Requirements for Tryouts
Athletes are expected to participate on the first day and all other dates of tryouts. Athletes who miss the official start date and express a late interest may be denied the opportunity to participate in the program. In programs where cuts are made, the coaches are expected to make their final selections from those who are in attendance at tryouts. Exception to this policy can be considered for those athletes that have a documented medical illness, family emergency or an injury. Consideration will only be given to those that notify the coach in advance of the tryouts. As mentioned previously in this guide, commitment is vital to the success of all involved. There is undoubtedly a sacrifice to be made, not only on the part of the athlete, but on the family as well. Athletes and parents are expected to make certain that personal plans and work schedules are adjusted so as not to conflict with tryout dates, practices, and contests.
Each year is viewed as independent of another with respect to tryouts and the tryout is open to all. Athletes who were involved with the program the year before are not “guaranteed” a place on the team roster in the next season. All athletes should be prepared to “compete” for membership every year. Some students mature from one year to the next and may be included on the team after having been cut the year before. Athletes can gain a potential advantage when they make more of a visible commitment to the program and improve significantly after having been involved in summer camps, summer league play, or community and organized club programs out of season. As was mentioned previously, as the level progresses to the varsity, the size of a team becomes more a function of those needed to conduct an effective and meaningful practice and to play the contest.
A note for seniors: One of the most difficult situations coaches face is the dilemma of the senior who has been in the program for years and now is viewed as a limited role player. Seniors will not be accommodated with a junior varsity experience, as this is considered a developmental program.
At the varsity level, the best will play, regardless of age, as long as program expectations are met. Coaches are encouraged to discuss expectations with seniors. If it is clear to the coach during tryouts that the role of the senior will be limited, that information will be communicated. The senior presented with the opportunity to remain in the program with a limited role must be prepared to accept this role, and still meet all the expectations of the program with respect to attendance and work ethic, while still showing support for the team. This is an arduous challenge and possibly the most difficult team player role. The senior must be willing to meet this challenge with a positive attitude if he or she wishes to remain a part of the team. If a coach feels that the senior has reached the limits of his or her potential and/or the athlete is incapable of adjusting to limited role expectations with a positive attitude, the coach may not provide the senior with the option of staying on the team.