The average number of teams at regionals around here is 57, and the inaugural year of Rocket City Regional had 51 teams. Will there be more spots added to the Memphis Regional when unrestricted registration opens on October 31? Also, how many more teams that are on the waitlist for the Memphis Regional will get in?
So when is the final call for late registering rookies and unregistered veterans to get into an event before they open all the remaining spots up to wait list teams? Im guessing this event will have 40-50 teams. A reasonable amount it can handle in its first year.
Depends on teams in the area. In CA there will be movement for teams this coming week (my team is switching waitlisted events to get an invitation). If you look up local teams on TBA and notice a lot of them are not registered for any event, then those are the teams the RDs are in contact with.
Generally there is a 5-10 team reserve capacity for regional events to allow for those teams. Once all have been sorted they begin sending waitlist invitations.
Unless you know someone on the regional planning committee who has numbers, you should assume the team capacity.
Collierville HS is huge (almost 2,400 students) so they probably have the gym capacity to host a very large event like a 50 team regional. This is a wealthy suburb of Memphis (median family income is $106,000) and the HS is highly rated (#12 in Tennessee) so they have the money for excellent facilities.
Being a ~2400 student school in a wealthy area does not guarantee you the ability to host 50 teams. I’d caution that there are very very few high schools that could successfully host a 50 team event. 50 team events need 50 pits. At a nominal 10x10 pit size, that’s 5000 square feet of pits, not counting the aisles, pit admin, spare parts, inspection or the practice field. 5000 square feet is the full size of a basketball floor, and once again there’s still tons of overhead required beyond that just for the pits. Even if you crammed the pits down to 8x8 (something teams would not enjoy very much), that’s still 3200 sq feet of team pits alone. With 50 teams also come 50 teams worth of spectators as well, which can be pretty demanding in terms of bleacher seating (and double so if they don’t extend all the bleachers in order to fit more pits around the field area). You basically have to put the pits in a nieghboring area (aux gym, cafeteria, or large foyer) to the gym instead of having them in the main gym itself. And if you use the cafeteria, you have to find a new location for everyone to eat lunch.
To put this simply, there’s a reason that district events (which are often housed in high school gyms) are capped at 40 teams.
See SenorZ’s post above. Their main gym has 24 rows of seats along each side, easily capacity to seat their whole student body. That’s enough for even a 50 team event. Plus, as the same source points out, they have three gyms, which means you have the two auxiliary gyms for pit space, which is plenty even at 10x10 pits. As I said to begin with, this is a very wealthy and highly rated school that has no problems pouring money into facilities, which they have. I’m from Memphis originally and still have family there, so the nature of this school wasn’t exactly unknown to me.
By the way, teams may not like 8x8 pits, but they’ve been used more than once here in NC District when smaller high schools have hosted. We usually limit our district events to 32 teams because most of the host schools (and it’s almost always high schools here, except for the NCDCMP which is at a Campbell Univ) don’t have the capacity for larger events, since there are very few that are the size of a school like Collierville. Even my own school, in a very wealthy district (Chapel Hill-Carrboro) is only 1600 students and has a mere two gyms. The events pretty much have to be at high schools though, because arenas and colleges are tied up that time of year with basketball and you just don’t mess with basketball season in NC.
I am glad to see the addition of a regional in TN since I know a lot of TN, AL, and KY teams were looking for other event options. But being such a small event and in a high school makes me wonder if this is a step towards TN being in districts? Or if a high school was just the only venue option available on short notice.
Tennessee and the southern states besides Georgia, Texas, and Florida are still a long way from moving to districts. Youth robotics, including Vex and FTC, is not as big around here as in other states. Even if Tennessee, Kentucky, Alabama, and Mississippi banned to gather to create a district like the New England states did, we would still have fewer teams them Georgia. So until we get more teams started, they last more than a year or two, Tennessee and other southern states are still a long way from having a district.
The ones here in NC use the secondary gym for pit space. Basically a high school can only host an event if they have two gyms with robot access between them. The cafeterias are usually given over to team break/lunch space, which is also needed since many of them aren’t necessarily near other sources of food. At 32 teams, most secondary gyms in high schools can hold pit spaces, practice field, pit admin, and robot inspection areas, though sometimes they can get a little cramped.
I have seen, on one memorable occasion, a single high school gym hosting a 40-team FRC regional. Yes, ONE gym room. At a high school. (CA schools tend to put their extra basketball courts etc. outside instead of inside, because it doesn’t rain as much out here.)
It was cramped, and there wasn’t enough bleacher room by a long shot, but it did happen. It helped that the gym was a double-wide or possibly triple-wide (that is, space for 2 or 3 courts side-by-side and NOT across the main court).
After that I think folks basically said “uh… two gyms. Or else.”