#BraggingRights: 3A State

Who’s the best?

We can know who the best is in wrestling. But what parts of the country, or state, are better than another, that’s a little harder to pin down.

Sure, it’s possible to have a gut reaction to the question.

I like the data myself.

So, while we’re in summer mode and posting camp flyers on Facebook pages and (hopefully) getting schedules for the coming year, and all of our records updates are done for 2020-21, and we’re in between big events like Disney and Fargo, we’ve got the time to crunch the numbers to answer the big questions.

What part of Florida is best in 3A?

In terms of the big schools, south Florida has ruled the Sunshine State, led by a pair of dominant teams. While they remained atop Class 3A, what the data tells us is the power is at least shifting, if not already shifted, toward central and west Florida.

We looked at three different measuring sticks. Each measuring stick led to the same conclusion: This past state tournament, under last year’s classification, belonged to Region 2.

There’s the tried-and-true method: which region scored the most points?

Although South Dade and Southwest Miami were 1-2 and a new (or at least new-ish at this level) force in Ft Pierce Central emerged for third, Region 2 teams were fourth through seventh, and the region had enough depth to take top honors.

  • Region 2 (15 scoring teams): 574 points
  • Region 4 (13): 459
  • Region 1 (16): 364
  • Region 3 (11): 304

How about state medals?

The distribution of hardware was perhaps the most even of the three classes at states, but Region 2 had the most finalists, and, as it turned out, the most depth, too.

  • Region 2: 27 medals (6 1st, 8 2nd, 2 3rd, 2 4th, 6 5th, 3 6th).
  • Region 4: 21 medals (5 1st, 3 2nd, 3 3rd, 4 4th, 3 5th, 3 6th).
  • Region 1: 19 medals (1 1st, 2 2nd, 4 3rd, 6 5th, 3 5th, 3 6th).
  • Region 3: 17 medals (2 1st, 1 2nd, 5 3rd, 2 4th, 2 5th, 5 6th).

I also like to look at the depth each region has. One measuring indicator I use is to calculate the depth of each region by compiling the win-loss records of each region’s 56 qualifiers.

And while Region 4 had a decent-sized lead in this category through 132, the gap was closed by the middles and Region 2 finally forged ahead behind powerful efforts by the groups at 182 and 195. Here, too, the distribution of wins was more even than in — by comparison — 1A or 2A.

  • Region 2: 128-93
  • Region 4: 112-99
  • Region 1: 90-107
  • Region 4: 76-107

So there you have it. Yes, Mark Twain said there were three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics, but in this case, the statistics tell no lies. Region 2 held the upper hand, as a group, in 3A state this past year.

We’ll start looking at the regions, one per day over the next 12 (assuming Fargo allows, time-wise), tomorrow.

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