Students can’t join off-campus sports

Anthony Huerta, Reporter

Soccer is the most popular sport on the planet. According to an article by Benjamin Elisha Sawe titled “The Most Popular Sports in the World” on, “It is estimated that more than half of the world’s population consider themselves to be association football (soccer) fans. The sport enjoys an estimated 4.0 billion person following, and a global sphere of influence.”

It’s played by everyone, there are soccer teams for anyone. You can have an all-boys soccer team, an all-girls soccer team, and a co-ed soccer team. In high school, the players can only play with their gender. Article 1 Section 1 of the UHSAA Handbook says: “For the protection of competitive balance and the integrity of women’s sports, The UHSAA will review athletic eligibility decisions based on gender assignment of transgender student-athletes in accordance with
its approved policies and appeals procedures.”

Boys’ Soccer and Girls’ Soccer are extremely popular and making the team make you feel like you’re actually good. “If I make the high school soccer team as a freshman I would consider myself to be a good player,” said freshman Alexander Cazares

What happens when you already play for another team outside of school like in a club, rec-center, or Mexican League? Well, obviously you have to stop playing for your club, rec-center, and Mexican League team. Article 1 Section 12 of the UHSAA Handbook says: “A student while participating as a member of a high school team, may not participate in a team not sponsored by his or her school in the same activity during the same season.”
“It’s more of a state rule, partially because when you make the High School team, you’re expected to make the team your responsibility and priority,” Taylorsville boys’ soccer Head Captain Benjamin Ivins said.

What he implies is that if soccer players are playing club soccer during high school your full attention will not be in the High School team and to play in the High School team they have to be 100% committed.
“With other professional teams, if you get injured doing something else, or you get injured playing for a different team, then you will be out for the high school team and you won’t be able to play, and that would be super frustrating,” Ivins said. How he compares it to the professional level is so true.

Cristiano Ronaldo in the 2014 season the last match he got injured and due to that he and Portugal performed horribly in the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

“I think that’s [playing for other teams] a rule primarily because they don’t want kids to get injured while playing club soccer,” senior Daniel Fairbourn said

In the UHSAA the rule says “The UHSAA has received numerous inquiries in regards to club team participation during the 2019 UHSAA girls’ soccer season.”

Article 1 Section 12 of the UHSAA Handbook says:
“No member of a high school team may compete in any organized competition on any
outside team for a particular sport after the competition start date in a given season…”

There are only two exceptions:

1. Olympic Development Program (ODP) rule: student-athletes may be granted an exception to the Limited Team Membership Rule in order to participate on an ODP (or similar team in
non-Olympic sports) team if the following conditions are met:
a. The outside team is a legitimate ODP team as verified by the national governing body for
that sport.
b. Student obtains written permission contract signed by a player, parent/guardian, high school coach, principal, and ODP coordinator.
c. The team shall be selected, and UHSAA advised at least thirty days prior to ODP competition.
d. Any missed academic lessons are completed.

2. The National League Player Showcase in March, for boys’ soccer, has been approved by the Executive Committee as an exception to the Limited Team Membership Rule.

“There is a lot of players who could become better and be playing more if they the opportunity to play other leagues as well as high school league if they had the time to do that so I think that could benefit a lot of kids if they had the opportunity to play more,” Fairbourn said.

“I would not necessarily agree with this rule, because it limits a lot of other playing time that students can get,” Fairbourn said.