The high school season has ended and you have filmed your high school state championships, or the competition in which you achieved the qualifying score. What comes next?
It's now time to submit your application to the National Interscholastic Swimming Coaches Association (NISCA) in consideration for High School All-American.
Sounds pretty simple doesn’t it. But not so fast my friends, it’s not as easy as it seems. If it were, the committee that reviews the applications and DVD’s would not have so many disqualifications. The vast majority of these DQ’s are not the result of a bad dive, but errors made when applying. After all that had work and training, it would be a shame to be disqualified for a technicality, but it happens every year.
In an effort to at the very least, reduce the number applications that get rejected, here are many of the most common errors made by divers, parents and their coaches.
Now I don’t mean to say that some of the DVDs submitted are not any good, but simply that a few of those submitted contain no video, or are unrecognizable by either a DVD player or computer!
The unfortunate aspect of this problem is that there are divers who go through the process of submitting an application, paying the fee, and then are disqualified because no one can see their dives, regardless of how well they performed.
The bottom line here is that the diver, the coach, or the parent is responsible for submitting a DVD that works. Review the DVD before submission, and make sure that the disc is in good working condition and can be viewed on different DVD players.
With over 500 applications submitted, there are always problems, but many of these are incredibly simple to correct just by following three simple rules:
- Submit a completed application.
- Include the application fee.
- Include the DVD.
Seems simple, but there are always a small number of divers that forget one of these three important items!
Dive and Score Sheet Problems
- Correct Score Sheet - Make sure that the score sheet that you include is for the competition that is on the DVD. Including a score sheet from a regional or sectional championship, and footage from the state championship, will result in an immediate DQ.
- Missing A Dive – If you forget to include a dive on the video, you’re chances of making All-American drop like a rock. Why … the missed dive counts as a failed dive. Since all of the submissions are judged like a real diving meet, if the diver does not complete the dive (aka – the dive is missing), it is failed. Now this is not to say that if a diver receives a fail dive they won’t be selected. If 2009 National High School Champion Kristian Ipsen missed a dive, I feel certain he would have made the top 130. But you would not enter a real competition knowing that you only get 10 dives and the rest of the field gets 11, so check your DVD and make sure all 11 dives are included!
- Missing A Dive Part II - If you miss a dive during the competition, chances are that someone else has that dive on tape. It is worth the time to ask other individuals who have taped the contest if they have the footage you need. It is also a good idea to film the entire contest, remember, it is easier to remove footage than try to add it in at a later date!
- Matching the Diving Order – If you do a dive out of order during a meet, it is a fail dive. Again, this is a fairly simple rule and any diver can expect the same result with their application as they would in a competition. Check your diving sheet and make sure that the dives on the DVD are in the same order as those on your score sheet.
These are just a few of the problems that seem to plague the applications that are submitted to for All-American consideration, and every one of these can be corrected by making sure that you have included each of the three items needed, and reviewing your DVD before it is sent.