Spring 2016 News

SYSA Postpones Decision on Change to Birth Year

Registration Recreational teams will use current system for fall 2016

New USSF 9 v 9 format for U12 teams will start this fall

The Seattle Youth Soccer Association (SYSA) Board of Commissioners, with representatives from each neighborhood club, voted to wait until 2017 to decide whether to change to birth year registration and team formation for recreational teams. They voted at the monthly SYSA Board meeting on Monday, February 1st. A switch to the new registration and team formation system, recommended by US Youth Soccer, will be considered again in 2017 for our recreational teams.

The Select teams throughout the state will change to the birth year calendar registration. Seattle United's teams will make the change to birth year registration in 2016 as planned.

Ballard advocated for the adoption of the birth year change this year. Other clubs thought that a phase in over 8 years was the best way to go. Ultimately it was decided to delay a year until 2017. During the year SYSA will gather data and anecdotes on the change over from other clubs in our state and across the country.

If you haven't taken the time to read Klinsmann's thoughts on why US youth soccer should change you can here. http://www.usyouthsoccer.org/changes_coming_to_youth_soccer_in_2016/

Many in the soccer community see little value in this change for recreational teams. We agree. However Ballard felt that since we are so integrated with our Select program (Seattle United) that it was important to be in sync with them. We would not have broken teams up and would have allowed players to play up on their prior teams.

New USSF 9 v 9 format for U12 teams will start this fall

The SYSA Board also voted to implement the new USSF guidelines for U12 recreational team play. Starting in 2016, U12 teams will play in a 9 versus 9 player format on a smaller field with smaller goals. The previous format was full-sided, 11 versus 11 with full-size field and goals. The roster size for U12 teams will remain at 14.

There are lots of pros and cons to this change. It really made sense coupled with the US Youth Soccer birth year change. From a registrar point of view there was too much turmoil in rosters from U10 to U13. We were forced to breakdown teams more than we wanted.

So what to expect at registration this year. If you were U10 last year, you will register for U11 this year. Some of your friends that try out for Seattle United will be U11 and some U12 depending on their birthdays. You will hear those families probably start referring to their age groups by the birth year as opposed to the Uwhatever. For example the U11's this year were born Aug 2005-July 2006. At SU all kids born in 2006 are U11 and 2005 are U12. The U11's will call themselves 06's.

Regardless of the ages, Ballard will be organizing to put together a great program for our players and coaches. We are excited and starting work already. Want to join us? To volunteer info@ballardsoccer.org. It is an exciting time to be in youth soccer in Seattle and this nation. Lots of change and lots of ideas being discussed.