U11-U12 Program

Welcome to the BFCT U11/U12 Program!

We want players to have FUN! Youth soccer should be an enjoyable experience, and we want players to have fun playing soccer. We believe players have fun when they get to play with their friends in a supportive environment that encourages growth and development through positive coaching. We also believe players have fun when they get lots of touches on the ball and do so in an environment where they are challenged and can achieve success.

We want players to GROW! Youth soccer provides tremendous opportunities for players to improve their soccer abilities and to develop important life skills. We believe players grow and develop when coaches create positive environments where players are not afraid to risk failure.  We also believe that being a good sport, being a great teammate, and being a willing competitor are important and essential to the growth and development of players and people.

We want players to PLAY! Youth soccer provides opportunities for players to have fun and to grow when players have the opportunity to play. We believe the game itself is the best teacher and that coaches should create opportunities for players to play. We also believe that players develop best when provided with opportunities to play at the appropriate competitive level.

So, how will we make this happen?

Training Groups: Each player will be assigned to a specific training group. Each training group will be formed based upon what our coaching staff determines is the best training environment for each player. Considerations will include a player’s ability, availability, and competitive level. The goal is to place each player in a training environment that maximizes their development and provides a challenging and fun environment.

Following the Player Placement event in May, players will train for three weeks with all of the players in their birth-year age group. These training sessions will provide additional opportunities for coaches to evaluate players and will provide opportunities for players to prepare for the Broken Top 3v3 tournament. (Please see attached information regarding theBroken Top 3v3 Tournament.)

Following the Broken Top 3v3 Tournament, players will be divided into three training groups:  Black, Red, and White.

The Black Training Group is designed for the most competitive players, regardless of birth year.  It is estimated that 15-18 players will be assigned to the Black Training Group. The Red Training  Group will include 18-24 players and will consist of nine to 12 players from each birth year.  While all of the players in the Red Training Group will generally train at the same time, they will typically train in two groups - 07 Red and 08 Red. The White Training Group will consist of 18-28 players and will consist of nine to 14 players from each birth year. While all of the players in the White Training Group will generally train at the same time, they will typically train in two groups - 07 White and 08 White. *subject to change

The training groups will be re-formed for each of the three competitive seasons - Summer, Fall, and Spring - and players will have the opportunity to move between groups during each season as well. Additionally, training groups may combine to provide opportunities for the players to train with all players in their birth year and/or to provide scrimmage opportunities with combined training groups.

Competition Groups: Each player will be assigned to a specific competition group, also known as a team. Teams will be formed based upon birth year and training group. Team rosters will typically feature between nine and 12 players to ensure that every player is provided with significant playing time in each game. The limited rosters will also allow for players to play with other competition groups throughout the season.

Our focus in forming competition groups is to provide each player the opportunity to maximize their development by ensuring an adequate amount of playing time in games at a level that is challenging and includes an opportunity for success. We will accomplish this by providing each player with a consistent roster spot on one team, as well as additional playing opportunities with other teams within our program. As a result, players should receive more playing time and more games than they might typically receive. Our hope is that the additional competition will enhance the growth and development of each player.

Below is a summary of how teams will be formed:

- BFCT U12 Black: This group will have an active roster of approximately 18 players, which will include the most competitive 07 and 08 players. Game rosters will typically be limited to 12 players. Players on the U12 Black team will regularly play in games with the 07 Red and 08 Red teams. During the fall season, the U12 Black team will play in the OYSA U12 Premier Division. The U12 Black team will play in the State Cup following the spring season.

- BFCT 07 Red: This group will have an active roster of approximately nine players, which will include competitive 07 players who are not on the U12 Black roster. Game rosters will typically be limited to 12 players and will include players from the U12 Black roster. Players on the 07 Red team will also have opportunities to play in 07 White team games as well. During the fall season, the 07 Red team will play in the OYSA U12 Division I league and will play in the President’s Cup.

- BFCT 08 Red: This group will have an active roster of approximately nine players, which will include competitive 08 players who are not on the U12 Black roster. Game rosters will typically be limited to 12 players and will include players from the U12 Black roster. Players on the 08 Red team will also have opportunities to play in games with the 08 White team and the 07 Red team. During the fall season, the 08 Red team will play in the OYSA U11 Division I league and will play in the President’s Cup.

- BFCT 07 White: This group will either have one or two teams, depending upon the total number of players who join the club during the Player Placement event, and will feature players not placed on the U12 Black or 07 Red rosters. Active rosters will include approximately nine players. Game rosters will typically be limited to 12 players and may include players from the 07 Red, 08 Red, and 08 White teams. Players on the 07 White team may also have opportunities to play in 07 Red games. During the fall season, the 07 White team will play in the OYSA U12 Division II league and will play in the Founder’s Cup.

- BFCT 08 White: This group will either have one or two teams, depending upon the total number of players who join the club during the Player Placement event, and will feature players not placed on the U12 Black or 08 Red rosters. Active rosters will include approximately nine players. Game rosters will typically be limited to 12 players and may include players from the 08 Red team. Players on the 08 White team may also have opportunities to play in 08 Red and 07 White games. During the fall season, the 08 White team will play in the OYSA U11 Division II league and will play in the Founder’s Cup.

So, what does this all mean?

We are excited about forming a U11/U12 program that maximizes the growth and development opportunities for each player. There is a place for interested and committed players of all skill and ability levels, and there are tremendous opportunities for growth and development. All players will receive coaching from the same group of coaches to ensure consistency in training environments. All parents and families will receive regular, consistent, and comprehensive communication from Age Group Coordinator.

Simply put, each player will be placed in a training group that matches their current level of development. Each training group will train at least twice per week with a consistent group of our coaches. Each player will be placed on a team that matches their current level of development, and each player will also have opportunities to play in games with other teams to maximize the amount of competitive opportunities available.

 

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

BFCT 07/08 Program

In a continuing effort to keep everyone informed and to effectively address questions and concerns, we have created this FAQ that answers frequently asked questions from players, parents, and families.

Why is BFCT making this change? Our club is committed to providing all players with a positive, enjoyable, and productive soccer experience. As such, we are continually evaluating our program to ensure players are placed in fun and competitive environments in which they can maximize their development. The philosophy behind combining the U11 and U12 age groups is an effort to ensure all players are provided maximum opportunities for development and enjoyment.

In the current structure, there is little, if any, coordination between the U11 and U12 age group. Each has a different philosophy - the U11 program attempts to create even teams, while the U12 program creates teams based upon competition levels - and different coaches. While each philosophy has been well intentioned, it is possible that the disconnect in philosophy and coaching may cause disparities in player development and enjoyment.

We know that the U11 and U12 years are times of dynamic growth, and we also know that players develop at different rates. As such, by combining the two birth years, we can better accommodate for that dynamic growth by having a larger volume of players and by grouping those players by developmental levels. This new program structure, while it is a change, likely appears more dramatic on paper than it will be in reality for players, parents, and families.

By establishing an environment that engages more players and that focuses on maximizing development and enjoyment, players will likely experience greater opportunities for playing, development, and competition as they advance through the BFCT program.  

How will players be grouped for training sessions? All players will train on a regular basis with a consistent coaching staff. Training sessions will group players by developmental ability. We recognize that we will have students in different grade levels, just as we recognize we will have players of different sizes and different skill levels. The focus of the program is to place players in a training and competitive environment that is developmentally appropriate. For most players, that means they will train in their age group with similarly skilled players. The new structure, however, allows for players to more easily move between levels as necessary, because it is a coordinated program overseen by the same coaches.

What do you mean by developmentally appropriate? Generally, developmentally appropriate is a reference to how a player compares to players in his age group and how players relate to their teams or training pools. There are four major components in determining how players are evaluated: technical ability, physical ability, tactical awareness, and psychological make-up.

Technical ability is generally judged on how well a player receives the ball, passes the ball, dribbles the ball, and shoots the ball, among other basic skills. Physical ability refers to speed, strength, jumping ability, coordination, balance, and control of bodily movements in soccer and non soccer-specific athletic movements. Tactical awareness is measured by the soccer decisions made when the player is at training or in games. Does a player know the requirements of the position? Does the player know the role in attack and defense? What does a player do when pressured in possession of the ball? The answers to these questions are good baseline to determine where players are in their tactical awareness. Evaluating the psychological make-up at this age can be rather difficult, but generally this area is measured by maturity level, focus, willingness to learn, willingness to receive instruction, and ability to apply lessons learned.

Will players be placed on a team with an assigned coach? All players will be placed on a team with a consistent coaching staff. The coaches will be assigned responsibility for a specific training group and team, but each will be supported by the other members of the coaching staff and overseen by the Age Group Coordinator. Players will likely experience coaching from three or four members of our 07/08 coaching staff throughout the year in training and playing environments, but all of the coaches will be under the guidance and direction of the Age Group Coordinator. For example, the AGC will be the head coach of the U12 Black team and will be primarily responsible for the Black training sessions and games, but will be assisted by the other coaches who may occasionally run a training session or coach a game. 

The team rosters will be small enough (nine to 12 players) to ensure that players have adequate playing time in games to maximize their development. Each player will be assigned to a specific team, but the rosters will also allow players to move freely between teams to provide players with additional games and to provide players with competitive experiences that maximize their development and enjoyment. As such, while a player will be placed on a specific team, they may play on multiple teams over the course of the season and will likely experience multiple coaches, all of whom will be under the guidance and direction of the Age Group Coordinator.

Why are 07 and 08 players grouped together, rather than say, 06 and 07 players? Players in the U11 and U12 age groups (in this case, 07 and 08 players) play in 9v9 games on a smaller field with a size four soccer ball and no heading is allowed. Players in the U13 age group (in this case, 06 players) play 11v11 on a larger field with a size five soccer ball and heading is allowed. As such, we are grouping 07 and 08 players together in this program due to these being the only two age groups that play by this set of rules - 9v9, smaller field, size four ball, no heading. 

  Does this change mean that my middle school student will be playing with fourth graders? Does this change mean my 10-year old will be playing with middle school players who are almost 13? The program change does not mean that all 07 players will train with all 08 players or vice versa. In fact, 08 players will only train with 07 players when it is determined to be developmentally appropriate. Training and competition groups will be formed based upon developmental levels, taking into account soccer skills and abilities, physical size and strength, as well as maturity and ability to focus. The program change also allows players to receive coaching from a consistent staff of coaches who will utilize the same language and training framework to ensure players receive a quality training experience regardless of age or ability level.

Will this look like the Junior Academy where players cycle through rotations and have different coaches for training sessions and games? The U11/U12 program will differ from the Junior Academy in that all players will be assigned to a specific training group and a specific team, with a specific set of coaches. In order to maximize opportunities for player development, there will be great flexibility and opportunity for players to move throughout the program for training sessions and games.

Will my 2007 ever have a chance to train or play with the 2006 group? One of the great aspects of being a part of the BFCT club is our continued efforts to provide players the opportunity to challenge themselves in a variety of competitive training and game environments. There will be times throughout the year when some of our most competitive 2007 players will get the chance to train, and perhaps, play with the 2006 group. This past season, on multiple occasions, players on the 2006 teams trained and played with the 2005 teams. The focus is always on providing opportunities for players to maximize their development and enjoyment. 

We want players to have FUN! Youth soccer should be an enjoyable experience, and we want players to have fun playing soccer. We believe players have fun when they get to play with their friends in a supportive environment that encourages growth and development through positive coaching. We also believe players have fun when they get lots of touches on the ball and do so in an environment where they are challenged and can achieve success.

We want players to GROW! Youth soccer provides tremendous opportunities for players to improve their soccer abilities and to develop important life skills. We believe players grow and develop when coaches create positive environments where players are not afraid to risk failure. We also believe that being a good sport, being a great teammate, and being a willing competitor are important and essential to the growth and development of players and people.

We want players to PLAY! Youth soccer provides opportunities for players to have fun and to grow when players have the opportunity to play. We believe the game itself is the best teacher and that coaches should create opportunities for players to play. We also believe that players develop best when provided with opportunities to play at the appropriate competitive level.