How Good of a Predictor Are Virtual Meets? 4A Boys

William Chandler and his senior teammates at Durango proved remarkably constant through last fall's cross country campaign. Photo by Alan Versaw.

We continue here in the series examining how good preseason meets are at predicting state meet placement. The test case here will be 4A Boys for 2015. For an introduction to the assumptions and methodology involved, please check out the lead article in the series.

4A Boys 2015 Virtual Meet Team Scoring as a Predictor of State Finish

Here is what the preseason virtual meet from last year showed for 4A Boys:

Championship Meet - 78 Teams Team Scores
1Durango High School585671822--
2Palmer Ridge High School1331019234041--
3Cheyenne Mountain High School15889354660--
4Classical Academy, The2031172434127--
5Evergreen High School2111220325889--
6Mountain View High School2471538507173--
7Battle Mountain High School28014395770100--
8Thompson Valley High School29531668102106--
9Silver Creek High School39731657586140--
10Air Academy High School41541327182189--
11Falcon High School472516777133144--
12Fort Morgan High School474484963153161--

And then, this would be the actual order of finish for the top 12 teams at state:

1Durango High School735+10+14+19+25 (33+35)0:40 1-5 Split | 16:43 Avg
2Palmer Ridge High School7511+12+13+18+21 (71+120)0:21 1-5 Split | 16:46 Avg
3Battle Mountain High School1738+30+34+41+60 (64+66)1:17 1-5 Split | 17:18 Avg
4Classical Academy, The1751+31+39+51+53 (67+132)1:51 1-5 Split | 17:12 Avg
5Air Academy High School2059+23+40+61+72 (103+127)1:28 1-5 Split | 17:24 Avg
6Evergreen High School2307+28+54+59+82 (112+123)1:49 1-5 Split | 17:29 Avg
7Mountain View High School23216+44+49+58+65 (141+157)1:02 1-5 Split | 17:32 Avg
8Thompson Valley High School2626+20+55+83+98 (133+151)2:01 1-5 Split | 17:35 Avg
9Widefield High School2803+27+36+86+128 (131+165)2:40 1-5 Split | 17:34 Avg
10Centaurus High School28524+46+47+74+94 (146+160)1:20 1-5 Split | 17:45 Avg
11Cheyenne Mountain High School29215+42+56+79+100 (106+125)1:44 1-5 Split | 17:45 Avg
12Golden High School3402+45+81+105+107 (109+149)2:42 1-5 Split | 17:47 Avg

Preliminary Assessment

The top two teams were projected correctly by the virtual meet, though not the closeness of their eventual finish. In all nine of the actual top 12 teams were included in the virtual meet, though there was generally a fit bit of scrambling of the order between projection and actual. Notable upward moves between projection and actual were negotiated by Air Academy, Battle Mountain, and Widefield. Cheyenne Mountain was the most noteworthy slide from the preseason projection. Other teams tended to stay closer to projected order of finish.

Neither injuries nor incoming freshmen can be credibly cited as doing much to disturb the order in this case.

In all, the virtual meet was a good predictor of eventual finish, but the correlation was not as strong as what we saw with 3A Boys.

The 2016 4A Boys Preseason Virtual Meet Scoring