What You Need to Know About STMFA Youth Football

How are children separated into teams?

Football teams are organized by according to the CFA By-Laws which divides the children into team bases by their AGE as of April 30th of the current year and also based by certain weight limits into the following:

  • Smurf: 5-7 years old and below 85 pounds, No Stripe Rule for Smurfs
  • Peewee: Generally 8-9 years old and below 105 pounds, Stripe Rule Applies 
  • Pony: Generally 10-11 years old and below 130 pounds, Stripe Rule Applies 
  • Midget: Generally 12-13 years old and below 160 pounds, Stripe Rule Applies 

With the addition of the Stripe Rule by the CFA, any player over the weight limit of their respective level is now able to play a position on the Offensive or Defensive line, so every child now has the opportunity to participate.

 

When do the teams practice?

Practices for 2018 start July 30th and run each week for the duration of the season. Football practices generally run from 6:00 to 8:00 pm, Monday through Friday until school begins. Once school begins, practice for all levels change to Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 6:00 to 8:00pm.  Football coaches can schedule additional practices at their own discretion.

Does the STMFA provide all of the equipment?

For football players, we provide Helmets, Shoulder Pads, Practice Jerseys & 1 mouth piece.  At Registration you pay $30 for your game jerseys, which are yours to keep at the conclusion of the season.  We provide some of the best helmets available on the market today and we keep our helmets reconditioned and certified, to be sure we keep your child as safe as possible.  Game/Practice pants and pant pads, cleats, and any additional equipment you wish your child to wear is your responsibility, however, we do offer Pants with Integrated pads at minimal cost to you, generally about $20 cheaper than store cost.

Are there minimum requirements for playing time?

No. Players are assessed by their skill level and this dictates playing time. We do not guarantee that each child will play during every game. If enough children register for a single team, a JV team will be created to provide as much playing time as possible for each participant. JV teams have a separate schedule from the Varsity team. JV teams and schedules are usually organized after the first regular season game of the season. 

Are scores kept at the games?

Scores are kept for all levels of play except Smurfs.

What rules are followed?

For the most part, PIAA rules are enforced by 4 referees during a game. There are no referees for Smurf games.  The head smurf coach from each team participating appoints a referee for the game.

What about Concussions? 

Concussions in football, just like in any other sport, are a concern.  Recently, there has been a lot of attention in the media about the long term effects of repeated concussions and players returning to the game without adequate time to recover.  We take concussions, their prevention, and their diagnosis very seriously.  We are a USA Football Heads Up program, so as such, our coaches must complete certain levels of training to teach your child how to “take their head out of the game” and all of our coaches also take concussion training where they learn to spot symptoms and the importance of rest after a concussion is diagnosed.  They also are trained for hydration, and heat acclimation.  For more information on concussions and safety, click here.

Isn’t playing Youth Football dangerous? 

There is a huge misconception that youth football is more prone to injuries than other youth sports. In reality, it is no more dangerous than baseball, basketball or soccer.  It is expected that hard contact will occur while playing, but the risk of injury is minimized because of the equipment that the players wear. We take injuries very seriously and we are prepared for them. For an honest look at youth football injuries, check out the USA Football website!

 
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