they could always just not qualify the 3rd robot on the winning alliance.

If that ended up being the case, why do 3v3 then? Why not just go back to 2v2? Would you wanna be that 3rd team on the winning alliance?

Unfortunately, he’s right. There’s no way you could do that. Suddenly, it matters so much more which team the 8th alliance picks first! Going back to the 2v2 would be even more terrible. Each team would only get 2/3 of the matches they get now!

Folks seem to be fixated on the “six or seven teams” part than the “per regional” part. Who says every event has to be a regional?

I know we compete at two events because we ALWAYS do better at our second event. It’s happened every single season 2815’s competed in FRC*.

*Okay, so it was hard to improve on regional champion this season…but even then, we ran better in qualification rounds at Palmetto.

If FIRST were to stage some more district-esque second-tier events, even without a formalized district system in an area, it might be able to reduce the number of regionals required to meet the needs of teams. It might be difficult to convert smaller/weaker existing regionals to these events, especially events in the Middle of Nowhere, but it would reduce the number of Championship slots needed.

I would be in favor of not qualifying the 3rd robot from the winning alliance.

  1. It would not create awkward situations like they have in FTC where the top pick might decline so they can be a captain and have a better chance at qualifying.
  2. I think the #10-16 picks would be happy enough to play in elims and have a chance at a banner.
  3. There is some awkwardness with the #8 and #9 picks since they are essentially equally seeded. One could argue in favor of allowing all three teams to qualify in cases when the #8 seed wins the event.
  4. This move would increase the competitive level of the average team at the Championship.

It would be nice to see a Championship that was more competitive on average during qualifiers than MSC. Accomplishing that while appropriately recognizing and inspiring the RCA / EI / RAS award winners is an interesting challenge.

If you guys want to not qualify the 3rd member of the winning alliance, how would you know if they didnt get a steal and majorly helped that alliance to win? In Florida our alliance picked 744 as our 3rd pick and we got a STEAL. Their minibot got us 30 points every match. Now if we had won because a good number of our matches had 30pts because of that minibot, how could you deny them a slot at CMP?

personally, i would prefer that nationals be about having the 350 most competitive robots in the world there. i realize this would exclude many teams (mine included) but i think that the level of competition there would be even more insane than it has been ever.

I personally always thought that it should be regional winners and then the top OPR teams going but since that would never in a million years get the OK, you have to come up with other ways to get the good teams in.

Not by record. Team A could be a high tier team, and get really unlucky with their schedule, giving them a 12-7-1 record across 2 regionals.

Team B could be a middle tier team with not as tough matches, and end up with a 14-4-2 record.

According to this, Team B should “move on” because they are the “better” team.

It may not happen when many teams have near perfect or perfect records, but when looking between 2 teams that are close to the cut, that schedule could make a difference.

This is a fair argument. I’m not saying that 2 teams qualifying is ideal, but if you’re limited on the number of teams you can send, this is where I’d probably start cutting spots. And most times you’ll end up with a #1 or #2 alliance winning, and you’re looking at a winning alliance that potentially consists of the 1st, 2nd, and 24th best robots in the competition. Makes a lot of sense to me to qualify the 1st and 2nd best and call it a day.

While I’m at it, I suppose I’ll examine the other slots:

Rookie Allstar: I would suggest not qualifying RAS teams. But keep the award around.

Chairman’s Award: I’d send all of these teams. I feel happy sending a Chairman’s Award winning team to the CMP even if their robot is awful, and I think most of them have fairly competitive robots anyway.

Engineering Inspiration: Similar feelings to RCA award.

If RCA winners were not given an automatic invitation to the Championship, and the award were to be judged like the website award:

A large part of the determination of the Chairman’s Award is the presentation. If some teams didn’t qualify based on points, they might be unable to send a small delegation of members to St. Louis to make the presentation, and thus would be out of the running for the award unless some major changes were made to the judging process. That’s why I don’t think that that change will happen.

Come to think of it, there is probably already some policy set in place for teams who win an RCA but cannot attend the Championship. I don’t know what it would be - does anyone know if one exists, and if so, what it is?

In MI, winning a district no longer guarantees you a spot at States. However, each team is guaranteed two events. If the same exact point system was applied to the entire program, there would be problems. If the rankings were based off of one event, I think that there would be several ties for spots. Additionally, not all teams have the funding or ability to attend more than one event.

FIRST has a huge problem on their hands, and they know it. There are a lot of "what if"s and "on the other hand"s, and in the end there will be some tough decisions to make. I look forward to seeing what they make out of the situation.

Assume that FIRST wants each team to at least have the opportunity to experience the Championship every 3-4 years. (So that students could go at least once while they are in high school.) This is basically the system they have now.

How do they do that with 2500 teams? 3000? 4000?

I know this is way way outside the box. Two events. One West coast, one East coast/Midwest.

Does it lessen any goals of the program? Not really. There are a ton of reasons why something like this might not be feasible. But it’s an option.

what if they ran 2 championship events, one starting on friday, and going to tuesday, one going from wednessday, and going to saturday. in the same venue. then, the top alliances from every division over both matches face off on Einstein. which will have extensive tv coverage. they would need a smaller venue. so they would be more flexible, a smaller venue would also cost less. and if this were the case, i think that many more of the top rate robots would make it.