Martin and I spent the better part of our drive back from High Point talking about the ultimate Hall of Fame. Ultimate provides some unique challenges when it comes to figuring out who deserves to be enshrined. Martin and I came up with three big reasons people get inducted into various Sport Halls of Fame: 1) Championships 2) Crazy Big Stats 3) Changed the way the game was played at a particular position/dominated his position for an era. We pretty much know who was on the various Championship teams, so I think it will be an easy argument to get the top players from those teams into the Hall. The question of how you justify putting players in the Hall who weren’t on those top teams is more problematic. At this point ultimate has virtually zero recorded stats. Individual teams keep stats, but you can’t really use those as justification – there’s a big problem with knowing how good the data is from team to team. Beyond that, I question how meaningful the stats we keep really are. In terms of dominating a position for an era – that’s also a tough one. Ultimate really only has two positions at this point – handler and cutter.
In Atlanta we could only come up with one man (there’s probably a few women) who seemed like an obvious Hall of Famer – Stu Downs (if you’re reading sorry to make you the poster boy Stuart). We ran into a problem when we started to come up with a really strong argument to justify what seemed like our common sense view that Stu belongs in the hall. 1) He’s never won a championship. (Begin aside – Stu was on the Keg Workers when they won worlds, but there’s the question of whether that should count or not. This is especially true if you want to make the eligibility rule something like “a player becomes eligible for the Hall of Fame beginning five years after his final season in open/women’s.” If the eligibility rules view Masters as a game akin to Tennis’s Legends series it seems weird to give a player credit for a championship in that division - end aside).. Of course, he was able to get to natties numerous times and that should definitely count for something. 2) We don’t have any stats. 3) Maybe you could say Stu dominated the game at a specific position. He’s still one of the best middle middles around.
Another question we had was – could a player be eligible for the Hall purely based on what he/she did in the mixed division?
Anyway kind of a fun topic, if anybody has any thought let’s hear them.