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Amador basketball has an aau team - is this ethical?

Original post made by Curious, Golden Eagle, on Sep 13, 2009

I just found out that Amador has an aau basketball team they put together this past summer. They are even called the "Dons". I thought high school teams are not allowed to do this. There was an informational meeting and the guy was really pushing it, he stopped short of saying that if your kid was not in this aau program ($1200?!) that he would not make the Amador team. I also heard that the aau Don's are coached by the Amador coaches and they use the Amador facilities. Does Foothill do this also? I really thought there was some kind of HS rule that you couldn't do this or is it just unethical? Anyone out there know for sure?

Comments (76)

Posted by Pmom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 8:17 am

I don't know the rules on this, but I do know a friend of my sons who is on an, or "the," aau team affliated with the high school and already says he's on the high school team, when there haven't even been tryouts yet. I think this should be addressed by the school board.

Posted by A Parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Sep 14, 2009 at 8:23 am

Ok.. what ia 'aau' and what does it mean? would someone who doesn't understand this please explain? thanks!

Posted by mary
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 8:26 am

It ought to be investigated immediately. This type of nonesense is where the line gets crossed in the name of high school trophies. Anything to get the best and most trained, even beyond the rules.

Hope you find your answers and bring it to public light. Hope you don't get squelched.

Posted by Susan
a resident of Valley View Elementary School
on Sep 14, 2009 at 8:51 am

HS sports are no longer an activity to keep kids involved & busy, to teach or improve skills. They are meant to showcase kids talents that they learned in previous years, through soccer leagues, club volleyball, Little league, or whatever. If your student has not participated in these, it is doubtful they will make the team. Non-school sports training is strongly encouraged by coaches, students, even other parents. Also, younger sibling have a greater chance of making the team is their older sibling excelled at the sport. I've seen this at both Foothill & Amador.

Posted by Ptown Mom
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Sep 14, 2009 at 9:16 am

I went to that info meeting and yeah they were putting the squeeze on us. The coach also said son made the Amador team. How can this be when the tryouts for highschool aren't until November? This is not right. My son should have the same chances as anyone else, we can't afford that kind of money. It's like you are buying your son's spot on the team.

Posted by LOL
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 9:19 am

Welcome to the "we have tons of money" attitude of Pleasanton.

Posted by Mom of 3
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Sep 14, 2009 at 9:26 am

In all sports, coaches encourage students to play during the off season, or summer months. Susan, younger sibs do not always make the team. Coaches (and players) want to win, so they choose the student that has the talent, not who their sib is. Bottom line is talent - don't take it away from those kids that make the team. Also, re: basketball, height plays a big part. In some cases coaches will take a student who may not be as agile, but because they have the height they'll work with them, hopefully to get them to improve. Parents, there may be some not-so-good coaches out there, but the majority of them do know what they are doing. Many have been doing it for years, most have played at least high school sports, many college. My 3 kids never got any extra training (we couldn't afford it), but did have athletic abilities and made the team. This is the time when your kid may have to sit a bench, but they are still a big part of the team. Don't take away their dignity by belittling the coach or the other players that do start. Please make an effort not to get on the rumor mill when it comes to a coach or another player - it only makes you and your own child look bad.

Posted by Mr. Soccer
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Sep 14, 2009 at 9:59 am

AAU Stands for "Amateur Athletic Union" and here is the link.
Web Link
To say you have to be on one of these teams to be on the school team is crap. If you love the game you play and it shows by the A game you bring, then you will get on the team(Most of the time). BUT when you are exposed to your rivals and coaches more and they get to see your good and bad habits they will be more likly to put you on their team if they like what they see. If they don't know you they may be turned off by the lack of what they don't know about you. IT SUCKS!! We are, as a society, constantly pushing to be the best. We have done this to our selves and our kids. Now who is to say we are better or worse for it. Do we or do we not have some of the best athlets in the USA right here in our HOUSE. You be the judge and let me know.

Mr. Soccer

Posted by tyu
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 14, 2009 at 10:01 am

Politics have been part of Pleasanton athletics for years. If you play the politics game your childs chances of making the team increases. When older sibs have been on a team like All Stars or high school your fam is likely to have been in the politics arena longer increasing your younger child's chances. It seems to not make sense because the coaches should want only the most talented players but that's how it works here always. You ever notice that coaches sons make the all star teams and often are not as good as the other players? Just an example.

Posted by Basketball Buff
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 10:07 am

AAU means Amateur Athletic Union and these teams compete regionally, by state and even nationally. These teams usually play year-round. There are are many AAU teams out there but none should be affiliated with a specific school. Here is what I found on CIF rules:

Web Link

I found a few of the wordings to be very confusing and though I didn't read the entire document, it doesn't specifically state schools are not allowed to have an AAU team. I do know that schools do not want to be looked at as being biased towards specific players e.g. at Hart MS, they won't hire an AAU coach, whereas at PMS it seems to be a different story. I don't know what it is like at the highschool level but whether it's not against the rules, certainly Amador knows this must be unethical; especially if some the parents of the players already think they are on the team prior to tryouts.

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 14, 2009 at 10:08 am

My son played on the 2001 Foothill which won the Northern California Championship and lost in the state final to Bishop Montgomery of Torrance. Back then there was no requirement to play on any AAU team. He played on the CYO A team for years in preparation for playing in high school and during the summer league games with the team and that was basically it. I have heard recently that there has been some AAU pressure being applied from some guy with a local team. The real odd thing I think here is that from the 1970's to 2002 Pleasanton teams dominated the EBAL but since 2002 middle of the pack so I wonder if it has to do with taking our eye off the ball and not as much focus on school.

Posted by b-ball dad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 10:51 am

almost every high school has a summer basketball program. this last year there was a jv and a varsity league in which virtually all of the EBAL teams were represented. all of these high school programs run open gyms and many have either aau programs or run teams in the mvp league in walnut creek. this is all done to help our kids get better and have an opportunity to play. not all of the kids who play summer ball will make their high school team and not all high school players play summer ball. the dons aau program is just starting but is open to any player regardless of high school although certainly most will go to amador. it has teams from middle school level to high school. the benefit of being an aau program is it opens the door to playing in more tournaments. the coaches basically volunteer their time to help the kids have the opportunity to play and get better. this is not a negative thing but an opportunity. also the cost was not $1200.00 and the cost included both the spring and the summer programs. these programs include workout time at a local gym with personnal fitness trainers which helps the boys get into great shape. my son participated this summer and although he may not make the high school team, he had a great time and is becoming a better player.

Posted by Pleasantonian
a resident of Del Prado
on Sep 14, 2009 at 11:02 am

I know several students who made their teams without being on club or other teams. These kids are talented and work hard. The advantage of playing in leagues/club is that the participants get more experience and coaching. There only so much that can be done during school week practices.

My kid was exposed to several sports for the very first time at her middle school, not through any club or rec league. We are so grateful for that opportunity. She is now playing on her high school team!

With the budget cuts, this year the cost for students to participate in high school sports has gone up tremendously, about $400/sport. Some "Scholarships" are available through "booster" clubs for students needing financial assistance. Everyone in our community could help our school sports programs: participate in fundraisers, join the campus boosters clubs and come to the events and cheer on our youth athletes!

Posted by joe
a resident of Castlewood Heights
on Sep 14, 2009 at 11:08 am

My son played on the team also and my family was honest with the coaches about our son going to Foothill not Amador. The coaches did not even blink they took him in and gave him a summer full of great memories. In the meeting the coaches repeated that this is not about a high school but about our community. There were players represented from all the middle schools and the 2 high schools. This program is everything that is right with our community, not wrong.

Posted by Sarah
a resident of Gatewood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 11:25 am

Just to throw this out there my family has been like many of the other families out there who have been hit by this economic time. My husband and I met with the coach and discussed our problem with paying for any extras right now. He was very considerate and let us work out the finances to what we could afford and even let us pay the reduced price out in payments. He was very kind to me and my family and iappreciate what he has done for my son.just fyi this announcement of financial help was in the first meeting and that is why I approached him for help.

Posted by Ptown Mom
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Sep 14, 2009 at 11:37 am

I get that it's beneficial to join an aau team to prepare for the upcoming tryouts. I think it's great if you can find one that will take the time to develop the players.

But I heard that the Dons aau program didn't invite other schools. They only invited players who were specifically going to Amador. I guess that's why they are called the "Dons"!

What's stupid is the blatant boasting of parents of players from the Dons aau team that their son is already on the Amador school team. Tryouts are over a month away! This has to be against the rules.

Posted by Sarah
a resident of Gatewood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 11:42 am

Stupid parents should be against the rules!!!

Posted by Ptown Mom
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Sep 14, 2009 at 12:31 pm

Sarah you are right! I'm sure Amador is trying to figure out how to keep these parents' mouths shut! I also heard that there is an additional $150 for transportation to get to the games. Is this true also?

Posted by anon
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 14, 2009 at 1:44 pm

Just because a student or parent says "because I did xyz", I have a spot isn't so. I heard this when my kids were at Harvest Park and Amador. Yes, some who did xyz did get a spot, others did not. It did help if the coaches had seen you previously, but if you did well in the try-outs, you beat out other kids.

Did you hear this from a coach? If so, go to the principal. And yes, such things should be banned. Personally, I think the coach should be banned from the try-out process.

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 14, 2009 at 2:49 pm


I am just curious as to how comfortable or effective a coach would be if someone else chose his team for him? I mean I have never heard of a coach in any sport from professional to high school where others pick his team for him without him having a say so in who makes the team.

Posted by D W
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 14, 2009 at 3:39 pm

For those who are concerned about the ethics of any AAU team and their high school teams, in this case Amador, I encourage you to check out or ask an official about the guidelines both within the Pleasanton School District and Pleasanton Park & Rec. Each of their respective websites should explain clearly what each coach can or can't do to invite more athletes in the offseason, while understanding that each student has a life beyond the sport they're asked to play on a team for. If neither website is clear enough, there should be a phone number where you can ask questions.

Sadly, politics is a part of every city's high school athletics. It's like the plague; it's unavoidable and has been existent since dirt. Some districts/cities/towns do it better than others. More often than not, even when students, teachers, coaches, and administrators are held accountable, unfortunately, parents and other relatives are not. Hence, one hears so many complaints about unruly families and/or boosters. It's these perceptions of favortism that allow this version of school politics to flourish.

In Pleasanton's case, since 2002, most of the non-De La Salle/Carondelet success has been coming from Danville, especially in football, soccer, & baseball (although Danville has been a very successful Little League town as far back as the 1970s). For Pleasanton to catch up, the coaches must cover every detail from what's legal & ethical to understanding what priorities each athlete and their families have, then properly recruit like crazy. Knowing what you're doing and communicating consistently are keys to returning to local sports prominence.

I don't blame any long-time Pleasantonian for wanting to reminisce about the city's glory years from the Amador Basketball Dynasty in the 1970s-80s to Foothill's Football Reign in the 1990s to both school's powerful soccer history featuring some of the Eastbay's greatest overall high school teams ever, thanks to the founding of Ballistic United and Pleasanton Rage that develop these teams.

It is clear that Pleasanton's sports success has run somewhat dry, although there has always been one team or athlete or another that sometimes stand out. That's why you see so many coaches under tremendous pressure to bring in athletes. Danville, Concord, San Ramon, Fremont, Oakland, Berkeley, they're never going to stop pursuing the best kids. Hence, Pleasanton seems like they're behind the curve when they're now really lucky to achieve what they have and have earned every championship that's been won.

Best wishes to each high school in 2009-10. It will be a long road, no matter what sport, but I believe the effort will always be there. What a great sports history both Amador & Foothill have. Let's build on it.

Posted by Parent
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Sep 14, 2009 at 5:10 pm

I find it hard to follow this discussion thread... If high school sports has gotten this complicated and involving AAU requirement... I don't want my tax dollars to support any of this... I understand the politics as related to who gets on what team... no different than who gets into what clubs (those very popular and high profile ones like Mock Trial or ComCivics...) It's who you know not what you know! Sorry, auditions are formalities for those with connections... rest is up to who one kisses...

Posted by Falcon dad
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Sep 14, 2009 at 7:03 pm

Foothill boys should have an aau team! Heard they are just starting open gym. What a late start when I know other schools have been doing workouts and conditioning for weeks now. Talked to some other HS school coaches and they get the impression that the new coach is overwhelmed and unorganized. Foothill is Div 1 so when other schools beat them it boosts their record. We have the talent so I hope that this coach gets his act together fast!

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 14, 2009 at 7:21 pm

Falcon Dad,

are you saying that Foothill did not compete in a couple of summer leagues? If true, you may be in trouble. Who is the new coach at Foothill?

Posted by Falcon dad
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Sep 15, 2009 at 9:23 am

The boys played in the summer. I just figured the training was going to be more intense. The coach just hired a young jv coach. I watched a jv game and the freshman from last year didn't look too good. Ok so Lloyd is new and I think he was dealt with a young team. But looks to me like he's surrounding himself with an inexperienced staff. The freshman coach has been there for years but it doesn't look like he really cares. I do miss those glory days when Foothill used to pummel the other teams, my older son was there. My youngest has a long way to go if Lloyd doesn't figure it out soon...luck of the draw...

Posted by dons dad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 15, 2009 at 9:48 am

amador is lucky to have this new head coach who is organizing an overall program for amador and the community. this requires a great deal of time from the head coach and all of the asssistants and they do this because they love the game and like working with kids. the community and especially the amador families should support this.

Posted by Disappointed
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Sep 15, 2009 at 10:16 am

I've heard about the Dons AAU team and know people who have gone to the program so their kid(s) could get on the Amador team. I've also "heard" that a kid made the Amador team already even though they haven't had tryouts yet. Makes one wonder about fairness.....

From what parents have told me, being on the Dons AAU team was almost a requirement or else their kid would miss their chance of being considered for a spot. It seems like the parents were feeling pressure because they thought their kid wouldn't get noticed otherwise. And they may be right.

Does this mean the most talented kids get chosen - I think not. Pressuring people to join your AAU Dons team so you can be part of the Amador High program IS WRONG and probably ILLEGAL. I hope the District is listening.

Amador High is sending a message that it is not really looking for the talented player but narrowing it's focus to a "select few" which certainly won't lead to winning championships any time soon. Look for the talent and then build a team. Don't determine the team and THEN try and develop the talent. It won't be there!

Posted by another falcon dad
a resident of Stoneridge
on Sep 15, 2009 at 10:18 am

well Amador may be on to something unethical or not. I don't think that Foothill should have an aau team, especially if the Amador parents already think they have a spot on the team before tryouts even start, to me that just seems wrong. but maybe this Coach Lloyd needs to get someone on his staff who has aau experience. I know aau has been getting a bad rap that it's all free flowing, no structure and no defense. but I've seen some really good aau teams out there, disciplined and well trained. I don't think they are paid, but how many assistants can a coach have?

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 15, 2009 at 10:41 am


If I were you guys I would look for a conflict of interest here or who is making the money as something is really wrong here and I do not know who is making money but someone must be. Do any of the coaches get paid by this AAU team or the coach of the AAU team. Seems like a huge conflict.

Posted by It's in a name
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Sep 15, 2009 at 10:53 am

Conflict of interest is right...

The Amador Valley High School basketball team and the AAU basketball team go by the SAME name - They are both the DONS for a reason. They are trying to promote them as one and the same.

Posted by b-ball dad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 15, 2009 at 10:57 am

i dont know where you folks get your stories. playing on that summer team does not guarantee anything. i attended all of the meetings and never felt the pressure you talk about. my son played in the program over the summer and again we never got the impression that it would guarantee a spot for him or for any other player. when the school has tryouts, the best players will make the team. certainly when it comes to player 14 or 15, if you have to chose between a player who worked all summer and a player who didn't maybe then the summer play may impact the choice, but coaches will always go with the talent, size and speed and not necessarily in that order.

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 15, 2009 at 11:17 am

B ball dad,

in a perfect world you could be right but i would be willing to bet that if you took last years roster of either high school team they all played summer ball and no one made the team if they did not unless they transferred in and are six and a half feet tall.

Posted by dons dad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 15, 2009 at 11:21 am

why is it that so many of you assume something negative is going on here. these guys, the coaches, charged $350.00 for the summer program. it covered: 2 months of workouts, 3days a week, with the personal trainers; practice twice a week; a 8 game summer league program; and 4 tournaments. it was a great bargain and at that price no one is making any money. they call the team the dons because the amador coaches run it and most of the players are or will be amador students. there are 3-6 coaches depending on their schedules and they spend 10-15 hours a week just with player time, not counting planning and scheduling. sounds to me, most of the people commenting here do not even have direct knowledge of the program and eveything is hearsay and assumed to be bad.

Posted by b-ball dad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 15, 2009 at 11:34 am

bob - you may be right, but players like to play and if you play summer ball you get better and if you don't then perhaps you fall behind. there are many summer programs out there and i know some kids chose bulldogs or hoopology or all three and all of these make them better. this is not a bad thing. it seems what everyone objects to is having to play summer ball in the dons program as if it is a unnecessary prerequisite. the way i look at it is the dons program is a great ooportunity to play and improve.

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 15, 2009 at 11:48 am

B-Ball dad,

I believe that the kids should play a ton and summer league is great and the rules are established for that but I believe people tend to lose sight of the fact that these kids are not going to go pro and maybe one from a league will even play in college so school has to take priority.

Posted by b-ball dad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 15, 2009 at 12:28 pm

bob - I agree whole heartedly. It's supposed to be fun. Most of the kids won't even play many highschool minutes if they make varsity. That's why summer is so much fun. They all get to play then.

Posted by Ptown Mom
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Sep 15, 2009 at 2:09 pm

Dons dad - what you describe sounds like a great program. I don't think anyone here would say it was a bad deal: you mentioned 5 workouts a week plus 12 tournament games for two months. (I didn't include the league games, because they were paid for by the school; Foothill players did not pay for summer league games.)

Of course this program was a great advantage for the kids who were in it. The real issue is that it is an UNFAIR advantage when more than one person in this discussion thread say they have heard from Dons aau parents saying their son already made the team. Spots have already been filled prior to tryouts! This is wrong.

So you say that the Don's coaches are coaching this aau team. How many of their sons are playing on the aau team and how many have a spot on the school team. Let me guess . . .

Falcon dad - I feel for you that Foothill may not have their act together, but at least it's an even playing field.

Posted by Pleasanton parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 15, 2009 at 2:26 pm

Just so everyone has the correct info, cost for the SPRING was $350 and the SUMMER was an additional $650. Total cost for both AAU programs $1,000.00.

Posted by ptown parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 16, 2009 at 11:26 am

$1000 or $1200 per kid is a lot of money so if the Amador coaches are coaching this aau team then someone is getting paid. I know gyms rentals can be expensive. I had to rent a gym once in San Ramon and it cost about $125 per hour. But I seriously doubt these coaches are paying that if they are using Amador facilities. So if they had at least 30 kids . . . you do the math!

I think that's the real issue there. Even if it's not against the rules to have aau teams affiliated with Amador, or if coaches are allowed to coach them. The real issue seems to be that Amador coaches are profiting AND saving spots for their sons and/or "favorites". Now THAT is unethical!

Posted by Concern Parent.
a resident of Grey Eagle Estates
on Sep 17, 2009 at 4:44 pm

I don't have a child in H.S. anymore and by the sound all the complaints and concerns "Thank Goodness"!!! In defense of all the AV Coaches/AAU Teams for H.S. Foothill & Amador, Let me remind all you parents that these coaches volunteer their time and sacrifice their family time as well! Anyone out there thinking they are rolling in the money for self profit should really inquire such allegations before making false statements! If their is anyone out there that can PROVE this, please step up and do so. Anyone that has coached a PYB,CYO or anything sports knows first hand that there is never any $$ at the end of the season. All these poor coaches are guarantee are head aches from unhappy parents and players. Please re-evaluate your own childs abilities to qualify to make any sport team and cut the coaches and staff a brake OR better yet, step up and donate your time and Coach! Not happy, then volunteer to coach! Class of 2009

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 17, 2009 at 7:37 pm

concerned parent,

the av and foothill coaches are all paid and do not volunteer their time. They also get paid for clinics and AAU participation. CYO and PYB are different as they are volunteers.

Posted by Sue
a resident of Amador Estates
on Sep 17, 2009 at 8:17 pm

Stop making comments you know nothing about. Not all the coach's get paid!!! It is amazing how we as a community can live up to our horrible rep as people with to much money and way to much time to blog over nonsense. I got it, I will get my pitchfork and you get your burning crosses and we will hunt these coach's down and make them suffer for.... Ooops I forgot the parents and players seem to like these coach's... I got it someone didn't like the job their school is doing with their kids so now we should punish everyone who does not go to that school on the hill. WHAT A JOKE-GET A LIFE

Posted by jane
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Sep 17, 2009 at 8:37 pm

hey Bob please don't take this as a attack but you have many posts on this subject, so i would like to let you know that both schools do not cover the amount of coaches they have. these coaches do this out of the goodness of there heart. when you make comments about all of them get paid and not know for sure while you make these comments makes everything you say very questionable and makes me feel you might have some jealousy of some sort. lets leave this alone and not sabotage our community. lets cut to the chase we have some coaches keeping our kids plugged in to a positive outlet and lets applaud not tear down. i hate to admit it we do have a negative reputation like Sue mentioned and all this does is keep it going. i am thankful for these coaches for all of there time and effort to improve the players in thing i would like to mention is if the complainers had a team they would be happy so until this happens those families should leave others out of their internal problems.

Posted by concerned parent
a resident of Grey Eagle Estates
on Sep 17, 2009 at 9:44 pm

Hello Bob,
I would have to agree 100% with Jane & Sue. If you have a problem with your school or Varsity Coach, it would be a great idea for your to approach your Coach or Athletic Director with all your issues/concerns instead of throwing all the coaches under the bus. You seem to be a know it all on Amador or is it Foothill or both? I hope we are giving them bonuses also on top of there high paying salaries. I hear they also get a pension when they retire from coaching for the rest of their lives and sometimes they write a "Tell All on Coaching" Book too!!!.

Let us all get some rest and focus on they real things that matter in life....Family, our Savior and your Health! Good night all!

Posted by Bob is right
a resident of The Knolls
on Sep 17, 2009 at 11:02 pm

HS coaches are paid. Even middle school coaches are paid. If you look at PUSD website, athletic coaches are paid with a stipend. Granted, it may not be a lot which is probably why the Amador coaches felt the need to charge $1000 for each player who joined their summer program ... through the goodness of their hearts (of course).

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 18, 2009 at 7:03 am

All high school varsisty and JV coaches get paid as do the coaches at the middle schools. They also get paid for summer leagues, clinics, and coaching seminars. I coached varsity ball for 5 years so I know and i was paid but not a lot so that is why i no longer do it.

Posted by Coach Baeza
a resident of Stoneridge
on Sep 19, 2009 at 1:16 pm

Hi Bob , this is Coach Baeza from Amador School. Like other parents who would rather stay ananimiss for understandable reasons I prefer to speak out.. First of all lets talk about coachs pay. Yes we do get paid, at least the head coaches do. The assistant coaches receive nothing for there services. Nothing as in zero, as in get your facts straight. Head coaches pay their assistants out of the money they receive from the PUSD. Now as far as doing the math, gas is not reimbursed, all the summer hours,open gym hours, pre-season hours and Ebal Season which can go on into late Feb if your lucky.... by the time you do the math a Head Coach is probably getting less than a few dollars an hr if that!! Since taking over as varsity coach Ralph Fields, has ignited excitement into a program which was in trouble. All the assistant coaches he has brought to Amador to work( Volunteer) with all of our kids have received nothing but the gratitude of all the players who respect and appreciate their efforts. For those who have nothing better to do than complain, I feel sorry for you, I really do. Im not mad, just puzzled. You should enjoy the fact that people care enough for our youth, and that we live in community were we have the opportunity to play sports at such an exciting level. Lets not forget PUSD cut backs in funding for teachers, school programs and sports are still going on and consider ourselves luck to have coaches that are willing to help coach regardless of the cut backs in funding Athletic Sports. I recommend you attend your schools Athletic Booster meetings to hear all about the cut backs in funding. There is a buzz in the air of excitement ,enjoy it and be part of it, not against it. Finally, Coach Fields would never turn a kid away from his program at any level if they had financial problems. Shame on those who cast stones. After my children graduate from Amador I can rest at eases knowing that our basketball program will remain in good hands.

Posted by Bob
a resident of Foothill Farms
on Sep 19, 2009 at 2:06 pm

Coach Baeza,

I was just commenting on the statement that they coaches do not get paid and yes you just confirmed exactly what I said. You and I did get paid and not much but coach for the love of the game and the fun it is. Back in the day, when I coached I estimated I made about .25 cents an hour if that and that did not include the time I spent scouting teams and the gas consumed. I was coaching when buses were eliminated and we had to have the parents or ourselves drive the kids to the games. Much has transpired since then (30) years ago but much sounds the same. I used to pay out of my own pocket for uniform repairs, my wife cleaned the uniforms between games and you can imagine how much time that took with a game on Wednesday and another Friday. Good luck to you.

Posted by Go Dons! :/
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Sep 19, 2009 at 6:03 pm

Well I could clear all of this up had I chosen to copy and paste an email I received from the Dons summer league. But instead I will play devils advocate and leave you with something to consider: Do you think that maybe there is a simple reason behind this "supposide" AAU coach at PMS they speak of, choosing to work as an assistant coach for free? Put money aside because in this case it is irrelevant. Has anyone thought about maybe he has a son that needed an inside source to make the team and couldn't have done it on talent alone? And that kids who may have been more talented but did not participate in this "Dons program" tried out only to not make the team at PMS or Amador over his son or his sons friends who did? Hmmm, why doesn't someone look into THAT? How does a kid know he made the team, before try-outs at Amador or PMS? Do you think coaches should be neutural parties when it comes to school sports and not have kids on the teams? Parents, don't play the politics. Call them out when they are wrong. Pleasanton is too good a town to let your kids down. Of course those parents who's kids made the team, will have nothing to complain about. My son did make the team, but wrong is wrong.

Posted by Ptown Mom
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Sep 20, 2009 at 8:08 am

Coach Baeza - I understand you have two sons playing basketball this year. I have heard first-hand that you told another player who was going to compete for your son's position at Amador to go to Foothill.

Go Dons - Yes I have also heard first-hand of this assistant coach at PMS who has boasted to parents that his son has made the Amador team. His son did not even make the 8th grade team. Shame on him. What is he teaching his own son?

I do believe that the Varsity Coach at Amador is trying to do his best and I hope he can contain his coaching staff with such shameful practices.

Posted by John
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 20, 2009 at 9:10 am

I have not kept up with it but based on the above is Amador the best team in the EBAL the last few years? and Foothill? Ihave no idea so if anyone knows please let me know.

Posted by Chris H.
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 20, 2009 at 11:58 am


I just looked it up and in Basketball we are near the bottom and neither team has been good for a few years. Basically, in almost all of the sports, DeLaSalle dominates and then the San Ramon and Danville schools.

Posted by Alan Johansen
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 22, 2009 at 5:54 pm

I moved my family to Pleasanton 20 years ago (wow!) My wife and I have raised 3 boys here. All attended Amador and we know that Foothill is a wonderful school as well. One of the reasons why we have loved living here is the fact that parents love their kids and support them with a passion. Basketball and every other sport at the high school level is not much different than other things that a young person may have an interest in-- or talent for. During the summer, kids can join bands, math camps, soccer camps, basketball teams or whatever! We need to teach kids that "life isn't fair" sometimes--but what they choose to spend time doing will lead to what they become skilled at. Sports and School are competitive environments. Sometimes (as with steroid use in football) kids will cheat--hey that isn't fair either and should not be condoned. But for the most part, work and talent wins out--not politics. The very best coaches and teachers are rare but they have the same formula: they care about the kids first--even above winning or pandering to parents who whine about things. While parents may not always agree with the specific decisions coaches make, I can tell you that the coaches I know at Amador (and Foothill) spend countless hours volunteering to give kids in this community a good experience and to teach a strong work ethic. If you have an issue with a coach or if you heard a rumor (often untrue by the way)--be a big enough person to talk to them directly. Otherwise, please appreciate what we have--and do what you can to be someone who pitches in to help build, not tear down. I would like to thank all those who spend time as coaches and volunteers in our community. The vast majority of parents deeply appreciate your efforts.

Posted by Darnell
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Sep 24, 2009 at 6:36 am

How come no one has addressed the elephant in the room?? Has this coaches son been chosen for his school basketball team BEFORE the tryouts because his dad is assisting? And are these AAU coaches allowed to coach public school ball when they have outside teams that are FOR PROFIT TEAMS??? Wouldn't they pick those kids who pay them first to be on their team? Thats what this blog states. So? Is it true? Who is investgating this to get real answers?

That is like a beauty pagent winner, winning before the pagent because she is the judges daughter . What kind of slimy politics is going on in this little town? Hello?? PUSD? WAKE UP AND SMELL THE STINK!!!

Posted by Amador Parent
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 24, 2009 at 9:47 am

Darnell.. funny you should ask the obvious...about the coaches son because i've seen him play and he may know how to but seriously not A team worthy...he was on that team is CYO for 2 years,,, wonder how that happened.

Now that daddy is coaching does that mean he is HS level too........

Posted by Sam
a resident of Castlewood Heights
on Sep 25, 2009 at 1:02 am

Now, I would first like to preface this by noting that I am unbiased but am very familiar with the CIF and NCS bylaws. According to CIF (California Interscholastic Federation) and NCS (North Coast Section) bylaws, this is a clear violation of "Undue Influence". More specifically "pre-enrollment contact". Here is the link check out page 74 where Rule 510 is clearly defined

Web Link

Basically, if Coach A is affiliated in any way with a High School, he/she may not have any players play for them in any capacity prior to the student enrolling at the school. The "Dons" AAU team has violated this rule. In the past, coaches from the High School teams used to go talk specifically to middle school students. For example the HS football coach would go to the middle school and talk to all boys interested in playing football. Since this bylaw has been in affect (about 3 years now), you may have noticed that this doesn't happen anymore. The fact that this AAU team is called the "Dons" doesn't help matters either. Not very clever. Maybe he is not familiar with this bylaw at all.

There have been many cases recently where a student-athlete leaves his/her HOME school (school of residency) because the student-athlete want to go play for his/her AAU coach who happens to be the coach at the HS. The student ends up having to sit out a whole year because of the violation of RULE 510.

The other thing I find quite disturbing, since I have school age children, is that this coach is charging a whopping $1200 to participate. Outrageous. Let's say that there are 30 kids (very conservative number, it could be more) involved in this program that's $36,000!!!!

Let's do the math...According to "dons dad" the team played in 4 tournaments which is about $300 per tourney (that's $1200 right there) and an 8 game summer league ($400 for the summer league). That's a total of $1600 for games.

Now come the workouts...If they use Velocity or Bodymax, you are talking about a group rate of about $200 per session with the instructors. According to "dons dad" they had 2 months of workouts 3 days a week. That is 24 sessions. $200 x 24 sessions = $4,800.

Oh, and I'm assuming the players get a uniform at least. Each uniform is probably about $50.00 x 30 kids = $1500

I guarantee they are not paying for balls or gym time since he has a key to the facility already.

Here's what I have so far...
$1600 for games + $4800 workouts + 1500 uniforms = $7900 Total Expenses

$36,000 - 7900 = $28,100 left over!!!! Am I missing something? There isn't a High school around that charges this kind of number. Mostly in the $150 range for the summer. And that is high. Someone's gettin' paid on this deal.

Posted by Keep Sports Legit
a resident of Castlewood
on Sep 25, 2009 at 5:12 am

After having followed this blog for over a week, and as a CBS sports writer for many years, I took it upon myself to attend the Pleasanton Middle School basketball game last night. Out of curiousity, I asked a few parents who this AAU coach was for the Dons. They pointed him out as sitting right there on the bench with the PMS kids. And along with their supposide coach who I was told is the PMS PE coach. I am shocked how brazen this AAU coach is sitting there in front of what appeared to be 300+ people (now witnesses)saying he is not their coach? If he is not a coach at PMS why was he giving plays, direction and obviously coaching alongside the "official coach" of the Pleasanton Middle School kids? Now PMS won this game by about 20+ points,(Bravo being some of their parents have PAID YOU so enjoy that cash cause its all about the kids). It was obvious that some of these kids have been practicing together with him for a long time and were taking his direction as their coach. I asked one parent who said her son is in the Dons AAU program with this coach sitting the bench, and aware of the controversy. WHAT?? Now my point being, if the comments prior to mine are true, then he is breaking the law along with the PUSD for allowing it to happen. The PUSD needs to address this, put a stop to affliation of the "FOR PROFIT" Amador Dons(not to be confused with the HIGH SCHOOL Amador Dons)because that would be illegal to use the high school name for profit and get him off that middle school bench. Are these Dons AAU programs giving that money back to Amador High in these hard economic times? I would bet not. Hard not to notice there were no other parents sitting either bench. Money is an obvious motivator for him being he is running a business to bring in more kids next season. Bravo for winning under illegal circumstances Mr. AAU Above The Law! And if you believe that its okay to break this law that is clearly in black and white on the link above, and its that important for your kids to win at any cost. Great message to send to the kids who just want to play ball. But I would guess those must be your kids on that bench alongside him.

Posted by Pleasanton res
a resident of Birdland
on Sep 25, 2009 at 7:01 am

So can anyone point us to where we can file a formal complaint? Maybe someone needs to step up and actually put a stop to this craziness...

If the law has been broken then punishment is due right?

Posted by Sam
a resident of Castlewood Heights
on Sep 25, 2009 at 9:23 am

There have been no "LAWS" broken by any means. There have just been CIF and NCS violations. No one is going to court over this. It is simply putting the Amador HS boys basketball program in jeopardy and, thus, may be subject to inquiry by the NCS, or even a playoff ban. I simply don't know if the coach actually knows what he is doing is a violation. Now, there are ways of conducting an AAU program that is well within the rules. De LaSalle has been doing it for years and they are not in violation. But, If your son or daughter wants to compete in AAU basketball, my suggestion is to research the program carefully. It is not enough to just ask the parents whose son or daughter is participating on that specific AAU program because they are already invested. AAU programs are so prevalent because there are very few checks and balances as compared to being a HS coach. In order to start an AAU program, all you need to do is pay a small, nominal fee to register and recruit some players basically. No fingerprints, paperwork etc. AAU coaches usually tell parents how good their players are getting by playing for them. This is simply because they want your money and they want to keep getting your money.

This is one of the reasons that the CIF has now allowed High school coaches to practice freely with their own enrolled players during the summer months (when school is out of session). Up until about 4-5 years ago, HS coaches were not allowed to practice in the summer with their own players. If they have practice (not just open gym) while school is in session it is another violation.

If Coach Fields at Amador just worked with his own enrolled players during the summer, there would be no violation. It is the fact that there are middle school kids in the mix that makes it a violation.

Posted by Bball mom
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Sep 25, 2009 at 5:46 pm

I don't know if PMS parents remember that this is the very same AAU coach who cost PMS a chance to play in the playoffs two seasons ago when his older son played for PMS (the one who already made the Amador High School team before tryouts!)

This "above the law" AAU coach was the PMS coach at the time, allowed a player on academic suspension to play in the playoffs. The PMS principal specifically told him this student was not allowed to play. This AAU coach said that the suspended player told him it was okay to play. He didn't even bother to check with the principal! When the news broke out, this AAU coach had to forfeit the playoff game to Harvest Park and they won the championships. It was so embarassing for PMS! Why does PMS still allow him to sit on the bench?

I'm afraid this AAU coach is about to repeat history. PMS parents are we ready to go through this again with his second son? How many sons does this guy have to connive their spot on school teams before people learn to keep him away from the gym and more importantly away from the kids!

Posted by Concern Parent
a resident of Grey Eagle Estates
on Sep 25, 2009 at 6:23 pm

Okay, I have to say being an x-parent from Amador 2009, I have no children at your H.S. Foothill or Amador, which means my son is NOT competing for YOUR SONS spots on the team...... I read all the comments above and I have to say I am really disappointed that some of you would stoop so low, enough to attack someone child. Really folks, lets keep the children off the hit list. Frankly, reading some of the comments leads me to believe that their are some parents worried about whether their son will get a fair shot to make a team? I personally think that if your child is good enough, then you shouldn't be worried. I think the coaches want to have a winning season and not win a popularity contest. Some of you sound like you need help as far as WHO to complain to... I have taken the time to look up the info just for you. Let me remind you, their are bigger fish to fry (and I don't mean the H.S.) watch the news and see what's happening in the world. You should really be devoting all your energy to something positive and go to church or volunteer in your community. It sounds like certain people on this Blog (NOT ALL) have nothing better to do but to be negative. What happened to the nice community I moved into 8 years ago!!! Can't we all just get along!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Foothill High Principal= John Dwer 925/461-6651
Foothill Athletic Director= John Mannion

Amador High Principal= Bill Coupe 925/461-6600
Amador Athletic Director= Lou Cesario

Posted by bball parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 25, 2009 at 10:46 pm

Instead of just reading this blog, take action. Contact the principal, athletic director and coaches to voice your concern. It is time for those in charge to make changes to the basketball coaching staff at Pleasanton Middle School and Amador High School. Call, email or send a letter ASAP. Send copies of this blog too.

Amador High School
1155 Santa Rita
Pleasanton 94566
Principal - Bill Coupe at [email protected]
Athletic Director - Lou Cesario at [email protected]

Pleasanton Middle School
500 Case Ave.
Pleasanton 94566
Principal - John Whitney (X3801) at [email protected]
7th Grade Basketball coach - Chris Bufkin (x3901) at [email protected]

Posted by billy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 26, 2009 at 12:45 am

wow, there are so many complaints about this program. i cannot imagine what has so many of you so up in arms. there seems to be some basic catagories of complaints

this program is somehow unethical, illegal, immoral and most certainly against CIF NCS rules. sam of castlewood, the "unbaised one", would have us believe this program violates section 510, he even gives us a link to follow and check it out. the section clearly defines undue influence, and the definition is predicated on exerting such influence to entice a player to enroll in your school. there is no such enticement occuring in this program. rule 510 is in existence to prevent schools from recruiting students solely to play sports for a school. this program does not attempt to recruit anyone, it simply provides an opportunity for local kids to play spring and summer ball. in fact sam, the "unbiased one", later points out de la salle has been operating a similar summer program for years. that program, greenline or asa, is run by de la salle coaches and the teams are coached by de la salle coaches and it has players from 6th grade through high school. quite similar to the dons program other than it has been around longer and is a bigger program. in fact many players from amador and foothill have played in that program in years past. huh? i wonder why no one has shut that thing down?

sam from castlewood also has analysed the cost of this prgram for us to prove the coaches are profiteering off of these unsuspecting players. he assumes the program cost $1200.00, but it really cost $1000.00 for the spring, suumer and the summer camp (at least that is what i paid). in his look at the expenses of the program, he used only a portion of the 2 months of summer activities rather than all of the spring and summer activities. it seems sam is really trying to prove his unbiased point rather than trying to look at the truth. the total program lasted for a little over 4 months and included: Spring: practice twice a week; training at crossfit, 3 times a week; 3 tournaments. summer: practice twice a week; training at crossfit 3 times a week; summer league play; 3 local tournamets, one week of basketball camp, 3 day tournament in reno; 2 day tournament in rocklin. now i don't know what each of these cost, but the cost of crossfit was $150 per player per 2-month session, the camp cost and the cost for food at the camp was $200.00 per player. those two costs represent half of the amount we paid and the other half covered the tournaments, uniforms and insurance.

at one time i arranged for a few months of open gym for some players in pleasanton and i rented gym space from the city. this was 7 years ago and the insurance cost for 30 players was about $600.00 per month. i don't know what the insurance cost was for this program but i cannot imagine that is was less than what i paid 7 years ago.

now i am not saying the coaches did not get paid out of what we paid for this program, but they are not making the amount of money a few people, like "unbiased" sam, assert. if you look at the hours they put in it seems like we received a real good deal. also if you look at the comparable cost of other spring and summer programs this program was more reasonable.

the other main complaints in this wandering thread seems to be either there is a coach who is a bad apple and is in it just so his son can play, or there is someone (this coach?) who claims his son has made the team prior to any tryouts being held, or all the coaches who have sons are coaching just to further their son's high school basketball careers or the kids who play summer ball are guaranteed a spot just so the coaches can continue to profit off of them.

this is all so upsetting that we have a local, used to be a CBS sports writer, take it upon himself to root out the evil doers in this for profit basketball scam. he goes to the PMS game to see first hand how this "AAU Coach" is exploiting the kids of pleasanton.

now as far as the "AAU Coach from PMS" who was so brazen as to sit with coach Bufkin at the PMS game, our CBS reporter would want to demonize him for taking the parents money and taking advantage of the players. however this "reporter" never bothered to determine that this coach was a volunteer and had no hand in setting up the summer program, determining its fees or sharing in the "profits". he also doesn't seem to know or didn't bother to find out, that mr aau coach is the 9th coach out of 9 coaches involved in the dons summer program. it seems a bit of a stretch to think the 9th coach of 9 coaches is somehow behind a grand scheme to profit off of the pleasanton basketball community while all the time trying to further his real goal which is to assure is to assure his son a place on the local high school team. not very objective reporting there, perhaps that is why he is a former reporter. i'm sure he doesn't mind me making up stuff about his career as he has no problem fabricating and strectching the truth based on his one game of observations.

as far as the players listening to this coach and coach Bufkin allowing him to assist on the bench, i think the AAU coach is still an assistant at PMS. these coaches at the middle schools are mostly parent volunteers, there are a few head coaches like coach bufkin but mostly the schools rely on parents to volunteer the time to help coach. there used to be a stipend of around $500.00 for the assistant middle school coaches but this year that has gone away. so this brazen aau coach must be volunteering to be an assitant for no pay. if indeed mr aau coach is still a PMS assistant, then he has every right and indeed he is expected to sit brazenly on the bench shouting instructions to the players. maybe cbs reporter should have spoken to the coaches, or the school or even maybe one of the parents who like the coaching style of mr aau coach, (i know there are a few because i have spoken to them). of course that would not have helped to illustrate his extremely sarcastic point and also would not have helped me with mine.

now the last group of comment makers throughout this thread have been the clearly biased parents who don't like: the fact that mr aau coach has volunteered to help his own sons play more and perhaps better; that mr aau coach has claimed his son will or has made the amador team when tryouts are still a month away; that their own sons may not or have not got a fair shake at playing; that other coaches such as coach beaza also have a subjective way of dealing with players. if indeed this is an accurate or even a partially accurate description of the motivations for tearing down the entire program, i would hope these parents would consider whether elimination of the program is what is best for their own sons.

it seems to me the issue of subjective judging of different players abilities is always going to exist, the fact that some players may make a team or get more playing time when some people believe another player may be more deserving is always going to exist. but what is also true is the best way for most kids to improve is to play and the best way for most kids to make teams and earn playing time is to improve their games. basketball is a game which rewards height, speed and athleticism. if you have two of these three things you usually attract a coaches attention. if you have one and it is height you always get a good look. if you are average in these things then the best way to make a team is to be able to shoot lights outs in a competive situation. if you can do none of these things then you have to be the smartest, hardest working player to even get a look. the difficult thing for a coach is most players are simply average and the small things which differentiate the players to the coach are very subjective and are things many parents may not see either in their sons or see as lacking in their sons. most high school teams have 10 - 15 players and of those players perhaps 6-8 players get most of the game time and maybe 1-2 players will get a small amount of time. which usually means 5 to 7 sets of parents think the coach doesn't know how to evaluate his players correctly and that is out of the parents who are happy their sons made the team. the parents of the players who did not make the cut usually think their son did not get a fair chance or they cannot understand why the other kid, who their son is just as good as, made the team when their son did not.

if you are one of the parents who think somehow your son will not get a fair shake at amador, you need to talk to the head coach and get him to explain the process. if your son does not make the team or does but doesn't get playing time then you need to talk to the coach and find out why and what your son can do to improve. you can work with you son to help him improve and have a better shot next year. perhaps if you are lucky there will be a good off season program which will allow your son to play with good players and for good high school level coaches and against good competion. this will certainly help him improve. but remember all of the kids who made the team or who play in front of your son are also doing the offseason work plus some are doing more. to improve more than the rest, you have to work harder than the rest.

last point, you can tear down this program, you can tear down coach fields (as this is his program), you can sit and shout about the unfairness of it all, you can claim to be unbaised and only interested in justice but at the end of the day if this program is stiffled and this coach or all of the coaches are replaced, your son will still have to show another coach with subjective judgement he can play. sometimes the best approach is to recognize the strengths of your situation and work with those involved to make it better. perhaps the thing to do is to speak with coach fields.

Posted by Shut up and do somehthing
a resident of Amador Estates
on Sep 26, 2009 at 6:49 am

Billy, you talk too much. No one can get through your entire blog without wanting to shoot themselves and you really just repeat what everyone already knows Captain Obvious.

Get out there and act upon it Pleasanton or shut up. You are all starting to get really boring and repetitive on this blog.

Posted by Call to Action
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 26, 2009 at 8:47 am

I am just a regular parent, wanting my son to have a fair look at the tryouts.

I am not an expert and all this is new to me but I do believe that Amador is in violation of CIF Bylaw 510: Undue Influence. Here is the the official document from the CIF North Coast Section (page 7): Web Link

Here is a quote on page 9: Pre-enrollment Contact:
Any and all pre-enrollment contact of any kind whatsoever with a student must be disclosed by the student, parent(s)/legal guardian(s)/caregiver(s) and the schools to the Section office on a completed CIF Pre-enrollment Contact Affidavit (CIF Form 510). Pre-enrollment contact may include, but is not limited
to: any communication of any kind, directly or indirectly, with the student, parent(s)/legal guardian(s)/caregiver(s), relatives, or friends of the student about the athletic programs at a school; orientation/information programs, shadowing programs; attendance at outside athletic events or the like by anyone associated*
with the school to observe the student; participation by the student in programs supervised by the school or its associates before enrollment in the school. Pre-enrollment contact may be considered prima facie evidence (“sufficient evidence”) that the student enrolled in that school in whole or in part for athletic
reasons (See Bylaw 200) and cause the student to be ineligible for participation in high school athletics for a period of one year from the date of enrollment at the new school in all those sports in which the student participated at the former school.

Again, I am not an expert but can someone with a law background help me to understand this? It sounds like players who participated in this program may be ineligible to play for 1 year. Shouldn't it be the school who is at fault?

Anyway, here is the office number for the CIF office North Coast Section: 925-866-8400.

Here is also the link to their website:

I will be calling them on Monday and I'm hoping that many of the parents who posted on this forum will do the same as well as contact the schools.

Posted by billy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 26, 2009 at 12:23 pm

shut and do...

yeah you're right,it was late, i was a bit irate...

a resident of Dublin
on Sep 26, 2009 at 2:58 pm


Posted by Mr.ENGLE
a resident of Amador Estates
on Sep 26, 2009 at 3:58 pm

why is it when coaches try to go good for the good of the kids a few bad apples (PARENTS) try to destroy a program because thier kids get lack of playing time orwont make the team..parents quit living your lives through your kids and let the kids just enjoy the game.My hat is off to you Mr.Hogan for truley telling it like it is..........

Posted by Ryan
a resident of San Ramon
on Sep 26, 2009 at 4:05 pm

(Comment removed by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff as innuendo, hearsay or specific accusatory information unsupported by facts.)

Posted by Sam
a resident of Castlewood
on Sep 26, 2009 at 11:43 pm

Billy, I appreciate you clearing up the facts...Those costs make little more sense to me. The honest truth is that I was just going by what was stated before. The fact that 2 of the tournaments were away would obviously be more expensive because you would need to factor in room and board for those. As for the workouts, again, I was just going by what was stated above. Obviously, from what you are writing, there were more workouts. My children are very young, so anything that is stated about the middle school stuff, I know nothing about.

I am all for coaches that want to work with kids. I just know a lot of HS coaches who don't take one dime other than tourney fees....PERIOD. They get out there, open the weight room, design the program, sweat in the gym working out their guys. You may have paid the rental fees for the gym time a few years ago, but I just don't think that is the case here.

For the record, Bylaw 510 defines "pre-enrollment contact". There doesn't have to be any "enticing" going on.

I honestly think that Coach Fields is a young, energetic coach that genuinely wants to make up for the lousy hire of his predecessor. I'm just not really sure if I would spend my first legitimate summer with a program pumping the parents for money and compensation.

Posted by Purple Don
a resident of Downtown
on Sep 27, 2009 at 12:41 am

you minority group of individuals who are trying to organize a lynch mob to get rid of a basketball program as well as a coach need to get a hint. That if your kids arnt good enough to make the team don't jeopardize the entire program on a technicality and make the rest of Amador's elite basketball players suffer as a result of your sniffling to the CIF director.get a life and let the kids play. So just (Word removed by Pleasanton Weekly Online staff) cry babies! Purple DON outtttt!!!!

Posted by Curious about Billy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 27, 2009 at 7:02 am

Is your son on the PMS 7th grade team?
Didn't you also volunteer as a coach last year with "mr aau" to ensure your son a spot on the 6th grade PMS team?
People should know any bias you may have.
You're not also an AAU coach...are you?

Posted by The Real Problem
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 27, 2009 at 7:16 am

The Real Problem is that CIF violations (if they exist) tend to disqualify the PLAYER and/or the TEAM, but not the coaches. Apparently the same goes for PUSD, or else they would have banned this guy when he was responsible for PMS forfeiting in the playoffs [did that really happen?].
The answer is simple: the entire situation should be reviewed and approved (or not) by PUSD and CIF NCS. That way, there will be no risk that the KIDS (aren't they the ones we care about?) on the team, and the student fans won't suffer by a disqualification.
As long as there are Parent Coaches, there will be some bias. If there are coaches without outside interests, especially financial ones, that bias may be heightened. It is time for PUSD to step up and make a new policy or enforce existing ones to cover this issue. Perhaps there could be a public meeting for all of us to have input.

Posted by ptown res
a resident of Amador Valley High School
on Sep 28, 2009 at 2:27 pm

ptown res is a registered user.

I just learned about this forum recently and was interested to hear what everyone had to say about Dons basketball. My son participates in the program and has had a posititve experience. We do not expect him to make the team and definitely were not told that he had to participate to make the team. We carpooled with a student who was going to go to Foothill but felt welcome at Dons workouts. It is obvious that kids who put more effort into any endeavor will reap more rewards, we feel fortunate for our son to have the opportunity to train in the offseason and meet some of the boys he would be going to school with. The cost was a lot of money for us, but we felt it was worth it for him to have the opportunity to get in shape, go to camp, and have fun.

On another note, my son played for "AAU Coach" and what a wonderful man he is! He has a great family and we are very greatful he decided to volunteer and coach basketball. What a shame to belittle someone who has given so much!!!!

Posted by p-town mom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 1, 2009 at 12:06 pm

p-town mom is a registered user.

Here is what I have found out from PUSD.

1. PUSD is looking into this - they have met with the Amador and Foothill principals and varsity coaches.

2. "Changes will be made" to the Amador HS Dons AAU program (what exactly I'm not sure)

3. AAU coaches are allowed to coach at a school. It is at the discretion of the school principal.

4. Amador varsity coach says that mr. aau is not in any way affiliated with the coaching staff at Amador.

5. PUSD has questioned mr. aau and he has told PUSD that he is not an AAU coach. He has also told PUSD that he was only a parent recruiting for the program.

6. A clear violation of 510 CIF rule is if a player enrolls in a high school for athletic reasons where his/her aau coach is coaching. Though there are still questions regarding pre-enrollment contact rule.

7. PUSD is still investigating the parent and/or coach who said their son already made the team before tryouts.

Posted by playfairnow
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Feb 14, 2010 at 12:05 pm

playfairnow is a registered user.

Yes, Amador High School's basketball program is politically controlled and corrupt, but it is nothing in comparison the range of problems and issues facing the Danville community, especially the Monte Vista High School basketball program which is crash and burning this season uncer the confused direction of varsity coach Bill Powers.

Web Link

Danville corrupt community basketball programs are much worse, read it for yourself!

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