Opening Pull: 2022 Youth & College Guidelines, MKBHD On ESPN

Plus, obligatory Wordle news.

Opening Pull is Ultiworld’s weekly wrap-up of the previous week in ultimate, available both here on the site and as an email newsletter. We’ve gathered the news you need to know and highlights you need to see. Check back weekly or subscribe now to receive Opening Pull in your inbox along with a rundown of the previous week’s content on Ultiworld.

2022 Youth and College Guidelines Released by USAU

As competition begins to pick up in the new year, USA Ultimate has released updated guidelines for the upcoming seasons for both College and Youth divisions.

Two weeks after announcing that the start of the official college regular season will be delayed until late February, USAU released another update on the spring competition with the main headline being that the governing body will not use any rankings this spring to allocate postseason bids. While bids from Conferences to Regionals will be based purely on the number of teams signing up for the Series, there is not yet any final determination on how Nationals bids will be allocated. Additionally, the window of weekends to host Conference championship tournaments has been expanded to provide more flexibility to organizers.

For the Youth Club Championships, there were a number of minor administrative updates aimed at increasing participation and gender equity. The minimum roster size for YCCs is increasing from 12 to 14, local organizers applying to send multiple boys’ teams to the tournament must also apply to send a girls’ or mixed team as well, and the U20 Mixed division is adopting the WFDF Rule A (prescribed gender ratio) and prescribed gender pulling.

WATCH: MKBHD Talks Ultimate on ESPN Short

In a five-minute feature on ESPN’s YouTube channel, the Worldwide Leader talks extensively about Marques Brownlee’s dual career as a YouTuber and semi-professional ultimate player, with additional interviews from coaches Eileen Murray, Anthony Nuñez, and Bryan Jones.

MKBHD ESPN clip

Universe Point Cease Cleat Production

After five years in business, Universe Point is halting production on their line of ultimate-focused cleats. Citing cost increases associated with pandemic-influenced supply chain issues, the company announced the decision to get out of the athletic footwear business on Instagram earlier today. According to UP’s Ed Sisson, the Universe Point brand will continue to live on and they are considering other as-yet-unknown opportunities in the future.

New York Times Buys Wordle from Ultimate Developer

The daily word puzzle that has taken the internet — and a sizeable portion of the Ultiworld staff — by storm over the past couple of months has been purchased from creator Josh Wardle for a price “in the low seven figures.” Wardle — along with his partner Palak Shah, for whom he created the game during the pandemic — both have ties to the ultimate community, having played on elite Bay Area mixed squads, the Polar Bears and Blackbird.

Brand Refresh for Dallas AUDL Franchise

Like two previous former AUDL champions, the Dallas Roughnecks are no more. With a new ownership group came a rebrand for the Dallas franchise, now known as Legion, employing lion and sword imagery with a black and yellow color scheme.

Legion Tweet

Coming Up

  • As part of their 2022 Coach & Organizer Convention, USA Ultimate is hosting a free Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion virtual session on Monday, February 7 at 6:30 Eastern.
  • Early college competition rolls on with several top men’s programs headed to the Southeast for Florida Warmup.
  1. Steve Sullivan
    Steve Sullivan

    Steve Sullivan is the Executive Editor of Ultiworld. He began playing in 2001 at Boston University, helped found and then played 14 seasons with Slow White, and most recently competed with San Francisco Blackbird. He has volunteered as a college Sectional Coordinator, a club Regional Coordinator, served three terms as a player-elected representative for the Mixed division on USAU's Club Working Group, and is currently an At-Large rep on the USAU Board of Directors. He has previously written for the USAU magazine and The Huddle, and was editor of the book "Ultimate: The First Five Decades, Vol II." You can reach him by email (steve@ultiworld.com) or on Twitter (@sjsully21).

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