Our Program & Mission
Hillsdale Hoops is a travel basketball program for 3rd to 8th grade girls and boys residing in Hillsdale, NJ. Our goal is to balance lessons in team play, good sportsmanship and competition by providing an atmosphere where participants can enjoy their experiences while they are given the opportunity to develop as people and players.
- Practices begin in October due to very limited facilities from December forward. We do make efforts to coordinate around fall sporting commitments.
- Participants need to consider other commitments that may conflict with this program. Please see our tryout page for additional info. Players need to be committed to the program in order to keep up with the team development that takes place during practices.
- Seasons begin with a tournament in late November. The Girls' League begins in mid-December. The Boys' League begins the first week of January. Our post-season tournament play can extend to late March.
- We typically play over 20 games per season. Please anticipate that we will practice or play games two or three days per week.
- Participants are given equal opportunities, but playing time is not guaranteed. Playing time is based on consideration towards skill level, effort, and commitment as well as game situations.
- Coaching priorities vary between Recreation and Travel programs. Both program's objectives include lessons in sportsmanship, poise and team concepts. Enjoying the experience and developing as people and players come above everything else; however, efforts to win games are considered in travel programs and playing time is not guaranteed.
Teams will consist of 9 - 12 roster players with 10 being the number of players selected in most cases. It is possible that 11 or 12 might be selected if based on the evaluation ratings we feel that it makes the most sense.
Season Player Fees
The fees below are based on a budget we have prepared for the upcoming season. We expect the actual cost per player to be approximately $450.00 per player this year. HHA is able to subsidize a large portion of this fee as a result of our fundraising efforts. We cannot commit to these fees at this point but it will be close to these amounts.
- Roster Player fees are $255 + $75 for tournament volunteer deposit
- Estimated uniform cost are $30 for shorts, $31 for jersey and $30 for sweatshirts (optional)
*We polled a dozen local towns on league fees. The range was $175 to $400 and typically included one tournament before participants had to pay an additional fee.
Volunteering / Sponsorships
Tournament income and sponsorships play a significant role in enabling us to maintain these fee levels. A $75 deposit check is returned upon participation as a volunteer (minimum of 3 hours of volunteering). This approach gives parents/guardians the option of assisting as a fund-raising volunteer, or basically paying an additional $75 so that we can compensate youth volunteers.
A Coaches View of Youth Tryouts
How do you keep the kids interested when many don't reach their peak until they get to High School?
All of our evaluators are youth basketball coaches. Most currently coach at local High Schools. While they agreed on the value of travel programs, they were consistent with some level of concern over this question. One of the evaluators (who has over 500 varsity wins) recalled that a number of his best players (several all-county players) did not make youth teams at one point or another. For various reasons, those kids stayed involved with a sport that they enjoyed. We hope that our message helps others to do the same.
As part of our evaluation process, we start each session with a clear message.
Selecting a travel team is difficult. We operate as fairly as possible, but we're not perfect. If you listen to one thing today, listen to this advice ... continue to practice and play the sports that you enjoy regardless of the outcome of any tryout. Teams face change over the years based on a number of factors such as dedication, development and interest in other activities. If you have fun playing basketball, join the Recreation program, attend local clinics or leagues, but keep playing what you enjoy playing.