Author Topic: Participation rules  (Read 681 times)

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PlayFair01

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Participation rules
« on: September 21, 2019, 07:53:06 pm »
I realize this us an unpopular opinion, likely not shared by many, but maybe I will be surprsed.  I also know things will never change without action so here goes.  Is anyone else frustrated by the participation rules? It seems that some coaches, maybe it is just ours, are using the kickoffs as the way to get all of the players on a team their required plays.  Our team has consistently used kickoffs to get 6 to 9 of the required plays, meaning our boys see between 2 and 5 live action plays.  I would love to hear the argument where kids are expected to improve when they only see the field a handful of times.  These are young boys that just want to learn to play a game and many are not getting the opportunity.  I understand that many teams are super competitive and I understand that if you want more playing time then get better, but how can you get better without seeing the field.  I would like to see if there is any support to adjusting the participation rules to allow kids to actually be able to play the game they love and if so how would one go about challenging the status quo.  Maybe I'm the only one that feels this way, curious how others feel.  Thank you.

A concerned parent

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CoachEmUp"

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2019, 10:05:47 pm »
I think you have a right to question participation rules and you can always email the infc your concerns and maybe they change it in the future. Kids get better in practice especially grades that have 2 hour practices 3 times a week. Some kids just donít give it there all or could be unruly. I will agree some kids are great at practice and just not the same talent level as others. And some times they get clumped in with others and get the minimum plays and that sucks. I would say itís always best to go to your coach and ask why your child is getting the minimum plays and what you can do for your child to participate more. Itís hard to be mad at a coach when they donít set the participation rules. And abide by those rules. My word of advice would be to call your coach and ask what can you do for your kid to get more plays. That goes a long way!
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baller25

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #2 on: September 22, 2019, 08:51:34 am »
every school needs to have a primary team with all stud players and a secondary team with new/limited ability players who play in the AA division against each other.  that is a decision that must be made by the local school athletic program directors, but most won't do it out of some idiotic "perception" that they'll be seen as weak.  some schools already do this whether they admit it or not, but i say good on them either way.

competitive youth baseball divides up players and teams by their abilities into A (least ability), AA, AAA, and majors (stud ability) divisions.  it solves several problems.  it ensures that kids don't get buried on teams like you are describing.  and it ensures that they'll get to play, and play against kids with similar abilities.  it keeps coaches from being forced to play players that aren't of similar ability.  it keeps parents happy because they play.

but it will never happen unless infc and local athletic directors agree to do it this way.  parents too.  but infc can't even build a usable website so don't hold your breath
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footballmom31

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #3 on: September 22, 2019, 11:21:48 am »
I recently had to have this exact topic with my coach. Being a parent with multiple children in multiple sports I combat this the most with football, for whatever reason. So I know your frustrations. I agree with coachemup, express your concerns with your coach and you do always have the INFC to refer to as well.
However I believe the minimum play count should be increased. I recently did the stats on this since football people speak numbers.

You have a team of 20 players, minimum play count is 7. There are on average 70+ plays per game. So if your child participates in 7-10 plays thatís less than a 10% participation in the game. Which those 7 plays are mostly kick-offs and not true action plays. Each coach is different on how they ďhideĒ their weaker players so to speak. And that is my issue.

The fundamentals to a team are only being as strong as your weakest link. With that being said in my opinion coaches should be working twice as hard to bring those ďsubparĒ players up and find a true purpose for them on their team. Not find a way to hide them and only let them participate in what they HAVE to.

Itís a hard balance to find, and because football has the lowest minimum participation rules compared to any other sport my kids play in you see these children not being coached and ďhiddenĒ instead. Which in turn reduces the amount of children and parents that want to participate in the game.


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BB_984

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2019, 12:07:28 pm »
I tend to agree with @baller25. In our area, our youth football leaders determined for safety reasons, it was better to go with two teams with 20+ players, versus three with 15. I really believe if we had promoted we were going to have a developmental team in the AA league/division, we would have additional players signup and would have had three teams. This would have allowed some of the players needing more development, currently on the A level teams, a chance to move to this squad, where they would have received the same level of coaching, improve their skill sets, and likely could have had a chance at starting. Another thing, not that football isnít dangerous at any age, it gets increasingly more so the higher the grade level. Iíve witnessed hits and tackles this year, that I remember back when I was in high school several moons ago. The physical capabilities and strength of these kids is amazing, so the coaches have to be cognizant of that a well when they are substituting players. I would also contend that kickoffs and kickoff returns can be extremely violent and are earned positions on our team. Iím not disagreeing with the original poster, Iím just saying there is much that goes into decisions made by the coaches.

HoneyBadger1

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2019, 12:17:36 pm »
My opinion Iíve never known a child to get better in game time situation only. A game only last hour half, but 4 days of practice for 2 hours a day thatís where a child can get better. My thing is when kids hit 8th grade there is no participation rule so what are you really teaching kids? That since momma/daddy paid money you have to play. Competitive baseball players have to tryout to make the team, so once they make the team itís all for sure they will play. Because most coaches arenít taking no more than 10 kids on a competitive baseball team as well as in basketball. One thing I explain to my parents I will promise every kid will get 7 plays but every play after that is earned.

baller25

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #6 on: September 22, 2019, 05:56:02 pm »
they won't get better in game time situation only but that's why we play.  to play in games.   kids lose interest if they don't get to play.  i don't fault any coach for playing new/limited ability kids to the minimum plays, those are the rules, might as well apply them. 

my argument is that this is a systemic issue and we are pretending that football at this level is a rec type sport when in fact it is as competitive as it can get.  yes competitive baseball teams have tryouts.  football at this level especially in infc should be tryout based.  new/limited ability kids should have a rec type league or a division within infc with rec type teams, which is supposedly what the AA division is.  but these local athletic directors force multiple A division teams within the same school because their egos won't let them have AA level teams.  changing this will have to come from a huge movement to do so by parents and coaches.

or we can just keep being naive and pretending that the 55 lb kid that is a foot shorter than everyone is on the same equal playing field as the 120 lb kid that is as big as an adult, and then we can just keep saying "oh but he just needs to work harder in practice"
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Coach12

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #7 on: September 22, 2019, 06:08:00 pm »
I know no one will like my rebuttal, but, Iím going to put it out there.

Unfortunately, some kids just arenít ďmade for footballĒ. Although they have a love for the sport, they just donít have the God given talent that other players do. (Not saying this is your child)

As a coach, you are expected to win... at ANY level. The only object of a competitive sport is to win. Telling your ďeliteĒ players that one player deserves as much playing time as him just because heís on the team is not fair to anyone... including the elite playerís parents.
We as coaches are expected to field the best 11 players on the team, and include all other players a minimum of 7 plays. As stated before, players do not get better from the 1 hour game played on Saturday. Players get better during practice, and extra time/effort put forth outside of ďnormalĒ practice times.
Some children are blessed with more athletic talent than others... thatís just the way the world works. Would we absolutely love if every child on our team had the same abilities and could contribute to the team equally? Yes!!! But again, this world wasnít built that way.
If we were to give every player equal playing time because they signed up, you increase your chances of not winning. Next step, parents with elite players complain that you arenít fielding the best team possible. Again, we are expected to win. Iíve seen teams in multiple sports fall apart because they simply do not win.

As coaches, we cannot simply GIVE a child more talent. We can only teach, ask for their best efforts, and gauge our responsibility as a coach from the displayed abilities.
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HoneyBadger1

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2019, 08:50:53 pm »
Baller 25 I do agree with some of the things you are saying. I was told that the INFC is not considered a competitive football league Iím guessing because everyone is required to play. But in reality this league is very competitive, I think some schools should have 1st year players play AA but then you have other schools who that wouldnít work out for because not every school is putting multiple teams on the field. So a team like Jenks may have a bunch of great athletes on one team and the other team have first year players playing down in AA. But a team like Muskogee would have to keep those first year players on their 1 team because Muskogee donít have multiple teams in every grade. So automatically the advantage goes to the team who didnít have to get any first year players. Not every kid blessed with God given talent but you donít have to be the most talented kid on the field either. What are the parents doing outside of practice to help get the better? How much extra time is being spent to help the child with fundamentals outside of normal practice days? How often is the kid outside just working on something? Just because a kid is undersized donít mean anything. We have several kids on our 7th grade team who barely weight 80 pounds and they battle every weekend with running backs who weigh 130-149. But I do see what you are getting at, kids can also help themselves by playing in 7v7 league or the 9v9 league.

PlayFair01

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2019, 09:27:46 pm »
I cometely agree with the sentiment that kids get better in practice, except for when kids are put in spots they will never play in games for the sole purpose of getting reps for the A team.  Then game time roles around and kids are hidden out on the field and have no idea what to do because they have not been allowed to practice that position and have not been allowed to tackle in practice.  The game is completely foreign and they only have 2 or 3 plays then the game is over and nothing was gained.  I get that not all kids are cutout for everything, but I feel our league should not be cutting them off at the knees before they even get a chance.  Great discussion, thank you all for the input. Best of luck to you all.

baller25

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2019, 10:14:18 pm »
man playfair i hope everything works out for you.  i feel like i got a unique perspective on this issue cause i been both a coach and a parent, and my 2 sons both playing, my oldest is a "minimum play" kid and my youngest is an elite level player.  i have coached them both and i have been in the stands as a parent too.  so i relate to what your saying.

Shaffer5

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2019, 09:37:08 am »
At the end of the day it doesn't matter. Baseball has minimum play requirements as well. Yet, people want to cry when their kid gets put out in Right Field and has to bat 9th. There has to be a Right Fielder and a 9th batter regardless. Not all but, most coaches will never sit a player who will got out and actually try to play regardless of talent but, when it becomes a safety issue or a "want too" issue then the coach has to make a decision that protects not only the minimum play player but, the rest of the team as well. This is a contact sport that can be dangerous at times under certain circumstances. Most of the time it is the parents or Grandparents who have unrealistic views of their own child or grandchild's effort or ability. In football if a kid will give effort a coach can find a spot for the but, if they are scared of contact and most times to the point of turning their back to contact it does become a safety issue. Kids get better at practice. I challenge parents to come sit at a practice and try to give an honest review of their kids effort and ability before getting upset. Because when it comes to playing time and a parent asking there is almost no correct answer a coach can give because the parent will never accept it due to the relationship that we all have with our children. So, in that I say once again just be sure to give an honest assessment of your child. Also, I seen someone say there is 70 + plays in a game? Are you serious? Those 8 mins go quick! 
« Last Edit: September 23, 2019, 01:50:55 pm by Shaffer5 »
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bk99

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2019, 04:28:23 pm »
Yes alot of good opinions here. Try your best not to look through the jaded parent goggles here. You have kids when it's there turn to get in for practice goofed off in line didn't pay attention to their position and learn the plays. Due to the fact they didnt pay attention are now a liability on the field. Kickoffs extra points etc get them their required play limit but if you aren't on the same level as the "starters " and you aren't going to give the same effort nor pay attention that's the way it is. If your not getting better in practice how do you expect to get better suddenly in a game. Just because you pay your league fees and show up doesn't get you playing time behind the minimum. Get better at practice
« Last Edit: September 23, 2019, 04:30:15 pm by bk99 »
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Coach7

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #13 on: September 23, 2019, 04:55:28 pm »
The reality is that kids will develop and will be on the field at some point , this come sooner than later for others-----and kids that good off or lack attention will eventually not be playing if that continues. Most coaches wd say 12 plays for a kid that doesn't know how to line up and put other kids in danger of injury is to many anyhow---- and just FYI in 5th it goes to 7 plays only and then in JH there is no guarantee of playing time ever again--- now the obvious statement is as kiddos improve their playing time will increase.   And let's call it what it is, it's unfair to up the number of plays if some teams have 15 and some have 29 and they are limited to same amount of coaching. So like I said most of this stuff takes care of itself w time

Coach7

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Re: Participation rules
« Reply #14 on: September 23, 2019, 05:04:42 pm »
To add to my above post. What we do is schedule scrimmages during the week from time to time and I actually play my second team a ltitle more than my first team during these scrimmages --- so on our team every kid does get the opportunity to show improvement