(New Q&A will be continuously added to the top of this page, keep checking back for more)
I want to play in college and get more exposure. Will I get noticed or do I need to be on a good team to get exposed?
Ahh great question. One of the main reasons BOOM formed was to help elevate the level of play in Maine, developing more Division I and II caliber players. We are very focused on helping expose girls to colleges and have many folks on staff and unique techniques to assist. We ran this conundrum by Coach Mike Crews and Coach Mike Morrison. Collaboratively they have: taken 15U teams to play in 18U National tournaments, work and network with top players and coaches throughout the US, or been part of the collegiate recruiting process. In BOOM’s opinion getting exposure is dependent on a few thing. For starters, players first need to travel outside the New England region and participate in national tournaments. BOOM intends to participate in at least two of these for the Elite team and possibly do an International play. The more tournaments the more exposure. BOOM will also guide and share other important things to do such as showcases, camps, letter/video, communications, etc. BOOM will also work on your behalf to communicate with colleges as well. Once teams are formed we will set up time to discuss college recruiting in depth with the teams.
What ages are your teams and how many teams will you have?
The age and teams are dependent on who shows up, the level of play and where the interest lies. Anyone can play up if they qualify will be a factor as well. We could have four or more teams and it could comprise of any combination of 14U, 15U, 16U, 17U, and 18U. We could have two in the same category (e.g. two 18U teams).
What is the cost for the teams?
Club and Travel teams will fall between $750 and $1200. The Elite team will be more whereas they play outside the New England region. Pricing will be shared at the parent meeting. This cost includes each team to have 3 practices a week with the exception of a tournament week. As typical in the past this does not include additional lodging, food and transportation cost the days of tournament. We want all girls to play and will work with anyone to help offset cost with sponsorship and fundraising. Last year 40% of our girls offset cost this way and 20% were fully funded.
Are you planning to do the AAU tournament in June for your Elite team?
Though this is a great tournament and anyone can play without qualifying, we have decided not to participate in it at this time. Based on feedback from players and parents the cost and time to extend the season another 1.5 months was not preferred. Commitment would be a challenge as the JO club season is six months, Spring sports come into play and school year comes to a close. In lieu of this, our plan is to participate in two national qualifying tournaments during the season instead. Only if we placed high enough would we qualify and consider a tournament outside the season, however it would be the USAV National Championship Tournament. Qualifying and playing in this tournament is a great goal for Maine and for us as a club even if it is a stretch right now. As the talent, coaching and commitment increases in Maine that goal will come closer to obtain. All tournaments and final decisions for the Elite team will be made with players, parents/guardians, coaches and Director once the team is selected.
How many practices a week do you have?
We will have 3 practices a week for our Elite and Travel teams. Club teams are set to have 3, however we could have 2 if more suitable. There are many statistics that prove the more touches the better the play. The East Coast (especially Maine) is far behind the South and West Coast as they typically practice 4-5 times a week. Having 3 practices is nice especially when we have tournaments as it allows to still have 2 practices that week. On occasion some players have scholastic sport games away and may miss a practices. This gives them the option to make another practice that week.
When will we be notified if we made a team and can you tell us who is on the team?
We will notify you as soon as we can and no later than Monday evening. If you are feeling any pressure and need to make a decision please contact BOOM Director Lisa. We have heard the concerns from players and parents on the pressure to make quick decisions. BOOM has raised this concern at our regional board meeting and intends to work with other clubs in MA and NH on a proposal to allow players a period of time to accept offers. Coach Mike Crews has seen this process work in California, where competition is even higher, and intends to help with a proposal.
In regards to telling you who is on the team that remains to be seen. We have had numerous talks about girls wanting to play with friends and seeing who is on their team before making a decision. The most important thing is to trust the coaches decision on who they pick for the team. We are selecting not only the best players for the team but the right players. If you intent to play club we assume you want to improve your game or gain more exposure to colleges. If that is the case your first concern should be who your coach is. Make sure the coach is a good fit for you and you feel you will advance your skills. You will learn more from you coaches then you will from your friends or teammates.
Will there be a BOOM team north of Portland?
Yes. We know there is a ton of talent north of Portland and BOOM definitely intends to grow and continue to service those areas. Unfortunately facilities and coaches is still a challenge for growth. At this time we will have a team in the Gardiner area in which Greely Head Coach, Kelvin Hasch, will have much involvement with. If you do not know Hasch definitely check out his BIO. We encourage anyone interested in this team to tryout and make a note on the pre-registration form you interest to play in Gardiner. For those northern teams we are not close enough to service yet we would be happy to run clinics, camps or group lesson (boys or girls). Contact Director Lisa if interested.
We have played JO, what is the difference between JO and BOOM?
Junior Olympic (JO) is USA Volleyball youth volleyball program. BOOM Volleyball and Maine Juniors are both Junior Olympic (JO) clubs. Our clubs fall under NERVA (New England Regional Volleyball Association) which falls under USA Volleyball.
If we do not make a team will you have clinics or an alternative option?
Yes we will. There are a large number of girls interested in playing JO club and the need continues to grow. Though BOOM will grow possibly triple in size it is nice to know you have other options if you don’t make a team. In Maine there are currently only two Girls JO club options, BOOM Volleyball and Maine Juniors. Club 207 is not having an offering this season. There are other great options for clubs in NH and MA, however the drive to practices is not optimal. Neither BOOM nor MJs themselves can offer a spot to all the girls that tryout as facilities and coaches are hard to come by. BOOM encourages players to tryout for both clubs so you can determine what is the best fit for you. As nice as it is to play with friends it is the coach that will make you better. This is especially important to know for those seeking collegiate play. We encourage players to evaluate coaches as much as they evaluate them in tryouts. If you do not make a JO team BOOM will have clinics and a fun new alternative in which we will announce at the the parent meeting. The clinics and alternative offering will involve working with Coach Mike Crews and other BOOM coaches to help with skills and play.