US Lacrosse Boys’ and Girls’ All-America Process FAQ
- Why is there a requirement to submit a coaches roster and what information must be included?
Even though US Lacrosse is the national governing body, we rely on our volunteers to keep us up-to-date on all programs in their areas at all levels. As the chair for your area, it is part of your role to help us identify the scholastic high school programs in your area, including the current head coach and his/her email address. Although we hope all coaches see value in a US Lacrosse membership, we understand not all coaches are members. By having a complete roster of programs, their head coaches, and their email addresses, we can not only can verify award allotment but are also better able to share US Lacrosse initiatives and resources to support high school coaches and players.
- On the girls’ side, why were the number of All-American and All-Academic slots per area cut?
US Lacrosse was charged with bringing the two gender processes together into one unified program. In reference to All-American, the change was not quite as drastic, moving from 1 per 4 member coaches to 1 per 6 programs. This actually increases the number of All-Americans in areas where coach memberships were low by removing the membership requirement.
On the All-Academic side, change was necessary. In 2015, there were over 3,000 girls’ All-Academic honorees compared to 300 boys’ honorees. While we appreciate the number of academically gifted lacrosse players and want to recognize their efforts, our committees wanted to increase the value of earning the award. It is also important to note, this award isn’t only about academics. There are plenty of academic awards in existence. This is a lacrosse academic award and the athletes earning the award should be compared against their peers for both lacrosse and academics.
- There used to be 2-3 groups of deadlines for submissions and now there is one. Why?
We understand climate and school year calendar plays a major role in determining when seasons start and end; however, the universal deadlines provide a final end date for everyone. One way to think of this is as a rolling deadline - May 1st or earlier. However, a chair must contact US Lacrosse and let all coaches know if the deadline is earlier than what is published nationally.
- There will be a single US Lacrosse announcement in July.
- The post season is not included in the awards process.
- Why was the process revised? What are the benefits?
US Lacrosse is the national governing body of the sport. As such, it was time to develop a unified process for the selection of girls’ and boys’ All-Americans and All-Academics. Over the years, US Lacrosse has fielded numerous inquiries as to why the processes were so drastically different. Even though the games have different rules, it no longer made sense to continue to administer separate processes inherited back when US Lacrosse was formed in 1998. The new singular process is easier to administer nationally, is more transparent and democratic, and provides more weight to the honors of US Lacrosse All-American and US Lacrosse All-Academic.
- How do we handle disputes and issue with the US Lacrosse awards process?
There now is a formalized grievance process for both games. Section F Grievance Process in the Handbook outlines the steps to take in the event of local complaint regarding the awards. There is a set time frame to submit grievances, they must be first submitted to the Area Chair and then will be reviewed by US Lacrosse.
- Can we send out local announcements before the official US Lacrosse press release is issued that names award winners?
Yes. In previous years US Lacrosse asked areas not to locally announce award winners before the national press release. Moving forward, recognizing that areas may have different timelines and school year calendars, it makes more sense for areas to have the ability to recognize award winners locally in a time and manner they see fit.
- How do we ensure that voting for year-end awards can be done fairly since coaches may not have the opportunity to see all the players in their area?
As with any democratic process, there can never be one way that satisfies the needs and concerns of everyone. The awards handbook only sets the criteria for what awards are selected, eligibility, the process that is to be followed, and the roles and responsibilities of an Area Chair. We recognize that seeing every team or player can be a challenge due to geographic or time constraints but we do not have an answer that is “one size fits all.” For specific concerns or questions we encourage you to contact your area representative that is a member of the US Lacrosse Coaches Subcommittee.
- Why was the amount of cards removed from the process?
We remain committed to the requirement for sportsmanship as criteria for All-American but we also recognize that there are differences in how often officials use cards in diverse areas of the country. US Lacrosse felt it more appropriate for the local area leadership to determine if the number of cards or unsportsmanlike calls warranted concern or discussion of a nominee’s viability.
- Is confidentiality still a part of the process and how do we ensure it with online access to forms?
Only the Area Chair and US Lacrosse staff will have access to all the online forms. During the voting process, all the coaches will see who was nominated. We impress upon all chairs and coaches to maintain the confidentiality of the nomination process.
- Will there be online voting that US Lacrosse will tally? How can we tally vote or what is the best example?
Each area is allowed to implement the voting system that best suits their needs. Some areas may choose to vote in person, some may use online voting through email or Google docs. The chair is responsible for collecting and tabulating the votes. US Lacrosse will also provide an excel template for those areas that would like a resource.