AAU IS QUIETLY UNDER ATTACK
For those who believe it is a conspiracy theory without facts when told AAU is quietly under attack meet retired General Martin E. Dempsey his connections to youth basketball are organized below to help you connect the dots.
Before we begin it must be noted that Dempsey's basketball bio does not include any experience playing, nor coaching basketball at any level so you may question how he has attained several high level basketball positions & his motives when making decisions within his role.
Dempsey's limited basketball experiences include that he has spoken on leadership panels with members of USA Basketball, addressed the men’s and women’s national teams on numerous occasions and led USA Basketball’s participation in the Hoops for Troops and TAPS (Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors) programs to connect the world's best athletes with the world's best military and their families.
Current positions held:
1. Special Adviser to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver - Dempsey counsels the NBA on leadership and service and helps with the league’s efforts to engage youth.
2. Chair of the recently formed Jr. NBA Leadership Council.
3. Elected USA Basketball Chairman for the 2017-20 quadrennium.
4. Member of the NCAA Commission on College Basketball led by Chair Condoleezza Rice which is currently thoroughly examining recruiting, AAU, grassroots & youth basketball leagues maintained by Nike, UA & Adidas etc. as recently confirmed by NCAA President Mark Emmert.
A brief snapshot into Dempsey's thinking on youth basketball & USA basketball: The NBA and USA Basketball have partnered to develop a first-ever set of youth basketball guidelines to enhance the way children, parents and coaches experience the game, emphasizing the importance of player health and wellness. The recommended playing and rest guidelines — which have been endorsed by a handful of organizations such as AAU, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Adidas, Nike, Under Armour and the NCAA.
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An overemphasis on early competitive success has led to several well-recognized issues that exist across youth sports, including in youth basketball:
- Pressure to begin high-intensity training at a young age
- Early single-sport specialization
- Frequent and multiple competitive event scheduling
- Increased risk for injury, burnout, and disengagement from sports
Dempsey's thoughts “As both the chairman of the Jr. NBA Leadership Council and a parent whose kids grew up playing basketball, I’m proud that the NBA and USA Basketball developed these important guidelines" “We have a responsibility as stewards of the game to provide an appropriate structure for youth basketball, and these recommendations will help to reshape the game in a positive way at the grassroots level and promote a healthy experience.”
Dempsey's thoughts on USA Basketball "Playing for USA Basketball is about commitment, sacrifice, and pride. It's about developing young men and women who are exceptional athletes but also exceptional leaders. It's about respecting the game and our international competitors. It's about representing our country with honor, and it's about winning. I look forward to working with the USA Basketball staff, coaches, players, and families"
You are probably wondering why & more importantly how a retired military general with no previous basketball experience has working relationships with the NBA, Jr. NBA, USA Basketball & the NCAA?
Think & Connect the Dots.