Exposure is about two things; 1) decisions and 2) timing. And for better or worse, exposure is an ensuing result from the decisions the parents have made. What school a child attends? What AAU team a child plays for? These are decisions parents must make that kickstart a young athlete’s exposure process. So here is our opinion on how to handle these decisions.
Q: What AAU team should my child play for?
A: Pick a team where you know your child is going to play and get better. Unfortunately, many parents are brainwashed to believe that AAU is the only way for their child to a college scholarship. AAU is not about basketball anymore, it is about travel. AAU coaches have become travel agents; they win so that they can visit Las Vegas or Florida once a year. The emphasis is not on development anymore, it’s on winning.
Your child will not get better unless he/she is in the game.
Q: Who should work my child out?
A: The guy who stresses over details and is placing emphasis on the fundamentals. Within the last few years there has been a transition; teachers of the game are becoming extinct, and “internet trainers” are becoming the norm. Players are falling in love with the entertainment of basketball, but never learn how to play the game.
Find a teacher of the game. Choose fundamentals and basics before the bells and whistles.
Q: What events should I send my child to?
A: Events are good for two reasons, the experience and the exposure. Unfortunately, it is difficult to find events that offer both. Find an event that offers what you are looking for. If you are looking for an event that offers experience, go to events where good players will be. These events can be used to measure the development your child has made, as well as see where he/she stands among his/her peers.
If you are looking for exposure, find camps. Camps are the best way to get individual exposure other than being a star on an elite AAU team. Camps should not be used for babysitting, find the right camp that will allow your child to stand out.
Recommended services that offer camps: Hoop Group, Pangos, Rocktop, CP3, John Lucas, Hoop Spotlight, Future 150, and Scout Focus.
Q: What school do I send my child to?
A: This is the toughest decision a parent will make. It is important to be at the right school are the right time, therefore, it is about opportunity. First and foremost, education should be the priority when choosing a school. However, from a basketball point of view, choose the school where your child can develop and play within their first two years there. Although basketball is a team sport, scholarships are not. Consider it a bonus, if the school has a good coach, and a miracle if your child’s team wins.
There is an abundance of excellent schooling options such as prep schools, elite high schools, catholic schools, and charter schools, pick a school where your child will play.
Overall, do what is best for you and your child.