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Academy Licensing (2022 - 27) - (Merged threads)


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24 minutes ago, JM2010 said:

I'm not missing the point. I do see both sides of the argument. Most kids in the scholarship won't be good enough otherwise they would all progress to the first team. Narrowing the pathway to focus on the best players should increase the quality as there won't be as many players in each team who aren't up to the standard.

I'm not sure how it would decrease participation. If there aren't as many getting picked up by academies then hopefully there will be more u17/u18 teams at community level


Participation numbers correlate with performance. The more in the pathway, the better the ones that rise to the top. Narrowing the path at 16 will have the opposite impact. I also think it’s naive in the extreme to think that kids attracted to the potential of a professional pathway and association with a club’s brand will all continue playing for as long. Sport participation is habit-based, the longer we lock-in more players through whatever incentive the better our outcomes.

 

I’ve no issue with reduction or withdrawal of funding based on quality, if central funds are limited then concentration of effort might make sense. But this policy goes much, much further: It bars some clubs from participation in competitions, even if they were prepared to self-fund it.
 

It does that because of the ridiculous upside-down belief that academies “crowd out” the community game, whereas in reality they provide additional investment of money and energy into the target market, and the pathway provides an incentive to both encourage initial participation, and keep people engaged. Our player pool issue is upstream at ages 8-10 and then retaining from then, not downstream. 

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7 hours ago, LeytherRob said:

How many players do you think will get to SL through a local college league?

Seven of Wakey's current first team squad were in the Wakefield College Cat3 set-up.

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3 minutes ago, Hull Kingston Bronco said:


Participation numbers correlate with performance. The more in the pathway, the better the ones that rise to the top. Narrowing the path at 16 will have the opposite impact. I also think it’s naive in the extreme to think that kids attracted to the potential of a professional pathway and association with a club’s brand will all continue playing for as long. Sport participation is habit-based, the longer we lock-in more players through whatever incentive the better our outcomes.

 

I’ve no issue with reduction or withdrawal of funding based on quality, if central funds are limited then concentration of effort might make sense. But this policy goes much, much further: It bars some clubs from participation in competitions, even if they were prepared to self-fund it.
 

It does that because of the ridiculous upside-down belief that academies “crowd out” the community game, whereas in reality they provide additional investment of money and energy into the target market, and the pathway provides an incentive to both encourage initial participation, and keep people engaged. Our player pool issue is upstream at ages 8-10 and then retaining from then, not downstream. 

Funded or self funded, there's still a requirement to meet certain criteria to enter this particular competition. 

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1 minute ago, Smudger06 said:

Funded or self funded, there's still a requirement to meet certain criteria to enter this particular competition. 


You’re clutching at straws now, I’m sorry. In the Hull case, and Cas, a decision has been taken that the particular local market isn’t large enough to have 2 academies. It’s not as simple as a quality issue, in fact I’ve little doubt that under John Bastian the Rovers set-up is up to scratch. The decision is to avoid “crowding out” the community game, based on a total misunderstanding of what is cause, and what is effect. 

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1 minute ago, Hull Kingston Bronco said:


You’re clutching at straws now, I’m sorry. In the Hull case, and Cas, a decision has been taken that the particular local market isn’t large enough to have 2 academies. It’s not as simple as a quality issue, in fact I’ve little doubt that under John Bastian the Rovers set-up is up to scratch. The decision is to avoid “crowding out” the community game, based on a total misunderstanding of what is cause, and what is effect. 

You believe that if you want but you only need to look at the club audits, academy results and numbers to the top level to see otherwise. This is about raising standards and ensuring the elite academy system is elite in nature and not just name. Unfortunately there is a huge disparity at academy level and the lack of standards/quality mean that it doesn’t act as a good stepping stone to first team footy

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48 minutes ago, The Future is League said:

If having an academy team was part of the criteria for being in Super League i think it would focus clubs mind more and not just pay lip service to Junior development.

It wouldn’t though, every club in SL had an academy bar Salford (and now Leigh) and it didn’t focus minds

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5 minutes ago, DoubleD said:

You believe that if you want but you only need to look at the club audits, academy results and numbers to the top level to see otherwise. This is about raising standards and ensuring the elite academy system is elite in nature and not just name. Unfortunately there is a huge disparity at academy level and the lack of standards/quality mean that it doesn’t act as a good stepping stone to first team footy

We’ll have to respectfully agree to disagree, I know my own club and know the direction of travel which is very clear. The simple fact is there are now less players in the pathway this evening, and a significant net reduction in £££ investment in community engagement and talent ID and development. At a time when participation data is trending towards our oblivion. Super League would be more competitive and higher quality if it only had 6 clubs, but we wouldn’t be growing the market. The same is true in youth development. 

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8 minutes ago, Hull Kingston Bronco said:

We’ll have to respectfully agree to disagree, I know my own club and know the direction of travel which is very clear. The simple fact is there are now less players in the pathway this evening, and a significant net reduction in £££ investment in community engagement and talent ID and development. At a time when participation data is trending towards our oblivion. Super League would be more competitive and higher quality if it only had 6 clubs, but we wouldn’t be growing the market. The same is true in youth development. 

Well who’s to blame for that in Hull? Your very own club principally, and then they made the cost cutting move to jump in bed with Hull FC in a joint academy after they realised their complete lack of any effort in developing the game had seen participation numbers shrink. There’s whole swathes of areas they could have looked at developing but instead they focused on chucking money at overseas players. You reap what you sow

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11 minutes ago, Hull Kingston Bronco said:

We’ll have to respectfully agree to disagree, I know my own club and know the direction of travel which is very clear. The simple fact is there are now less players in the pathway this evening, and a significant net reduction in £££ investment in community engagement and talent ID and development. At a time when participation data is trending towards our oblivion. Super League would be more competitive and higher quality if it only had 6 clubs, but we wouldn’t be growing the market. The same is true in youth development. 

You make a great case and i'm inclined to agree with you.

In truth, I'm not really qualified to comment on this issue but my gut feeling tells me that if lack of cash, is an issue for the RFL, then withholding funding for some but allowing participation, (even if that lead to a disparity in quality from top to bottom) would have been the most sensible approach.

The thought of young players aspirations being dashed by a blundering bureaucracy and as a consequence, turning away from our game, breaks my heart.

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1 hour ago, JM2010 said:

I'm not missing the point. I do see both sides of the argument. Most kids in the scholarship won't be good enough otherwise they would all progress to the first team. Narrowing the pathway to focus on the best players should increase the quality as there won't be as many players in each team who aren't up to the standard.

I'm not sure how it would decrease participation. If there aren't as many getting picked up by academies then hopefully there will be more u17/u18 teams at community level

The idea is that fewer academy spots means that more players stay in the community game. Rather than having many fixtures unfulfilled, with a slow demise of those age groups u14s-18s as players get fed up training without games, there will hopefully be enough players to keep those leagues going.

With the introduction of reserves, there will be more opportunities to play professional than before, but this recruitment will largely be at 18/19 from other academies and the community game. Many great players came through amateur, to A team to first team and this is now a valid route.

Granted players in those age groups drop off for various reasons, being dropped from a pro club being the most prevalent, so fewer academy spots but more reserve team spots should massively reduce this loss. 

This could remove a bottle neck and have a positive affect on different levels of the game. 

I do feel very much for the players at those clubs currently, it must really hurt. And for well established academies who were not successful, this is a tough day for those teams and I really feel for them.

It isn't perfect, but neither was the previous system, hopefully this brings more positives than negatives. 

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35 minutes ago, DoubleD said:

Well who’s to blame for that in Hull? Your very own club principally, and then they made the cost cutting move to jump in bed with Hull FC in a joint academy after they realised their complete lack of any effort in developing the game had seen participation numbers shrink. There’s whole swathes of areas they could have looked at developing but instead they focused on chucking money at overseas players. You reap what you sow

Ah, and now your driver more clearly reveals itself, how depressing - some sort of punishment for your assessment of past behaviour? How limited. That way lies mutual destruction, when we could be working together to help the sport 
 

Hull KR fought over a decade to get promoted, overcoming numerous barriers that have effectively killed many fellow clubs who missed the ‘95 arbitrary cut off, and then once they made it and with limited funds prioritised short-term survival quite rationally. They did however invest hugely in stadium & community development, unlike many peers who had the benefit of 12 years’ more TV funding and did nothing. Since then, the club’s approach to new talent development has evolved rapidly, first trying a joint academy (for some of the reasons the RFL is pushing this plan) in a grown-up collaboration with a traditional rival. When that wasn’t delivering results, Hudgell then invested hugely in establishing our own independent academy platform, recruiting a well-storied team to do so and with metrics tracking in a great direction. What part of that well-intentioned journey in the club and the wider games best interests gives you the right to just sit there and judge? Pathetic, absolutely weak.

 

Time to grow up, put petty club bias to one side, and engage with the subject 

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1 minute ago, Hull Kingston Bronco said:

Ah, and now your driver more clearly reveals itself, how depressing - some sort of punishment for your assessment of past behaviour? How limited. That way lies mutual destruction, when we could be working together to help the sport 
 

Hull KR fought over a decade to get promoted, overcoming numerous barriers that have effectively killed many fellow clubs who missed the ‘95 arbitrary cut off, and then once they made it and with limited funds prioritised short-term survival quite rationally. They did however invest hugely in stadium & community development, unlike many peers who had the benefit of 12 years’ more TV funding and did nothing. Since then, the club’s approach to new talent development has evolved rapidly, first trying a joint academy (for some of the reasons the RFL is pushing this plan) in a grown-up collaboration with a traditional rival. When that wasn’t delivering results, Hudgell then invested hugely in establishing our own independent academy platform, recruiting a well-storied team to do so and with metrics tracking in a great direction. What part of that well-intentioned journey in the club and the wider games best interests gives you the right to just sit there and judge? Pathetic, absolutely weak.

 

Time to grow up, put petty club bias to one side, and engage with the subject 

Haha ok then, if that’s what you want to believe. I have no agenda, I want the game to grow as much as possible as most posters know. 

Perhaps you should look at what other clubs do before and then analyse what Hull KR do in comparison. Saints have assisted with significant junior development in Cornwall, Wakefield have been supporting the upstart of a number of junior Midlands and Lincolnshire (one being on the doorstep of Hull, yet it takes a club 70 miles away to help with the setup) whilst Leeds have setup quite a number junior clubs in and around Leeds. There are plenty more examples I can provide

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22 minutes ago, DoubleD said:

Haha ok then, if that’s what you want to believe. I have no agenda, I want the game to grow as much as possible as most posters know. 

Perhaps you should look at what other clubs do before and then analyse what Hull KR do in comparison. Saints have assisted with significant junior development in Cornwall, Wakefield have been supporting the upstart of a number of junior Midlands and Lincolnshire (one being on the doorstep of Hull, yet it takes a club 70 miles away to help with the setup) whilst Leeds have setup quite a number junior clubs in and around Leeds. There are plenty more examples I can provide

You’ve shown your hand already mate, happy to have a discussion on the merits of the academy strategy but you’re clearly just coming from some daft myopic “serves ‘em right” viewpoint re: KR so no thanks pal 

 

Just as an aside, interesting that it came down to a false Wakefield/Cas and FC/KR choice, with each of the successful parties sharing development staff members with the RFL, who work alongside members of the selection panel. Life’s full of coincidences eh. 

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Will Cas and Wakey both having an academy produce more SL players overall than just Wakey having one or will they just be spread between both clubs with more community players needed to fill out their squads. I think that is an important factor. Same goes for Hull and Hull KR,  Huddersfield and Bradford, Wigan and Leigh etc.

I do understand the frustration of the clubs that have missed out though as they will now feel they are handicapped against the top clubs although, is that down to them not having a good enough academy set up in the first place?

What were the problems with the joint Hull Academy as potentially that could be a way forward

 

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4 minutes ago, JM2010 said:

Will Cas and Wakey both having an academy produce more SL players overall than just Wakey having one or will they just be spread between both clubs with more community players needed to fill out their squads. I think that is an important factor. Same goes for Hull and Hull KR,  Huddersfield and Bradford, Wigan and Leigh etc.

I do understand the frustration of the clubs that have missed out though as they will now feel they are handicapped against the top clubs although, is that down to them not having a good enough academy set up in the first place?

What were the problems with the joint Hull Academy as potentially that could be a way forward

 

My thoughts also.

Merged Hull academy was the way forward, shame it didn't work but I'd like to know more about why it didn't work.

Maybe another solution could have been to have regional scholarships, with shared responsibility between pro and community game, then u19s academy signed from 17. Leaving players in the community game for 3 further years.

Another consideration is the enhanced training, access to medical care, training facilities are all greater at a pro club, so player development is enhanced in that environment. How do we improve the community game to rival those facilities? Invest in community facilities direct from the RFL at a cost?

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8 minutes ago, JM2010 said:

Will Cas and Wakey both having an academy produce more SL players overall than just Wakey having one or will they just be spread between both clubs with more community players needed to fill out their squads. I think that is an important factor. Same goes for Hull and Hull KR,  Huddersfield and Bradford, Wigan and Leigh etc.

I do understand the frustration of the clubs that have missed out though as they will now feel they are handicapped against the top clubs although, is that down to them not having a good enough academy set up in the first place?

What were the problems with the joint Hull Academy as potentially that could be a way forward

 

I would also argue that there will be little difference in the players coming through to open age professional game with one academy in the region instead of two.

And if the reserves works out as planned the opportunity to progress after academy is increased removing a bottle neck and lost talent 

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Few thoughts. Seems like the clubs that missed out haven’t had the written decision yet - expect more pushback then. 
Also looks like academy geographical congestion played a bigger part than the last licensing cycle. It’s very possible that Bradford (or Cas, or HKR) could have had the 6th best application, but if Leeds/Hudds were 4th & 5th best, or WakeyHKR were 5th best,then they miss out. Which is wrong. 
Bradford now have 8 strong local clubs with a BD postcode. Do they now get shared between Leeds/Hudds?  
I don’t know % of other academies but Bradford were close to 50% with their last scholarship year from a BD postcode. 
The club to look at is Siddal. Every year, about 1/2 get picked up by scholarships- Every club, Wigan, Saints, Leeds are after them. How does that fit with geographical congestion?

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People seem to be wilfully ignoring the fact that 12 licenses were available (9 heartlands) and only 10 issued (7 heartlands) - the other applicants must have been nowhere near the required standard.

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"Just as we had been Cathars, we were treizistes, men apart."

Jean Roque, Calendrier-revue du Racing-Club Albigeois, 1958-1959

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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, nadera78 said:

People seem to be wilfully ignoring the fact that 12 licenses were available (9 heartlands) and only 10 issued (7 heartlands) - the other applicants must have been nowhere near the required standard.

People are also completely getting the wrong end of the stick. If it was due to geographical congestion, the clubs that missed out wouldn’t be allowed to run an academy. They can still run and academy but they haven’t met the standards for the Elite academy setup. Nothing to do with geographical congestion, it’s about raising standards 

Edited by DoubleD
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22 hours ago, nadera78 said:

Interesting that they could have awarded 12 licenses, but decided only 10 applicants were of sufficient standard. Doesn't leave a lot of room for the clubs left out to complain about the decision.

Also notable that they've emphasised the desire not to have clubs stripping the community game of youngsters who stand no chance of ever making it to a professional level simply to pad out their academies.

This is how the SL licensing should have worked, only 10 clubs good enough then 10 licenses with space for others if they get their act together in time

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A great thread getting in to the meat of what the RFL is all about.

This is not about tribalism but survival as a game.

The RFL have 109k active participants at Community level  now being asked to pay £20 pa on average to support central admin. We are being taxed. Grants  of any kind to pro clubs therefore  taste nasty

The impact on the Community game ( the umbilical  cord ) has finally been recognised , Protect it at all costs..  John  Ros and  ' Deano'  ( a military  logistics expert in charge of the UK drone system ) well understand the position.

So it is not ownership of players  as a club but about proper production . These lads belong to the game as a  whole. Get that mind set right and we might be ok.

Entirely confident that non Academy talent scouts watch all that is happening ( or they shouldn't have the job ) Bid in for a let go lad by all means but the record shows that most remain within the game anyway.

The purpose of the Elite Academy and the Scholar route remains  the improvement of players and not  competitive results on the park. But without the grass routes there is nothing.

Take out the pro  club focus and we might have a chance....

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  • Glensider changed the title to RL decision on Academies
  • John Drake changed the title to Academy Licensing (2022 - 27) - (Merged threads)

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