After reading through many of these forums over the years the age and reclassification debate consistently comes to dominate so many of the forums. With so many interested in the topic I think its a good time to debate all aspects including the good, the bad, and the ugly.
For purposes of this discussion let's start by setting the ground rules.
1. A player who complies with the US Lacrosse age requirement of Sept 1, but find themselves in a state that has a dec 1 school cutoff is NOT considered a hold back or reclassified if he is in the lower grade. You must even the playing field and for this argument Sept 1 is the most fair way to start.
2. That being said the current class of 2019 should be sept 1, 2000 or later and be u-13 eligible, and the class of 2017 should be sept 1, 1998 or later and would qualify as U-15.
3. This is not to say private schools don't have different requirement, but this is the fairest way to think of it.
The way many think of this is that the age in the younger divisions U-11 and U-13 are important due to safety. Then as you get into recruiting it then becomes an issue of fairness.
Each year at this time early recruiting class is full of reclassified players and this year is no different. There are boys who have left a public school and repeated 9th grade and other who repeated 8th grade in a private school and returned to public school. There are many ways to get this done and these are just two examples. Most of these players who are turning 16 before and or after the sept 1 us lacrosse guideline, reclassify down a year and repeat the recruiting circuit.
Fair? Not Fair? Short Lived until other boys mature? Exploiting the system. Let's have at it.
In my mind there are two questions here. First, is it fair/ok that parents reclass? To me it is every parents prerogative to choose to reclass. Whether you decide to reclass is completely up to the parents. For those who choose not to, I don't think they have the right to cry about it. Whether its fair in a grade based youth tourney is a completely separate issue. This is the primary reason USL went to an age based format. If a tournament chooses not to organize their tourney this way then that i there issue.
The second question is whether reclassifying ultimately matters in college play. Since it is a relatively new phenonenom time will tell. It certainly matters in recruiting which is why for now the trend is to reclass.