All-Star Showcases vs Tournaments

I get a lot of questions from parents asking why they should have their athlete play in a showcase versus a tournament. The answer is if you don’t have to pick, then don’t. Let your son play in both as they have different purposes. I do explain to them the difference between both events. All-Star games should follow this simple principle – to allow all players on the team equal opportunity to show off their talent. I can’t speak for all All-Star games, but there are two games out there that I know follow this principle: the IV Star Showcase and Junior Academic All-American Bowl. Let me say that again, they “showcase” talent. What this means is they understand every kid who was nominated to play a position SHOULD and WILL play in that position for that event. Players will split time in a position to ensure they all get EQUAL time to showcase their talent. It doesn’t mean that an athlete can’t play another position during that game, but the primary position should be the one in which that athlete was nominated. This is why it’s called and All-Star showcase.

On the other hand, the primary goal of tournaments (and there are a lot of good ones out there) is to win a championship. It differs from an All-Star showcase in that equal playing time may not come into effect as each team’s mission is to win and move on to the next game. Players and parents love this platform as they can play more than one game and the element of competition can be very exciting.


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Bret Cooper

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