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Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the US Academy:

1. What is the age range?

For the 2019-20 Season 2006 & 2007 birth years will compete in the Development Academy.

2. How long is the season?

The season is 10 months, August through the end of May. US Soccer believes in a year-round training program for the Developmental Academy age groups.

3. How does the selection process work?

A series of open try-outs and ID sessions can be located on the tryout page.  From these open try-outs and ID sessions players will be placed on the Academy Rosters. Players may be added to the roster after this point and throughout the season. Roster sizes differ between age groups but generally will provide opportunities for 16 players in each respective age group.

4. When will final roster decisions be made for Academy teams?

The majority of decisions will be made by the end of May.  As mentioned, there is the potential for players to be added to the roster as the season progresses up to the max roster size.

5. Can a player on an Academy roster play for any other team or club?

No. Academy players must be registered with Santa Barbara SC and Academy players are not permitted to play on any other team.  A player can play within the Santa Barbara SC and be rostered in the Academy as a part-time player. 

6. Is there a way to be involved in the Academy Program without being selected to the roster?

Yes, US Soccer gives the Development Academy Clubs the option to add what it calls Development Players (DP).

Development Players (DP’s): This is a player that is eligible to train with the Development Academy Squad.  A club can have an unlimited number of DP players. Selection of DP’s is at the coach’s discretion, and these players are registered to and play with their club regular team, however, they  regularly attend two practices a week with the Academy team and can play in up to 6 games.

7. Does the Development Academy play in the same leagues and competitions as other teams?

No. Development Academy teams only compete against other Development Academy teams. The number of competitive games is limited to 36 per season. The Santa Barbara SC Development Academy teams can arrange scrimmages and friendlies for training purposes as well as receive approval for outside competition, if and when Academy Director deems necessary.

8. Does the Academy Roster remain the same each year?

No. Each year a new set of try-outs will be conducted and each year a new group of players will become eligible for selections for the academy roster.

9. How many practices per week are required?

US Soccer mandates the training frequencies for the development of the elite soccer player. More practices with less games but more meaningful games.

  • U13 (2007) = 3 times per week

  • U14 (2006) = 4 times per week

10. What does the game schedule/travel commitment look like?

The majority of games will take place in Southern California between Santa Barbara and San Diego. There will be two additional events. One Regional event in California as well as one National event.

The game schedule for all the three age groups is located HERE.

11. Will the Roster be limited to players from Santa Barbara SC only?

No. US Soccer has designated Santa Barbara SC as Development Academy Club in order to help them identify the top talent not only in Santa Barbara but also on the Central Coast, or within a 2 hour radius of Santa Barbara. In addition, Santa Barbara SC is required to field not only a competitive team but a team that plays within the club style of play, all against the top players and teams and clubs from all over Southern California.

12. Can an academy player play soccer in High School?

No. Development Academy players are not permitted to compete for any other team, and this includes their high school team. While involved with the US Academy the elite player must be committed to training on an annual basis over a 10 month season. For the U13 (2007) (no conflicts) and the U14 (2006) Academy, this will only be a conflict for one year, freshman year. Once the U13-14 Academy year is complete the player can then transition the following year to their  sophomore year of the high school play.

13. Can a development player play in High School?

Yes. Since DP’s can play on other teams, they are permitted to participate on their high school team.

If you have any questions about the US Academy at SBSC please email Johnny Whallon the Academy Administrator.

Contact Us

Santa Barbara Soccer Club

121 Gray Avenue, Suite 300
Santa Barbara, California 93101

Phone: 805-679-7592
Email: [email protected]

Santa Barbara Soccer Club

121 Gray Avenue, Suite 300
Santa Barbara, California 93101

Phone: 805-679-7592
Email: [email protected]
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