NEW this Spring: Mental Strength Training for all Basics players



At Basics, we are not believers in the current model of player development by emphasizing competition over preparation.  Too many programs focus on competition in an attempt to improve.  The reality is players who possess moderate or even GOOD skills are done a disservice by forcing them to compete BEFORE THEY HAVE SHARP SKILLS.  Please view Basics Candid Shots Video Log on Teaching Plays: 4:06

As of this writing we have 110 program graduates playing college basketball (or who have played).  Competition is incidental to a player’s competitiveness.  It plays a role, but it plays NO ROLE without really sharp skills and conditioning.  Without sharp skills and conditioning, competition is frankly a waste of time, energy and money.

SEE OUR PYRAMID OF SKILL HERE.  The top block, COMPETITION, is defined as “Winning, or having chance to win.”   The fact of the matter is most players and teams have little or no chance of winning because they have poor skills, conditioning is average and they do not think correctly. (Mental Strength Training here)

NOTE: Of course we have to compete at some point.  We argue that a TINY FRACTION of kids (less than 3%) are actually ready to compete.  Basics recommends competitive scrimmaging coupled with constant coaching reinforcement.  We also MEASURE many of the skills so players (and parents) actually know where they are on the skill spectrum.    See 2:24 Candid Shots Video log on The Mikan Drill, WITH NUMBERS ATTACHED by age and gender.    Where is your child in the progression? 90% + are AVERAGE or below.

Our question then is–why are so many kids/teams/programs trying to compete with average skills?  It makes no sense to us at all.  The ugly truth is players without sharp skills often REGRESS (get worse) when asked to compete.


When are try outs?
  • March 2020:  all dates, times, locations and registration on this page
Are there cuts?
  • Yes for ages 13 and older.  No for ages 12 and younger
  • For ages 12 and younger, the fee is due to secure a roster spot.  NO TRY OUTS, NO CUTS.
  • For U-12 players ONLY–More info here.  TIP–1st come 1st serve
  • Why we do NOT CUT at this young age–POST
Are there advanced teams?
  • Yes.  Based on try outs we will compose teams in both the U-14 and U-17 divisions of players who demonstrate they belong with more competitive players.
  • PARENTS–we understand the allure of “travel” and “elite” teams.  Take a few minutes and PLEASE listen to our 4:41 Candid Shots video log on Developing an Elite Athlete.  It DOES NOT MATTER who your kid is playing for in the off season.  What matters is “Are they practicing properly and are they improving?”
  • NOTE: Players often PLATEAU and stop improving because their commitment level decreases.  
Where do the teams practice?
  • Byron Center, Holland, Rockford, Belmont, Ferrysburg and Fruitport
Where + when are tournaments?
When and how often are practices?
  • Each team practices TWO TIMES EACH WEEK.
  • Rockford: Mondays and Tuesdays
  • Byron Center: Mondays and Thursdays
  • Holland: Mondays and Wednesdays
  • Belmont: Sundays and Mondays
  • Fruitport: TBD
  • Ferrysburg: Mons, Tues, Weds and Thurs
  • Forest Hills: Weds and Thursdays
Are there Sunday practices?
  • Sunday is a day of rest.  We try as best as we can to avoid Sundays.  One of our gyms only permits Sundays, so stay tuned.
When does the season begin + end?
  • Try outs are in March, we begin practices after Spring Break
  • We end in late May or early June
  • We do not believe in organized summer basketball.  See below.
What are the costs?
  • $595.  Half ($300) is due to secure the spot.  Second half ($295) due April 1.
  • SIBLING DISCOUNTS: if sibs play, please take $50 OFF each sibs fee in the spring program
  • Fee includes: Tourney fees, Shooting Shirt, Basics uniform, Basics socks, unlimited skills clinics this spring at ANY Basics gym
  • OPPORTUNITY for excellent business exposure and affiliation with Basics:  Shooting Shirts
What about Summer Basketball?
What else?
  • All Basics Spring Players may attend an UNLIMITED NUMBER of skills sessions at no additional cost all spring AT ANY GYM.
  • We will arrange SCRIMMAGING with area teams.  No cost, no travel, no refs, no uniforms, no admission, no results, no parents which all EQUALS a superior competitive experience in every way.
  • Players may join OTHER PRACTICES on OTHER DATES at no extra cost if space is available.  It almost always is.  ANY GYM.
  • We have found a LARGE DISCREPANCY often in the skills of players at U14 and U17.  This year, we may offer  more ADVANCED/SELECT teams at these divisions BASED ON THEIR TRY OUT PERFORMANCE.
  • Listen to Basics Podcast:  Tips for Try Outs.  Great advice.
  • TIP for kids considering “Elite”, Exposure camps:  DON’T.  Listen to this Candid Shots video log on the topic.   Also known as “Showcases.”
  • Summer camps right around the corner!
  • All spring team players get 50% OFF a college player profile if they have the goal and ambition AND SKILL to play at the next level.