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The Divide Between JV and Varsity Sports

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Sports. Love them or hate them, they are a major part of high school life: we get days off school to attend state tournament games, Homecoming week is basically a homage to how amazing football is, and we hear about them during the morning announcements. Well, we hear about varsity sports.

There is a divide between varsity and junior varsity; whether it be that the varsity teams get new jerseys or that varsity gets to play at Pesonen Stadium, while most of the time, the junior varsity teams get resigned to the middle school fields. And while both teams might get the same amount of play time, that doesn’t mean that they are treated the same by the coaches, fans, or varsity players.

Because we all share the same pool, we don’t divide the two teams up, there are some girls from JV and varsity in each lane. We also have groups of randomized people, that mix JV and varsity, and we do team bonding activities with our groups”

— Sally Richardson

“I think varsity sports are better thought of because they get to do stuff like play on the turf, play in section games, and get warm ups. Not as many people care about the JV team. I think it’s mostly just the parents that go to JV games,” said sophomore soccer player, Vasili Nicklow.

JV teams exist to provide those athletes who are unable to participate on the varsity level an opportunity to develop skills and gain experience needed to one day be able to play on the varsity team. With this in mind, it would make sense that coaches are as focused on helping the JV team improve, as they are with coaching the varsity teams. Instead, nearly all of the focus is put onto the varsity players.

“I feel like the varsity team is the coaches’ main priority and they generally favor them. As a member of the JV team, most of the time, I feel unnoticed. Like when the dance team doesn’t have both gyms, the JV team would ask if we could split the one that varsity team was using, so we could all practice, but the coaches just told us to go out in the hall,” said freshman dancer, Dalay Perez-Negrete.

Along with there being a lack of attention between JV players and coaches, the varsity players aren’t always aware of how their actions affect those who are on JV.

“I went into a track seasoned injured so I spent a lot of time doing [physical therapy]—when I was finally able to run it was the JV Conference meet. And it was a really big deal to me because I got to finally do what I loved, but it was frustrating because a lot of the varsity runners kind of saw the meet as a joke and ran events that they never ran and didn’t give it the respect that is deserved. Just because it was a JV meet didn’t mean that it was a joke and it was disappointing to see other teammates treat it like it was, because for me it was finally a chance to run after months of not being able to,” said senior track runner, Cari Spencer.

The girl’s swim and dive team has been taking strides in bridging the gap between the JV and varsity teams by integrating practices and creating a sense of comradery in and out of the pool.

“Because we all share the same pool, we don’t divide the two teams up, there are some girls from JV and varsity in each lane. We also have groups of randomized people, that mix JV and varsity, and we do team bonding activities with our groups,” said senior swim and dive captain, Sally Richardson.

So yeah, sports are a big deal in high school, but the only ones that seem to matter are the varsity teams. And unless the coaches and players are willing to change how they view the JV teams, nothing is going to change.

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About the Writer
Hannah Thillman, Visuals Editor

Hi! I'm Hannah, one of the Visuals Editors for The Spartan Speaks. I am a senior at Orono and this is my second year on staff. Outside of journalism,...

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The Divide Between JV and Varsity Sports