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AFLW: The Farce of the Conference System

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What are your thoughts on the conference system and how do they fix it?

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The AFL: over-complicating simple ideas since 1990. 

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I might be a simple man but believe in a simple fix. 10 teams. 9 games and a final four. Extend season by one or two weeks. NO more teams for a year or two as talent is not there.

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I was scratching my head when they listed 2 'conferences,' only to find we played teams in both.

What exactly is the point of them?

Why are they called conferences?

I always thought a conference was a company sponsored junket where, if you made an appearance, it was only at the bar.

Dumb name for a  botched competition

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Daisy was spot on with her ‘gimmicky tournament’ comment all those months ago. The season should have been extended after the introduction of two new teams. Everyone plays each other once and be done. Can’t imagine what will happen next year when more teams come in. 

The AFLW doesn’t need to compete with the mens game, it needs to become the most popular female competition in the country and this isn’t the way the AFL should be going about growing the game in my opinion. The players sacrifice a lot for a 7 week season in the hottest month of the year. 

Our Demons have been very enjoyable to watch this season, probably more so than the previous two and we as fans should be peeved if we miss finals due to this botched system.

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Scrap it and just play the top teams.

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They have botched the two groups,  Given the system they chose it seems odd it has happened.  Basically One pool is dominating the other pool, look at the percentage between the two.  So the opposition in the GF will be a weak team by default.  

Though Freo has been a surprise, stye only just pipped  us, reckon if we played them week 2 or 3 we would have beaten them.  We always seem to start slow.  North I haven't seen but they seem to have joined very strong?

 

 

 

 

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'Optics' be damned!!

I'm sure the AFL ran many fixtures until they got what they wanted ie 7 games (that would help the AFL's 'favourite' teams; the big Melb clubs, Pies and Blues).  So, fake Conferences were born and they then found weasel words to justify them.  I say 'fake' because 'real' conferences do not have 'crossover' games.  The concept of 'crossover' games may be 'innovative' but makes no sense. 

The AFL compounded the problem by having one very strong conference (A) and a weak one (B). 

I believe it is no coincidence that Pies and Blues are in the weaker B.  Note:  Blues play only one of the two prior premiers (both in Conf A) and Pies play neither while other Conf B teams play both.  The cynic in me thinks this is tailor made for them to make the finals - the old story:  good for tv ratings!!  If either team does make the finals the AFL can really start worrying about the 'optics' as those finals are bound to be scrappy, one-sided affairs.

What about Home Ground for finals?  With the current ladder Freo would play Blues and because Blues are on top of the Conf B ladder they would be the Home team.  Enormous disadvantage for Freo, especially as they will most likely have to come back to the east cost for the GF.

If the AFL focus on what is good for the game and developing a worthwhile competition the 'optics' will take care of themselves and there will be no need to be 'innovative'.

Edited by Lucifer's Hero
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Everyone could see from the get-go that it was a terrible idea, even if they managed to guess well enough to make even conferences - and yes, it would be a guess! It's nigh on impossible to know who will rise and fall from season to season, with expansion teams, the rate of improvement, the significant movement between clubs, the immediate influence of draftees. Having said that, they sure did make some weird choices based on teams' standings in the first 2 seasons.

Regardless, it's not a true competition if all teams don't play each other once. It just isn't.

The number 1 thing the AFL can do to improve the standard is to give teams the chance to play together for as many games as possible.

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Nicole Livingstone say the ladders will sort themselves out because there are a lot more in-conference games coming up.  https://www.theage.com.au/sport/afl/aflw-boss-calls-for-patience-on-conference-system-20190219-p50ypm.htm  That is true but it doesn't man the top teams in conf B will rise above the lower teams in conf A. 

Conf B teams need to win a lot of games to bridge the W/L gap with conf A.  Equally as important they need to win by big margins to bridge the %'age gap with Conf A. 

I fully expect the combined ladder at end of rnd 7 will be much the same as now ie top conf B teams will be below most if not all the conf A teams.  Livingstone is just delaying the day of reckoning and praying for some miracles.  Time will tell...

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Don't let me get started on this stupid idea.

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1 hour ago, Lucifer's Hero said:

Nicole Livingstone say the ladders will sort themselves out because there are a lot more in-conference games coming up. 

We all know the ladders mean nothing in the current system where 4 or more of the best teams are in one conference...

The ladders might look better but the lopsided finals will tell the true picture.

No matter how much she tries to SPIN it, it is an epic stuff up...

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They use conferences in America because they have like 30 teams in the competition... AFLW has 10.

Gill is just in love with american sports and has dollar signs in his eyes. We aren't America, lets have our own style and systems based on what Australian's want.

How do we vote this guy out? Surely as members we can have a say in who runs the AFL?

Make AFL great again!

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Is it possible that the AFL did this on purpose so as to confuse us re their next move?

Edited by chookrat
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Plough Wallace was onto this a couple of weeks back on SEN. Gave the AFL a right spray.

His solution was for the AFL to admit their mistake and have cross over semis - ie the team that finishes top on each conference plays the team that finished second in the other. Seems logical, easy to do, fair and would require no logistical changes. 

As he pointed out the conference B teams would still get their chance to make the GF - and would do if good enough. But in all likelihood neither would win, leaving the A sides to play off. Either way the GF has the two top sides. Simples.

Edited by binman
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 I  believe it was a trial for doing this in the mens game. It looked terrible this year for the woman buut mainly as new teams came in that were powerful straight away and made grading difficult. Gil, for all his faults would like to make the draw more equitable in the mens game. Im behind that. if conferences is the way to get there then so be it. 

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19 minutes ago, binman said:

Plough Wallace was onto this a couple of weeks back on SEN. Gave the AFL a right spray.

His solution was for the AFL to admit their mistake and have cross over semis - ie the team that finishes top on each conference plays the team that finished second in the other. Seems logical, easy to do, fair and would require no logistical changes. 

As he pointed out the conference B teams would still get their chance to make the GF - and would do if good enough. But in all likelihood neither would win, leaving the A sides to play off. Either way the GF has the two top sides. Simples.

Sounds like Plough has misunderstood as the solution he proposes is what is proposed hence the problem.  The problem is on a 10 team ladder the top two teams of Conf B are below most or all of the Conf A teams so two bad teams would play in the finals dislodging two better teams. 

The solution is for the AFL to admit their mistake and to combine the ladder for the two conferences so the 4 best teams play in the finals regardless of which team.  

Imagine the outcry if teams 9 and 10 with inferior W/L and inferior percentages played in AFL finals over teams finishing 7 and 8. 

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19 minutes ago, Lucifer's Hero said:

 

Sounds like Plough has misunderstood as the solution he proposes is what is proposed hence the problem.  The problem is on a 10 team ladder the top two teams of Conf B are below most or all of the Conf A teams so two bad teams would play in the finals dislodging two better teams. 

The solution is for the AFL to admit their mistake and to combine the ladder for the two conferences so the 4 best teams play in the finals regardless of which team.  

Imagine the outcry if teams 9 and 10 with inferior W/L and inferior percentages played in AFL finals over teams finishing 7 and 8. 

I think Plough is right on this. If you finish third in your conference then you dont deserve the right to think about hypotheticals that you dont get to play a grand final because there are at least two teams that finished the regular season above you in your own conference. The farce we have now is that you could be the second top team in wins and percentage yet miss out on finals to Carlton with a win rate of 1/3 and percentage below 80%. The crossover finap would mean that Carlton would need to beat the second team in Conference A to play GF. 

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34 minutes ago, Wells 11 said:

 I  believe it was a trial for doing this in the mens game. It looked terrible this year for the woman buut mainly as new teams came in that were powerful straight away and made grading difficult. Gil, for all his faults would like to make the draw more equitable in the mens game. Im behind that. if conferences is the way to get there then so be it. 

All they've proved is that conferences are just as, if not more inequitable than the current mens system...the only way for an almost truly equitable system would be to play each team twice & that's not going to happen. Danger would have a fit.

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1 hour ago, Lucifer's Hero said:

 

Sounds like Plough has misunderstood as the solution he proposes is what is proposed hence the problem.  The problem is on a 10 team ladder the top two teams of Conf B are below most or all of the Conf A teams so two bad teams would play in the finals dislodging two better teams. 

The solution is for the AFL to admit their mistake and to combine the ladder for the two conferences so the 4 best teams play in the finals regardless of which team.  

Imagine the outcry if teams 9 and 10 with inferior W/L and inferior percentages played in AFL finals over teams finishing 7 and 8. 

No, it must be me who is confused.You're right the system i proposed is what will happen. I'll try and find the audio and see what Plough's fix was

Edited by binman
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51 minutes ago, rjay said:

All they've proved is that conferences are just as, if not more inequitable than the current mens system...the only way for an almost truly equitable system would be to play each team twice & that's not going to happen. Danger would have a fit.

In the AFL the real solution is each team play's each other only once. it is the only fair system. Sure it means much fewer games but there you go.

They could expand the finals system potentially to offset (a bit) the issue of reduced games. Perhaps have a wildcard. 

But that's not going to happen with the AFL's thirst or TV revenue

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1 hour ago, chookrat said:

I think Plough is right on this. If you finish third in your conference then you dont deserve the right to think about hypotheticals that you dont get to play a grand final because there are at least two teams that finished the regular season above you in your own conference. The farce we have now is that you could be the second top team in wins and percentage yet miss out on finals to Carlton with a win rate of 1/3 and percentage below 80%. The crossover finap would mean that Carlton would need to beat the second team in Conference A to play GF

The issue isn't who plays in the GF, it is who plays in the 2 prelims.  To my mind, the prelims should be based on the 4 best teams overall not who may make it thru to the GF (and the Home Ground advantage should go to the higher placed team overall not the highest placed in each conf). 

imo Carlton/Geelong (as the ladder currently stands) have less right to play in the prelims than any team that finishes above them on W/L and %'age regardless of where the higher teams finished in conf A. 

Will wait and see how it pans out.

Edited by Lucifer's Hero
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16 hours ago, Docs Demons said:

I might be a simple man but believe in a simple fix. 10 teams. 9 games and a final four. Extend season by one or two weeks. NO more teams for a year or two as talent is not there.

Logical more like it.

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52 minutes ago, binman said:

In the AFL the real solution is each team play's each other only once. it is the only fair system. Sure it means much fewer games but there you go.

It could still lead to possible inequities. You could play all the good teams at home and all the weak teams away.

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