It has been happening for many years and probably will continue to happen for years to come. It seems that it has become like an epidemic in some places.
The politics that are involved in minor sports is becoming more and more common and it is a damn shame because it has taken the purity out of what should be the purest form of sport.
Basically this is how it works: A kid trys out for a team. Kid plays well. Kid gets cut. Less skilled kids make it. Parents get upset and complain. Nothing happens except the parents get labelled as well as their child as trouble.
Why did kid get cut?
Reason A: Kid's family may not be able to contribute as much money to team as another may be able to.
Reason B: Kid may be from outside the region in which the team is based.
Reason C: Kid's parents are not personal friends with the coach.
There are several other unjust reasons to cut a kid from a team but these three are the main ones I came across while researching this article.
No names or places will be used in this article, but all are true stories.
A kid tries out for a Bantam AAA hockey team. He is not from the main region in which the team is based but lives just minutes outside of the city. He is not a "townie" kid. His parents are hard, honest workers and make a good living but are not considered as well-off as some who reside within the city. He plays very well but is cut from the team. His parents complain about the unfairness and in this case, the decision is overturned and he is allowed to play on the team. He goes on to lead the entire league in scoring, but was originally cut because of where he lived.
Several kids from a neighboring town try out for a basketball team in the main city. This team will represent the province. Parents and coaches from the neighboring town know most of the players who are trying out. There is no question in these peoples opinions that at least 5 kids should make this team. They don't even look at these kids because they are from the other town. In the girls try outs, at least 2 should have made the team, but again, they are cut based on where they live.
Whats even more disturbing to me is that one of the kids posted on his Facebook that although he was disappointed and thought he should have made it, he would not give up. Several kids posted words of encouragement to him, and then there were some kids in the age range of 12-16 saying things like " Its all politics, that's how it is in sports now" and "You are better than them, but they already had it picked before tryouts."
The fact that kids say that and seem to almost expect it now in sports is very distressing to me.
A kid makes a AAA hockey team as an underage player, is voted Captain by his teammates and leads the team in scoring. The next season, the new coach has history with his father and the kid is cut from the team.
The father is not a known troublemaker around the rink, in fact he is a very well liked coach at a different age group. But this coach didn't like him and cut his kid because of it.
These were just a few examples of what I came across while talking to people about this topic. There are several others with similar stories.
You know what their advice is to parents who will face these same situations?
You are better off to keep your mouth shut and let it go. In the end, nothing changes and you only get your child blacklisted if you speak up.
It disgusts me how the system seems to operate, and it is even more demoralizing to see how it is condoned by the people who can do something about it, let go by parents in order to protect their children and most of all to see how it is now just becoming "the way sports work" to the kids who play.
Fairness, some people may say it is a term that is overused in minor sports, a lot of people will tell you it is not even in some's vocabulary.