Turnpike Basketball Club is committed to creating fair and balanced house league teams. There are several factors that go into creating well-matched teams within both boys and girls divisions in all age-groups. The success of the team selection process depends on cooperation from the club, coaches, parents and players.
- Pre-Season Evaluations: Prior to the start of each season, Turnpike Basketball conducts player evaluations (or "tryouts"). This affords the coaches of each age group the opportunity to evaluate the players and rank each according to their ability relative to their peers. The evaluation considers fundamental skills, offense and defensive skills and game situation analysis. We provide 2 evaluation sessions and a make-up session and ask ALL players to attend 1 session. All players should exhibit their highest ability of play during tryouts so they can be fairly evaluated. It is critical that each player attends a pre-season evaluation session.
- Post-Season Evaluations: At the end of each season, each team's coach is asked to submit player evaluations for the season just ended. Having just completed a full season with the players, it's at this point in the process that the coach has the best insight into a player's ability. The coaches are asked to evaluate the players using the same criteria as the pre-season evaluations. The post-season evaluation is archived until next season.
- Team Drafts: Prior to the start of each season, the coaches come together for team drafts. Each coach is provided a listing of all players in the form of a "draft sheet" that represents their playing ability and corresponding "draft round." The ranking of each player is based on their post-season evaluation (if they played in the prior season) as well as their recent pre-season evaluation. Each coach in the age division selects a number out of hat which determines the order in which they pick their players and we follow that order in a serpentine format until all players are assigned a team. Coaches and assistant coaches are required to draft their children in the draft round in which their player falls. If a coach's player is a first round player - that team does not receive another first round pick. For coaches that are not able to be present during the draft - their team is "auto drafted" for them by assigning the next available highest ranked player.
A few important footnotes to the process:
- There are times when a player doesn't have any evaluation score and therefore is placed at the bottom of the draft sheet. We try to avoid this as much as possible - but at times it is logistically difficult to eliminate this dynamic.
- Players register with all kinds of special requests. We understand that certain players may want to play on the same team, however it is entirely up to the coaches selecting the teams to honor those requests.
- The draft sheets are provided to the coaches as a guide based on each player's ability. If the coach decides to pick "down draft" for any reason, that is up to that coach. It's important to note that the balance among teams in the age divisions is greatly impacted by coaches picking "down draft" and for each lower ranked player a team selects, another higher ranked player is chosen by another team. We do not recommend "down draft" picks, however, at times it happens(mostly to accommodate those special requests).
- From time to time, player trades may happen after the drafts are complete. This is usually due to schedule conflicts for practice times. The decision to trade players is entirely up to the coaches involved. Turnpike Basketball honors the request if both affected coaches agree.
- Lastly, the balancing of teams is a very complex process that involves many variables and relies on the cooperation of all involved. It only takes a small misstep to throw off the balance of the whole age division. We try our best to avoid those missteps.