A solution to Ladue’s soccer selection dilemma


Photo by Ashley Byer

In the Ladue soccer program, practically no freshmen are cut due to the existence of the freshmen team. Some sophomores are dropped, but the majority still make a team, one way or another. However, any juniors that are not good enough to play for varsity are cut, and no juniors play for junior varsity alone. Recently, a lawsuit from a disgruntled junior who was cut raised the argument over whether juniors who are not good enough to make varsity should be immediately placed on junior varsity teams. This argument is ridiculous. Players that were not good enough to make the team, junior or otherwise,  do not deserve to automatically make the junior varsity team. 

Juniors who are unable to make varsity have either equal or inferior skill to the majority of underclassmen on the junior varsity squad. However, because they are older, they also have less time for development or improvement in their high school careers. Therefore, the younger players on junior varsity hold far more potential and are more crucial overall to the success of the Ladue soccer program. If juniors cut from varsity are allowed to play for junior varsity, less spots would be available for underclassmen to play and develop their skills.

A solution to this problem could be the introduction of a fourth team. In larger athletic schools such as CBC or De Smet, there is a freshman, sophomore, junior varsity and varsity team. The freshman and varsity team function similarly to the current freshman and varsity teams of Ladue, but the sophomore team would consist of exceptional freshmen and the majority of sophomores. The junior varsity team would provide a team for the juniors and seniors who are cut from varsity.

In the current Ladue soccer system, juniors who are not good enough for varsity should unable to play for junior varsity. Underclassman need the space to better develop their games. Unless a new team is implemented, there is no reason to allow these juniors onto a team simply because they tried out.