Thursday May 6th, 2021

2020 Conference USSSA Questions and Answers


Link to the 1st part of the Conference Q&A on Facebook

Link to the 2nd part of the Conference Q&A on Facebook


There were about 45 to 50 directors, players, manufacturers, and sponsors at the Conference meeting at the USSSA Convention Thursday, November 21st.

Labor Day Weekend is later in September now so Conference Championship, Womens Major, and Mens 'A' Worlds are the weekend before Labor Day Weekend.  Men's Conference Championship will be played on the baseball fields in the back of Space Coast Complex.

In 2020 players can go into their USSSA account and sign a waiver once for the whole season and it will be good for every team they play on.

Also in 2020 teams can add a player to a team and they are automatically on the team but have 48 hours to login and deny the roster add.  In Conference players will be added by me (DW) and the players will have 48 hours to deny the add.

Q: When is the Conference Information Package going to be available?
Answer: The Conference Information Package will be out within a week of the convention which ended Thursday, November 21st.

What happens to the PR value in 2020 for 2019 Higher level players that played on lower level teams?
Answer: If the player is not an NCC bump tagged player and the committee doesn't tag the player at the higher class then the PR value for the player will equal what team he was on in 2019.  The Conference however does not use the PR value.

The safety bag for 1st base.
Answer: There is a lot of support for the safety bag but there was no vote allowed.

Should there be a handshake line after the game?
Answer: There was a unanimous vote to eliminate the handshake line at Conference tournaments.  Umpires will pregame this rule with each team at Conference events.

If the floating rubber is not used at the highest levels, why continue to have this rule in place for the lower levels?
Answer:  This question was tabled until the Slowpitch meeting because it isn't a Conference question and then it was forgotten about.

I've been told moving the pitcher rubber back is too expensive to do nationwide but is there support for the 53 foot pitching rubber?
Answer:  There was ZERO support for even looking into the possibility of moving the pitching rubber back to 53 feet.  Not a single person raised their hand in support of looking into a 53 foot pitching rubber.

What is the uniform rule for coaches?
Answer: For 2020 Conference teams must wear matching hats, uniforms tucked in, matching sox if you wear high sox, and coaches must match.  Either all coaches need uniform pants, kackies, or coaches shorts but they all must match and look professional.  No shorts for Conference players.  Womens teams must have matching headgear including bandanas, bows, and hats.

Can we require pitchers to wear masks in conference play?
Answer: No.  Legally there are no standards for pitching helmets although standards may be coming in the future.

Is the the new 44 375 Dudley Pro-M ball here to stay and is going to be used outside of Viera as well?
Answer: Yes, the Pro-M ball will be used for Conference and the ball will be available to the public around 6/1/2020.

Can the Conference Championships be the last chance tournament for regular season points?
Answer: No, its too close in days for teams to be able to decide whether to go to the Major.  So the 17th seed for the Major will now be given to the highest non qualified conference team at the Last Chance Major in Columbus, Ohio.

Will merging teams of the same class automatically be bumped up or give a TBD class?
Answer: Two teams that merge from the same class will start the season "TBD" – To be determined

What is the possibility of having mens slowpitch Worlds in October further away from hurricane season?
Answer: Hurricane season goes until November 30th and sponsors can't afford to add another month to the schedule.

Should there be a limit of (2) mound visits per game?
Answer: The current rule is 4 visits per team per game.  There was no support for lowering that number.

Is there a better bat testing technique or procedure available? Current testers are fickle at best, week to week. 
Answer: The new bat testing company is creating a more accurate tester but it may not be used until 2021.  The more accurate the testers the more expensive they get.  So you have to weigh expense and accuracy.

Should the Conference Umpires be paid more?
Answer: Conference Umpires received a raise last year.

Classification Committee:  Someone suggested one representative per state that hosts a conference event.  There is no need for a classification made up partly of players, coaches, etc with skin in the game?
Answer: There will be an all new classification committee in 2020.  It will be 100% anonymous.  This is because last year there were a number of 'AA' and 'A' teams that were incredibly unprofessional when they didn't get the mid and late season player adds they wanted.  They then called, texted, and emailed committee members at all hours of the day and night.  Then people and players around their team blasted the committee members on social media.  The number of committee members and their names will not be known to anyone.

Will the Conference ever go to set guidelines (points, etc) to build teams??
Answer: Pre-Season points for each classification and having at most 3 higher level players are guidelines before the season.  In season points are just a maximum.  Zero point teams could be classified 'AA' if they have too many 'AA' players for instance or their performance warrants it.  A 3 point team with 6 AA players probably isn't an 'A' team.  'B' teams with a bunch of 'A' players probably isn't a 'B' team.

Are there any new ideas on forfeits?
Answer: There were no new ideas on what to do about forfeits but there is a code of conduct that all participants will sign.

Are there any new ideas on tampering?
Answer: There were no new ideas or solutions for tampering but the Conference said "It will not be tolerated in 2020".

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