Duxbury Dragons Football-Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is Duxbury Dragon Football?
Duxbury Dragon Football is a non-profit organization committed to providing a great football experience for the youth of Duxbury. Duxbury Dragon Football is the result of a merger between DYF, DPW, and Duxbury Cheerleading
2. What is the Old Colony Youth Football League (OCYFL)?
The OCYFL is the league that we belong to. It is an independent league that comprises 26 towns located on the South Shore and Cape Cod. There are 5 divisions of teams, primarily based on each towns player enrollment. The largest towns are in Division 1. Duxbury is in Division 1. The OCYFL has monthly meetings to which 2 of our assigned representatives attend. One advantage of belonging to a smaller independent league is that problems are resolved much more quickly other leagues. For example, if a coach on an opposing team runs up the score on another team on a Sunday, it is highly likely that this coach will be reprimanded/fined/and/or suspended at the Wednesday executive board meeting just 3 days after the incident. Go to www.ocyfl.com
for more information on the league. There are also links to the sites for other towns which also have driving directions.
3. What are the playing levels and how are they determined?
There are 3 playing levels: mites, pee wees, and midgets, with midgets being the older players. The age and weight requirements for the levels are provided below. It is important to note that we play against age- and weight-based competition. One potential negative with other leagues is that they allow what’s called “older-lighter” players to play. This means that your 8-year-old could be playing against an 11-year-old player, albeit one that is lighter than the weight limit. However, as you know, children that are 2 or 3 years older than your own are more developed (stronger/faster) which potentially results in a mismatch and a potential safety issues.
After the player makes the weight at the official weigh-in, 1 pound is added to the limit each week of the season. However, it is important to note that the player needs to make the official weigh-in weight on that day (usually on the first Saturday in September).
Age -No Mite player shall attain the age of ten (10) prior to July 1st. For those players born in in June, a waiver is available if the extra 30 days allows a player to play with his own grade. All players must attain the age of seven (7) by September 1st.
Weight -At the official, scheduled weigh-in, the maximum weight will not exceed 115 pounds. However, the playing weight for the first game of the season is 105lbs, then 1 lb is added each week, until reaching the season end weight of 115. If a player does not make weight, he/she will have an option to play as a Pee Wee.
Age - No Pee Wee player shall attain the age of twelve (12) prior to July 1st. For those players born in in June, a waiver is available if the extra 30 days allows a player to play with his own grade.
Weight -At the official, scheduled weigh-in, the maximum weight will not exceed 140 pounds. However, the playing weight for the first game of the season is 130lbs, then 1 lb is added each week, until reaching the season end weight of 140.If a player does not make weight, he/she will have an option to play as a Midget.
Age -No Midget player shall attain the age of fifteen (15) prior to November 15th. of the current year.  However, no player, regardless of the aforementioned requirements, shall participate in the league if he or she is in the ninth grade of school.
Weight-At the official, scheduled weigh-in, the maximum weight will not exceed 175 pounds. However, the playing weight for the first game of the season is 165lbs, then 1 lb is added each week, until reaching the season end weight of 175. Each player must make official weight. Otherwise, their name will be dropped from the roster (ie, there is no other team for the player to move up to).
4. Why do we need to register so early?
The main reason for this is that the DDF board needs to get an accurate head count for the upcoming season, mostly for equipment and volunteer planning needs. Football is an expensive sport and we need to make sure that our players have the best and safest equipment available. To insure this, we need to know how many kids we have signed up to determine how many new helmets we need, etc. We need the registration money early as well to keep our equipment up to date. For example, every 2 years we send our helmets out for reconditioning, which entails x-raying them to determine if there are any microcracks, cleaning/replacing the padding, and painting the helmets. This process is expensive but necessary for the safety of our players.
5. What is the DDF board?
The DDF board (see sidebar on the home page of this web site for board members and contact information) is made up of 11 volunteers, including a president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer, and 7 directors. Each person on the board has an area of responsibility, eg, concession stand, football operations, fund-raising, etc. The board also makes decisions on coaches and league matters, as well as handles any disciplinary issues. The board meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 7pm in the Merry Room of the Library. These are open meetings and everyone is encouraged to attend. If you are interested in running for the board and/or would like to volunteer, please contact the president or the secretary.
6. What about the games?
The league games for the 3 levels are typically played on Sundays and are played in the following order: mites, midgets, and pee wees. The start times for the Sunday games are 11:30am for mites, 1pm (approx.) for midgets, and 2:45pm (approx.) for pee wees. In the past, we have also had what we call JV games on Saturdays. Essentially, we divided our levels into 2 teams, roughly by grade. For instance, for the mites, there would be a JV mites team and a varsity mites team. The JV mites would play on Saturday and the Varsity mites would play on Sunday. This format gives our players the most opportunity to get playing time and to develop as football players against age- and weight-matched competition (see discussion above about older/lighter players allowed in other leagues).
Duxbury fields teams in both Division 1 and Division 6. Each level fields 2 teams that each play a game every weekend. So essentially, we have 3 levels (mites, pee wees, midgets) and 2 teams from each level (essentially by grade level so long as the player makes the age/weight requirements) making 6 teams total in our program with 6 different head coaches.
7. What about equipment?
DDF provides all of the equipment (helmet, shoulder pads, rib pads, thigh pads, knee pads, practice pants, and game shirts and pants) for the players with the exception of the girdle and girdle pads (for sanitary reasons), mouthpiece, and practice shirt. The girdle consists of a short-like garment that has spots for 3 pads, a tail pad and 2 hip pads. Some units come with these pads integrated into the garment. Girdles and pads and mouthpieces can be purchased at local sporting goods stores. In the event that mouthpieces are lost, the coaches carry extras that can be used until the player is able to purchase another mouthpiece that is typically molded/fitted for the individual player. Practice shirts can be purchased (see the registration form or contact the secretary).
8. How/when do we get the equipment?
Equipment hand-out days are scheduled for the individual teams sometime early in August. These will take place at the equipment shed behind the middle school. A check deposit of $150 is required in order to receive the equipment. The check is held and returned/destroyed upon receipt of the equipment at the end of the season. The web site will provide more specific information regarding equipment hand-out as we get closer to August.
9. When does the season start?
According to league rules, the first practice can be held 30 days from the day of the first game. The first game is usually held on the same day as the league weigh-in, which is held on the first Saturday after Labor Day. So for 2018, the first DYF practice could be held on August 9TH. The first game of the season will be held on September 9th. Each team plays 8 games and potentially 2 playoff games. The last playoff game will take place on Sunday November 1th. Please see your individual coaches for more specific information regarding preseason and game schedules.
10. What is preseason?
Preseason starts roughly 4 weeks before the season starts, usually in the middle of August. Practices are held 3 to 5 times per week during preseason, and 2 to 3 times per week during the regular season. There is usually at least 1 scrimmage against another town held during preseason. Although we don’t expect parents to make wholesale decisions regarding their vacations and conflicts with preseason youth football, it is important to remember that this is the time that coaches spend on conditioning, evaluating the skills of their players and determining their positions, as well as installing offense, defense, and special teams. If your child misses substantial amounts of preseason, it is likely that they will, at least temporarily, fall behind their teammates with respect to knowing the team’s plays etc., conditioning, and playing time, until the coach determines that they are in condition (both mentally and physically) to warrant more playing time.
11. Who will my son’s coaches be?
Head coaches are selected by the board early on in the calendar year (February or March). Coaches need to let the president know that they are interested in being a head coach, and then present an overview of their experience and coaching philosophy to the board. After that, the board will discuss and vote on the candidates. Once a head coach is in place, he/she will ask individuals that they want to be assistant coaches, or if someone is interested, they can contact the head coach. All coaches, including assistant coaches, are required to undergo a CORI check, and the majority of coaches attend our youth football clinic held in the late spring.
12. What if I have an issue with a coach?
The board takes the selection of coaches very seriously, and tries to make the best choices for the program. The head coaches put considerable time and effort into the program, including preseason and regular season practices and games, as well as numerous coaches meetings outside of practice to review strategies and break down game films. If you have any problems, please discuss these directly with the head coach at an appropriate time (not during the middle of practice for instance). If the resolution is not acceptable, you should then discuss the matter further with a board member. The complaint needs to be in writing to the board member, because the board cannot act on hearsay and rumors; however, they will definitely follow-up on issues that are brought to their attention in writing.
On another note, it is important to remember that football is a team sport, and every position is important. Everyone wants to play running back or quarterback, but this obviously is not possible. Coaches spend a lot of time trying to put the best player into the best position for him/her at that point in their development, and parents should encourage their sons/daughters to play hard in whatever position they earn. Just because a player cannot play running back this season doesn’t mean that they won’t be able to in a future season. Kids mature at different rates.
13. What is the DDF Mailing Address?
Duxbury Dragons Football
PO Box 1272
Duxbury, MA 02331