Thursday, October 13, 2016

Agenda Teams

What, you may ask, is an agenda team?  Good question.  Here is my definition:

In club volleyball, any team whose goal is something other than to make all the players on the team the best they can be.

Unfortunately, any team that has favoritism in playing time or whose goal is to qualify for nationals might fall in such a category.  But, for now, let's limit our definition of agenda teams to those who are put together for some defined volleyball purpose and that this purpose may or may not be in the best interest of individual development of players as volleyball players.

Hey, don't get me wrong.   I think agenda teams have their place in club volleyball.  

In the past, select basketball teams whose players also play high school volleyball have gotten together to play volleyball just to keep their skills sharp.   The season was tailored to and made so it didn't interfere with high school and select basketball

There have also been clubs over the years, especially clubs founded in rural areas, that are designed to help keep their HS program strong from year to year by getting the kids from a HS team to play together all year. 

There are probably more examples of agenda teams that I haven't thought of.  

The key in all this should be the coaching and the commitment of the players to excellence.

I have seen too many times that an agenda team has bad coaching or the commitment of the players is less than necessary to accomplish the goals of that team.

I have seen HS coaches who have steered their kids towards a team that helps their HS program but not making sure that team has a competent coach, at least as good or better than what those players would get if they just went to tryouts like everyone else.

So, as parents, when you are asked to be on an agenda team, just make sure that you are getting your money's worth.   No favoritism, good coaching, reasonable fees and enough commitment from all the players and coaches to make it worth while.   Ask these questions and, if necessary, have a frank discussion with your HS coach to make sure they are aware of any concerns you have.

Good luck at tryouts!

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