WHAT IS THE MISSION OF OUR TRAVEL PROGRAM? Travel basketball offers Edgemont children in grades 4th through 8th an opportunity to learn the game from experienced professional coaches, build skills, play competitively, and enjoy camaraderie with friends and neighbors in a serious, fun, positive, and team-oriented environment. Edgemont Hoops believes in the “modern” (i.e. position-less) game where each and every participating child, regardless of size, athleticism, or prior basketball experience:

-Is given ample opportunity to master all individual fundamentals and team concepts in a positive and encouraging environment;

-Competes against the most talented and ambitious players from neighboring communities;

-Achieves a satisfying level of personal proficiency; and

-Develops a lifelong love, respect, and appreciation for the game of basketball.

WHO ORGANIZES, FUNDS, AND ADMINISTERS EDGEMONT TRAVEL BASKETBALL? Edgemont travel is organized and overseen by Edgemont Travel Basketball Inc. (d/b/a Edgemont Hoops), a New York State nonprofit 501c3 corporation run by volunteers who reside in the community. Click here to learn more about the organization. It is funded by Edgemont residents in the form of program fees and donations.

IN WHICH LEAGUE DOES EDGEMONT TRAVEL PARTICIPATE? Edgemont teams typically compete in the Tri-County Basketball League and sometimes in other leagues and tournaments.

WHEN AND WHERE ARE GAMES AND PRACTICES? Tryouts will begin in mid-October and team practices will commence shortly thereafter. Teams generally practice twice per week from there forward.

A standard travel season consists of 12-15 regular-season games plus playoffs and scrimmages. Most games are on weekends but some are on weeknights. Travel practices and games will not conflict with Edgemont Recreation or EHS modified practices and games.

Home games are played primarily at EHS with some (for younger teams) in the Greenville APR. Away games are rarely more than a 25-minute drive from Edgemont.

Game schedules will not be available until the first week of November. Opening weekend is typically the weekend before Thanksgiving. The regular season concludes in mid-February just before winter break. Playoffs commence after winter break and can continue to mid-March if teams advance.

IS EDGEMONT TRAVEL CONSIDERED AN “AAU” PROGRAM? No. Edgemont’s travel teams, and the teams against which we compete, draw players solely from their own communities. AAU (or club) teams allow players from any communities to try out for their teams and play in leagues that are separate from the travel league.

WHO COACHES THE TEAMS? All teams and clinics are coached by experienced professionals (not parents).

WHY DOES THE PROGRAM ONLY USE OUTSIDE COACHES? Edgemont travel coaches generally have more experience than parent coaches. Further, competitive basketball requires difficult decisions regarding player selection and playing time, among others. Edgemont travel believes these decisions are best made by individuals who have no conflicts (or appearance thereof) and are removed from politics, favoritism, and other non-basketball elements.

CAN PARENTS HELP SELECT THE COACHES? No.

MY CHILD IS PRETTY BUSY. HOW BIG IS THE TRAVEL COMMITMENT? The travel program requires a significant commitment. At many points during the season, travel players will have 4 or 5 events per week.

This level of commitment is necessary for players to build good habits, understand team philosophies and systems, memorize sets and plays, and develop chemistry with their teammates.

Before registering for tryouts, please make sure your child is able to prioritize travel basketball over other winter sports and activities. Please do not accept a spot on an Edgemont travel team if you intend for your child to prioritize another sport or activity (e.g. baseball training, LAX training, indoor soccer, gymnastics, math enrichment, harp lessons, etc.). Please keep in mind that game schedules are not known until November, and that both practice and game schedules are subject to change based on gym and coach availability.

IS TRAVEL BASKETBALL AGE-BASED OR GRADE-BASED? CAN KIDS PLAY UP A GRADE? Edgemont travel basketball teams are primarily organized by grade. However, league rules do allow players to play up a grade.

Edgemont travel will consider case-by-case requests to try out “up” a grade only if the child could have enrolled in the higher grade (as per Edgemont UFSD school policies regarding age cutoffs).

Coaches will only admit a lower-grade player to a higher-grade roster if they believe playing up is developmentally more appropriate for the child. Players who initially attend higher-grade tryouts but do not make the higher-grade team will retain eligibility to try out for their own grade’s team.

Ultimately, final decisions to allow a child to play up a grade will rest with the individual coach on a case-by-case basis.

Regardless of age, players may not play down a grade.

WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO PLAY ON EDGEMONT TRAVEL TEAMS? Children who reside within the legal borders of the Edgemont Union Free School District (including children who live in Edgemont, but attend school elsewhere) are eligible to participate in the Edgemont travel program. Also eligible are students who reside outside of the school district but “tuition in” to attend Edgemont schools.

HOW MUCH DOES A TRAVEL SEASON COST AND WHAT DOES IT COVER? Season fees are typically in the $750 – $800 range, but can vary by team depending on roster size and number of team events.

All program payments are allocated to expenses which including coaches/trainers, gym rentals, league fees, referee fees, equipment, and organization fees (e.g. insurance/accounting/tax). All day-to-day program management and administration is done on a volunteer basis.

HOW MANY BASKETBALL EVENTS DOES THE FEE INCLUDE? There are typically 40-50 on-court events (practices, skills training sessions, scrimmages, and games) over the course of an Edgemont travel season.

IS FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE? Yes. No child will be prevented from playing due to financial hardship. If assistance is required, please e-mail the program administrator. All discussions will be confidential.

CAN MY CHILD PLAY BOTH EDGEMONT TRAVEL AND EDGEMONT RECREATION BASKETBALL? Yes. Please note that Edgemont travel is not intended to replace or compete with our recreational program. In fact, travel and rec have long worked in close partnership to ensure there is a basketball-playing option for every interested Edgemont child.

For travel players, rec offers a great opportunity to enjoy additional playing time and build confidence in a less competitive and more relaxed setting playing with and against friends. REC IS STRONGLY RECOMMENDED FOR YOUNGER TRAVEL PLAYERS IN PARTICULAR. NOTE: the two programs coordinate schedules to avoid conflicts.

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN EDGEMONT’S TRAVEL AND REC PROGRAMS? Travel is significantly more competitive and requires far more preparation for games (and therefore a much bigger time commitment), and is designed for boys and girls who are serious and aspirational about the game and for whom basketball is their primary winter sport.

The travel season begins in much earlier than rec. Travel games are played against teams from other towns and school districts located up to 30 minutes away, while rec games are played at one nearby location. There are no cuts in rec, but travel teams require tryouts.

IS PLAYING TIME EQUAL IN TRAVEL BASKETBALL? No. In some situations (e.g. close games / playoff games), some players may play only a little. That reflects the highly competitive nature of travel basketball, in which playing time is earned based on each player’s attendance / commitment and performance in both practices and games.

During practice, every player will be given the same instruction. In games, coaches will do their best to distribute playing time fairly while a) attempting to win the game; and b) ensuring that children are placed in competitively appropriate situations where they have a reasonable chance to succeed and help their team.

During the course of the season, the coaches will provide feedback to players so they know what to work on and how to earn more playing time.

DOES THE TRAVEL PROGRAM PRIMARILY FOCUS ON WINNING? Our opponents in the highly competitive Tri-County Basketball League all play to win, and Edgemont’s program is no exception. However, we do not take a “win-at-all-costs” approach. Our coaches seek to achieve a reasonable balance of player development and strategy while making every effort to ensure that all players, regardless of skill level, have an opportunity to contribute in competitively appropriate situations over the course of hte season.

MY CHILD PLAYS FALL AND WINTER AAU BASKETBALL. CAN HE OR SHE STILL PLAY EDGEMONT TRAVEL? Yes, provided that Edgemont travel is prioritized in the event of a conflict. However, please note that it can be challenging to manage multiple winter basketball schedules, many of which play games in similar time slots. We generally recommend that competitive players join their community travel and rec teams in the winter and play AAU in the spring, summer, and/or early fall seasons.

CAN MY CHILD PLAY EDGEMONT TRAVEL SOCCER AND TRAVEL BASKETBALL? Yes. While Edgemont travel basketball starts while fall travel soccer is still in season, events are scheduled to avoid conflicts with travel soccer games and practices. However, in the winter (i.e. during prime basketball season), Edgemont travel basketball players are expected to prioritize basketball over any winter travel soccer activities (e.g. indoor training or tournaments).

CAN MY CHILD PLAY NON-EDGEMONT “ACADEMY” SOCCER AND TRAVEL BASKETBALL? It depends on the extent of the winter select soccer commitment. A once-per-week soccer program that doesn’t conflict with travel basketball practices can work, but a heavy soccer schedule that continues through the winter (e.g. multiple weeknight practices and weekend games/tournaments) is not feasible. In those cases, rec basketball is likely the more suitable option.

WE OFTEN TAKE FAMILY WEEKEND GETAWAYS IN THE WINTER. CAN MY CHILD STILL PLAY TRAVEL? No. Travel basketball requires a heavy weekend commitment from December through early March, and there is likely to be a travel basketball event on every Sunday, except over school breaks.

CAN MY 7TH- OR 8TH-GRADE CHILD PLAY BOTH EHS MODIFIED BASKETBALL AND TRAVEL BASKETBALL? Yes. Travel basketball practices and games are scheduled to avoid conflicts with Edgemont High School’s modified sports program (which is limited to weekdays and typically concludes by 6:00pm).

HOW MANY PLAYERS WILL MAKE EACH TRAVEL TEAM? Edgemont travel teams typically carry between 10 and 12 players. The final decision on roster size will reside with each team’s coach after tryout evaluations.

WHAT CRITERIA ARE EMPLOYED TO SELECT PLAYERS? Deciding who should make each team is not an exact science. Coaches, with the assistance of additional evaluators attending the tryouts, will do their best to identify the best players for each team, which need different types of players to be successful. Factors considered by the coaches include skill-level, experience, position, basketball IQ, hustle, athleticism, coachability/ability to follow directions, selflessness, role/potential to contribute, enthusiasm, attitude, sportsmanship, and body language.

WILL THERE BE CUTS? It depends on tryout attendance, which can vary significantly from year to year. If, for example, 10 kids attend travel tryouts and the coaches and commissioner believe that the team could be reasonably competitive, there would be no cuts. But if a larger number of children try out, cuts are likely.

PLEASE NOTE: THERE IS NO GUARANTEE THAT EACH GRADE WILL FIELD A BOYS AND GIRLS TEAM EACH YEAR. The number of Edgemont teams in any given year is not predetermined, but rather will be driven by interest, commitment, and ability. As a small district, we are sometimes unable to field an appropriately competitive team every season for every grade/gender, or simply do not have enough participation.

CAN PARENTS BE INVOLVED IN SELECTING PLAYERS? No.

WILL WE HAVE AN AND B TEAMS? Due to Edgemont’s small size, the program will field (at maximum) only one boys and one girls travel team per age/grade level.

WHY HAVE CUTS AT ALL? WHY NOT JUST HAVE VERY LARGE ROSTERS AND/OR B AND C TEAMS? Cutting kids is not preferred, but unfortunately there are practical limitations on how many kids can participate at the travel level. Large rosters are not manageable, dilute the experience for all, and render it difficult for coaches to prepare for competitive play. Further, Edgemont is a small community, so historically many of our A teams play in the B (lowest) division to begin with.

Unlike travel soccer leagues, the Tri-County Basketball League does not have “developmental” divisions. It only has A and B divisions which are intended to match up roughly with school district size. Its B divisions are quite challenging (as they include teams from significantly larger communities) and the league expects participating programs to field competitively appropriate teams.

WHY DO GAME OUTCOMES MATTER AT THIS AGE? They don’t, as long as a team has the opportunity to play a reasonable number of competitive games over the course of the season. Over many years, our coaches and administrators have learned that playing on a non-competitive team is not conducive to developing skills or fostering a love of the sport.

IF MY CHILD PLAYED ON A TRAVEL TEAM LAST YEAR, WILL HE/SHE AUTOMATICALLY MAKE THE TEAM THIS YEAR? No. Each season starts with a “clean slate” for all players. Rosters will be determined based on many factors and no spots on any team are guaranteed.

IS TRAVEL BASKETBALL FOR EVERYONE? No. Compared to recreational play, it is more serious and, at times, somewhat intense. Parents should consider whether the program is a good fit for their child.

ARE PARENTS ALLOWED IN THE GYM DURING TRYOUTS OR AT PRACTICES? No.

HOW CAN I HELP MY CHILD PREPARE FOR TRYOUTS? Working on fundamentals is the best preparation. Click here for a curriculum.

HOW WILL I BE NOTIFIED IF MY CHILD IS SELECTED FOR A TEAM? WHAT HAPPENS NEXT? After a travel team spot is offered, families will be expected to reply promptly, as the process of selecting teams is difficult and stressful. Offers to other interested players may be contingent upon whether those initially offered a spot accept or turn down their offer.

ARE REFUNDS AVAILABLE IF MY CHILD DOESN’T ENJOY HIS OR HER EXPERIENCE? It is very difficult for the program, which is run as a nonprofit, to offer refunds. Fees are set based upon an assumed level of participation such that the program can cover its team-specific (e.g. coaches) and fixed (insurance) costs. Once teams are selected, costs are allocated on a per-family basis.

WHAT OPTIONS DO I HAVE IF MY CHILD DOESN’T MAKE A TRAVEL TEAM? In addition to Edgemont Recreation basketball for grades 3 through 6, the travel program organizes clinics and open gym sessions available to all Edgemont children.

Further, there are many other nearby opportunities to join teams and develop skills both in-season and during the off-season.

I AM A PARENT AND WOULD LIKE TO COACH OR OTHERWISE BE INVOLVED IN YOUTH BASKETBALL IN EDGEMONT. WHAT ARE MY OPTIONS? For grades 3 through 6, Edgemont Recreation basketball relies on parent volunteers.

WHAT IF I STILL HAVE QUESTIONS? Contact Jon Lewis.