I've got a general philosophy question and real world examples.
Is it worth having kids compete if they won't qualify for state? I'm thinking of an example where kids have to hit a certain standard to get into state in lieu of qualifying at a sectional meet - so instead of being top 6 at a sectional meet each school can have 2 kids per event if they hit a time standard - say 11:00 for 2 miles.
Is it worth it to run a kid that can't hit the standard? Is just a waste of everyone's time?
What about if you have a kid that isn't near qualifying for state going into sectional (i.e. a freshman ranked 18th in the 800m and top 6 go to state)? Would it make sense to even run them at the sectional meet?
I ask this because I've got two head coaches (one for indoor, one for outdoor) that seem to think it's a waste to run kids that won't qualify. For example, last year outdoors at sectionals the team only ran 4 boys at sectionals even though 20-25 had competed during the year. The rest just weren't close to qualifying.
Indoors this year the head coach won't allow my middle school kids to compete with the HS unless A) they are at or near the qualifying time and B) they run a time trial for him in practice. This is despite the fact I have shown him results of my kids in races, offered to pay their entry fees in the HS meets, and be responsible for them at the meets. There are only a couple of indoor meets for middle school kids, so it will help them to get more racing experience even if they don't qualify for state (even though I know some of them would). It's not as if having MS kids run up would impact the HS kids at all - they only have 4 boys on the HS team despite having over 1,000 kids at the school.
So am I crazy for thinking it's best to have kids compete and get experience even if they ultimately won't qualify for the next round of competition?