What is the mission of the Marlboro Youth Basketball program?
The Marlboro Youth Basketball program was created in 2006 and operates as an independent organization focused on the growth, management and administration of the pre-scholastic travel basketball experience for Marlboro boys and girls in the fourth through eighth grade. Through such a structure, the program seeks to promote athletic excellence, good sportsmanship and citizenship, fair play, fun, and a balance between individual and team achievement, all within the context of competitive basketball.
As a member of the South Central Massachusetts Youth Basketball League, Marlboro Youth Basketball also supports and adheres to the goals outlined in the league’s charter. Specifically, to create a positive experience for youth by enhancing their development through the sport of basketball, by enabling them to see the results of hard work and teamwork, and helping them to build personal character with a focus on self esteem, self respect and respect for others.
How does the Marlboro Youth Basketball program differ from the Boys & Girls Club League?
Whereas the Boys & Girls Club provides a wonderful opportunity for Marlboro youth to play against each other as part of an in-town league, the Marlboro Youth Basketball program allows for boys and girls to play against other towns in a more competitive setting. It is designed for players who have enjoyed success on the court and who are interested in taking their game to a higher level.
When are games and practices?
Nearly all games are played on Sundays, starting in late-November and running through late-February/early-March (note: teams playing in the same league as Whitinsville-Christian may have to play one Saturday game during the season). Game times range from 12-4 pm.
Practices start in November and will likely be one night per week for 60-90 minutes. While we are attempting to secure more gym time during the pre-season period, resources are very limited given that we must share time with the Boys & Girls Club teams during the season.
In addition, most of our teams will elect to play in shorter (usually 2-3 days) pre- and/or post-season tournaments, the schedules of which will vary depending on the time of year. This likely would include a Saturday or weekday (during school vacation week) game.
Who do you play against?
In addition to Marlboro, members of the South Central Massachusetts Youth Basketball League include: Auburn, Blackstone, Boylston, Charlton, Douglas, Dudley, Grafton, Hopedale, Hopkinton, Mendon, Millbury, Northboro, Northbridge, Oxford, Shrewsbury, Southboro, Spencer, Sutton, Uxbridge, Westboro and Whitinsville-Christian.
How are teams selected?
We remind parents and potential players that, by its nature, travel teams are selective and not all players who try-out will be chosen for a roster. In addition, past participation on Marlboro travel youth basketball teams does not guarantee a roster spot for the coming year’s teams. Players choosing to attend less than all of the scheduled tryouts also run the risk of not being properly evaluated and not selected for the team.
Teams of 9-10 players will again be selected by an independent group of evaluators (individuals who are not coaching that particular team and do not have any children in that division). Assessments on size, speed, overall athleticism, general basketball skill, level of aggressiveness and attitude will all be taken into consideration as part of the evaluation process. Depending on overall talent, program resources and interest, we will support one or two teams at each grade level.
What is the cost?
For the 2022-2023 season, the registration fee has been set at $170 per player. Marlboro continues to maintain the lowest registration cost for travel youth basketball in the region, with most competing towns charging families in the range of $200-$300 a year for participation.
Is playing time guaranteed?
Philosophies on playing time differ from town to town. Whereas a number of programs provide no guarantees at all, Marlboro Youth Basketball players can expect to play in both halves. That said, because this is a very competitive program, it is very important that parents and players alike understand that the distribution of playing time each half will vary, with coaches ultimately being responsible for allocating minutes at their discretion.
What is expectation of travel team players?
Players are expected to make a committed effort to attend all practices, games and tournaments, with any absences being communicated to, and approved by the coach in advance. Players are further expected to be attentive and play hard at all times and, consistent with the program’s mission, show respect for their coaches, teammates and opponents.
What is the expectation of travel team parents?
The parental role for players playing on Marlboro Youth Basketball travel teams is threefold:
- To ensure that they are able to get their child to games and practices each week. To this end, SCMYBL includes teams ranging from a 15-60 minute commute from Marlboro. Parents must consider the increased time commitment for practice and games when deciding whether their child will try out for a travel team.
- To support home game coverage. Typically, each team is allotted 4-6 home games per season, which requires them to provide a time keeper and someone to run the admission/concession stand - for either the game before or the game after theirs. These collective responsibilities are to be shared among team parents.
- To respect and support the coach’s decision-making and direction. Whereas coaches are more than happy to talk about a player’s progress and/or areas for development with parents, specific questions about playing time will NOT be addressed once the season begins.
If selected for a travel team, can my child still play in the Boys & Girls Club League? What happens if there are conflicts?
We strongly encourage our players to play both travel ball and participate in the Boys & Girls Club League. Where there are scheduling conflicts due to practices being held on the same night, we would expect the player to rotate weeks between attending the travel team and Boys & Girls Club team practice.