Tryouts can be a confusing time for players, coaches and parents. Georgia Soccer released its tryout dates recently and with this in mind a reminder on the rules of recruitment & tryouts.
- May 24 for 9u-12u Academy and the 13u Athena, Classic, GPL and National League (known collectively as "Select").
- June 1 for 14u-19u Athena, Classic, GPL, National League (known collectively as "Select").
As you review the rules, know that these rules apply to registered Georgia Soccer members and players. A player who is not registered in Georgia Soccer can be recruited or tryout at any time during the year. These players are considered unregistered (rule 302.2c).
Below is an excerpt taken from the Georgia Soccer Youth Rules & Regulations.
320. Tryouts and Advertising
320.1 Player tryouts for Academy, Classic and Athena may not be held before the approved and published date.
320.2 All member affiliates shall have open tryouts for all select teams. Clubs/Associations may advertise their tryout schedules in the media of their choice at any point after the tryout dates have been set by Youth Representatives to the Georgia Soccer Board of Directors. Advertising includes marketing your association, team, camp, tournament, tryout, or event through the public media, newspapers, radio outlets, mass mailings, etc.
An email distribution list put together by an individual or association that includes players/families that are registered with another club does not constitute a mass mailing and is prohibited at all times even during the open recruiting period. Mass mailing is provided to Georgia Soccer youth members by using Georgia Soccer’s database, with that database sent to a certified mailing house, and the content kept confidential from the individual or association using it.
- Coaches’ data is available to all entities so that clubs can market their tournaments to coaches and teams.
- Player data is not available to be purchased by youth clubs for any reason at any time. Player Data will be available to colleges for the purpose of marketing their team camps but will still be kept confidential via the mail house.
- Clubs can mass mail to their own in-house mail list which is available to them through the registration program.
320.2a The announcement/advertisement must be limited to the following: tryouts must be open to all players, the name of the club/association must be clearly stated; its business address, and telephone number, complete dates, times, places and coaches for tryout sessions may be included if available.
320.2b No language can be incorporated which would deny the right or ability of any youth soccer player of the correct age to participate; or which would restrict eligibility for the team to any arbitrary prerequisites such as particular school, church, housing, subdivision, etc.; nor can the advertisement serve in any way, directly or indirectly, to coerce or threaten players to try out for a particular member affiliate's team versus another.
320.2c A member affiliate may advertise for unregistered players at any time.
320.2d No select program player may register with a member affiliate and be rostered to a team prior to the signing date approved and published by Georgia Soccer.
330. Recruitment for Select Program
330.1 Prior to May 1, no person may directly or indirectly induce or attempt to induce a player to leave the team for which he/she has registered without either written notice to the player’s coach or an approved release on file in the electronic registration system.
330.2 Prior to May 1, no registered player may directly or indirectly contact any other team during the current seasonal year without either written notice to the player’s coach or an approved release on file in the electronic registration system.
330.2a If a member ascertains that another member of the association has violated the recruiting rules, that member is entitled to seek redress by filing a grievance with the Georgia Soccer Ethics and Grievance Committee - Youth.
330.3 Recruitment Sanctions: If a coach, team official, player, parent of a player, or anybody acting on behalf of the team is found guilty of unauthorized recruiting, the sanctions may include, but are not limited to the following: warning, coach suspension, tournament play restrictions, team advancement restrictions, coach dismissal, and team suspension.