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CHAPTER 11

Averages and Handicaps

AVERAGES

A bowling average is computed to indicate the approximate ability of the bowler. It is commonly utilized in the formation of leagues, bowling tournaments and other forms of organized competition. Averages are also used when computing handicaps and in ranking or grouping individuals by ability. A bowler's average is based on the total number of pins scored and the total number of games rolled.

TO COMPUTE A BOWLERS AVERAGE:

ADD together the total scores of all games rolled by the individual.

DIVIDE this figure by the total number of games rolled.

THE RESULT IS THE AVERAGE OF THE INDIVIDUAL (NOTE: Averages are only shown in whole numbers.

No fractions or pins left over are shown. Any pins remaining after the whole number are dropped from the average to be shown. Do not round averages to the next highest number.)

EXAMPLE OF AVERAGE COMPUTATION: in league Susan has rolled nine games competition Her scores are: 137; 142; 165; 174; 117; 181; 147; 133 and 151.

FIRST ADD ALL SCORES:

137

142

165

174

117

181

147

133

151

TOTAL PINS 1347 NEXT DIVIDE BY NUMBER OF GAMES: (9 The result would be 149.6 or six pins over the basic average of 149. The six pins would be dropped from the computation, leaving Susan with a posted average of 149.

This figure available to persons would enable them to figure that Susan would roll scores between 139 159 approximately 70% of the time with 15%. of her scores being below 139 and 15% above 159. Exceptions to these percentages would be new bowlers who are practicing to improve and established bowlers who no longer bowl as much as before.

HANDICAPS

Bowling handicaps are score allowances that are given to teams and individuals to permit them to compete on an equal basis. Handicaps are computed based on the individual and/or team average(s) and are usually a percentage of the difference between the true average and a pre-determined figure.

Several different methods of determining handicaps are in use throughout the country but the two most popular methods are called the "INDIVIDUAL" and "TEAM" systems.

The individual method is the most common method utilized as it allows leagues and tournaments to award handicap prizes, trophies or other compensation to individuals without requiring additional administrative workloads to determine these special winners. Additionally, it gives all or most of the individuals competing a handicap thereby starting all participants from the same basis.

The individual handicap is figured from a Pre-determined average. This average is normally 10 pins or more above the highest average the group expects to have entering or engaging in their competition. This pre-determined figure is called the "SCRATCH" score. Any person entering who has an average at or above this score would receive no handicap and would be called a "scratch bowler". Popular figures that are in use are 180, 190, 200 and 210. Additionally, a pre-determined percentage figure would be established to apply in handicap. .:computation.

To compute an individual handicap, the average of the individual would be subtracted from the scratch figure. The percentage factor would then be computed. the result would be the individuals handicap for each game rolled. When figuring handicaps,,,• all fractions or pins left over after the whole number are dropped from the compUtation Handicaps are not rounded to the next higher number.

An example would be

SCRATCH SCORE:

SUSAN's AVERAGE: 149

DIFFERENCE(true) 31

PERCENTAGE FACTOR 80%

PRODUCT answer) 24.8

SUSAN'sHANDICAP 24 (allowance given each game)

In team competition Susan's handicap would be added to the handicaps of all her teammates. This sum would be the team handicap for each game of competition. For individual awards, Susan's handicap could be added to each game as well as total score she rolled for determination of awards.

The same method could be Utilized for team competition but the scratch score would be determined on team total averages rather than individual averages.

The easiest team handicap method utilized does not use a scratch score but rather the total averages of the competing teams. The averages of members of opposing teams are added to determine the team average. The lower team average is subtracted from the higher team average. The percentage factor is then applied to the difference in team averages. The lower average team is the only team receiving a handicap. THE TEAM HANDICAP METHOD CAN ONLY BE USED IN LEAGUE COMPETITION WHERE TEAMS DIRECTLY OPPOSE EACH OTHER. IT CANNOT BE USED IN TOURNAMENT COMPETITION UNLESS IT IS AN ELIMINATION TOURNAMENT.

An example of team handicap is TEAM "A" TOTAL AVG. 865

TEAM "B" TOTAL AVG 715

DIFFERENCE IN AVG

150

PERCENTAGE FACTOR PRODUCT BOX

120 TEAM HANDICAP PER GAME

Any fractions remaining after the whole number would again be dropped. Team handicaps also are not rounded to the next highest number.

There are variations of the two basic system that may be used but their use is normally specialized and for some special reason so are not in popular use.

Studies conducted in the past show that even a handicap of 100% does not always give even competition with the higher average bowlers winning a larger percentage of the time. It has been determined that the true percentage for absolute equality should be someplace above 100% but has never been (to my knowledge utilized in actual competition. Whatever handicap method is utilized, it should be remembered that

THE HIGHER THE PERCENTAGE FACTOR THE CLOSER THE COMPETITION,

THE SCRATCH SCORE SHOULD ALWAYS BE ABOVE THE HIGHEST AVERAGE IN THE COMPETITION,

NEGATIVE HANDICAPS SHOULD NEVER BE USED.

HANDICAPS ARE NEVER ROUNDED TO THE HIGHEST WHOLE NUMBER.

Another method for calculating a handicap is based on 200. the formula is

200 - average = handicap

Thus, 200-150 = 50, a handicap of 50

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