Cowichan Valley Football Association

Equal playing time is a myth – and it’s OK!


I know that statement may seem cold and cruel in today’s “fun first” world of youth sports, but it’s also the truth, so put away those stopwatches and understand why this happens:

Coaches will bend over backwards at the younger levels to make sure that everyone sees the field for a significant period of time.  But, unless you have 48 kids exactly on the roster who fit perfectly into each position, it will be impossible for each kid to play exactly one half.

Usually minor teams will have 25-35 players so someone is going to wind up playing the whole game ,while other may see only a half of play or less.  Plus, you may have a scarcity of large bodies and plethora or tiny fast kids which means there might be no back-ups along a lines of play while wide receiver might be three deep on the depth chart.

To make matters more unsettling for parents, particularly with a hockey background, there are no “shifts” in football.

Once an offence is on the field, they get to stay on as long as they are making first downs or until they score. This could be less than a minute or the majority of time in a particular quarter.  That quarter might also be the one in which your
child was scheduled to play linebacker for that team and spent most of it on the bench waiting. This can be a source of frustration if you do not understand that there is nothing a coach can do about that, and that he has the best intentions to get your child some significant playing time, but the game might not work out that way.

Relax, it may go in your favor next week when your child’s team’s defense is on the field all day.  Playing time is just one of many things a coach has to coordinate in a game.  Trust that he’ll do his best and just relax and enjoy the game.
Really! – It’s OK.