Michigan Rush Downriver

Age Group Chart

Transition to Birth Year for the 2016-2017 season


United States Youth Soccer Association has mandated that all youth soccer teams, in every club, and in every state, across the entire United States, be divided and formed based on player 'birth year' beginning in 2016-17. This means that no longer will we be considering the August 1st 'cutoff date' for determining whether a player is U8 vs U9 and so on...instead, all players born within a given year will now be expected to play within the same 'age group' together. (For example, all players born in 2001 will be in one age group, and all players born in 2000 will be in another, and so on).  

Michigan Rush Downriver, in abiding by the US Soccer mandate, will be going to 'birth year' for this year's 2016-17 tryout. We will ask that all players please attend the tryout for their appropriate 'age group' under the new birth year alignment. With that said, our directors and professional staff will be looking at cases where transitioning to birth year might not make sense and exceptions to the rule may be necessary. Our goal has always been, and will remain to be, to create teams of 'like-players' as best we can, and have them play against 'like competition' as best we can, so that we may provide a developmentally appropriate training and game environment for every player within Michigan Rush Downriver, to help them reach their full potential.

Age Group Birth Year Players Playing Time (Minutes) Break Time (Minutes) Offside Ball Size
U8 2009 4v4 3 x 15 5 No 3
U9 2008 7v7 2 x 25 10 Yes 4
U10 2007 7v7 2 x 25 10 Yes 4
U11 2006 9v9 2 x 30 10 Yes 5
U12 2005 9v9 2 x 30 10 Yes 5
U13 2004 11v11 2 x 35 15 Yes 5
U14 2003 11v11 2 x 35 15 Yes 5
U15 2002 11v11 2 x 40 15 Yes 5
U16 2001 11v11 2 x 40 15 Yes 5
U17 2000 11v11 2 x 45 15 Yes 5
U18 1999 11v11 2 x 45 15 Yes 5
U19 1998 11v11 2 x 45 15 Yes 5

Why Small Sided Games for U8 to U12 teams?

Small sided games accelerate player development.  The benefits of small sided games for players include more touches on the ball and an increase in tactical decisions. This style of play allows players to learn different positions and learn tactics quicker.  

From US Soccer:  "What we’re trying to do is to help players develop by putting them in an environment where they are constantly involved in the play.  That could be with the ball and that could be without the ball, but when you make things small-sided, everyone is somehow involved in the play, whether that’s in defending, in cutting angles, in cutting the ball back, you’re always in the play."