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Important Information regarding upcoming Tryouts from MAHA

By George Atkinson MAHA President, 02/22/19, 10:30AM EST


The following information below was copied directly from an email sent by the MAHA President.  It contains very important information regarding try-out season that is upon us.  Violation of anything below may result in a one year suspension.

Now that Districts are over, teams are going to start posting try-outs and prepping for next season. However, we do have multiple teams within each district that are still going to states and even some making a push towards nationals.  This is an important time for them and should be focusing on the games ahead, coaches have already begun to try to communicate, poach, or recruit players for next season.  Here are a few things you should know:

1 - Whether it's through you, your coaches, manager, or even a parent on your team, any communication thereof deemed to be recruiting of another rostered player / family on a different team is considered tampering  (MAHA Rule, page 47).

2 - Whether it's through you, your coaches, manager, or even a parent on your team, you may not ask for a player not on your roster to skate in your team's practice, even with a note from the coach (MAHA Try-out Rule, page 46).

3 - You are allowed to blanket/mass-market your try-out schedule, but it may not be a targeted list. The difference is mass market is for anyone and everyone being invited to an open try-out.  A targeted list has specific names or specific emails listed, as designed to target and recruit a specific subset of players.

4 - If a family not on your team reaches out to you to skate, it is your prerogative to allow them. If you do so, they must have a written letter (or email) with permission from said coach (note the difference from pt 2 is who initiated the communication). If they don’t have permission form their current coach, you must thank them for calling and tell them you can talk to them once their season is complete.

5 - Make sure you understand the new try-out rule.  All current non-national bound teams, may begin SPRING TRY-OUTS ONLY starting March 18.  FALL TRY-OUTS for all Tier II do not begin until May 20.  All non-national bound Tier I teams may not have FALL TRY-OUTS until May 6. You need to make sure you are advertising appropriately. Click here for a chart that shows the dates for each age and classification.

6 - Due to the new try-out rule, commitment letters are not valid to players crossing seasons.  In other words, you may not offer a Fall 19-20 spot to a player until after the appropriate fall try-out time period. 

I get it, there is a lot here and too many rules to govern on how to handle try-outs.  Keep in mind, that as a coach, you dictate all of this.  These rules are in place because coaches continue to break them. Even worse, this email is going out because we already have coaches breaking the rules and coming in for hearings state-wide.  While 95% of you continue to abide by the rules, the 5% need to be addressed.  If you have physical proof of these issues, please let your district chairperson know asap.