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Dealing with the 'Law of Diminishing Returns'


blue32
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A big shout out to Tudor for providing this Forum. I'm loving it. 🙂 

Commissioner William O'Connell, Ed Viggs, and Andrew Slawson, of the Long Island Electric Football League, recently wrote in their League report, "Out of a few hundred (new) bottoms we had five offensive player bases that we would consider average quality. And we had only five player base bottoms that passed the sniff test to be lineman or linebackers..."

The same thing has happened to me for last 50 years. I've thought about this a lot and we're both experiencing the Law of Diminishing Returns. The Law of Diminishing Returns is when a coach is investing more and more money, and more and more time tweaking, and getting fewer and fewer useable players. For example, when a coach builds a team of 20 players the coach will buy 20 new bases and all 20 bases will make the team.

The first draft is 12 new bases and maybe six new bases replace six veteran bases.

The second draft is 12 more new bases and maybe three new bases replace three veteran bases.

The third draft is 12 more new bases and maybe one base replaces one veteran base.

The fourth draft is 12 new bases and none of the veteran bases are replaced.

In the fifth draft the coach buys 24 new bases and two new bases replace two veteran bases.

This is bound to happen because the natural world has limits (like gravity!). What is the strongest a plastic base can become? What is the fastest a plastic base can run?

I try to answer these questions by imagining the strongest and fastest possible player. I call this player X.

X =  (Weight * Velocity)

Many leagues cap player weight at 4 grams. So, X = (4 grams * Velocity)

The motion generator determines the speed and I have a wide receiver who consistently runs 40 inches in 10 seconds, or 4 inches per second (4 ips)

X = (4 grams * 4 ips) = 0.0004064 m kg / s (according to Google.)

What if we increase maximum grams to 5 grams? 0.000508 m kg / s

What if we increase maximum grams to 10 grams? 0.001016 m kg / s

What if we increase maximum grams to 20 grams? 0.002032 m kg / s 🙂 

At some point the natural world will step in and the Law of Diminishing Returns will prevent a reasonable coach from increasing the weight, unless the coach changes the material the base and prongs are made of.

Even though I know this, I keep on buying bases and I keep hoping for that one Gale Sayers. That's the fun of a hobby! 🙂 

I apologize for the length. Thanks for reading. 🙂 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

We did have an interesting rule for the one season we tried CWS (Cumulative Weight System). The team roster was fixed at 36 players, and our fixed weight was 157.5 grams. However, you could have one player at a skill position who was exempt from the Cumulative weight, and could be any weight you wanted. 

One team had a 20g tailback, and I had a 12g outside linebacker. The weight part was interesting, because if you knocked the ball carrier down on a tackle, it was ruled a fumble. On the other hand, if the ball carrier knocked a defender down, the runner could continue to advance. 

I had my 12g LB on a Tudor Pro Line Strong Rookie Base, and put cone-shaped lead sinkers underneath to hit the weight.

Suffice it to say, excess weight does lead to a reduced speed factor, and the bases do not hold their tweak as well. However, stronger plastic does hold up better to higher weights, as you might imagine.  

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On 2/10/2022 at 11:28 AM, NO Dave said:

if you knocked the ball carrier down on a tackle, it was ruled a fumble. On the other hand, if the ball carrier knocked a defender down, the runner could continue to advance. 

This is very interesting! 😃👍

My experimentation has shown that 25 grams is about the limit of the prongs on average Tudor base on my Ultimate field with two motion generators. I've tested other bases that have different plastic and have had somewhat better results.

Here's an interesting discovery: The real beneficiaries of increase weight are Red Peg bases. Red Peg bases tend to be very fast and exceedingly weak. My red pegs, with a plastic player, tend to weight about 3 grams. However, if you increase the weight to 9 grams (about the weight of 2 dice) then they maintain speed, but their strength is better than any other player on my other teams. An excellent example of the true power of momentum. (weight X speed)

Coaches who are experiencing the Law of Diminishing Returns, can unlock new strength potential by shedding the weight restriction. I believe the current trend toward increasing strength by increasing dynamic friction is a dead end because it is cancelling out the momentum created by the motion generator.

I continue to be perplexed by leagues imposing weight limits. 

On 2/10/2022 at 11:28 AM, NO Dave said:

bases do not hold their tweak as well

I haven't experienced this. My experience has been that with increased weight leads to less tweaking. TTC dials and red pegs turn more consistently. I haven't tested a lot of rookie bases.

Thanks for letting me know your experience. I especially like the rule about knocking down ball carriers resulting in fumbles. 😃

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