Cal North Association Cup is cup competition created for Cal North Division mid-level competitive teams (or Recreational teams wishing to "play up"). Although all eligible Cal North Competitive or Recreational teams may apply to and participate in Association Cup, top tier Competitive teams or those teams that are seeking the opportunity to advance to a Regional/National competition are encouraged to apply for Presidents Cup. The Cal North Association Cup hosts brackets in the U9, U10, U11, U12, U13, U14, U15, U16 and U19 age groups. In the U9-U11 age groups only there will be an open division specifically for teams that are not Cal North members but that are members of other affiliated USSF organizations. Winners of the open division will compete against Cal North champions.
Who is eligible to attend the Cal North Association Cup?
Any Cal North registered Competitive or Recreational U12 through U19 team that competes in a playing league hosted by a Cal North member league or a Cal North District or any U9 – U11 team that is a member of Cal North or other USSF affiliated organization is eligible to apply. Association Cup is open ONLY to teams and players that participated in a playing league for Silver Elite, Silver, Bronze, Copper or Recreational teams. Teams and/or players that participated in Far West Regional League, Premier or Gold divisions of Cal North sanctioned playing leagues are not eligible for Association Cup. Each team must have a team roster that has been approved by its District Registrar in order to complete their application to Association Cup. The roster requirement also applies to teams that will participate in a 2013 Cal North spring playing league to meet their playing league requirement for cup.
When does the Cal North Association Cup take place?
The U9, U10 and U11 Association Cup takes place over the course of two weekends in December as part of the Cal North Junior Cup Festival. The U12, U13 and U14 Association Cup will commence in early January and conclude at the end of January. The U15-19 age groups start play in March and are scheduled to conclude in early April. The dates can be found in the Calendar on the Cal North website.
What is the format of the Cal North Association Cup?
Teams are placed into brackets by modified blind draw. During the preliminary round play on the first weekend of cup, teams will play round-robin against the other teams in the bracket. On the round-robin weekend teams will have one or two games on Saturday and one or two games on Sunday. Teams qualify to advance to the single elimination rounds either as bracket winners or as a second place team from a bracket with a designated "wild card". Teams advancing to the single elimination rounds will play "knock out" games where the winning teams advance to the following round of play and the losing team is eliminated from the competition. The winning team will continue to advance from each single elimination match. Second round games, round of 16 games, quarter finals, semifinals and championships are scheduled over the course of the next two weekends of the competition. The scheduling of the single elimination round games will be based on the number of brackets. The U9, U10 and U11 teams play 8 v 8 games with all games taking place over a two-weekend time frame. The U12 and older age groups play 11 v 11 matches and will play over a three weekend period. In the event of weather-related field cancellations, the games may be postponed to alternate weekends or sometimes relocated to venues where the conditions allow play to continue.
Where are the games held?
Currently the U9-U11 Junior Cup Festival has been scheduled at Cherry Island Soccer Complex just outside of Sacramento. Additional locations may be required based on the number of applications received. The Cal North Association Cup is a Northern California-wide event and therefore games can be hosted by any of the nine districts within Cal North’s territorial area (see the map of Cal North territory on the Cal North website). Teams must be prepared to travel anywhere within this area. Venues will be selected after we are able to confirm the number of applications in each age group. Only then can we determine which venues will best suit the needs of the teams in each age group/gender. Over the past several seasons games have been played at complexes throughout Northern California. The Morgan Hill Soccer Complex, Fremont Central Park, the Cherry Island Soccer Complex in Sacramento, Bartholomew Sports Park in Elk Grove, Mistlin Soccer Complex in Ripon (near Manteca), Hanford Soccer Complex, and Redding Soccer Park are some examples of venues at which Cal North Cup games have been held.
What cost is associated with the Cal North Association Cup Tournament?
The Association Cup entry fee is $550 for timely applications received from Cal North member teams. The cost for the open division in U9-U11 Junior Cup Festival is $600. The entry fee covers the costs of facility rental, field preparation, referees, support staff, awards, and other associated costs. Any cup-related costs incurred by the team for transportation, lodging, food, etc. are the responsibility of the team members.
What are the dates/deadlines associated with attending Association Cup?
In order to be accepted for Association Cup teams must complete an application which includes three components: (1) event registration (online entry which can be accessed on the Cal North website’s Association Cup page); (2) the entry fees (can be paid online with a credit card during the application process or sent via check/money order and (3) a copy of their authorized Cal North roster (scanned & emailed if paying online or by hard copy if paying by check)
The application deadline for U9-U14 Association Cup is November 1st at 5:00 PM and January 2 at 5:00 PM for U15-U19 applications. Any applications completed after the deadline will be diverted to the Reserve Pool and will be placed in the Cup on a space available basis. Reserve Pool applicants are not guaranteed a spot in the competition.
What is the deadline for submitting a roster to Cal North?
The official team roster must be submitted by 11/1/12 for U9-U14 teams and by 1/3/13 deadline for U15-U19 teams. Teams that will be playing in CCSL 2013 Spring League or other official, recognized Cal North 2013 spring league to fulfill their playing league requirement for Association Cup also must have a valid Cal North team roster authorized by their District Registrar and submitted as part of their Association Cup application by the application deadline. If the team does not already have a roster that has been approved by the district they should email their league registrar or District Registrar for specific timelines and deadlines that must be met in order to obtain an approved roster by the November 1st Association Cup application deadline.
Can I make changes to my roster before attending Association Cup?
Teams can continue to make roster changes after they apply to a Cal North Cup. The team roster "freezes" on the Tuesday prior to the cup’s scheduled start date but all changes must be submitted by the league to the District Registrar on the Friday prior to the roster being frozen. During the season Cal North allows up to 5 inter league transfers per team (players moving from one league’s roster to another league’s roster), an unlimited number of intra league transfers (players moving from one roster to another within the same league and considered to be a "club pass") and an unlimited number of added players (players not on a Cal North roster this season. Although there is no freeze date for adding or deleting registered team officials (coaches, assistant coaches, managers, etc.) all player movement on and off the roster will stop on the freeze date. Throughout all roster changes, a team must retain a core of 9 players from their league roster to the Cup roster. U10-U13 teams may have a maximum of 18 rostered players. U14 and older teams may roster no more than 22 players Teams should contact their league registrars for guidance regarding roster changes and/or the timeline for submitting roster changes to the league and district prior to the roster freeze deadline.
Will my team have a realistic chance of being competitive in Cal North Association Cup?
There are many intangible and variable factors that contribute to the success of each team. Teams in Association Cup will compete against other competitive-level teams from throughout Northern California. The random draw for placing teams in brackets is modified so that teams play against teams from districts other than their own (except in the case where there are more teams from one district than there are brackets, in which case two teams from that district may be in a bracket).
Interested in Participating?
If your team is planning to apply for Cal North Association Cup first confirm that you have enough players who are committed to participate on all of the weekends that are noted on the Association Cup calendar. If not, you may want to consider transferring or adding players to supplement the roster. Keep in mind you will not be able to make changes to your Association Cup roster after the freeze date that teams and that Cal North rules require that the team must carry over a core of 9 players from their league roster to their Cup roster. U14 and older teams are allowed to roster up to 22 players however prior to each game the team will be required to designate no more than 18 players for the game roster.
Use your District Association Cup Representative and your League and District Registrars as a source of information to ensure your questions are answered and the Association Cup deadlines are met.
WE LOOK FORWARD TO YOUR TEAM’S PARTICIPATION IN CAL NORTH’s ASSOCIATION CUP!!!!