These are some of the questions that we have been asked most frequently.  But you no doubt have others.  So if you have other questions please Leave a Reply in the box at the bottom of this page.  Thanks!

When does the basketball season begin?

That depends on which of the many seasons you’re interested in.  Basketball is enjoyed year ’round.  See the Calendar page to find the months in which a particular season begins.  But since you asked, here are a few key start dates:

  • Piedmont Rec Dept (PRD) Leagues: 5th/6th grades-November; 2nd/3rd/4th grades-February
  • Middle School Competitive Teams: 6th (PBBF), 7th (PRD), 8th (PRD)-November
  • High School Teams – November
  • PBBF MVP Spring League Teams: 3rd-8th grades – March
  • PBBF MVP Summer League Teams: 3rd-8th grades – June

Does the Piedmont Basketball Foundation only support Competitive Basketball?

Emphatically, no.  We support Recreational, Competitive, School and Community basketball in Piedmont and neighboring communities.  The reason that we have been known for promoting Competitive basketball, is that we filled a gap in kids basketball experiences by organizing Competitive teams for kids in the MVP leagues and the Oakland Citywide leagues and East Bay tournaments.  These teams are not for every kid who loves basketball, but they do provide a great experience for those who really want to get into the game, learn more from more knowledgeable coaches, challenge themselves by playing against the best in the East Bay, and play with teammates who are similarly motivated.

We fully support Recreational basketball in Piedmont, and love nothing more than seeing kids play the game for pure fun, who may have no aspirations to play for a middle school or high school team, but just love to play this great game.  We hope that these kids play basketball for the rest of their lives, and do what we can to make their recreational experiences as good as they can be.  That’s a huge reason that we put so much effort into helping get a new floor in the Patio Gym, which is where the youngest of our kids get their first experience with basketball.  For so long, that experience was a poor one because of the slippery floor.  And we are really happy to have helped provide a better place for these kids to play just for fun.

(Ironically, we think that the Piedmont Recreation Department’s league are actually TOO competitive for their purpose, which we think should be to 1) teach kids the fundamentals of how to play the game so that they can enjoy it more, 2) let them enjoy it more by having won-loss records not even be a part of it.  While there are many hugely great things about these leagues — like the rules to make sure that every player gets a roughly equal chance to play — we think that the way the teams are set in stone for the entire season creates too much of a competitive environment.)

And finally, we support community basketball.  That’s why we fought to keep the courts at Hampton Park just as they are.  Because they are such a great place for people to shoot around by themselves, with their kids, or get in a casual (or serious) half-court or full-court pickup game.

If people are happy playing hoops – any way, any place, any age and in number – we are happy.

In what league should my kid play to have the best experience?  Soccer is really easy to figure out with Class IV, Class III and Class I teams.  Basketball is confusing.

Unlike soccer, there is no state-wide organization into which leagues and clubs neatly fit at various levels.  But perhaps using the soccer analogy is helpful to understand the various levels of basketball that are available to your kids.

Recreational Basketball (like Soccer Class IV Club Teams) – Examples: Piedmont Recreation Department Leagues for Grades 2-6

School and CYO Teams (like Soccer Class III Competitive Teams: PSC Highlanders, Montclair Clippers) – Examples:  Piedmont Middle School Traveling Teams, Corpus Christi CYO Teams (these are limited to students at a given school or parish)

Competitive Teams (like the mysterious Soccer Class II which doesn’t exist) – Examples:  Piedmont Basketball Foundation MVP Teams and Oakland Citywide League Teams.  Although these teams are made up predominantly of players who live in Piedmont, they often include excellent players from Oakland, Berkeley and Alameda, and with that broader range of players often compete at a high level.

AAU Teams (like JLYSL Bay Oaks) – Examples: MVP Flight Elite (boys), Diablo Warriors (boys),  Oakland Rebels (boys), Sportstrong (boys & girls), East Bay Xpolsion (girls), East Bay Panthers (girls), California Ballaz (girls).  In addition to competitive regional leagues, these teams compete in high level tournaments in the Bay Area, the western states, and even nationally if they have the ability. Team members may come from a radius of 20 miles to, in the case of the elite teams, 100 miles or more.  Games for AAU teams are usually focused on intense weekend tournaments with two games each day.

Didn’t answer your question?  Leave a Reply in the box below, and we’ll get right back to you!