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Why the rush to have tryouts?

What's on your mind?

by TheTownUSA » Thu Aug 06, 2020 12:02 pm

xyzdude wrote:
Point being, softball is a GREAT sport, but don't put all of your eggs in that basket to get your daughter through college. If you can grasp that concept now, it will save you a lot of disappointment down the road. It may even help to salvage your relationship with your daughter, so she actually wants to spend quality time with you when her playing days are over. /quote]

The over the top parent is an issue that doesn't only relate to college recruitment but to sport in general. We have all seen those players who are constantly looking to a parent in the stands (typically Dad) in between pitches during an at bat. Time to wake up parents - if your daughter is playing sports to win your affection you have done something wrong along the line. In my opinion, playing higher level travel ball at 14U or older needs to become the player's thing, not the parent's. How do you know if it is your daughter's thing - by making her take responsibility and be accountable for her commitments and decisions. I see that in the little things like making her responsible for keeping track of the schedule, her equipment, her food/drink/snacks, etc. You may even try and make her line up transportation to certain things once in a while and not be there (maybe try supporting your non-athlete kid or go on a date with your spouse). Even with lessons, I would purchase a dozen lessons at a time with her hitting coach and then leave it up to her to schedule them [our rule was that for every lesson you took, you had to do three practice sessions on your own to work on what you did in the lesson before you could schedule another lesson]. Make her do most of the work for college recruitment. Help her along the way but don't do it for her. In short, life is hard and it is rarely "fair". Let your kid work out their own stuff and never as a parent get caught up in the drama (and there will be drama for most). Remember that as a parent you are not there to break down her game, tell her what she is doing wrong, or complain about how she is being treated - if it is her thing leave that all up to her and you will be surprised at how mature and grown up they become through the process. Your most important job is to (1) pay the bills, and (2) feed them. I found that, especially with my softball playing child, there was practically nothing that a good meal or ice cream couldn't fix. The time you spend together on this journey is what ends up being important and is what makes them want to spend time with you after the sports career is over.



These two posts are the most informative that I've experienced since joining The Bucket. Last year my daughter played a couple of invite only tournaments where the games were extremely competitive. Child psychologists say it's not the birthday parties and good times that kids remember after they reach adulthood, but more so their childhood trauma. I would say the same applies to travel ball.

I can barely remember that 2 run shot in the bottom of the 5th that once propelled us into the championship game of a tournament. What I vividly remember is the ace pitcher of an opposing team walking off the field in tears, when her coach refused to pull her from a game, after she had run out of gas and gave up the winning run. My wife speculated she may have done it on purpose to get back at her dad, coach or both. There was merit to that argument.

That wasn't the only time I witnessed a struggling pitcher stare at her bench late in the game, seeking help, only to be blown off. But the one memory that stuck with me above all others, was the coach that verbally micro-managed EVERY single batter for the entire game. It literally ruined the experience for me as a spectator. I wanted so badly to stand up and yell out, "Would you please shut the f**k up and give your batters hitting lessons at practice? I'm trying to watch a game here!"

I wonder how many parents know their daughters are playing travel sports to appease them, more than they are for their own enjoyment? Attached are some facts about the realities of athletic scholarships for those who are interested.


https://www.ncsasports.org/recruiting/h ... ship-facts
Last edited by TheTownUSA on Thu Aug 06, 2020 8:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by Schmick » Thu Aug 06, 2020 4:07 pm

Every senior from the HS my kid is at, the last 3 or so years that I have paid attention has gone on to play in college. Not all went to P5 D1 schools but all have gone on to play at a 4 year University somewhere. Granted, only the elite travel ball players play all 4 years at that HS as the park and rec and lower tiered travel players are weeded out by being kept on the frosh/soph and JV teams for multiple years and never making Varsity
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by TheTownUSA » Thu Aug 06, 2020 4:49 pm

There is plenty of opportunity for PGF girls to play college softball if that is the path they choose. Some may play for Oregon or UCLA, while others may play for Barstow Community College or Southern Baptist University. I would never put pressure on my daughter to make her believe the only path to attend the college of her choice was via an athletic scholarship. That's just another stress in life she doesn't need.

I like her playing PGF because it's fun and they have the best competition. Anything beyond that is gravy. I've seen parents who push their kids, thinking it's going to make them play better. That drive has to come from within, or it ain't going to come at all.

There has been more than one set of disappointed parents who had their hearts broken, when their highly coveted daughter told them she was done with softball after her last high school game. Girl's interests change as they become women. I read a statistic that claimed on average, college softball players only play for 2 years before they quit the game. I'm just saying it's not a good idea to put all your eggs in that one basket. I suspect most of you agree with that axiom.
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by Schmick » Thu Aug 06, 2020 10:32 pm

The school of my kids choice (Pepperdine) doesn't even have a softball team so she can either give up softball when it's time to go to college or choose a different college and continue to play softball
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