Set Up For Success: A Youth Basketball Blueprint

By LeagueApps
April 5, 2019
5 min

At LeagueApps we pride ourselves on living and breathing youth sports. Our platform powers countless teams around the country, across a multitude of sports.

To better understand the sports we’re serving, we have launched our “Best of the Best” series. Each article will feature top organizations answering questions pertaining to their sport. Topics will range from organizational growth and savvy technology utilization to college recruitment and coach retention. Our series gets kicked off with three questions for some of the country’s top basketball directors.

How do you go about recruiting and retaining quality coaches as you scale?


Steve Sterrett – Wake County Basketball Association

We look to identify patterns. For example, we’ve learned that coaches can sometimes get too competitive as their kids get older, so we don’t let parents coach after 6th grade. When we do look to bring parents on board, we’ve been pretty successful recruiting volunteers through sheer word-of-mouth. Once we have them on board we try to provide as much training as possible. We utilize the rec season as well to get parents prepared to coach.


Phil Guglielmo – Evolution Basketball Training

We couldn’t do it without social media. We’re the biggest we’ve been in ten years because of our growth across Virginia, and using FB employment ads to get the word out has helped tremendously. Another factor, as it relates to retention, is the of our client base. Coaches want to stick around because they’re seeing the impact they’re making on each player season to season. We’ve been fortunate that each coach had some connection with Evo Ball before they started coaching.

Michael D. Reio – Basketball World Toronto

It’s always a challenge finding ways to attract and retain coaches, but Basketball World is consistently building out ways to support our coaches. Paid positions, offering training opportunities when they don’t exist, marketing their stories, are all ideas that we’ve developed over the years. Making sure we listen to our customers and hiring coaches who align with our mission/family is vital. We support that through surveys and feedback channels throughout the year.


Accessibility is a daunting problem in youth sports. How are you tackling this challenging issue?


Phil Guglielmo – Evolution Basketball Training

We address this in three ways. The first is recognition. We know some of the best players are often players that aren’t financially stable, but just want to play the game. The next step is scholarship assistance. We offer this on a need basis and make sure we work with athletes so that they can afford our training. The final step is community engagement. We partner with organizations in the area and hold giveaways, fundraisers, and offer up free seasons of training throughout the year so we can impact more kids.

Steve Sterrett – Wake County Basketball Association

We work with foundations and have established scholarship programs for those who can’t afford it. This topic is bigger than us, it’s really about growing the game. We don’t turn away kids who can’t pay except for the incidences where we do not have the facility space, because we know that basketball can change a kid’s life and at the end of the day we just want them to have access to the game. We’re in the process of getting a facility built which would allow more kids to be impacted and be able to play.

Michael D. Reio – Basketball World Toronto

We started BWT’s Youth Programs 10 years ago with the goal of providing quality basketball programs that were well organized with the goal of quality instructors, conducive environments and a planned approach to educating kids. Complimenting our Youth Program four years ago, BWT started working with a non-profit foundation called Lay Up to promote programs for kids in underprivileged neighborhoods. This is our way of ensuring that kids have the means to play the game, the proper resources, and a variety of quality programs that encourage player development.


How does your organization quantify success?


We measure our impact in a couple ways. The first is how much we’re impacting the kids. Positively affecting kids through sports and encouraging them to be better off and on the court. We’re successful because we’re filled every season, our customers are satisfied, and we are constantly trying to improve things. The more measurable success indicator is how many kids have gone onto the college ranks.


Our success ratio is that every kid that’s played for us through their senior year has played college ball at some point. Since 2017, 74 kids gone to play college ball, with the vast majority playing at the D3 level. NC/SC/VA are the states most kids flock towards.

Phil Guglielmo – Evolution Basketball Training

 It boils down to player development. We’re all about making the players better, in the last decade, over 250+ our players have played college ball, many at the D3 level. Another factor we point to is our growth. We have grown to four facilities with around 15,000 players having trained in our facilities year-round. We also champion the #EVOFam, which is our way of embracing a family aspect component to our business. We’re here to help our players on and off the court.