First of all, what we should be looking at is what his averages were before the 2010-2011 season. If he averaged 195+ in previous years, then averaged 180 for one season and then back up to 195, that will tell more than just coparing last year to this year. Another thing is we are being way too judgmental. Whose to say he bowl at a crap house that had no oil and averaged that 180 and then tried a different house(s) this season and thats why averages went up? OR.......whose to say that he was using some old crappy equipment that was drilled bad and couldnt score but then got with a better pro shop that fixed his equipment and now he is scoring better? OR.....whose to say that he wasnt able to get some coaching in the past and struggled a bit and now he has been able to get some lessons under his belt that has helped him increase his average this year? Lets remember that every house condition is different from center to center across America. I typically "average" 230 on a "house shot". But there was one year I was managing at a local center and decided to bowl in a league there and barely averaged 210. Why you ask? Because that center in the evenings did not strip and re-oil the lanes before league. They just put a 30 foot filler shot over what was left over from the morning oiling which was only 36 feet in length. So needless to say I struggled trying to control the breakpoint. But also, I was not as educated about surface changes and layout changes at the time. High average in the house at the time was 216 by, of all people, the center Manager who was 18mph at release with a 225rpm rev rate.
There are all kinds of reasons why this can happen. We can judge all we want. But the fact remains that all he is doing this year compared to last is making one more spare a game or carrying one more strike. NOW....if he got in at 180 but is now averging 210+, then I could see a reason to think something else is going on. This isnt anything different that doesnt happen to every handicap tournament or even scratch tournaments with multiple average divisions. Welcome to bowling!