JT, I thought that I verbally committed very early in my career as a freshman in HS, boy was I wrong!! This is something I have been asked my opinion on many times since this happened and it has been consistent each time. Everyone has their own path/journey or whatever you want to call it, but the vision stays the same: playing softball in college. Yes, IMO I do believe 6th and 7th grade is too early. No, I do not think there should be an exact limit on the age, but I do believe that coaches should wait until the athlete starts to mature and develop further (which is different for everyone). I am not a person that believes that an athlete has to be a certain size, but these 7th graders look very matured (physically) for their age. From what I can recall about reading about the first girl that verbaled to FLA was that both of her parents were D1 athletes (which also helped the daughter during the recruiting process). Having uber athletic parents defiantly helps the college coach foresee the future through a very athletic family. I do believe this would be a completely different case if both parents were not athletic or knew nothing about recruiting. I do hope that the NCAA passes the new recruiting laws about waiting until later in the athletes' HS careers to commit to schools. I strongly believe this would help a lot of athletes/teams/families who hope to reach their goals by playing softball at the next level. The athletes would be able to focus more on development and playing softball correctly rather than playing in 100+ games per summer at all of these "showcases". In this new era of softball, teams are way more concerned about playing to many games and not get better in between. Look at college teams for instance: in division 1 we are allowed 20 hours of practice per week and then play anywhere from 3-5 games over the weekend. Why in travel softball is this the complete opposite? We play in 6-10 games per weekend and do not practice one time during the week?! How do we expect the team to get better without practicing? Yes I understand that some teams cannot practice together because everyone is so spread out, but this is a very small number of teams that fall in this category. Coaches: work on developing your players as athletes, not your win/loss record! Im not saying that winning isn't important, but if we can focus on making the athletes better and creating great work ethic the winning will take care of itself! Be passionate about the sport you play, obsessed with getting better, and grateful you have the opportunity!