US Youth Soccer recently held its Olympic Development Program (ODP) South Region Summer ID Camp, with the Tennessee State Soccer Association (TSSA) hosting separate four-day events for girls and boys players over the course of two weeks in Murfreesboro.
“One of our main goals at Tennessee ODP is to help every player in our system reach the highest level possible,” said Bryan Johnson, TSSA Director of Player Development. “We are proud of our process and how we have continued to develop the Olympic Development Program in Tennessee. Players in our system have found success at the local level, and we have created a developmental pathway that we hope will lead to similar success at the regional, interregional and even national level.”
Top level players in the 2005 to 2010 age groups participated in this Summer ID Camp, which was held at the Richard Siegel Soccer Complex in Murfreesboro for the second consecutive year. 12 states comprise the ODP South Region, and more than 650 girls and 750 boys participated in these sessions. Over the course of four days, players were given the opportunity to showcase their talents in front of evaluators who will be selecting teams for a Fall Interregional Event that will be hosted by US Youth Soccer this November in Orlando, Florida.
Nearly 1,000 players currently participate in Tennessee ODP, with approximately 100 boys and 100 girls from the state taking part in the South Region Summer ID Camp.
“We are very proud of the relationship we have had with USYS over the last two years related to the ODP Region Camp,” said Hans Hobson, TSSA Chief Operating Officer. “Any time we have the opportunity to showcase and utilize this great facility (Richard Seigel Soccer Complex in Murfreesboro) with a Regional event, it is a win for our membership.”
The Olympic Development Program is an identification system linked to the United States Soccer Federation and US Youth Soccer. The program offers its players a pathway that could lead to representing Regional and U.S. Youth National Teams. Originally established in 1977, ODP was the first program in the country designed to identify potential youth national team players. ODP players begin initially at the local sector before progressing to the state, regional and possibly national levels. By playing with like-talented athletes, ODP offers the opportunity for players to advance in their personal development and to be scouted by college coaches.