May 27, 2009

Pickleball News by Dick Manasseri

Want-Ads that Work

Marilyn Holladay responded to one of the Want-Ads in the last Pickleball News. She has volunteered to contribute to and publish Pickleball News going forward. Thank you Marilyn!

One of Marilyn first articles is on USAPA Rankings – see below. You can contact Marilyn at

Speaking of Want-Ads...


Rochester Pickleball Program Organizers/Teachers/ Mentors

We have an opportunity to support a program in Rochester for Family Pickleball on the weekends starting in the Fall, as well as, an Intramural program for Grades 6-8. More details will follow shortly.

If you would like to volunteer to be part of the Teacher/Mentor Corps associated with these programs, please contact me at . Your support will allow us to reach dozens of new players of all ages via these programs.

Macomb Township Pickleball Mentor for Special Needs Adults

Macomb Township Recreation Center is seeking a Pickleball Mentor, willing to volunteer one hour a week, to lead a Pickleball session for adults with special needs. Contact Michelle Duda at .

Action Required This Week

The deadline for registering for the MSO Pickleball events is next Monday June 1st. Please finalize you partner picks and get your registration forms in on time.

Check the MSO Players List to see who still needs a partner

USAPA Member, Jeanne Rinehart, has done an outstanding job involving hours of phone calls and email contacts to get us partnered up. Thanks Jeanne. One last time

Questions? Contact MSO Pickleball Co-Directors
Michelle Pozan --
Krystee Dorland -

Action Recommended Soon

It’s also time to take action and register for:

Auburn Hills Senior Service Skills Clinic with Lewis Forrest – June 6
This clinic is limited to 16 players, so register early.

Auburn Hills Summer Smash – June 14
The variety of summer programs offered by RARA Rochester, Troy, Auburn Hills, Royal Oak, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Macomb Twp, Livonia, Ann Arbor, Oxford, Detroit, Ypsilanti, Madison Heights, Southfield, Marysville, etc. Contact your local Recreation Center to support their efforts.

Pickleball Goodies! - New Option for Local Paddles Purchases

USAPA Member Tom Valentine’s Pickleball Goodies is now open for business as our first local distributor selling various models from all four paddle manufacturers: Pro-Lite, Pickleball Inc., SType, and Spike.

Tom will bring the shopping experience to you where you play in SE Michigan so that you can see and try the various options. Prices start at $36 and Tom is offering USAPA Members a 6% discount. Buy Michigan!

Special thanks to Paul Shellburg and Arlene Stec who, at different times, have volunteered to manage the Courtesy Paddle Purchase Program that has provided paddles to hundreds while we waited for a local distributor like Pickleball Goodies.

Great Lakes Regional Tournament August 26-30th

The Bloomfield Hills Recreation Department has agreed to host our first Great Lakes Regional Tournament at the Bloomfield Hills Middle School. This USAPA sanctioned (Tier 3) Showcase event will be a celebration of the remarkable growth of Pickleball in our Region with Divisions and formats to attract players of all ages and skill levels. There will be two Senior Divisions, one for competitive players and one for recreational players plus a Junior Division. There will also be an Open Division where players of all ages can register by rating (3.0 – 5.0). The details, including the registration form, should be available in the next edition of Pickleball News.

Spicy Pickle-Ball Kalamazoo Doubles Tournament - Ready to Go!

Congratulations to USAPA Ambassadors Melissa Muha and Bob Northrop for providing 61 players from across Michigan with a great day of "Pure Michigan" Play.

What is this USAPA Rankings Business All About? – Marilyn Holladay

In sports, we often hear about teams or individuals being the top ranked or fifth ranked in their sport in the nation. We assume this means they are the best or the fifth best at what they do at this point in the season. But … how is this determined. It is usually not from all teams/individuals competing head-to-head in the same tournament. Therefore, the organization governing that sport needs to set up criteria for ranking. This usually involves taking into account who the competition has been, not just the number of wins and losses, and often also involves the margin of victory or defeat.

How does this apply to us as Pickleball players? USAPA sanctions certain tournaments. There are four tiers with Tier 1 being national tournaments, Tier 2 large regional tournaments, Tier 3 tournaments are similar to the numbers we have seen at MSO, and Tier 4 are the smaller tournaments but still must have at least 40 entries. New tournaments are usually Tier 4 until they become established.

Basically, points are awarded for finishing 1st, 2nd or 3rd with more points awarded for larger tournaments. For example, if you finished first in a national tournament:1500 points for Tier 1, 900 for Tier 2, 600 for Tier 3, and 400 for Tier 4. This should reflect the fact that the winner had to play more matches against tougher opponents. The MSO is USAPA-sanctioned at Tier 3. The June 14th Summer Smash in Auburn Hills is USAPA-sanctioned at Tier 4.

These rankings MAY be used to seed a tournament. What is seeding? It is designed to organize brackets in such a way that the best teams/individuals end up in the finals. There is always the possibility of upsets as in any sport. If seeding is used for a Pickleball tournament, the top-ranked player will begin play against the lowest-ranked player. The USAPA tournament software allows for seeding in this way or random seeding.

At this point in the development of USAPA, many players are not ranked. Are you?
Go to and look for your name and the name of your friends.

For example, checkout the Ranking Point for Women in 2009 60+ Doubles

Do you see any names you recognize?

Important note: You have to be an USAPA member to get ranking points. One more good reason to join!!!!

USAPA Membership

Five reasons to join now:
  • Discounts on paddles from Pickleball Goodies
  • Discounted registration on future Showcase Events
  • Ranking Points for 1st, 2nd, 3rd place by age group in the MSO and the Auburn Hills Summer Smash
  • Participation in the Regional Tournament August 26th-30th for Competitive and Recreational Seniors, Open and Junior players
  • Really cool T-shirt

It’s easy!

Thanks for your continuing support,
Dick Manasseri
USAPA Director
Ambassador Program
National/International Relations