The Flower Mound Rebels in the great state of Texas have been kicked out of the playoffs for being “too good”.
The team of 7- and 8-year-olds have won their games by a combined score of 199-6. This includes a 33-0 beatdown of the team coached by Rhett Taylor, the VP of the Keller Youth Association, which the Flower Mound Rebels joined last year. Taylor was among the five board members of the league who voted to eject the Rebels from the playoffs.
“This is the Keller league, not the Flower Mound league,” Taylor told NBC Dallas Fort Worth. “In my mind, they’ve dominated our league.”
“My team got one first down all game,” Taylor said. “And my team is good.”
Ragan Montero, coach of the Rebels, called Taylor a “sore loser” for the decision.
“He’s a sore loser. That’s all it comes down to,” Montero said. “He’s changing the rules so it benefits him.”
“I don’t think we can be too good. He wants to play with us, but he doesn’t want us to be good. I’m not really sure what that teaches the kids. Hey, try your hardest, but sorry, you won’t get the end result you want?” he added.
Taylor even admitted to kicking out the Rebels for the sin of being “too good”.
“They are too good. I fully admit it, absolutely,” Taylor said. “They are a select-level team. They are too good for a rec-level team.”
Taylor said it came down to fairness.
Keller Youth Associated president Calvin Washington released a lengthy statement on the issue:
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“Keller Youth Association prides itself in being an all-inclusive program that allows the youth from Keller and surrounding cities to participate in sports. While we offer ‘Select & Elite’ teams for baseball and softball, we have always maintained that our football leagues are ‘recreational level’ only. We made the decision in Fall 2020 to allow a handful of other cities to bring teams to KYA Football to help curb the low registration numbers due to COVID-19,” the statement read.
“Guidelines were laid out to keep the playing field competitive for these teams and because KYA conducts grass drills and follows a draft process, we asked that outside teams follow the same rules. As the following seasons progressed and our numbers increased, KYA instructed Flower Mound to bring two teams per division so they could conduct a true draft process for each. However, they were adamant in only bringing one team for the 7/8U bantam division that has garnered the recent negative attention in the media.
“Prior to the Fall 2021 season, the Flower Mound leadership was told that if they brought only one team, and that team was grossly unbalanced compared to the other recreational teams, they would not be allowed to participate in the postseason. Once the Fall 2021 season started, KYA quickly realized the level of talent the Flower Mound team brought far exceeded the level of talent that a team conducting a draft process could have. Multiple conversations were had with the Flower Mound staff regarding the level of talent their team possessed, supported by that they outscored their opponents 199-6 during the regular season.
“KYA allowed Flower Mound to finish out their regular season games, as well as offered to schedule an end of the season game with another local team that is selected and not drafted, so the Flower Mound team could have a championship style game.
“Flower Mound elected to forfeit the remaining regular season game and declined the offer to play in this exhibition championship game. In the end, the decision was made to maintain the integrity of our recreational league and provide playoffs for only the teams who followed the guidelines set forth in the preseason.”