MCS Sports Program Rationale

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Rationale 1:  Philosophy Sport Teams

Our program is often run at a senior level.  As we are a small school however; we have chosen to open our program to students in grades 8-10 who are interested and who show interest in a sport.  Due to a lack of volunteers and or players, MCS is not able to offer a junior sports programs at this time.

When we provide senior sports teams, our program is built around our senior players, and the majority of play time in games is devoted to these players (most of which have been trained up through our program over the last 3 years). 

While we have younger players on our team, the team is not designed around those players.  Our goal instead, is to use portions of practice time to train up those young players in the fundamentals of the sport in question so that, when they reach grade 11-12 they will be prepared to take over the majority of leadership – and game time – for the team.

Rationale 2:  Practices

Practices are the cornerstone of our program.  We expect players to attend all practices unless they fall behind in school work, are sick, or must miss practice for some other important reason.  We ask that, as much as possible, parents or players let us know ahead of time if they will be missing practice.

Practices are a privilege and a joy.  If a student does not enjoy practicing for a sport, we would not recommend them to join our team.  We practice up to four times a week (except during weeks when we have games), allowing our players the privilege of 8 hours of instruction, physical activity, and relationship-building experiences each week.    

Practices are for everyone on the team.  While we do target these practices slightly more to our senior players (see Rationale 1 for explanation), there is time set aside for everyone.  We usually devote close to half of our practice time to the development of fundamental skills (more than half of our time during the first part of the season and then progressively less time as the season progresses).  While fundamental skills are important for everyone, it is during this time that we work with younger players closely to teach basic skills of the sport.   The rest of practice is mostly taken up with theory and strategy.  Again, this time is useful to everyone, but it is targeted toward our senior players.  It is during this time that we discuss plays, defensive formations, court movement, etc.

Rationale 3:  Games

As explained in Rationale 1, games are primarily for the benefit of our senior players.  We make it a goal in most games to try and get each of our players involved, but the bulk of game time is reserved for our seniors.  Eventually, if they stay with the program, all of our junior players will one day be seniors and will have their chance to play a lot of game time.

It is expected that all players except Red Shirts (See Rationale 5) attend all games.   Watching games from the bench is very important for players to learn the theory and dynamics of the sport in question.  Also, we never know which games will present the best opportunities to give our young players game time, so it is important for them to be ready to play at all times. 

Games and tournaments are not only a learning experience but are also a great deal of fun.      

Our school is a small single A school. We play games against A, AA, and even AAA teams.  When we are playing large schools it is usually not a good time to play our younger players as these schools tend to have much larger, and more experienced players.  Sending a 5’6” 130 pound grade 8 against a 6’2” 190 pound grade twelve is not a helpful experience.  This sort of situation is not a good learning experience for young players because mismatches of this type can shake a young player’s confidence, and increase their chance of injury.  For this reason, we mostly play our senior players in these games.

We are always looking for opportunities to compete against junior teams, so that our young players can have a chance to compete more.  Nonetheless, it is hard to find local teams to play, and our time as coaches is limited.  In addition to this, our primary focus is always on our senior players and providing games for them to compete in.

Rationale 4: Coaching Staff

All coaches volunteer their time.  They are not paid to run a sport team, but do it because we love the sport and have a great deal of respect and love for our players.

Rationale 5: Red Shirt Policy  

The name “Red Shirt” is taken from a common college/university concept of having extra players on a team who practice with the team, but do not play in games.  It is our goal to train up these “Red Shirts” so that next year they will have the skills they need to take a place on our regular roster. 

The position of Red Shirt is not in any way a derogatory term, but is meant to be an honour for those players selected for these positions.

Although these players do not dress for games, they are an important part of the team.  They are expected to make practices regularly, unless they fall behind in school work, are sick, or must miss practice for some other important reason.  We ask that, as much as possible, parents or players let us know ahead of time if they will be missing practice.  Games are optional for these players, but they are encouraged to attend.  A great deal can be learned by watching the games, and it also helps to build camaraderie within the team.  That said, we understand that tournaments can sometimes be expensive, and while these players are welcome to attend tournaments, they are not expected to.

 

Thanks so much for your continued support of our program,