Columbus United Soccer Club

United Policies

Policy on Playing Up

Approved by the Columbus United Advisory Group Oct. 2010.

It is typically permissible for a player to play up one age group—for example from a 2002 team to a 2001 team.  However, the parent/guardian can not ask or demand that their player do so. The coach, in consultation with the DOC, makes the decision of whether a player can play in an older age group.

It is typically permissible for a player to play up two age groups—for example from a  2003 to a 2001 team. However, the parent/guardian can not ask or demand that their player do so. The coach, in consultation with the DOC, makes the decision of whether a player can play in an older age group. Playing up two age groups should only be done when a player is both physically and technically ahead of the other players in their birth year. It should only be undertaken in very special situations. In general it should not be undertaken if the player has a team in their age group that provides player development opportunities for the player.

The decision to “play up” should only be based around the needs and ability of the player. It will not be allowed to avoid a particular coach, team, or other player. It will not be allowed purely to help a team fill its roster.

Playing up three age groups is not allowed.

Policy on Coach Selection

Approved by the Columbus United Advisory Group May 2009

A head coach that has performed in an acceptable manner as determined by the DOC shall have the first choice to coach the team the following year.  A head coach in an older age group will have the first opportunity to coach if another head coach “moves up” into that age group.

Head coaches are responsible for picking their assistant coach. The DOC can only deny this appointment for substantive reasons.

If a team does not have a returning head coach the individual who served as assistant coach will have first choice for the head coaching position—upon approval of the DOC.

When a team has an open coaching position (defined as not having either a returning head or assistant coach) individuals interested in coaching the team should submit their request to the DOC. The DOC will make the decision and is the final arbiter.

CSO/ Columbus United Guest Player Policy
The following policy covers players registered with CSO/Columbus United teams (including Columbus Crew). Guest playing is not allowed for any recreational player other than players registered with Crew.
CSO/CU players may guest play on another team provided the following criteria is met.
1. The guest play opportunity does not conflict with a scheduled match or commitment with their CSO team.
2. The player/family of the player that is going to be guest playing on a non-CSO team or a team within CSO makes a request to their team coach to be allowed to guest play.
3. The CSO coach and/manager (depending on team structure) receives the request to guest play a minimum of 72 hours before the first day of the event.
4. The CSO coach approves the request. The coach sends the request and the note of approval to the DOC within 48 hours before the first day of the event.
5. The DOC approves the request.
6. Under no circumstances may a CSO guest player play with or be placed on more than one roster for any event.

CSO/Columbus United Teams Requesting Guest Players Policy
The following policy covers players that may be asked to guest play with a CSO/Columbus United teams (including Columbus Crew).  CSO recreational teams are not allowed to have guest players. 
1. The CSO team (coach/manager) making the request must be fully appraised of the guest player policy of the team/club from which they are requesting the guest player. The CSO team must fully abide by the rules, guidelines, etc. of the team/club.
2. The CSO team requesting an outside guest player must make the DOC aware of the request when it is made. The DOC must approve the request. 
3. If the player(s) accept the opportunity to guest play the DOC must be alerted to the specifics (player name, home organization, event, etc) at least 48 hours in advance of the first day of the event. 
4. Under no circumstances may a guest player with a CSO team play with or be rostered with another team for the same event. 
5. Guest players with CSO may only be asked to pay a event cost equal to that paid by other CSO rostered members of that team. Under no situation may a player be asked to pay additional money to guest play with a CSO team. 
6. If requesting guest players from within CSO the coach/manager must abide by the CSO guest player policy.
7. A CSO team may not request guest players if that request means that a CSO registered player would  be replaced in any manner and would not be able to play at an event.

Guest Player Policy Between CUSC and Starkville Soccer Association/Impact Teams

Guest player between CUSC players/teams and SSA/Impact players teams has been streamlined through a partnership between the two organizations. Please note the following modifications for guest play between CUSC and SSA:

a. there will be no time requirements on guest player requests
b. request will be made and approved between the coaches of the respective teams without the need for DOC approval
c. coaches/managers will be responsible for acquiring and returning needed documents such as player cards etc. Any lost items will be the responsibility of the coaches involved in the request.


Dispute Resolution Policy

Approved by Columbus United Advisory Group Oct. 2010, Updated CSO Board July 2018

Players or parents who have a substantive dispute with a coach, assistant coach, manager, or other team official (hereafter referred to as “coach”) should follow the following dispute resolution protocol.

1. The individual should first approach the coach and clearly and politely express the nature of their concern. The coach should be given the opportunity to resolve that dispute at the team level.

2. If the complaining individual is not satisfied with #1 they should take their complaint to the CSO Board Member for Competitive Soccer.

3. If the complaining individual is not satisfied with #2 they should take their complaint to the Director of Coaching.  The DOC shall be considered the final arbiter at the club level.

These steps do not apply to the following:

1. Criminal activity. Any criminal activity should be reported to law enforcement.

2. The club does not field complaints regarding referees .
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