Youth sports can be kind of funny. Football is king when it comes to high school in our small town of < 5000 people. But at the youth level, we can't find enough coaches for our 4 team 3rd-4th grade flag league, yet we have more than enough volunteers for the 8 team baseball league for the same age group. Maybe it's because football is more difficult to coach than baseball because the type of teamwork is different. We only have flag football available through 4th grade and then the kids play tackle football, soccer, or fall travel baseball or nothing. This year we only have about 6 4th graders and the rest of the league is 3rd graders. With the drop in average age, we also lost the experienced coaches. I've always been willing to be one of the assistant cat herders, but have no desire to be the head coach. This year I went from being a parent, to an assistant coach on another team, to head coach of my own team in the course of 2 days just because nobody else would do it and I did not want the league to only have 3 teams instead of 4. We now have 3 new coaches this year.
Our league has a 4-5 day football camp/tryout where all the coaches run the players through drills and evaluate the players before holding a draft. The coaches get together and designate the better players as QBs so that each team gets at least one player capable of playing QB. The teams are drafted relatively equally since all the coaches get to evaluate all the players for 5 days. My son was one of the designated QBs and then I drafted the best available players who for the most part my son was already friends with and ended up with a pretty decent team. Usually the dad's of the best players get together as coaches to sort of stack their teams, but due to lack of experienced/willing coaches, that did not happen this year. 2 of the teams, including mine did not have assistant coaches before the draft. I got lucky to get a couple other dads to be part time assistants to help out, including an experienced coach whose son decided not to play tackle and came back to flag after the draft was over. He told the league that he would help coach and that he knew me better than the other coach without an assistant, so I got his son, who happens to be the best athlete in the age group, without going through the draft. Some people think we stacked our team, but other than the one kid, it was all done through the draft. If I wasn't comitted to giving all the kids chances to handle the ball, we could score a whole lot with the kids we ended up with. I just feel good that our least talented kid scored a TD in the first game of the year, even though some of the better kids have not scored yet.
All of our local youth leagues have made the decisions to be rec leagues that play for the fun of it instead of truly competitive leagues. All the local youth leagues therefore redraft teams every year. Some people don't like this and take their more talented kids to other towns to play more competitive sports or play in travel leagues. Others like the rec league because it gives the younger or lesser talented kids an easier entry into a sport. To each his own. In my case, my son is probably one of the above average kids who could hold his own in any league. I sometimes wish our league were more competitive (fewer clueless kids), but we chose to play in our town becuase we don't want to travel and all his friends play here.
The FlushMember Since 21 Sep 2009
Offline Last Active Oct 25 2011 05:28 AM
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