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Coaching Youth Fooball - Football Plays
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Saugussoftball

What To Do About Absentee Players

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What a difference a year makes! Last year I have the greatest team a coach could ask for. I guess "the other shoe had to drop"! This year's team is such a struggle and a dissapointment.I've had girls who have only showed up to 1/2 a practice, or not show at all. No call, no e-mail no excuse other than a shrugged shoulder. Parents drop late and pick up up to an hour after practice has ended. These girls are in 5th and 6th grade so I won't leave them abandonned at the field.

The ones who seldom come to practice expect to play their full innings AND to start every game. This is mostly the 6th graders who will be moving up to the next level feel they have somehow earned this priviledge.

Tonight, the night before playing the #1 team, I had 7 girls show and 4 were 5th (of my 5 th's) the others were the ones who are my neediest. Everyone of the "stars" were no shows. I am so angry, I feel like quitting. I may just NOT show up for the game and give them all "the shrugged shoulder" right back.

Rules are that everyone bats and evryone plays a minimum of 3 innings in the field. My thoughts are put them all at the end of the batting order and sit them all. We could win against this team, but I really don't want to let them get away with this. I am open to an honest excuse, but this is not the first time this has happened.

Any thoughts. They're still just kids and it's up to the parents to get them practices, but it's up to the kids to check their e-mails. (I don't phone them, I'm way too busy) :angry::angry::angry::angry::angry::angry::angry:

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Coaching Youth Fooball - Football Plays

Update: As I said, I'm open to an honest excuse........One girl's grandfather dies over Memorial Day Wkend, another had a stomach bug, one had finals and two were at a Track meet (regional conference) One of my "always comes to practice" pitchers had pretty bad "lower right pain and her parents thought it may be appendix....................so

Mea Culpa..I apologize for my grouchy-whine!

We tied the #1 team last night, short handed and with my starting pitcher being pulled for "crow-hopping" in the 1st inning. So I guess they're not so rotten after all!

-------------------- :blink:

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This is a little late for you, but it may help you next year with this problem. When I took over coaching my two softball teams, I made it Very clear with a discussion with my players and a note home to the parents.... skipped practices or games without an excuse will result in being benched the next game. Basically I will accept most excuses - as long as the player lets me know. In the case of an emergency or illness...they must let me know why they weren't there by the next practice. Forgetting a practice is Not an acceptable excuse. The girls all have schedules, calendars, and clocks. My first year, I had to make the dreaded phone call to three parents - two of them immediately said... oh no, it's not the childs fault - it's my fault...I forgot they had practice. At which point you need to take a deep breath...count to ten....and calmly explain that No, the player is responsible for remembering practice. This year I had to make one phone call - and the parent was totally supportive and even took off work early to drive the girl to the out of town game - knowing that she was going to be benched...but also knowing that having to sit there and watch her team would ensure that this player never forgot practice again. I have had many parents of the girls who do practice hard and attend every practice and game possible say to me....Thank you for doing this! As a parent, it was very hard for me to explain to my daughters - who went to every practice - why the kids that skipped practice to go to the pool were getting to play an equal amount of time as those who were sweating it out on the field. Good Luck.... hope this helps you in the future!

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Even in Pop Warner, where there are minimum play rules, my Father-in-law was able to lay down rules as far as attendance for about the same age group that you are working with. He did this in the parent meeting at the beginning of each year. The rules were very specific as far as number of missed practices (excused and unexcused) and the consequence that is enforced for the different situations. He rarely had a problem ~ when he did, he enforced the rules he set.

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