I like a handicap system where it is based on the difference of the 2 teams averages. Then for the end of the year awards, you have a handicap system in place so people can win awards that aren't scratch.
I bowl in a league that uses this type of handicap system. The handicap is 100% of 235, which is the book average of the highest average bowler in the league. I didn't understand the concept when they first started, but see now it's benefit. As GP states, when 2 teams bowl each other, the team with the lower team average gets that difference in pins, as team handicap.
This past monday, my team bowled a team with a slightly higher team average 936 versus 896, giving us 40 pins team handicap a game. We happened to win all 4 because we were able to match the other team scratch. But the week before, we had to give opposing team 150 pins, resulting in losing all 4 games, because our 5 bowlers could not bowl over our averages to make up the difference.
In this league, the higher average teams do not have an advantage and the 3 years this has been in effect, the lower average teams end up winning 1st place. The higher average teams end up in the middle of the pack. This is a 32 team league and the bowlers keep coming back because it's about as fair as you can get.
As I mentioned in a previous post, I do believe you could come up with a handicapping systems for tournaments, with individual bowlers, and am open to the idea