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Having Bantam team and no JV team - good idea or not?

 
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hockeymom9



Joined: 10 Mar 2013
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Sun Mar 10, 2013 9:11 pm    Post subject: Having Bantam team and no JV team - good idea or not? Reply with quote

Hi everyone, our association in northern Minnesota is considering starting a bantam team again (we are currently without) and in the process of doing this, it would eliminate our jv team. Numbers are and have been very low, but because of no checking in peewees, our peewees are going straight to JV (and many are going straight into varsity). At this point, our varsity and jv are practically the same team. We are looking for any advice, suggestions on whether this is going to be good for the kids development or not. Any suggestions, anyone have this experience??? Some of our concerns are whether we can still schedule varsity games without also having a jv team; development of kids; viability of association, etc. Thanks in advance!
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MrBoDangles



Joined: 28 Jan 2009
Posts: 3850

PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would the varsity team have enough kids? Saw that you mentioned that the jv/varsity were mostly the same.
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Rocketwrister



Joined: 18 Feb 2003
Posts: 662

PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 2:26 pm    Post subject: Re: Having Bantam team and no JV team - good idea or not? Reply with quote

hockeymom9 wrote:
Hi everyone, our association in northern Minnesota is considering starting a bantam team again (we are currently without) and in the process of doing this, it would eliminate our jv team. Numbers are and have been very low, but because of no checking in peewees, our peewees are going straight to JV (and many are going straight into varsity). At this point, our varsity and jv are practically the same team. We are looking for any advice, suggestions on whether this is going to be good for the kids development or not. Any suggestions, anyone have this experience??? Some of our concerns are whether we can still schedule varsity games without also having a jv team; development of kids; viability of association, etc. Thanks in advance!


Northern MN as in Iron Range?
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observer



Joined: 03 Apr 2008
Posts: 2227

PostPosted: Tue Apr 23, 2013 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ouch. Sounds like a difficult decision. I like the idea but all players and parents have to be on board or some will leave and join the HS program just when you thought everyone had committed to playing bantam.

Please make sure your youth hockey association recruiting committee is doing all they can to attract 20 new mite boys for fall. Present situation is not good but make sure the future is bright.

Good luck!
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hockeymom9



Joined: 10 Mar 2013
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 8:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Since my 1st posting, a 'bantam committee' has sent questionares to all peewee and bantam age levels to find out for sure how many are interested. This whole situation seems to be a no win - no win situation. In reality there probably is only enough kids for a bantam team for possibly two years, after that, probably not. If bantams are created this year, it could drop the varsity numbers extremely low. But if a bantam program is not created, several players/parents are saying they will quit or transfer to another association. That would hurt just as bad. This program cant afford to lose any players because numbers are already so low at each level. Average of 12-13 kids per level. I would also have to admit that unfortunately, there are a few other underlying issues also involved that I couldn't even begin to write about!
But, I defintely agree with you and last season I started a couple of new learn to skate and learn to play hockey rec groups that helped to bring in 17 brand new 3-7 year old skaters and was coordinator for try hockey for free day. I was very excited about the numbers and success of both programs, but unfortunately it only replaced what we lost. And with the current youth hockey board in place I dont know if these programs will continue.? (I have retired - lol!) I only say this because the president of the club had a hard time even remembering what the name of the two groups were!

In my opinion, Acquiring new players and Retaining them is definetly the key to a successful program!

Thanks for all of the comments! And yes this is the iron range - the real north! Smile
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observer



Joined: 03 Apr 2008
Posts: 2227

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I started a couple of new learn to skate and learn to play hockey rec groups that helped to bring in 17 brand new 3-7 year old skaters and was coordinator for try hockey for free day.


Congratulations! It should be easy for everyone to see this is the most important role in your entire organization. Without recruiting there is no hockey in your town's future. No President or board members either. The organization, and it's President, need to understand without the same effort this year hockey will die. Frankly, that would be unfair to the 17 you recruited last year. Organizations can't have peaks and valleys in their recruiting effort. A more determined effort, with an even bigger goal, girls too, is the only way to save the game in your town. Co-oping isn't possible in a lot of towns which should make your board even more determined.

Unfortunately, right now, the bantam team idea isn't great unless you have numbers coming up in the future to sustain it. The goal now is to make the new 17, and this year's 20, the first bantam team 6-8 years from now.

You can't retire. Start regular recruiting committee meetings soon.
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Rocketwrister



Joined: 18 Feb 2003
Posts: 662

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe I know what town your talking about. You need to have the numbers. Get our recruiting and if it's the town I'm thinking about you have 2 neighboring communities I'd start recruiting heavy in too.

You need to get the interest in and then sustain it. Keep the kids in the program.
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hockeymom9



Joined: 10 Mar 2013
Posts: 6

PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks everyone for your insight. I at first was totally - we have to have bantams; but now can see that unfortunately I just don't think it is going to be possible. Numbers are everything! Everything that was said here was spot on! Now if we can only get our board to understand these important things...recruiting + maintaining = strong healthy program!! Smile
Rocketwrister - I'm pretty sure you're correct on location. Wink We are from one of those neighboring already co-op'd in communities and have been very involved with some degree of success, but it has not been without it's many headaches! Hockey should not be this hard! Unfortunately, there aren't very good relationships between these communities on any level. We are not originally from here and don't understand why these communities, all struggling and this close to each other can't get along (not just in hockey) for the sake of the kids! It's pretty ridiculous!
I have to 'retire' because of health reasons, but have loved being part of seeing the little kids play hockey for the 1st time and watch them grow and love the game just as our son does!
Thanks again everyone!!
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