This Q&A is designed to help anyone new to our program, whether they have played elsewhere before or not. Hopefully it can answer many of the questions you may have. If not, remember you can always contact us.
Q: What age group am I?
A: First, don't be confused by the age definitions, most players fit in the following age groups by grade (dates are for the 2017-2018 club season):
12th grade: 18's (born on/after 9/1/99 or 9/1/98 and still in HS)
11th grade: 17's (born on/after 9/1/00)
10th grade: 16's (born on/after 9/1/2001)
9th grade: 15's (born on/after 9/1/02)
8th grade: 14's (born on/after 9/1/03)
7th grade: 13's (born on/after 9/1/04)
6th grade: 12's (born on/after 9/1/05)
5th grade and younger: Check in with us
Your age group is actually determined by how old you are on the August 31st that follows the club season. If you are a little young in your grade, you'll still play with players in your grade. If you're a little old, you may be required to play with some girls a bit older (that happens with less than 1% of the girls). Also, we do have some mixed age group Boys and Regional teams as players are assigned by ability and position.
Q: How much does it cost?
A: Pricing information is here
Q: I played for another club last year (or didn't play club). Am I at a disadvantage?
A: Not at all, we start each season from scratch. We welcome new and transfer club players every year. Teams are formed each year on merit. Teams at all levels have players in their first year with us.
Q: How are teams formed?
A: We hold 3 evaluations prior to the start of the season. From those evaluations we'll make teams that are based upon the following considerations:
| Current volleyball ability
| Some carpool considerations
Q: Do I need to come to all evaluation days?
A: Yes please! It does take us a while to see all the players. If you can’t make one, just let us know in advance.
Q: What do I need to bring on the first day of tryouts?
A: If you've made an payment in advance (online or mailed in a check) and have joined USA Volleyball you'll receive an "express check-in pass" a few days before the tryout. If you are missing either of those you may have to wait in line a bit.
Q: Where do I get the required USA Volleyball membership?
A: Go to http://www.huskyvolleyball.com/forms
Q. What if it snows?
A. Check the website and your email for a notice before leaving for the gym. If there's nothing posted there, we're on. There are no makeup dates.
Q: How are players evaluated?
A: During the evaluations the players will be tested for certain volleyball skills along with vertical jump. They will be asked to execute a variety of skills while being observed by a coach. Most of the evaluations are objective, so (for example) when passing players receive a certain number of points (0-3) based upon their ability to pass the ball to a target (perfect passes get 3 points, good = 2 points, below average = 1 point, poor = 0) and an average is computed.
Q: Can we request that our child be placed on a team with some other players from our town?
A: For teams other than High Performance teams, we do that naturally. However we attempt to limit the number of players from the same town to two or three (max). Carpools absolutely can not be guaranteed. If you do require a carpool to be able to play, we will do our best to place your child with someone that live near you, however both players will be placed on a team at the level of the lower rated player based upon our evaluations. For High Performance teams, carpooling needs are not considered.
Q. How many teams do you make?
A. We will form as many teams as we can and are only limited by gym space and coaches.
Q: Who will be coaching my child?
A: It's too early to tell! We have had over 50 teams the last few years. Here's what the general makeup is of our coaching staff:
| Current high school coaches
| Adults who have "real jobs" and are very knowledgeable about volleyball
| Current and former college players
For some teams, there will also be a "lead coach" that will provide warmup and practice plans for the day and help give additional instruction and feedback to players. All of our coaches have a minimum of USA Volleyball's IMPACT certification and are background checked.
Q: What is the cost for playing Husky Volleyball and what does it include?
A: Costs vary based on team type (Boys, Regionals, or the different levels of High Performance). Please check the Sign Up page for team specific pricing. Costs do not include transportation to tournaments. They do include all practices, uniforms and tournament entry fees.
Q: When do I pay?
A: Please send your check in ahead of time. Handling checks on the first day really slows our down the check-in process.
Q: Are there payment plans available?
A: Payment plans are available (credit card only) with payments due before tryouts and then billed automatically on the first of subsequent months.
Q: What's the time commitment?
A: We have a few days off for holidays, but aside from that players are expected to attend practice(s), a play-day or a tournament every week. Practices are 2 hours long. For some teams, we will host a scrimmage day or two in January and/or February that will be about 3-4 hours long. The NERVA tournaments go from about 9a-5p. Girls teams also have free open scrimmage on most Monday nights during the winter season (optional)
Q: What's the travel commitment?
A: All NERVA tournaments are in New England, usually (but not always) less than a 90 minute drive from the Windsor area. High Performance Girls teams will also participate in additional tournaments outside of the region (see specific HP team schedules for details).
Q: Where are practices held?
A: Windsor, CT at The Den and occasionally at another facility if needed.
Q: What if it snows?
A: Check the website, Facebook, and your email for a notice before leaving for the gym. If there’s nothing posted there, we’re on. Unfortunately there's no room in the schedule for makeup days (we go every weekend through the end of the season except Easter Sunday).
Q. What if I can't make a practice because I'm sick, on vacation, etc.
A. Just send your coach an email as soon as you know so that they can plan practice accordingly. Please don't just not show up!
Q: What do we need to know about tournament days?
A: A few things!
| Each tournament has something called an "entry time" which generally will be at 8:30am. That's the time that players should expect to arrive at the gym (no earlier!).
| Players should all arrive within 10 minutes of the entry time.
| Parents should bring a portable chair (unless told otherwise that there will be seating)
| Players should bring plenty of water to drink and food to eat.
| You will play at least 6 sets/games that day (more if your team makes the playoffs).
| Players can expect to play until about 2p-5p depending on how the team does.
| Often the team can have a work assignment following their last match of the day. It is the responsibility of the player to stay until the completion of their team's work assignment.
| It's expected that excepting a last minute illness, coaches will be notified at least 1 month in advance if you're missing a tournament.
Q: How is playing time decided?
A: For teams other than High Performance teams, playing time is roughly equal among players at the same position. For High Performance teams, practice time is equivalent but players are expected to earn their playing time in games.
Q: What if I want to skip a tournament?
A: It's important that you attend all tournaments and not leave your team short-handed. Not showing up on tournament day without notifying your coach in advance will make you subject to dismissal from the program (with no refund).
Q: What if I need to drop out?
A: If you have to drop out for medical reasons we will pro-rate your fee. It’s important to understand that if you drop out because of any non-medical reason the entire fee still applies.
Q: I want to play in college, are these the right teams for me?
A: Yes! You'll be exposed to quite a few college coaches. It's most important to remember that you have to do your part to market yourself too though! We have recently added the position of Recruiting Coordinator to help you through the process.
Q: Can you compare Husky Volleyball to Club XYZ?
A: We're not really comfortable trying to directly compare one club to another, however we can tell you that many of our alumni have gone off to play in college, many have received scholarships, and many have been very successful - as much as any other club in New England. If another club is telling you that they can give you more collegiate exposure or give you better training, well... that's just not the truth. You'll find that our teams get about the same amount of training and play against a very similar level of play as other clubs that commit to exhaustive travel schedules. Years ago New England volleyball was considered weaker than many of the eastern states, but that's no longer the case. New England teams are on par with most clubs in NY and NJ so there's no reason to incur the money and time to undertake a heavy travel schedule.
Q: I want to tryout for high performance, what if I don't make an HP team?
A: We'll put you on one of our regional teams that is appropriate for your level (unless you tell us that you only want to play HP or not at all).
Q: I'm trying out for HP, what happens to my payment if I don't make HP and don't want to play on a Regional team?
A: We'll refund what you've paid minus the tryout fee (to cover the cost of gym time and your tryout shirt)
Q: What if I can't make a practice because I'm sick, on vacation, etc.
A: Just send your coach an email as soon as you know so that they can plan practice accordingly. Please don't just not show up! This is a higher commitment than Regionals. HP players are expected to schedule family vacations around tournaments listed on our schedule. If you have questions about the schedule please ask your coach or Pat Ryan.
Q: Where are the tournaments?
A: All HP teams will compete in the NERVA 1-4 and Regional Championship tournaments just like Regionals. Each of those tournaments will be in New England, likely 90 minutes from Windsor (but on occasion further). However, HP teams will also participate in additional tournaments that may be outside of New England depending on the HP level. Please check the schedule of the HP team you are considering for the specifics.
Q: What expenses are there other than the Husky club dues?
A: Travel and hotel expenses related to tournaments are not included. If the team requests to participate in an additional tournament, the Tournament Entry Fee is not included in the original club dues.
Q: Can I play on a High Performance team and play other high school sports at the same time?
A: Yes, as long as your high school team doesn't have practices that conflict with our Sunday practices. The multi-day tournaments usually start after the winter season ends, but softball players do run into some conflicts. If you are unable to attend practices on a regular basis, you should play Regional instead. Your HP teammates will be highly motivated volleyball players that want to play in college and will expect your club volleyball team to be a very high priority for you.
Q: How about playing HP volleyball and AAU basketball?
A: Our experience has been that it's difficult play AAU basketball and be on one of our HP volleyball teams at the same time due to tournament conflicts. Seriously, it's not us... but the basketball coaches don't like it! There have been some instances where the schedules can work out, however missing HP tournaments at the end of our season to play in early season AAU basketball tournaments will not go over well with your teammates! One thing that we have noticed is that although we're willing to work with you on missing a competition day, AAU basketball coaches typically aren't flexible about that (no offense to any reading this, but you know it's true!).
Q: What's the attendance policy?
A: You are expected to attend every tournament and practice. If you are unable to attend any event, we need to know at the beginning of the season so that we may take that into account when selecting the teams. We do understand that there can be some conflicts, but we expect that your volleyball team will be your 2nd priority behind school work.
Q: What happens if I have to drop out?
A: When you agree to join an HP team you are agreeing to pay the entire fee for the season and the payment plan is a convenience. If you have to drop out for medical reasons we will pro-rate your fee. It's important to understand that if you drop out because of any non-medical reason the entire fee is still due. None of the costs of running the team will go down because we have 1 less player and it's nearly impossible to find a replacement player.