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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.


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Unread 11-04-2013, 11:49 AM   #1
big matt
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Default Table of Death

We all know about bad tables and how they can kill your day..well this past weekend in Laughlin,Nv we had very bad table..table #10..their highest score of the day was a 41st in pork,47th in chicken,48th in ribs and a whopping 53rd in brisket!..now I can see a low scoring table on one meat but all 4?..can you imagine getting your score sheet and see you won your table but were 53rd?..are you kidding me would be my thought..that 53rd brisket was cokked by the#3 guy in the country..I'm sorry even on his worst day he doesn't cook 53rd place brisket he just doesn't..also the highest scoring team that hit table 10 was 16th overall..that means if you hit that table you were done no matter how well you did..this folks can kill comp bbq and will send people home really pissed off that stuff like this can actually happen..we all know it's a gamble but with the new data out there something has got to be done to correct this problem and it needs to be done ASAP IMO..yes we hit the table but so did 24 other teams and I'm sure they feel the same way.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 12:27 PM   #2
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Utilizing the judges that you have at a contest in a way that is fair to everyone is one of the biggest challenges that an organizer has.

Currently the only tools at my disposal are previous experience with individual judges,
how many contests they have done, and any info shared with other organizers.

With the new scoring system providing so much more information, I have hopes that
organizers will get some new tools to help sort our judges and create tables that are better balanced. I hope that is not a naive pipe dream!

And judges need the kind of feedback that the teams are now seeing to evaluate their own performance. Just talking among themselves between categories would not have helped the situation you described, since the whole table was down. Not just one or two individual judges. Ways need to be found to communicate this scoring info to the judges
while maintaining the anonymity. There has to be ways to do that.

IMO- it is just as bad to have a "hot " table as it is to have a "cold " table.

More opinion- no matter how good a team is, there can be an occasional bad result.
That is why we have to actually cook the contests, and not award prizes based on team standings. Probably not the case here, though, since that table was consistently
low across all 4 categories.

Very sorry for your experience and your bad luck to land on that table.

Much thanks for sharing the specifics on the Brethren. The info needs to be out there.

To some degree, this is a preventable situation by creating balanced tables using all the
data available.

KCBS, please help us organizers do just that. Help us create a more level playing field
for everyone. So that the winner is actually the best that day, not just who was the luckiest to hit the best tables.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 12:40 PM   #3
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The same thing happened at the (I think) Hendersonville Sam's club regional. There was 1 table that had Swamp boys, Killer B's, and a few other big names who all scored at the bottom of the pack in pork. It effectively killed some team's chances of moving on to the nationals. And I will agree that everyone has a bad day, but not that many teams who cook that well.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 12:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carlyle View Post
Utilizing the judges that you have at a contest in a way that is fair to everyone is one of the biggest challenges that an organizer has.

Currently the only tools at my disposal are previous experience with individual judges,
how many contests they have done, and any info shared with other organizers.

With the new scoring system providing so much more information, I have hopes that
organizers will get some new tools to help sort our judges and create tables that are better balanced. I hope that is not a naive pipe dream!

And judges need the kind of feedback that the teams are now seeing to evaluate their own performance. Just talking among themselves between categories would not have helped the situation you described, since the whole table was down. Not just one or two individual judges. Ways need to be found to communicate this scoring info to the judges
while maintaining the anonymity. There has to be ways to do that.

IMO- it is just as bad to have a "hot " table as it is to have a "cold " table.

More opinion- no matter how good a team is, there can be an occasional bad result.
That is why we have to actually cook the contests, and not award prizes based on team standings. Probably not the case here, though, since that table was consistently
low across all 4 categories.

Very sorry for your experience and your bad luck to land on that table.

Much thanks for sharing the specifics on the Brethren. The info needs to be out there.

To some degree, this is a preventable situation by creating balanced tables using all the
data available.

KCBS, please help us organizers do just that. Help us create a more level playing field
for everyone. So that the winner is actually the best that day, not just who was the luckiest to hit the best tables.
I think you explain it much better than me thanks!..and guys I'm not bitching I feel for all teams that hit that table
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Unread 11-04-2013, 01:26 PM   #5
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I totally agree. These kind of tables will hurt competition BBQ as a whole. I was too, at Hendersonville sam's. I didn't hit table #1 and GC'ed by 12 points. I could have potentially hit that table and not made it to the Nationals. I was fortunate. Good thing that Rub is such a hell of a good cook to be RGC after hitting that table!
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Unread 11-04-2013, 01:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Podge View Post
I totally agree. These kind of tables will hurt competition BBQ as a whole. I was too, at Hendersonville sam's. I didn't hit table #1 and GC'ed by 12 points. I could have potentially hit that table and not made it to the Nationals. I was fortunate. Good thing that Rub is such a hell of a good cook to be RGC after hitting that table!
Same here we have won 3 times since the new data was released and each time we avoided the bad table..but each time we have hit it we've been down in the scoring..and I'm not alone it happenes at every contest..the question is how do we even it out and prevent it from happening?
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Unread 11-04-2013, 02:14 PM   #7
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From a Table Captain and Judge perspective I'd like to address this issue:
1. MOST of the contests that I TC or judge I am NOT assigned a table, just told to go sit at a table.
2. Where I have been told a particular table to go to it is either based on check-in order or based on number of contests judged.
3. Finally, I've been the TC for a "table of death" and I tried almost every entry, and the judges did NOT under score the entries. Sometimes a team has a bad day no matter how good they usually are.

There definitely needs to be more thought to judge placement at tables.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 04:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by big matt View Post
Same here we have won 3 times since the new data was released and each time we avoided the bad table..but each time we have hit it we've been down in the scoring..and I'm not alone it happenes at every contest..the question is how do we even it out and prevent it from happening?
The only way to do it is to have only one judging table. Of course, that's a lot of bbq to be judged by a few people....
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Unread 11-04-2013, 05:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bbq.tom View Post
From a Table Captain and Judge perspective I'd like to address this issue:
1. MOST of the contests that I TC or judge I am NOT assigned a table, just told to go sit at a table.
2. Where I have been told a particular table to go to it is either based on check-in order or based on number of contests judged.
3. Finally, I've been the TC for a "table of death" and I tried almost every entry, and the judges did NOT under score the entries. Sometimes a team has a bad day no matter how good they usually are.

There definitely needs to be more thought to judge placement at tables.
I see your point and thanks for the input..my problem isn't with one meat scoring low I understand that happenes but when a table scores EVERY meat low we have a problem..at this contest there were 85 teams..the highest scores off table 10 were 41st pork,47th chicken,48th ribs and 53rd in brisket.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 05:32 PM   #10
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Maybe IBCA has the right answer, half the entries at a table move to the next level, regardless. Takes longer and more product but it could be the only fair way to judge.

Blazing BBQ was third at the Jack and they cook mostly IBCA, just saying! If we had feedback on our placment in IBCA, I would start cooking them more as I live in the area.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 05:35 PM   #11
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One other possibility is to have two tables judge the same entries. Of course this would necessitate having each team submit 12 samples of each category. Then average the two tables.

Just a thought.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 05:38 PM   #12
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Just post their names, it would bring an end to that crap real quick
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Unread 11-04-2013, 06:52 PM   #13
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There doesn't seem to be a standard manner of seating judges by contest reps/organizers. There are many differing ways of seating judges, i.e., no two people living at the same address at the same table, no drinking buddies at the same table, just take a seat, play musical chairs based on a 20 question game where you raise your hand, sit in an assigned seat at an assigned table, line up by number of contests judged and get an assigned table, etc. When judging, I have experienced all of the above. Which is best? I have a personal opinion having experienced all of the above options, but my opinion doesn't matter. What does matter is that there is consistency across all competitions, and that KCBS put out a standard policy for seating judges that must be followed by all contest reps/organizers.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 07:23 PM   #14
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Actually, with the improvements in data, perhaps what Carlyle suggest will be possible, as judges will now have a track record. Over time, even a year, you will be able to manage table assignments based upon ratings of judges. Not whether they are good or bad, but, by handicap, so to speak. That would actually do wonders for evening out scores and eliminating both hot and cold tables. That would be good, across all aspects.
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Unread 11-04-2013, 07:38 PM   #15
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Quote:
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Actually, with the improvements in data, perhaps what Carlyle suggest will be possible, as judges will now have a track record. Over time, even a year, you will be able to manage table assignments based upon ratings of judges. Not whether they are good or bad, but, by handicap, so to speak. That would actually do wonders for evening out scores and eliminating both hot and cold tables. That would be good, across all aspects.
This sounds right on point to me..bottom line guys is that we all want to be judged fairly and on a level playing field..not sitting there with our fingers crossed and hoping that we don't end up on a terrible table.
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