Dealing with Coaches as a Team Administrator

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Jun 14, 2019
90
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A little backstory...
My daughter is in her 3rd year of travel. She plays on a very competitive team, but we have always done our best to have her play rec ball with our small town. I knew a lot of the rec girls didn't have the opportunity to play on travel teams but there was a desire to learn more and I wanted to support our future high school team so I started a tournament team for these girls. We would do a few tournaments once rec season ended. We ended up adding in a few other girls from neighboring small towns as well. I have said over and over this was development focused. Just have fun and get some game time. I asked the rec coaches to coach, but I have the business license etc under my name and have done all the administrative work.

Ok. We have our first tournament. I think everything went ok. Wasn't happy that a few girls sat the bench all day, but I know it is the first tournament I figured they would figure out how to rotate better.

I run into one of the coaches who tells me they have talked and they will be working with just the core 5 players and that they will be training a new girl privately to take over one of the other girls positions. That 3 of the girls shouldnt play at all and they were going to play 9 bat 9 from now on. They were going to hold separate practice for just those 5 (my daughter was included, but one of our other coaches daughters was not and neither was he). I ended up contacting our head coach and saying I didn't think this was right and was not the purpose of this team and was told if I want him to coach he is coaching to win and I should have informed the players parents that it is competitive not rec ball. I guess I'm just a little shocked. I never would have taken the time to start this if I knew these coaches would flip so quick on girls they trained since tee ball. Any advice on how to deal with this? These kids are so excited and have no clue what is about to happen to them. I don't want to overstep the coaching, but I also started this team with a purpose and want it to be positive for our community, not hurt kids who have been working hard.
 
May 13, 2023
1,538
113
A little backstory...
My daughter is in her 3rd year of travel. She plays on a very competitive team, but we have always done our best to have her play rec ball with our small town. I knew a lot of the rec girls didn't have the opportunity to play on travel teams but there was a desire to learn more and I wanted to support our future high school team so I started a tournament team for these girls. We would do a few tournaments once rec season ended. We ended up adding in a few other girls from neighboring small towns as well. I have said over and over this was development focused. Just have fun and get some game time. I asked the rec coaches to coach, but I have the business license etc under my name and have done all the administrative work.

Ok. We have our first tournament. I think everything went ok. Wasn't happy that a few girls sat the bench all day, but I know it is the first tournament I figured they would figure out how to rotate better.

I run into one of the coaches who tells me they have talked and they will be working with just the core 5 players and that they will be training a new girl privately to take over one of the other girls positions. That 3 of the girls shouldnt play at all and they were going to play 9 bat 9 from now on. They were going to hold separate practice for just those 5 (my daughter was included, but one of our other coaches daughters was not and neither was he). I ended up contacting our head coach and saying I didn't think this was right and was not the purpose of this team and was told if I want him to coach he is coaching to win and I should have informed the players parents that it is competitive not rec ball. I guess I'm just a little shocked. I never would have taken the time to start this if I knew these coaches would flip so quick on girls they trained since tee ball. Any advice on how to deal with this? These kids are so excited and have no clue what is about to happen to them. I don't want to overstep the coaching, but I also started this team with a purpose and want it to be positive for our community, not hurt kids who have been working hard.
Firstly want to applaud your efforts! Seems the goal and purpose of putting this together was a good one!

Unfortunately what happened is a typical thing. You handed over the steering wheel to people that did not have the same goal and purpose. That is the root of the situation.
Now it is either those people coaching have to get in alignment of the original purpose.
Or it's time to let it go and possibly walk away.

In short time they will realize/ encounter the ruins of what they have already done.
 
Last edited:
Apr 30, 2018
192
43
This is your team; you are the one with "skin" in so to speak. Are you going to be comfortable in the community being around these parents and kids that are going to be excluded?

If your vision of developing kids is not happening, then you need to do something to correct course.
 
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Dec 11, 2010
4,742
113
Everyone wants to work with the best players.

Improving the bottom half of your lineup is how you make a high school team better.

The gains you get working with the best players won’t be as big as the gains you get from working with the average players.

Yet some kids won’t improve no matter what you do. Adults think they can predict that at an early age. They can’t.

It’s a catch 22.

Good luck.
 
May 29, 2015
3,968
113
Like @RADcatcher said, this is a very noble effort and I salute you!

There is no good answer because you don’t have any leverage. I used to run into this every season when I ran our rec program.

For 10 games in one summer, those coaches were the best damned coaches in existence (who played the same 4 teams over and over and happened to get lucky with the group of 12 girls who committed less than 100 errors over the season), they are ready to go pro now. :rolleyes:

Like the children they coach, they will not learn from others’ experiences. Sadly, it is the girls who will suffer. Some of those girls may thrive, but most will likely get frustrated and burned by the experience they are about to have. They are no longer going to go to have fun and enjoy a new experience over a weekend, they are expected to win at a level that they quite frankly don’t understand.

Ideally, cut the coaches loose. You aren’t going to get the toothpaste back in the tube. They will take those players with them and go do their own thing though. It puts you back to square one and restarting, but you still have your team with your purpose.

The next part will probably sound ridiculous and it may be … you said you created this and hold the business. I am assuming it is distinct and separate from the rec league then. If that is the case, develop a contract for your future coaches and parents/players. The key piece is to spell out the exact expectations of your coaches and the playing time they will provide. While this is technically a “travel” team, it is still built in the spirit of some core “rec” values. This way there is NO surprise to anybody.

The biggest piece of leverage you can gain is the ability to dismiss them without having to refund any money. It isn’t great leverage and it may be pretty petty, but it can help prevent another mutiny like this. You cannot stop people from leaving, but you can protect yourself and your vision for this team a little.
 
Jun 14, 2019
90
18
Like @RADcatcher said, this is a very noble effort and I salute you!

There is no good answer because you don’t have any leverage. I used to run into this every season when I ran our rec program.

For 10 games in one summer, those coaches were the best damned coaches in existence (who played the same 4 teams over and over and happened to get lucky with the group of 12 girls who committed less than 100 errors over the season), they are ready to go pro now. :rolleyes:

Like the children they coach, they will not learn from others’ experiences. Sadly, it is the girls who will suffer. Some of those girls may thrive, but most will likely get frustrated and burned by the experience they are about to have. They are no longer going to go to have fun and enjoy a new experience over a weekend, they are expected to win at a level that they quite frankly don’t understand.

Ideally, cut the coaches loose. You aren’t going to get the toothpaste back in the tube. They will take those players with them and go do their own thing though. It puts you back to square one and restarting, but you still have your team with your purpose.

The next part will probably sound ridiculous and it may be … you said you created this and hold the business. I am assuming it is distinct and separate from the rec league then. If that is the case, develop a contract for your future coaches and parents/players. The key piece is to spell out the exact expectations of your coaches and the playing time they will provide. While this is technically a “travel” team, it is still built in the spirit of some core “rec” values. This way there is NO surprise to anybody.

The biggest piece of leverage you can gain is the ability to dismiss them without having to refund any money. It isn’t great leverage and it may be pretty petty, but it can help prevent another mutiny like this. You cannot stop people from leaving, but you can protect yourself and your vision for this team a little.
Unfortunately, I live in a town of about 1200, if I cut them I would end getting my daughter blackballed in this town. It is a very tricky situation I have landed in.
 
May 13, 2023
1,538
113
Unfortunately, I live in a town of about 1200, if I cut them I would end getting my daughter blackballed in this town. It is a very tricky situation I have landed in.
Hmmm town of 1200...
Rally a town meeting to reach a common goal?

Be flexible to do what the majority wants to do. That way you are not creating a rift as much as trying to facilitate the best situation for a common goal. Then when the larger majority picks what they want to do they will get the end of the stick they deserve.

(I tried to say that nicely hope it came across okay ?.)
 
May 13, 2023
1,538
113
Like @RADcatcher said, this is a very noble effort and I salute you!

There is no good answer because you don’t have any leverage. I used to run into this every season when I ran our rec program.
⬆️ Like discussions that bring out responses of 'reality feedback'. How much this happens and when the direction of things change and how it affects people.

Perhaps this is why some people will do things themselves and control that steering wheel with both hands instead of letting any of the decision-making go to other people.


For 10 games in one summer, those coaches were the best damned coaches in existence (who played the same 4 teams over and over and happened to get lucky with the group of 12 girls who committed less than 100 errors over the season), they are ready to go pro now. :rolleyes:

Like the children they coach, they will not learn from others’ experiences. Sadly, it is the girls who will suffer. Some of those girls may thrive, but most will likely get frustrated and burned by the experience they are about to have. They are no longer going to go to have fun and enjoy a new experience over a weekend, they are expected to win at a level that they quite frankly don’t understand.

Ideally, cut the coaches loose. You aren’t going to get the toothpaste back in the tube. They will take those players with them and go do their own thing though. It puts you back to square one and restarting, but you still have your team with your purpose.

The next part will probably sound ridiculous and it may be … you said you created this and hold the business. I am assuming it is distinct and separate from the rec league then. If that is the case, develop a contract for your future coaches and parents/players. The key piece is to spell out the exact expectations of your coaches and the playing time they will provide. While this is technically a “travel” team, it is still built in the spirit of some core “rec” values. This way there is NO surprise to anybody.

The biggest piece of leverage you can gain is the ability to dismiss them without having to refund any money. It isn’t great leverage and it may be pretty petty, but it can help prevent another mutiny like this. You cannot stop people from leaving, but you can protect yourself and your vision for this team a little.
 
Nov 9, 2021
208
63
Tough situation for all involved I would imagine. Taking rec girls and playing travel ball can be very difficult. If they are truly rec players they likely will get killed in most tourneys they enter. It can be a reality adjustment for some, as they probably didn’t realize the gap in talent that often exists.

Setting expectations for that type of team early is critical. You have to let them know they are there for experience to see where they need to improve. But often coaches get their egos tied up in wins in losses intentionally or unintentionally. The quick fix that coaches default to is to try and find better players. It is a much quicker path to success than spending the years it would take to develop the bottom half. Great coaches to me are the coaches whose teams improve, not necessarily the teams that win the most.

You probably need to sit down with the coaches and see if you can work out a compromise to more match your vision. Play everyone on Saturdays and only 9 on Sundays is a traditional route. Could also see if the coaches would allow all to practice and develop, even if they won’t take all to tourneys right now. If a girl or two shows improvement they could invite them to tourneys with them. Good luck it sounds like a tough situation when you have people with different visions of what they want.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
Aug 25, 2019
1,066
113
Unfortunately, I live in a town of about 1200, if I cut them I would end getting my daughter blackballed in this town. It is a very tricky situation I have landed in.
What you have is a manager there, not a coach. A coach will help weak players get better, a manager wants good players, hit a few ground balls, then fill out the lineup.
DD ran into this in 12u. She made a real good team based on her hitting. She was weak at fielding. At the end of the season the "coach" says while she's a good hitter, her fielding is weak, so she not gonna play much next season, maybe look for another team. I looked him straight in the eye and said" you're the coach, so coach her to get better, isn't that what your suppose to do? " he had such a dumb look on his face, he didn't know what to say. He was a manager, not a coach. She moved to another team that season.
 

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