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czechmatedebate

St. James is dropping out of NFL!

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My coach has recently informed me that St. James will no longer be a member of the NFL. She explained that NFL seems to be nothing more than a money-making scheme. Although, we will continue to compete in the NCFL.

 

I'm wondering how this will affect our district. Also, will this have any negative ramifications for St. James debaters?

Edited by czechmatedebate
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My coach has recently informed me that St. James will no longer be a member of the NFL. She explained that NFL seems to be nothing more than a money-making scheme. Although, we will continue to compete in the NCFL.

 

I'm wondering how this will affect our district. Also, will this have any negative ramifications for St. James debaters?

 

First, this decision may reduce the number of debaters from your NFL district that will be able to qualify for NFL nationals. However, that depends largely on how many of the overall competitors you were contributing. You have to remember though that you will save money in this move which might help you travel more.

 

For your debaters you obviously will not be able to qualify for NFL nationals anymore. Beyond that though, most college debate programs don't care if you were a member of the NFL, they look at all the tournaments a person attends. It should not also considerably change your ability to use debate on a more general college application.

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Its the number of teams.

 

This is somewhat true although the number of schools does have an effect. Schools are limited in the amount of entires they can have, so while each event gets spots based on the number of teams in that event, more schools allows more teams to come usually.

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This is somewhat true although the number of schools does have an effect. Schools are limited in the amount of entires they can have, so while each event gets spots based on the number of teams in that event, more schools allows more teams to come usually.

 

There is also a bonus system (I'm not sure of the exact numbers) which allows districts to send additional teams. For example, Southern MN has qualified 3 teams for the last 5 years even though we normally get 20-25 teams. The bonus is based on how many new membership reports the district accumulates, which are based on NFL points

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Cole that is not the only reasoning we at SJA have a very small budget for debate and paying for NFL does not allow us to go to very many tournaments outside of johnson county or anything. That is the main reason not because it is a scheme we simply just need to save some money and yes NFL is good but not the most important thing for program right now

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Cole alot of schools are dropping out of NFL due to budget problems.

Also watch yourself don't say anything on here you'd regret. alot of people who know you are on here. Myself included

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This came out of nowhere! Didn't St. James have 2 teams in go-rounds (or maybe 1 team in back-to-back go rounds) in NFL policy quals? I'm pretty sure one of them was soph-soph. Your school could really tear it up next year and beyond, I'm surprised of the decision.

 

Aside from St. James, the withdrawal probably hurts other teams as well. A lot of Kansas teams' only shot at national appearence is NFL, and qualification depends on the number of entries. I believe 2 years ago in TTNFL, only 2 qualified because there weren't enough entries even though there were 4 or 5 great teams that could represent KS well. Obviously each coach is entitled to their own opionion, but I don't believe this is a good move. Though South-X makes a good point about traveling to other tournaments, its not like KS teams really have great traveling freedom to go to other big tournaments. Kansas, and three trails in general, has a lot of high calibar teams that deserve to go to national tournaments like NFL. This can only be achieved through membership/entry into the qualifier.

 

I really hope your coach reconsiders the decision, but I still respect their opinion.

 

EDIT: Care to elaborate on why NFL is a money making scheme?

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.

 

EDIT: Care to elaborate on why NFL is a money making scheme?

 

I wouldn't go so far as to call it a scheme, but the NFL is pretty expensive.

 

Each student membership costs $15. Then you pay dues to the local district (which vary). Then you pay for entry fees. Then if you are lucky enough to qualify to nationals you pay (relatively high) entry fees and for your travel to get there. Once you're there, you go to the assembly and every other word is "sponsored by".

 

Then you hear about the NFL selling PFD "topic areas" for about 50k a piece.

 

Contrast this with CFL where the membership dues are $25 per school per year, Vs say about $450 for NFL (plus whatever your local district dues are) for a squad that has 30 novices. CFL puts on a great national tournament with WAY less resources.

 

I know that NFL has a decent website and put out a few print publications, but where does the rest of that $$ go?

Edited by t-money

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NFL has released an annual report in print form to member schools in each of the last two years. It may not be available online. The document contains a chart of income and expenses, and although some of the categories are vague enough to make you wonder what the money is actually spent on, the organization seems to run pretty much on a break-even basis. So, for that matter, does the national tournament itself.

 

That is very small comfort, I suppose, to schools which qualify for the national tournament for the first time only to discover the somewhat staggering costs associated therewith. For schools in a financial bind, this sort of thing can be very, very difficult to justify to administrators. It is disappointing to see up-and-coming programs abandon the organization, but logistically speaking, I can't blame those schools for choosing an organization which offers a national tournament of similar quality at a fraction of the cost.

 

Up until very recently, I thought that the NFL's financial model was going to cause serious problems for the organization as school budgets across the country tightened. However, the balance of evidence suggests that I was wrong. Every time NFL adds a new supplemental event, even at $50 a pop nonrefundable, hundreds of schools fork over the cash to enter it. That sort of thing can make up for a lot of money lost due to the absence of small-school programs. Nor are the national tournament qualifying events shrinking; if a school drops for lack of cash, there's always somebody in line to take their qualifiers' place. The organization has gotten out in front of the problem to an extent by providing assistance for alumni fundraising by qualifying schools--though, again, this is going to be of no comfort to new programs which lack the alums to make this a viable way to attend.

 

Bottom line: it seems like NFL has found a revenue model that works for them, and as long as programs are willing to keep forking over the dough for Storytelling entries, lapel pins, and honor cords, I can't imagine them changing it. The organization itself increasingly seems oriented towards marketing itself as honoring and supporting educators as opposed to competitors, and the national tournament and accompanying awards ceremonies reflect that in a massive way. That may alienate some of us, but the continuing health of NFL Nationals proves that the market for it is very substantial. CFL is very much competitor-oriented--it has no reason not to be--and will hence serve as the alternative for many less-well-financed programs.

Edited by STADB9

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NFL has released an annual report in print form to member schools in each of the last two years. It may not be available online. The document contains a chart of income and expenses, and although some of the categories are vague enough to make you wonder what the money is actually spent on, the organization seems to run pretty much on a break-even basis. So, for that matter, does the national tournament itself.

 

I'd love to see that, I'm curious to know that their net income is from membership dues. I'm going to search the interwebs for it.

 

I'm not anti-NFL at all. I do think that they do a lot of good things. I'm just not convinced that the debate/forensics community wants or needs a lot of what they do. I don't think it's wrong to question where the $ goes. I'm not in any way saying that they don't mean well or that there is some sort of corruption going on.

 

I know that there are a few schools in KS that have a nightmare scenario in terms of the finances of NFL membership: Low budgets, and high numbers of novices. One school in particular had about 90 novice members ($1350 membership dues, if you're scoring at home) but their budget is only in the 5-8k range (per year). That is an absurdly high percentage of a school's debate/forensics budget going out and not near as much value coming back.

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It's cool. I understand what you're saying and I spend a lot of time saying many of the same things. I think I understand NFL's rationale better now, and it's not as suicidal as I once thought; that doesn't mean it's the direction I'd prefer they take.

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One school in particular had about 90 novice members ($1350 membership dues, if you're scoring at home) but their budget is only in the 5-8k range (per year). That is an absurdly high percentage of a school's debate/forensics budget going out and not near as much value coming back.

 

The answer to that problem is to have the students buy their membership. Its what we do and it is never a problem. The people that stay in the program always join.

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The answer to that problem is to have the students buy their membership. Its what we do and it is never a problem. The people that stay in the program always join.

Yeah, we didn't pay for our NFL membership, but we (that is, our parents) did chip in significantly for registration and hotel costs at most tournaments. There are always ways to defray costs.

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