Every year the same question is asked by players and parents as they try and decide what the best path to achieve their hockey objectives. There are many alternatives available. According to a survey of college coaches the most heavily scouted leagues were all at the level of Junior Hockey. Junior Hockey provides many opportunities for a player to improve and showcase their individual and team skills. The opportunities are provided through a schedule of highly competitive league games and participation in showcase and league tournaments including national tournaments. Additionally, Junior Hockey clubs frequently provide additional training and educational opportunities that enhance the player’s educational and current training programs. These programs include preparation for college entrance examinations such as the SAT and ACT tests and off ice strength and conditioning programs. No other programs offer the same variety of opportunities that Junior Hockey does. Both the ECAC and Hockey East recruit almost all their players from the ranks of Junior Hockey.
Junior Hockey is the pinnacle of the skill development program offered by USA Hockey, and the ultimate challenge for players wishing to test themselves and retain their amateur status. Athletes age 20 and under as of December 31 are eligible for Junior Hockey. Junior Hockey is an alternative for exceptional athletes who demand a greater challenge than that provided by prep school teams, high school varsity or club teams, or area midget teams. The purpose of Junior Hockey is to develop and prepare the exceptional athlete for career advancement either in collegiate programs and/or professional opportunities.
In just two years, the USHPL has seen over 500 aspiring hockey players compete in the league and move onto NCAA collegiate hockey including close to 200 at the Division 1 level. “This is a great time for the USPHL as the membership has come together to provide a truly unique platform for young aspiring hockey players” said USPHL President Richard Gallant. “The USPHL will be the only junior league to have a pathway that connects bantam and midget hockey to a junior hockey model that spans Three Tiers of Junior Hockey in the United States”
The USPHL membership will consist of approximately 60 members fielding over 125 teams with a geographic reach that spans the complete Eastern Seaboard through to the Mid-West United States.