Selecting Your Top Five

One question I get quite often for those of you that participate in the Minnesota State High School Clay Target League is how do I select my top 5 shooters to compete in the MSHSL State Tournament.

While there is no one way to select your team there are a few things you should consider before sending in your roster.

1.  Read the Policies and Procedures, specifically the section that notes that the Head Coach makes the selection.  This is a key note because it prevents teams from having to have criteria in place that the Head Coach may not agree with.  Nobody knows their athletes better than the head coach so trust that his/her decision is the right one.

2.  Factor in more than just scores.  All to often we as coaches think we have to pick athletes with the highest average score.  This may seem logical in some sports but when it comes to trap and skeet shooting it is important to account for squad chemistry.  The league allows athletes from grades 6-12 so it’s important to remember the varying maturity levels.

3.  Consider opinions from assistant coaches.  I have found it very helpful to obtain feedback from my coaches before I make my selection.

4.  Know your athletes mindset as it comes to competition.  Not all athletes that shoot well are competitive.  Speak to your athletes before selecting them to be on a competition team that they may not be comfortable with.

5.  Regardless of who you select make it a squad that represents your team well on all levels.  All-Star teams can fail and the last thing you want is parents thinking the only reason you coach is to win.  Carefully select the right athletes and reward them with accolades regardless of how they finish.

A good coach will take into account many more factors than just the five I have listed but the above list is a great way to start assembling your championship team!

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