Safe Sport and players who turn 18

Discussion in 'General Softball Discussions' started by tourn_director, Aug 25, 2020.

  1. Can someone explain to me how the Safe Sport Act affects players who turn 18 during the season. My understanding from reading about Safe Sport is that once a player turns 18 they are considered an adult and should only be around players 17 and younger if they have the background checks coaches have. Furthermore, the act implies those who turn 18 can no longer play in youth play. I hope my understanding is incorrect.
  2. Stedman00

    Stedman00 Active Member

    how does that make sense with 18U teams and even High school sports???
  3. Well--it doesn't make sense but that's the way the Act reads to me. If I am correct (but hope I am not), you could have a player who might be able to play on Saturday when she was 17 but if she turns 18 the next day--no can play. If the new 18 year old wanted to just hang around in the dugout she would have to have back ground checks and ACE certification. Just absolutely crazy!!
  4. Bob, that is the same question I have had on the issue since it was enacted. In the bowling world, if a kid turns 18, they are done in youth bowling at that point on. BUT they can turn 18 during their high school bowling season and complete that season in progress. That makes no sense. I have a teammate who's kid turned 18 during Dec right in the middle of high school bowling. He got to finish his final matches and postseason but could not come back to finish out his junior league when it resumed in March and also could not participate anymore as a youth player in the junior tournament group he was part of because he turned 18. So basically this kid could not bowl his last few weeks of juniors with several kids he met and had been friends with while bowling with bumpers as a pee wee anymore because of his birthday. But others in his class could still bowl because they had later birthdays when the high school season was finally over.

    Same type of scenario: At our league preseason meeting last fall, one of the players had a son who was turning 18 in November and was not bowling with his high school team because they were not going to have enough kids try out to have a team. His kid wanted to go ahead and just turn adult and jump in as their extra man for a rotation. He could do that if every person over 18 in our league did the Safesport online training. That would also include any substitutes that filled in until this kid turned 18. Guess what, our league made a rule that no one under 18 could bowl in the league which we could do and not lose sanctioning with the national governing body.

    It has also killed the adult/youth leagues. I can not bowl adult/youth with my kid and be sanctioned unless every adult in the league does Safe Sport including any substitutes. We have to bowl non-sanctioned which I don't like because now the rules are wide open and can be abused by people who don't care about fair play.

    I bowled adult back in the day at 17 during my senior year of high school. I was not involved with any high school sports that year, so no big deal on the amateurism rules at the time. In my younger days, we always was looking for the hot shot kid coming out of juniors to recruit to bowl with us in the better leagues or weekend tournaments. Some of those kids were not 18 yet but wanted to play better competition so would go adult anyway. It never bothered me because at the time it was just bowling and we wanted to win or do well as we could.

    So is NFHS excluded from this? I could see that changing the landscape for spring sports since probably most kids turn 18 before their senior school year ends.


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