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Is unlimited weight ruining football?

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jrk5150
(@jrk5150)
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We as a program have always been very successful in D1.  We rarely had a year where at least one of our teams didn't win our league. And our league basically mirrored our HS league, so IMO it all made sense. Our kids were playing against the same kids they'll see in HS.

When D3 was implemented, the leagues were blown up and we just played within the conference, and our competition changed. IMO, it wasn't a good place for us to be - the programs we were playing are not feeding HS's that our kids will be playing.  Bottom line - we were out of our league, pun intended. 

Every once in a while we field a team that can compete for the conference, but year in/year out, no. The pools of players we all draw from are simply too different.


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Coach Correa
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At the end of the day the rules are the rules play by them and coach up what you got there's pros and con's to all these convo's me I'm just grateful to Coach Football and get to do what i love year in and year out.......There's no perfect way people will always find something to bitch about.

Head Coach Tito Correa New Britain Raiders 14-U


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patriotsfatboy1
(@patriotsfatboy1)
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At the end of the day the rules are the rules play by them and coach up what you got there's pros and con's to all these convo's me I'm just grateful to Coach Football and get to do what i love year in and year out.......There's no perfect way people will always find something to bitch about.

Are you bitching about people bitching?  😛


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CoachHec
(@coachhec)
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Just my humble opinion but UL Football is the best.

Weight Limits is like banning youth basketball players over 6 feet tall. RB limits is like other leagues limiting 6 footers to inside the paint to prevent them from blocking jump shots.


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DKTurtle
(@dkturtle)
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Just my humble opinion but UL Football is the best.

Weight Limits is like banning youth basketball players over 6 feet tall. RB limits is like other leagues limiting 6 footers to inside the paint to prevent them from blocking jump shots.

Except that putting a 6 foot kid on the court against a 4'10 kid doesn't pose much of a safety risk. A 150 pound RB in a league where most LBs weigh around 100 pounds does.

In some leagues it may work, in my league a number of teams would finish the season with fewer than 11 healthy kids.

Practice makes permanent. Perfect practice makes perfect.


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CoachHec
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Except that putting a 6 foot kid on the court against a 4'10 kid doesn't pose much of a safety risk. A 150 pound RB in a league where most LBs weigh around 100 pounds does.

In some leagues it may work, in my league a number of teams would finish the season with fewer than 11 healthy kids.

Of course you also you into this in some weight limit leagues. This is where you would have say a 14 year old 9th grade stud running back lose 25 pounds in a month to weigh in at 125 and be eligible to play in the 125 lb division the week before the season starts. Then the kid starts eating and would get to around 140, 150, or more as he dominate that level that season, trucking 12 year old, 95 pound 6th graders who have trouble gaining weight.

At least in an UL league, everyone knows the situation. And if that little kid still want to play ball with the big boys, then it will be up to the coaches to get him prepared as much as possible to be able to play against the monsters. More often than not, its a competent coaching issue not a weight limit issue.


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SmakAtak
(@smakatak)
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Just my humble opinion but UL Football is the best.

Weight Limits is like banning youth basketball players over 6 feet tall. RB limits is like other leagues limiting 6 footers to inside the paint to prevent them from blocking jump shots.

Blocked jump shots and broken necks are not the same type of problem.


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Prodigy
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I think weight limits are ruining youth football more than unlimited weight.  I can't think of another youth sport that doesn't mirror higher levels with regards to format.  You don't weigh baseball, soccer, hockey, rugby or lacrosse players....but youth football is some exception.

I think age/weight based youth football is actually a very unrealistic version of the game, not really comparable to any other level of the game due to the weight limits.  Normally you're going to put your bigger, slower kids on the line and your quicker, more athletic kids in the backfield or as linebackers/defensive backs.  With weight limits, you're just lowering the bar.  If we're talking 7-9 year old kids in Pop Warner, I believe the top-end weight is 105 lbs.  you could easily have a kid who is pushing 105 lbs. bodyweight that ends up being a runningback in Pop Warner and you have kids weighing less than him on the line blocking against other small kids.  It's a really weird version of ball to say the least when you take the time to compare it to unlimited ball.

What's a little laughable is, youth football enrollment numbers are down as a whole nationwide, whether it be because families are worried about safety, it costs too much, kids aren't interested or whatever.  Now, throw weight restrictions on top of the already low numbers and you just lowered the number of kids in the community that can enroll in the program...and there's always a few posts here once the season gets started of coaches who are bummed out because they don't have enough kids to make a team.

I remember my first year coaching with Pop Warner, this really big kid came out.  Kid named Dominique.  The first time I laid eyes on this kid, I thought for sure that he was in HS, but he wasn't, he was 9 years old at the time...and he didn't make weight and was sent away.  He would show up at practice and watch his friends play, and even when we offered an unlimited weight program in the town, we were never able to get him involved.  I think he got turned off and embarrassed at a young age and will carry that memory with him for his entire life.

Go look at the Pop Warner age/weight matrix for 2016...and I'll tell you that last season I had a teamful of kids that wouldn't have been able to play because of their weight...but they had a good time playing unlimited ball last season.  With obesity being an epidemic, we should be doing all that we can to give kids opportunities to participate in sports they enjoy.  Think about the fat kids who don't excel at any other sport and you exclude them from play in Pop Warner or force them to play against older kids and they get tuned up...With unlimited ball, they get a chance to actually be successful and be a part of something...where other kids look at them and think "wow, I always thought Johnny was just a slow, fat kid, but he's actually a really valuable member of the team"

As for the "man child" -- it's been my experience that this is a rarity.  If you make a good tackle on a bigger kid, he's not going anywhere.  It's a matter of wrapping up the legs, gang tackling, working together.  What I do see is if the opponent has a big running back, sometimes kids get scared, they frankenstein their tackles, they don't wrap, they don't execute...and that comes back to coaching, getting the kids to perform, believe in themselves and not fear the manchild.

/rant off.

If you show up for a fair fight, you are unprepared.


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Michael
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You don't weigh baseball, soccer, hockey, rugby or lacrosse players....but youth football is some exception.

Doesn't youth hockey outlaw checking?

Michael can not receive PM's, emails or respond to Posts. He passed away in September 2018. To honor his contributions we are leaving his account active. R.I.P - Dumcoach Staff.


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morris
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Doesn't youth hockey outlaw checking?

I'm pretty sure that is a yes.  Also at least In England and other countries when teaching Rugby they limit the types of contact and such up until a certain level (like scrums are not used and maybe the throw in). 


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Shamrocks
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Topic starter  

I think that the media and what parents hear about concussions, injuries and so on with football is scaring many kids away from playing.  I would bet a majority of the kids who play youth sports are on the lighter side than the heavier side.  So by having weight limits or limiting the weight of a RB may allow some parents to give their lighter kids a shot, add in unlimited and the odds are, those parents of the majority kids who are on the fence would opt for Johnny to play soccer instead.  IMO

Yes, youth hockey and lacrosse is limiting contact a great deal, kind of killing the sports the way I played them back in the day, lol.


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Ronin
(@ronin1974)
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I think that the media and what parents hear about concussions, injuries and so on with football is scaring many kids parents away from playing.  I would bet a majority of the kids who play youth sports are on the lighter side than the heavier side.  So by having weight limits or limiting the weight of a RB may allow some parents to give their lighter kids a shot, add in unlimited and the odds are, those parents of the majority kids who are on the fence would opt for Johnny to play soccer instead.  IMO

Yes, youth hockey and lacrosse is limiting contact a great deal, kind of killing the sports the way I played them back in the day, lol.

FYP...


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CoachHec
(@coachhec)
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Blocked jump shots and broken necks are not the same type of problem.

A broken neck is more likely caused by a tackle by a very fast 125 pounder than double cheeseburger eating 250 pounder who cant catch up to the 130 pound runner.


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CoachHec
(@coachhec)
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Joined: 11 years ago
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I think weight limits are ruining youth football more than unlimited weight.  I can't think of another youth sport that doesn't mirror higher levels with regards to format.  You don't weigh baseball, soccer, hockey, rugby or lacrosse players....but youth football is some exception.

I think age/weight based youth football is actually a very unrealistic version of the game, not really comparable to any other level of the game due to the weight limits.  Normally you're going to put your bigger, slower kids on the line and your quicker, more athletic kids in the backfield or as linebackers/defensive backs.  With weight limits, you're just lowering the bar.  If we're talking 7-9 year old kids in Pop Warner, I believe the top-end weight is 105 lbs.  you could easily have a kid who is pushing 105 lbs. bodyweight that ends up being a runningback in Pop Warner and you have kids weighing less than him on the line blocking against other small kids.  It's a really weird version of ball to say the least when you take the time to compare it to unlimited ball.

What's a little laughable is, youth football enrollment numbers are down as a whole nationwide, whether it be because families are worried about safety, it costs too much, kids aren't interested or whatever.  Now, throw weight restrictions on top of the already low numbers and you just lowered the number of kids in the community that can enroll in the program...and there's always a few posts here once the season gets started of coaches who are bummed out because they don't have enough kids to make a team.

I remember my first year coaching with Pop Warner, this really big kid came out.  Kid named Dominique.  The first time I laid eyes on this kid, I thought for sure that he was in HS, but he wasn't, he was 9 years old at the time...and he didn't make weight and was sent away.  He would show up at practice and watch his friends play, and even when we offered an unlimited weight program in the town, we were never able to get him involved.  I think he got turned off and embarrassed at a young age and will carry that memory with him for his entire life.

Go look at the Pop Warner age/weight matrix for 2016...and I'll tell you that last season I had a teamful of kids that wouldn't have been able to play because of their weight...but they had a good time playing unlimited ball last season.  With obesity being an epidemic, we should be doing all that we can to give kids opportunities to participate in sports they enjoy.  Think about the fat kids who don't excel at any other sport and you exclude them from play in Pop Warner or force them to play against older kids and they get tuned up...With unlimited ball, they get a chance to actually be successful and be a part of something...where other kids look at them and think "wow, I always thought Johnny was just a slow, fat kid, but he's actually a really valuable member of the team"

As for the "man child" -- it's been my experience that this is a rarity.  If you make a good tackle on a bigger kid, he's not going anywhere.  It's a matter of wrapping up the legs, gang tackling, working together.  What I do see is if the opponent has a big running back, sometimes kids get scared, they frankenstein their tackles, they don't wrap, they don't execute...and that comes back to coaching, getting the kids to perform, believe in themselves and not fear the manchild.

/rant off.

PREACH!!!!!!! One comment I may have about this is that lots of people complain how kids today are not as healthy as kids back in the day. Then the same people complain about the big fat Stanley playing with little Jimmys even though the odds are better that Jimmy's speed will hurt Stanley's slothlike running skills.


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jrk5150
(@jrk5150)
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Joined: 12 years ago
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The only issue I'd have with a man-child is whether their development is best served with their age group or playing up.  That decision would be person-specific.  A kid who can flat out dominate isn't really going to learn a whole lot - challenge creates improvement. I'd be more careful in football than in non-collision sports, but generally, kids should play at their ability level - not above it, but also not below it if possible. If it's close, I would not move a kid up unless he and his parents wanted it.

We had a kid come through our program - Mike McLaughlin, played MLB at BC (defensive captain as a Sr.), and was one of those players on the bubble in the NFL until he got hurt. I wasn't involved in our program at the time, but my understanding (we were Pop Warner then as we are now) is he always played up in age groups due to his size. Even if we were unlimited, I would probably think he'd be best served playing up at least one age group; a kid like that just isn't going to get any better playing against kids his age. I'm sure in plenty of areas of the country his age group could have provided suitable competition, but not around here...


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