The fields at Fools this weekend were the muddiest I've played on in a long time. I've noticed that some college tournaments this year were cancelled or shortened due to wet fields. What's it going to be like in the future?
In the _old_ days, it was a badge of honor that we played through any kind of conditions, and field-trashing was considered kinda cool. Maybe it's still this way, and it's my perspective that changed, but there's no way that any respectable field should let teams play in conditions like it was on Saturday and Sunday. Most of the fields had standing water on them and quickly turned into mudpits. The Open finals field, which was probably the best field left, had a several-inches deep puddle obscuring the back 15 yards of one corner of the (fortunately upwind) end zone.
At least we've progressed enough to delay games due to lightning, owing to that unfortunate accidents 11 years ago.
So, how many field-trashings have been so severe as to cause permanent field loss for the ultimate community? I know of two great local sites lost due to (other teams) playing in bad conditions. PADA lost Tinicum and had to pay $10K (is this correct) in damages back in 1998. I heard that the UCSD team got into real trouble for sending teams to unauthorized sites after their own site (and backup) got cancelled due to rain at this year's President's Day tournament (or some CA college team at some college tournament). Anyone want to add to this list?
It will take a few years, but players have to get used to the idea that a tournament CAN GET CANCELLED on the day of the tournament. Perhaps this means that there will be fewer national tournaments (where the hell are these college kids getting all the money to travel, anyway? And shouldn't they be studying? Why, in _my_ day, we had things a lot tougher, I'll tell you.), but that's the way it's going to have to be. Tournament directors have to treat the fields as if they own them. Even on the local level, teams have to have a sense of ownership of the fields if that's what's necessary to treat them with respect.