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Postgrad and junior hockey

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Smallpotatoes, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    A few weeks ago, I was talking with a high school hockey coach about how these days it's virtually mandatory for any kid who wants to play college hockey, even at the Division III level, to spend a year after high school playing junior hockey or spending a year at a prep school as a postgrad.
    A year at a prep school or playing for a junior team can cost thousands of dollars, probably tens of thousands. For those who end up getting a scholarship to play college hockey, the investment is worth it, but is it worth it for those who end up playing at a nonscholarship program and perhaps paying full sticker price?
    I realize at many Division III and other non-scholarship place like the Ivy Leagues, there are ways around it, and athletes have been known to get better need-based financial aid deals than non-athletes, but the kids and their families still have the tuition bills.
    Also, the kid who spends the year in juniors or as a postgrad also enters the workforce later than his classmates who went straight to college after high school. In other words, it's a year when he and/or his family is paying for school as opposed to the kid being out in the world earning money.
    For the kid who does the juniors or postgrad thing just because the Division III coach wants 20-year-old freshmen, what makes it worthwhile?
    Is there something wrong with a system that virtually requires a kid to spend a year after high school playing hockey somewhere else at his family's expense in order to play college hockey, with or without a scholarship?
    Anyone think this might be a worthwhile story?
  2. Dessens71

    Dessens71 Member

    I'd read it.
  3. Beef03

    Beef03 Active Member

    Would be a decent read. I would like to make a few points, however.

    1) If the kid is reccruited to play junior or major junior hockey, particularly in Canada, I believe the only cost to the family is a plane/bus ticket. The team pays for boarding. I may be wrong on this but I am pretty sure.

    2) If they can afford to send the kid to a top end prep school, chances are they can afford the college tuition.

    3) if the player can't crack a junior A roster (tier II) chances are he won't crack a decent college or university roster, and at that point he should probably be considering a different vocation.

    4) For those who fall through the crack, simple lesson: LIFE IS NOT FAIR. If they reallly want to pursue hockey and they think they've been overlooked try cracking a semi-pro roster in texas or the USHL.

    Fact is that's the current system in place. To butcher a line from "Rudy" Not everyone was meant to play college hockey. And besides If their goal is just to get noticed or to get drafted, etc. there are other routes than College.
  4. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    The best person to comment on this is Huggy who I'm sure will be along sometime today.

    Beef's right about the cost as far as Major Junior/ TierII. Kids are billeted with families.

    Tier II's a good route to US college hockey but as you know, if you play Major Junior, you forfeit your NCAA eligibility because the players are paid a stipend (it's very small, but they get paid)

    And, as Beef said, if a kid can't crack a Junior Tier II team in Canada, his future isn't in hockey.
  5. Fly

    Fly Well-Known Member

    Not sure where the OP is located (sounds like east coast).

    Almost ALL hockey in the US is pay-to-play. Period. End of story. It's become a rich-kid sport. And that is a crying shame.

    I watch a lot of minor hockey (U16/minor midget & U18/major midget), along with assorted Tier 2/Jr. B in the US and Ontario. You see teams in Canada, mostly community-based (other than the whores in the GTHL) and there are MAYBE 15-16 kids on the roster. In the States, it's rare to see a similar team with fewer than 19 or 20. Why? Simple- the $5-25K each kid pays to play. That's the operating budget for the team, cash for the coach/manager/sponsor/owner. And it's the same in most of the US Tier 2 programs, like the NAHL, AJHL and EJHL. Kids pay a varying amount (depending on team) for the right to play and hopefully get exposed and move to the next level. It's nothing but a massive money grab.
  6. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    Hey, Fly, lay off the GTHL. :)
  7. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

    Hey, that's not fair to whores, my brother. The GTHL is a cesspool.
  8. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    As Huggy knows, my eldest played AA hockey in the GTHL from Atom to Midget so I have first hand experience of the way they operate.

    Their politics alone make the Kremlin under the Soviets look like a tea party. The President, John Gardner, outlived his usefulness about 15 years ago.

    That said, if you live in Toronto and your kid wants to play elite level minor hockey, that's all you have. It's not the largest minor hockey organization in the world for nothin'
  9. Flash

    Flash Guest

    Don't feel special in Toronto ... minor hockey at any level in Canada is corrupt and run by self-serving assholes.
  10. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    You know what, Flash? Not all of it.

    Our local houseleague is run by good people and although it's a small, neighbourhood league, people who run it really do "think of the kids".

    The GTHL is a monster.
  11. Huggy

    Huggy Well-Known Member

    GTHL has some full-time coaches making anywhere from 25-30K and up. That's fucked.
  12. JR

    JR Well-Known Member

    Yup. Some of the AAA teams have full time coaches. And the team registration fees are anywhere up to $7500 from what I hear.

    And I agree. It's fucked.

    And of course, the looniest hockey parents are those whose kids play AAA.
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