‘Where the Trails of Passion and Purpose Meet, Begins the Path to Victory’
The Rush Way is the embodiment of all that is Rush Soccer; the rules and manner in which Rush members hold themselves and how they expect other Rush members to conduct themselves.
This is not inherent in all people, but can be learned. The Rush Way encourages passion, leadership, respect and, above all, quality.
The following is a summation of the Rush Way. It is by no means all inclusive, but enough to provide an idea of what it means to wear the Rush colors and be part of the best.
Club and Organizational Philosophies
All who represent the Rush are representing the Rush brand and tens of thousands of people throughout the country. The Rush stands for excellence, passion, desire, commitment and respect.
Rush – A Coaches Run Organization. What sets Rush apart from most every club in the country is the fact that the coaches run the organization. All decisions are made or delegated by the elite coaching staff assembled at every Rush Branch Chapter. Each decision has the basic foundation of ‘what is best for the player and what is best for soccer’. Keeping this in the forefront of all thoughts ensures the right decision is always made.
To be a Rush employee takes a certain type of motivation and passion. The Rush expects employees to take ownership of their positions and, therefore, they are held accountable for the work they do. The Rush looks to hire men and women who are knowledgeable and critical thinkers of the game and who have personalities that are comfortable in any situation when dealing with club matters.
Along with this accountability comes freedom. Staff can set their own work schedule as they see fit. As with Rush players, there are always repercussions for not upholding the highest standard of quality. Rush will first look to hire and promote from within, but will ensure that Rush employs the best possible person for the job, resulting in new employees from outside of the organization when necessary.
Rush Soccer and adidas Soccer are synonymous with quality and excellence. Rush coaches are expected to be attired in adidas Soccer from head to toe whenever they are representing Rush Soccer. Attire adorned with the Rush is an honor to wear and tells everyone that we hold ourselves to a higher standard.
Education of our players comes first from the education of the coaches. The commitment from Rush to educate our coaches and employees is of the highest priority. Evaluating employees, programs, coaches and players is paramount in continuing the growth and success of Rush Soccer at all levels. Staff and coaches hold weekly informational and educational meetings. Coach Education Sessions in the form of club meetings, coaching clinics, session plans, etc. are continuously provided to all coaches within the organization to encourage the betterment of everyone associated with Rush Soccer. Employees are also encouraged to participate in all national licensing programs and to seek outside opportunities (intra branch travel; state, regional and national team program participation, etc.) for educational development.
Player Development & Recruitment
While each Rush Soccer Branch is inherently different and adheres to the rules that govern the game of soccer within their respective communities, the Rush seeks to develop players both from within and through recruiting. Rush Soccer encourages and expects their coaches to be actively recruiting players to strengthen the club. Rush coaches will be out across the state, nation and internationally to scout players who meet the above criteria.
Pre Match, Post Match and Match Play
The Rush Way to Play (Style of Play)
The Rush Way to Play is based upon movement and activity by both player and ball. Possession-oriented does not fully describe how we play; attack-oriented does. Whether in possession or in defense, we are attacking. Rush players play with freedom yet understand the importance of responsibility and the balance between the two. Rush teams are flexible and adapt to varying circumstances. The Rush Way to Play represents both passion and purpose.
The 6-3-1 philosophy is in place to ensure that all teams are progressing and improving consistently, as well as experiencing the emotions of winning and losing through manipulating six wins, three losses and one tie throughout the year. If a team is winning all the time, they are encouraged to schedule a scrimmage against tougher competition to be sure they are being pushed. Likewise, if a team is in a losing slump, then a scrimmage is encouraged against an opposition that they should beat, to regain a positive attitude, develop a goal scoring mentality and create confidence in defense.
Rush believes that the cliché “the game is the best teacher” is a creed to live by. Playing 70 games a year is our aim. This is a rigorous schedule; therefore, the calendar must be strategically thought out by the coaching staff.
An intensity calendar has been devised to select peak times throughout the year. This calendar gives our athletes and teams time to recover and regenerate and other times to intensify training for an upcoming important event.
The Rush use the 4-3-3 Formation as the default formation and all teams within the organization should be familiar…flat back four, three midfielders (2 holding/1 attacking or 1 holding/2 attacking) and three forwards up top. This is not to say that other formations should not be used. In fact, the Rush encourages teams to be familiar with a number of formations. The 4-3-3 default system ensures that players are comfortable when guest playing and when Rush Select teams are formed. As the level of play increases, the subtleties of other formations must be learned to adapt to scenarios such as opposition, team strengths and weaknesses and the score of the game.
Rush believes that under the age of 14, every player should have the opportunity to experience all positions on the field. Players should not be stereotyped into specific positions because of speed, size or other qualities, but should experience the emotion and functions of all positions on the field. These experiences allow them to advance their soccer knowledge, raise their technical ability, and gives them opportunities to think as a field player, all of which raise the level of their position-specific demands.
At 15 and older, players become more familiar with one or two, sometimes three specific positions, understanding the defensive and offensive roles and expectations that those positions entail.
Playing time for any individual is completely at the coach’s discretion. Rush encourages that playing time at all levels should be equal throughout the season. At the younger developmental ages, players should be exposed to as much of the game as possible. Limiting team roster size will aid in increased playing time for all players.
At the older/higher levels there will be instances when playing time will vary from game to game; but if player placement has been completed correctly, then equal playing time throughout the year should be achieved. For instance; of your ten field players, this could mean you play eight of your starters and play two of your weaker players, 80/20 rule. This will provide a more balanced level of play. Especially in the youth division, starters should vary throughout the season.
Substitution patterns should be dictated by the game and not predetermined. Players will be educated to use the current state of the game on how to approach their substitutions. Regardless of the state of the game, all players should come off the field at the center line and exchange courtesy with their replacement. This will promote team spirit and give confidence to the player entering the field.
Pre-game Routines (Warm Up)
Rush understands that different players need varying levels of arousal to play to their full potential. Some players need a more calming environment and some need a more vibrant energetic environment to be ready to play. It is the duty of a Rush coach to recognize the needs of the individual players and create a warm-up environment that can serve all.
Initially players should be given time on their own to prepare both mentally and physically. Later, players should experience repetitions of actions they will see in the game. Forwards should be allowed to finish, wide players to cross, defenders to deal with balls in the air and striking longer balls, etc.
Rush encourages players to analyze problems and discuss solutions on their own before coach intervention. Players should be given a couple of minutes away from the coaching staff to voice opinions and discuss solutions.
The coach should then bring their views and knowledge to the group. It is the coach’s discretion whether the information given should be technical, tactical or motivational in nature, or a mixture of each, depending on the situation of the game. The Rush Way expects our coaches to apply the 4:1 comments positive to instructional coaching method.
This is the part of the game where players should be given education on how changing specific things would have altered the game. Mistakes must be learned from and positives must be acknowledged. Spend very little time dwelling on the past and prepare to look forward to the next challenge and how that day’s game will enable the team to be better next time. (Once again: the Rush Way expects our coaches to apply the 4:1 comments.)
Team Photos (Team Photo Guidelines)
The Rush has a certain style for their pictures. Learn it and apply it.
The Rush Player
Practice and Game Attendance
Practice and game attendance is optional for all levels of player within the Rush Organization. Playing other sports and multiple sports at the same time is the choice of the family and zero repercussions will be administered the coaching staff. Players who wish to become better and succeed within the game will attend all practices and games with the attitude of wanting to leave a better player. The Rush Tutor Program promotes and encourages players who wish to push themselves the opportunity to practice with any other team within the club on any given day.
When a coach addresses a player during training or competition, it is important the player acknowledges. Communication is two-way.
All coaches and players must be aware that at any time during their travel they are representing themselves, their team and, moreover, Rush Soccer. It is imperative that players are respectful to all that is around them and adhere to the rules in the Rush Soccer travel code of conduct.
Players must realize that education comes before soccer; therefore, a player is expected to maintain a 2.75 G.P.A. or higher if he/she is to be considered for travel. As stated in our Rush Mission Statement, “…the Rush accepts the responsibilities of teaching life lessons to our athletes to further their development inside the game and out.” Grades are a part of that development.
Player First, Team Second
Similar to the European youth club structure, Rush encourages the player to be first before his or her individual team. For example, we encourage:
- The player to play with the adult team before his own team’s game.
- The player to train with older, experienced teams in place of his own teams.
- The player to guest play with an older team in place of their own game.
This enables players to be comfortable playing on teams that are in line with their ability regardless of age but based on performance in training and game days. Players are encouraged to train with higher level teams to accelerate their development.
Players are expected to greet the staff with a handshake for all staff local, national and international. The Rush staff across the country expect their players to shake their coaches hand each time they meet. Why?…respect, build social skills, break down barriers, learn culturally accepted behavior, the list goes on.
Each and every player should know our core values and should strive to live by them daily. The values form our character on and off the field.
The ECNL, U.S.S.F. Academy, Rush Select, Rush Elite and the Elite Program offer a wide variety of options for the passionate, talented Rush athlete.
All players should be aware of the R.E.A.C.H., Rush Equipment Assisting Children program and understand the importance of social responsibility. In a nutshell, this program provides the opportunity for our players to turn in their old uniform in order to donate to our less fortunate Rush clubs and players around the globe.
Player Placement and Movement
Player placement and movement is the process by which a player moves from one roster to another, based upon the player’s individual abilities, performance, and head coach and Director of Coaching evaluations.
Current Rush players are not required to attend player placement (tryouts) week because they are being evaluated over the entire year.
The club is loyal to players within the club first, but current Rush players may be replaced by players from outside the club thus causing movement to another team (“once in the Rush, always in the Rush”) within the Rush Organization if the new player demonstrates higher levels of ability with regards to the coach’s evaluation criteria.
Any player wishing to leave the club for any reason will be released by Rush, barring fees owed.
The Rush Supporter
Coaches’ Sideline Behavior (Standard of Conduct)
From the outside, the conduct of the coach on the sideline can be perceived as a reflection of the conduct of all coaches within Rush Soccer. Coaches are a reflection of their players and should conduct themselves with respect for the officials, the opponents and the game of soccer.
Remain positive when at all possible but motivational throughout. Education and being a first class role model are the paramount reasons that a coach has been given the honor to coach for Rush. It is always important to remember this.
Parents’ Sideline Behavior (Player Parent Agreement)
Rush parents are expected to be positive, motivational and supportive to all players and officials, period. Parents are expected not to coach from the sidelines but enjoy the experience of the game.
Players’ Sideline Behavior (Player Parent Agreement)
Players are encouraged to support other Rush teams and give their full-hearted support. Learn the Rush song; be as loud but respectful as possible and help educate the rest of the country in the way soccer should be supported, as it is in the rest of the world.