What is the Composite Team?
The ECNL Composite Team is an optional program for ECNL clubs. As clubs evaluated the premise of this team, many have opted in as it is seen as a valuable opportunity for players. We have decided to do so. With the birth year changes an age group jump occurred for players that were in the U16 division this past season. Instead of progressing to U17, they jumped to U19. To support a greater number of talented players who would have been ECNL players prior to the birth year mandates as well as other players with potential to be great ECNL players, the Composite division has been created by the ECNL to continue an elite player development environment. Players on the Composite Team are official ECNL players and can play on any age appropriate ECNL team in the club, being able to take full advantage of the player pass as any other ECNL player can. The Composite Team will compete against other ECNL Composite teams from around the conference and potentially the country. National Showcase events will occur for these teams. Players born in 1998 and younger are eligible. More to come on this as the ECNL unveils the details of this new opportunity.
Why were players listed by birth year only and not teams?
Two reasons: 1) With the number of potential changes with current ECNL rosters, we named players based upon age group (year of birth) without locking them to a specific roster. 2) To allow training (prior to league play beginning in September) to provide the most competitive environment possible allowing club coaches to best determine proper placement of players, which in turn is what is best for players.
When will I know what roster I am placed on?
The club will register players with the league when the ECNL opens registration sometime in July. However, it is important to note that as long as age eligible, players can play in multiple age groups as long as they are on a club roster. The game day roster changes for a variety of reasons.
Will players be allowed to "play up"?
Absolutely. This is nothing new for our club. Some players will be moved to an older age group immediately. Many players are in consideration for playing on an older roster. Most players will be placed on a team roster that correlates with their birth year.
When does training for the new year begin?
There may be sporadic training in June, more regular training will begin in the latter part of July and will be full time at the beginning of August.
What team am I to train with?
Players are to train with their birth year unless communicated to by Rush coaching staff. ECNL teams will train at the same time and when that is not the case, training with an older birth year will be a possibility.
How do I pay fees if I do not know what team I am on?
ECNL fees are consistent from team to team. Only ECNL/club fees will be collected prior to roster formation.
How does club determine final placement or player movement?
Each player is looked at individually. We do our best to keep what is best for the player at the forefront of our decisions. Fundamentally, players must be in consideration for a first eleven (starting) position on whatever team they play on. This goes for players who may only play for their birth year age team. They are expected to compete. Players selected to Colorado Rush ECNL have earned their position and are, again, expected to compete for a starting position. Our starting line ups are meant to be fluid, changing. Players who perform at a level that puts them in consideration for a first eleven position for an older team may be selected to train, play or join full time an older team.
Why not declare specific rosters right now? Isn't that what tryouts are used for?
Traditionally, the role of tryouts has been to form teams. However, it has also been tradition in many clubs for players to be selected for a team and be restricted to that team. At Colorado Rush we have long used the club pass for the benefit of both the player and the team. We want to continue to remove restrictions as we believe they inhibit player development. This does not mean all players move from team to team. We believe players need to have a healthy balance in training and matches. Players need to perform in environments that can force them to push the envelope as well as allow players to achieve success. As a club we have had great success following this belief.
Additionally, we want to give all players the chance to compete and earn a position that is best for them.
Can I be moved to an older team since that is where several of my teammates from last year were placed?
No. This is not a sufficient reason for player placement/movement for players that want to compete in a national league. Players are placed/moved based on soccer-related reasons.
We hope these questions and answers have been helpful. Ultimately we are committed to developing players. We appreciate the trust our members show in us to do just that. Developing players (and young people) is a responsibility we take very seriously. We have an excellent track record as a club in assisting players in their development. National mandates and league rules do not change our values or our priorities. Players who embrace competition can thrive here at Colorado Rush. Our goal is to make 2016-2017 the best soccer year of our players young lives.