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DoubleD

The Value Of A Good Academy

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I keep a close eye on the Academy results and it’s generally the usual suspects up there but it was only when I looked at the history of winners that I noticed how closely it correlated to those with successful Men’s first teams.

It seems without doubt that teams with strong and successful youth and academy setups carry that on to the senior level. So should clubs be concentrating and investing greater in developing this, in their areas? For me, there is no doubt.

Clubs can’t buy/chase success, they need to invest in the whole setup, particularly youth, to achieve success.

2019 Table

1 Wigan Warriors Under 19 18 17 1 0 768 230 538 34
2 St Helens Under 19 20 17 3 0 800 346 454 34
3 Leeds Rhinos Under 19 20 15 4 1 730 364 366 31
4 Warrington Wolves Under 19 20 12 8 0 586 552 34 24
5 Huddersfield Giants Under 19 20 10 9 1 563 500 63 21
6 Wakefield Trinity Under 19 20 10 10 0 512 536 -24 20
7 London Broncos Under 19 19 10 9 0 542 618 -76 20
8 Widnes Vikings Under 19 19 7 12 0 432 606 -174 14
9 Bradford Bulls Under 19 19 6 12 1 382 528 -146 13
10 City of Hull Academy Under 19 20 6 14 0 430 735 -305 12
11 Castleford Tigers Under 19 20 3 15 2 378 638 -260 8
12 Newcastle Thunder Under 19 19 1 17 1 288 758 -470

3

Season Champions Runners-up
2013 Wigan Warriors U19 Leeds Rhinos U19
2014 Warrington Wolves U19 St Helens U19
2015 St Helens U19 Wigan Warriors U19
2016 St Helens U19 Wigan Warriors U19
2017 Wigan Warriors U19 Castleford Tigers U19
2018 Wigan Warriors U19 St Helens U19
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London u19s winning yesterday will put them up to 5th 🙂

A genuine question ... I have read on this forum relatively often, complaints that Radford doesn’t promote/give a chance to the City of Hull academy lads a look in - do Rovers take many City of Hull lads on? Is there any specific reason why the City of Hull academy are doing poorly atm?

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2 hours ago, DoubleD said:

I keep a close eye on the Academy results and it’s generally the usual suspects up there but it was only when I looked at the history of winners that I noticed how closely it correlated to those with successful Men’s first teams.

It seems without doubt that teams with strong and successful youth and academy setups carry that on to the senior level. So should clubs be concentrating and investing greater in developing this, in their areas? For me, there is no doubt.

Clubs can’t buy/chase success, they need to invest in the whole setup, particularly youth, to achieve success.

2019 Table

1 Wigan Warriors Under 19 18 17 1 0 768 230 538 34
2 St Helens Under 19 20 17 3 0 800 346 454 34
3 Leeds Rhinos Under 19 20 15 4 1 730 364 366 31
4 Warrington Wolves Under 19 20 12 8 0 586 552 34 24
5 Huddersfield Giants Under 19 20 10 9 1 563 500 63 21
6 Wakefield Trinity Under 19 20 10 10 0 512 536 -24 20
7 London Broncos Under 19 19 10 9 0 542 618 -76 20
8 Widnes Vikings Under 19 19 7 12 0 432 606 -174 14
9 Bradford Bulls Under 19 19 6 12 1 382 528 -146 13
10 City of Hull Academy Under 19 20 6 14 0 430 735 -305 12
11 Castleford Tigers Under 19 20 3 15 2 378 638 -260 8
12 Newcastle Thunder Under 19 19 1 17 1 288 758 -470

3

Season Champions Runners-up
2013 Wigan Warriors U19 Leeds Rhinos U19
2014 Warrington Wolves U19 St Helens U19
2015 St Helens U19 Wigan Warriors U19
2016 St Helens U19 Wigan Warriors U19
2017 Wigan Warriors U19 Castleford Tigers U19
2018 Wigan Warriors U19 St Helens U19

Shock horror , the best juniors sign for the bigger clubs and they then produce the best academy players ?

 

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I think there is a correlation, but it's not the be all and end all. Success breeds success and so the most successful clubs at senior level can attract the best youngsters in the same way they can attract the best players for less.

Its a shame other clubs however don't make a big thing that their USP is that because they aren't "one of the big clubs" they actually rely on their academy more.

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2 minutes ago, Tommygilf said:

I think there is a correlation, but it's not the be all and end all. Success breeds success and so the most successful clubs at senior level can attract the best youngsters in the same way they can attract the best players for less.

Its a shame other clubs however don't make a big thing that their USP is that because they aren't "one of the big clubs" they actually rely on their academy more.

Even at pre academy level , the ' bigger ' clubs have in the past overloaded their scholarships ignoring RFL rules , not forgetting the ' super ' amateur clubs good prospects are encouraged to move to 

It's virtually impossible to break this cycle , Bradford have been fantastically successful in producing top quality players , how many have they now managed to keep ? , And looking at their standing now their recent ' status ' within the game is now catching up with them 

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3 hours ago, DoubleD said:

I keep a close eye on the Academy results and it’s generally the usual suspects up there but it was only when I looked at the history of winners that I noticed how closely it correlated to those with successful Men’s first teams.

It seems without doubt that teams with strong and successful youth and academy setups carry that on to the senior level. So should clubs be concentrating and investing greater in developing this, in their areas? For me, there is no doubt.

Clubs can’t buy/chase success, they need to invest in the whole setup, particularly youth, to achieve success.

2019 Table

1 Wigan Warriors Under 19 18 17 1 0 768 230 538 34
2 St Helens Under 19 20 17 3 0 800 346 454 34
3 Leeds Rhinos Under 19 20 15 4 1 730 364 366 31
4 Warrington Wolves Under 19 20 12 8 0 586 552 34 24
5 Huddersfield Giants Under 19 20 10 9 1 563 500 63 21
6 Wakefield Trinity Under 19 20 10 10 0 512 536 -24 20
7 London Broncos Under 19 19 10 9 0 542 618 -76 20
8 Widnes Vikings Under 19 19 7 12 0 432 606 -174 14
9 Bradford Bulls Under 19 19 6 12 1 382 528 -146 13
10 City of Hull Academy Under 19 20 6 14 0 430 735 -305 12
11 Castleford Tigers Under 19 20 3 15 2 378 638 -260 8
12 Newcastle Thunder Under 19 19 1 17 1 288 758 -470

3

Season Champions Runners-up
2013 Wigan Warriors U19 Leeds Rhinos U19
2014 Warrington Wolves U19 St Helens U19
2015 St Helens U19 Wigan Warriors U19
2016 St Helens U19 Wigan Warriors U19
2017 Wigan Warriors U19 Castleford Tigers U19
2018 Wigan Warriors U19 St Helens U19

Considering the line " don't bring much to the game" is often slung at the likes of Huddersfield, London, Wakefield etc, i think this shows differently?

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As an organiser and follower of the Giants academy team for the last 3 years, i have to say, i have enjoyed watching these lads a hell of a lot more than i have the senior side, the games are usually, fast, open, competitive and exciting, something rugby league used to be at all levels not so long ago!

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Disappointing to see that the Red Devils have no team in there.

I think it should be a mandatory requirement of Super League membership that all teams must have an under 19 academy.

For the Catalans they should play an academy in the French Competition if they don't already and if Toronto get promoted  They would obviously have to base their academy players in the UK and play out of a UK base.

Edited by The Future is League

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I think there is a correlation, but it's not the be all and end all. Success breeds success and so the most successful clubs at senior level can attract the best youngsters in the same way they can attract the best players for less.

Its a shame other clubs however don't make a big thing that their USP is that because they aren't "one of the big clubs" they actually rely on their academy more.

This is what Widnes were actually very good at, until they hit financial difficulties

 

Even at pre academy level , the ' bigger ' clubs have in the past overloaded their scholarships ignoring RFL rules , not forgetting the ' super ' amateur clubs good prospects are encouraged to move to 

It's virtually impossible to break this cycle , Bradford have been fantastically successful in producing top quality players , how many have they now managed to keep ? , And looking at their standing now their recent ' status ' within the game is now catching up with them 

I don't agree with this crass statement. Yes there is an element of this, but this is a gross exaggeration and very lazy aspersion. The encouragement of players to certain clubs may have happened in the past, but clubs realised it was counter productive. It doesn't happen at club level anymore that's for sure. Looking at Leeds latest intake, 4 have come from Wetherby Bulldogs (hardly a super club). Interesting that a few go to Tadcaster Grammar too, not sure if they play league there too (certainly was always a union school).

It's far from impossible to break the cycle. Warrington have shown tremendous strides in this area, as have Huddersfield. It would have been more apparent with Widnes/Bradford if it wasn't for their financial troubles and dropping out the top level, which will mean the top talent will leave as with anyone good, they will want to play at the top level.

You reap what you sow and many clubs have sadly being doing not much more than the bare minimum and almost paying lip service to junior development in their regions

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Shock horror , the best juniors sign for the bigger clubs and they then produce the best academy players ?

 

You’ve got the cart before the horse, the best clubs find and create the best juniors, not the other way round.

2.8 million live in greater Manchester, 2.2 million live in West Yorkshire, there isn’t a shortage of potential players out there.

Edited by Sir Kevin Sinfield

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You’ve got the cart before the horse, the best clubs find and create the best juniors, not the other way round.

2.8 million live in greater Manchester, 2.2 million live in West Yorkshire, there isn’t a shortage of potential players out there.

I'm not altogether convinced by this Sir Kev.

Coaches like ready made players at all levels apart from for the very youngest children.

And the point about how many people live somewhere in no way reflects the number of potential players, misleading is that.

The present sitaution means that top clubs essentailly always have first pick and talent is not in any way distributed throughout the game. This makes the sport imbalanced in favour of some and not others. And loading all the responsibilty and blame onto those "less attractive" clubs is part and parcel of the whole problem.

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“I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.”    

 

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6 hours ago, DoubleD said:

This is what Widnes were actually very good at, until they hit financial difficulties

I don't agree with this crass statement. Yes there is an element of this, but this is a gross exaggeration and very lazy aspersion. The encouragement of players to certain clubs may have happened in the past, but clubs realised it was counter productive. It doesn't happen at club level anymore that's for sure. Looking at Leeds latest intake, 4 have come from Wetherby Bulldogs (hardly a super club). Interesting that a few go to Tadcaster Grammar too, not sure if they play league there too (certainly was always a union school).

It's far from impossible to break the cycle. Warrington have shown tremendous strides in this area, as have Huddersfield. It would have been more apparent with Widnes/Bradford if it wasn't for their financial troubles and dropping out the top level, which will mean the top talent will leave as with anyone good, they will want to play at the top level.

You reap what you sow and many clubs have sadly being doing not much more than the bare minimum and almost paying lip service to junior development in their regions

I could care less wether you agree or not , I have witnessed myself the big NW clubs having double the number of kids in their scholarships that RFL rules allowed 

I have also personally seen local players at amateur clubs told " if you want to be on ' X ' clubs scholarship)academy you must move to amateur club ' X ' 

The big clubs get the best kids , more than they are actually allowed , they can then filter out the best of the best , it is virtually impossible for lower tier clubs to bring through any top quality junior players , if they do they are ' poached ' as soon as it is financially worthwhile doing so 

You are clueless on this subject , and you are welcome to have the last word I won't comment or reply further 

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30 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

I could care less wether you agree or not , I have witnessed myself the big NW clubs having double the number of kids in their scholarships that RFL rules allowed 

I have also personally seen local players at amateur clubs told " if you want to be on ' X ' clubs scholarship)academy you must move to amateur club ' X ' 

The big clubs get the best kids , more than they are actually allowed , they can then filter out the best of the best , it is virtually impossible for lower tier clubs to bring through any top quality junior players , if they do they are ' poached ' as soon as it is financially worthwhile doing so 

You are clueless on this subject , and you are welcome to have the last word I won't comment or reply further 

You only won’t comment any further become you know you’re talking out your derrière (like usual)

Having had dealings with academies, foundations and juniors, I am comfortable calling this out as nonsense. However, feel free to produce evidence of clubs having double the number of scholarships than RFL rules allow. 

No surprise it coming from a Leigh fan who don’t have an academy 😂

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1 hour ago, DoubleD said:

You only won’t comment any further become you know you’re talking out your derrière (like usual)

Having had dealings with academies, foundations and juniors, I am comfortable calling this out as nonsense. However, feel free to produce evidence of clubs having double the number of scholarships than RFL rules allow. 

No surprise it coming from a Leigh fan who don’t have an academy 😂

Bit unecessary there DD.

Irrispective of your dispute over more than they should, are they attracting more and therefore the talent pool is concetrated in their hands or not?

Because if it is the value of a good academy will only ever be judgeable at those clubs where the talent resides.

Personally I also think there's a big wastage of talent that comes out later.

Edited by Oxford

“I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.”    

 

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4 minutes ago, Oxford said:

Bit unecessary there DD.

Irrispective of your dispue over more than they should, are they attracting more and therefore the talent pool is concetrated in their hands or not?

Because if it is the value of a good academy will only ever be judgeable at those clubs where the talent resides.

Personally I also think there's a big wastage of talent that comes out later.

No I don’t believe that to be the case, and I think those at Huddersfield, Widnes, Warrington and Bradford would test-amount to that

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Wigan have schools and junior teams at clubs which are well coached. We also get a lot of the best athletes locally. We do, though, scout far and wide. Smithies is Halifax (I know he has leap frogged straight into the first team). As a club it has many advantages when it comes to running an Academy, and could get away with re-badging the amateur junior town team if it wanted. 

I am astonished a city like Hull can’t sustain 2 Academies, or at least produce one elite between them. I think I read that even that is being closed? We don’t help ourselves as a game a lot of the time. 

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39 minutes ago, Oxford said:

Bit unecessary there DD.

Irrispective of your dispue over more than they should, are they attracting more and therefore the talent pool is concetrated in their hands or not?

Because if it is the value of a good academy will only ever be judgeable at those clubs where the talent resides.

Personally I also think there's a big wastage of talent that comes out later.

This is the environment the game has created. Some clubs invest in that and get the rewards. Other clubs dont and generally whinge about other clubs being bigger and better than they are. 

I dont agree with the current system and I agree with you that there is a lot of wastage out there and the system isnt great BUT we cant get away from the fact that some clubs are failing in this respect and the casting of aspersions the clubs who are sustaining the game through their investment in youth development as grubrats often does is simply a self serving bad faith argument to detract from where some clubs are failing.

The simple fact of the matter is no heartland club should be in SL if they dont have an academy. If there is no point having an academy because all the youngsters in the area are already picked up by other clubs. You shouldn't be in SL. 

We have chosen this path, until we decide to operate in a completely new paradigm we need to demand everything of our clubs in this regard. 

Edited by scotchy1

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13 minutes ago, DoubleD said:

No I don’t believe that to be the case, and I think those at Huddersfield, Widnes, Warrington and Bradford would test-amount to that

So those with a strong local amateur tradition?

The Bradford ones and Widnes too do tend to join their local club at first at least. Are they pillaged at all at the academy level?


“I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.”    

 

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8 minutes ago, scotchy1 said:

This is the environment the game has created. Some clubs invest in that and get the rewards. Other clubs dont and generally whinge about other clubs being bigger and better than they are. 

I dont agree with the current system and I agree with you that there is a lot of wastage out there and the system isnt great BUT we cant get away from the fact that some clubs are failing in this respect and the casting of aspersions the clubs who are sustaining the game through their investment in youth development as grubrats often does is simply a self serving and faith argument to detract from where some clubs are failing.

The simple fact of the matter is no heartland club should be in SL if they dont have an academy. If there is no point having an academy because all the youngsters in the area are already picked up by other clubs. You shouldn't be in SL. 

We have chosen this path, until we decide to operate in a completely new paradigm we need to demand everything of our clubs in this regard. 

I agree that some clubs invest and get rewarded i would argue that is not all they do. The imbalance we have is twofold the one already mentioned and greater crowds mean they can afford what is a great deal of money that lesser clubs have to spend on the first team just to compete. So it can't ever be as simple as all clubs must do the same. Until and unless the club finishing bottom gets lots of cash on a sliding scale up the league to even it up a bit. I won't hold my breath.

Edited by Oxford

“I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.”    

 

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The value of a good academy is immense , it will help to sustain you and improve your team and the sport 

The value of a poor academy is nil 

Just running an academy to appease fans on an internet MB is stupid 

Just paying junior players who aren't good enough to lose game after game when they should be still playing in the community game is also stupid 

People who think all clubs should spend money doing the above are also stupid 

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4 minutes ago, GUBRATS said:

The value of a good academy is immense , it will help to sustain you and improve your team and the sport 

The value of a poor academy is nil 

Just running an academy to appease fans on an internet MB is stupid 

Just paying junior players who aren't good enough to lose game after game when they should be still playing in the community game is also stupid 

People who think all clubs should spend money doing the above are also stupid 

Calling people stupid doesn't help but I agree with the points you make.

While the top clubs can attract players from all the areas and can afford a better talent spotting regime this essentail bias will continue, thus making it self -perpetuating which is nice for those who benefit.

 


“I'm not upset that you lied to me, I'm upset that from now on I can't believe you.”    

 

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44 minutes ago, Exiled Wiganer said:

Wigan have schools and junior teams at clubs which are well coached. We also get a lot of the best athletes locally. We do, though, scout far and wide. Smithies is Halifax (I know he has leap frogged straight into the first team). As a club it has many advantages when it comes to running an Academy, and could get away with re-badging the amateur junior town team if it wanted. 

I am astonished a city like Hull can’t sustain 2 Academies, or at least produce one elite between them. I think I read that even that is being closed? We don’t help ourselves as a game a lot of the time. 

You are correct that the Hull joint academy is being closed. However, the players are reverting to their parent club so there should be two academies in the future, as far as I am aware.

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36 minutes ago, Oxford said:

Calling people stupid doesn't help but I agree with the points you make.

While the top clubs can attract players from all the areas and can afford a better talent spotting regime this essentail bias will continue, thus making it self -perpetuating which is nice for those who benefit.

 

It depends if those people genuinely believe that Lower tier clubs can put together 1st class academies ? , Or if they are just petty point scoring on an internet MB ?

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On ‎18‎/‎08‎/‎2019 at 18:56, The Future is League said:

Disappointing to see that the Red Devils have no team in there.

I think it should be a mandatory requirement of Super League membership that all teams must have an under 19 academy.

For the Catalans they should play an academy in the French Competition if they don't already and if Toronto get promoted  They would obviously have to base their academy players in the UK and play out of a UK base.

To confirm, TFIL, yes, Catalans Dragons have an under-age team in the French domestic, U19 Elite competition.  They also field a team in the adult Elite 1, that is the top flight of domestic rugby league in France.  Both those sides play under the name St Esteve XIII Catalans, and, incidentally, appear to have had predominantly blue shirts in the 2018-19 season.

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