Parent Letter


Basketball Philosophy

                  As coaches and a school we believe that Middle School Basketball provides the opportunity for players to develop strong fundamental basketball skills along with increasing their knowledge about the sport.  Participation is one of our main areas of focus.  We will implement a system that will allow us to play as many players as possible during a game.  Positions and playing time will be determined by the coach and will be as equitable as possible.

                  We will promote a team atmosphere in all aspects of our program.  All players will be expected to respect and encourage teammates not only during basketball activities but at school as well.  Players will also show respect and cooperation to all coaches, teachers, and administrators as well as represent Columbine Middle School with the highest integrity.

                  Our offensive and defensive strategies will incorporate teaching the fundamentals of basketball, game situations, and teamwork.  Coaches may make slight modifications based on middle school rules and personnel.  Winning is important and we will do our best to be competitive and win as many games as possible, however we will not have a “win at all cost” mentality.  As middle school basketball coaches we believe that it is our goal to “TEACH FIRST and WIN SECOND”.

Athletic Packets

  • Athletic packets may be picked up at the office and include (Physical Form, Proof of Insurance, and Training Code).
  • All athletic packets must be filled out and fees paid before a player is allowed to participate in practices.
  • Athletic packets and fees may be turned into the front office or to coaches.

    Academic Expectations – We expect players to work as hard in the classroom as they do on the basketball court. 

  • Eligibility – Teachers will post grades by noon on Monday.  Coaches will receive an eligibility list every Monday.  Students failing one or more classes will be ineligible to participate in games that week Monday through Saturday.  Citizenship will also be considered when determining eligibility.  Players who are listed on the ineligible list for a total of three weeks will not be allowed to play or practice for the remainder of the season. 
  • Wednesday Study Hall – For all players who have a “D” or an “F” on the eligibility report, coaches will strongly encourage them to attend study hall after early release on Wednesday’s.  Players will report to a designated classroom no later than 2:45 and remain there until 3:45.  Players are encouraged to bring all school work and personal belongings to study hall, they will not be allowed to return to their lockers or leave the campus without parent permission.  Players are allowed to bring a light snack to study hall to have before practice.   
  • Wednesday Early Release – Players who have the 4:00 practice time will have the option to attend study hall on Wednesday’s or leave campus at the end of school and return no earlier than 3:50 for practice.  Players not able to leave campus should report to study hall until the beginning of practice.  Players will not be allowed to stay on campus or roam the halls before practice.

Concussion Test

  • Every 7th grade player and 8th grade players who did not play last year will be given a computer based impact test at the beginning of the season.  If a player were to suffer a head injury or concussion during the season the test will be given to the player’s family physician for evaluation.

    It is the policy of Columbine Middle School that players suffering head injuries or concussions may not participate in practice or games until there is a written release from a physician.


  • Players will be issued the following equipment for Basketball; Practice Jersey, Game Jersey and Game Shorts.
  • Players must also wear proper tennis shoes or basketball shoes to all practices and games.
  • Game Jerseys and Game Shorts cannot be worn to practice or school.

Personal Belongings

  • Players will be encouraged to store all personal belongings either in the locker room or their PE lockers during practice.  Items such as cell phones, iPods, or mp3 players should be locked up or given to coaches to be placed in coach’s office.
  • Players not taking PE during basketball season can see Mr. Skiff about being issued a PE locker for the season.
  • Players should not leave their belongings outside of the locker room unlocked.  We have had problems with theft in the past. 

Fundraising and Athletic Booster Club


  • Players will be dressed out and on the court ready to practice no later than 10 minutes before practice every day. 
  • There are 2 different practice times that are used for Girl’s Basketball
  • After School Practice – 3:45 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  • Late Practice – 5:00 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.
  • We will have practice every day Monday through Friday except for game days.  Practices may be changed or cancelled due to holidays or other scheduling conflicts.  Coaches will inform players about practice changes in advance, and notice will be provided on the Columbine Basketball Webpage.
  • Because of limited practice time and space, all basketball practices will be closed, with only players and coaches being allowed in the gym during each scheduled practice.
  • Ineligible, injured, or players forgetting to bring all of their equipment are still required to come to practice and study halls.  A failure to show up will be considered an unexcused absence unless parent permission has been given.


  • Players will be required to attend and participate in all practices and games.
  • Players will be given a warning for their 1st unexcused absence.
  • A player receiving a 2nd unexcused absence will be required to set up a meeting with their parents and coaches.  This meeting will be used to discuss a plan to improve attendance and possible consequences.  A player will not play until coaches meet with parents.
  • Players must have written parent permission or a written doctor’s note to be excused from practice.

Game Day

  • Please refer to the schedule given to players and posted on the website for game times and locations.  Any changes to the schedule will be announced to players and posted on the Basketball website.
  • Players will be asked to wear nice dress clothes to school on game days (Friday for Saturday games)
  • Ineligible, injured, suspended, or players not having their equipment may sit on the bench during home games, but will not be allowed to travel with team for away games.
  • Away Games:
  • Players may be excused early from school for away games.  It is there responsibility to make sure that they make up any school work that may have been
  • We recommend that players bring a small snack with water or sports drink to have prior to the game.  NO SODAS!!!!
  • Parents wanting to take players with them following an away game must sign them out with a coach prior to leaving.

Coaches Contact Information

                  As coaches we have an open door policy.  If a player ever has any questions or concerns about basketball, encourage them to go to their coach first and discuss the matter.  If there are still questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us at school or via e-mail, and the coach will set up a meeting with the player, the parent, and the coach.  If further resolution is needed for an issue the Athletic Director will be invited to attend meeting. 

 As you can see by our schedule the season is only about six weeks long and as coaches our practice time and game time is very valuable to us.  It is our goal to devote our entire attention to the players on the court during practice and games and we hope that parents will respect this and voice any questions or concerns they may have at the appropriate time and manner.  We would like as many parents, students, and other spectators to come and watch our games both home and away.  It is important that our players get the encouragement and positive feedback that they deserve for all of their hard work.  We look forward to a great season and hope to see everyone in the gym. 


For more information about Columbine Basketball please see our webpage at , go to Columbine Middle School and go to the athletics pull down menu.  Final step is to click on the Columbine Basketball Page.



Alex Matlock, 8th Grade Head Coach                                   249-2581                      

Dinah Irwin, 7th Grade Head Coach                                

Steve Gaber, Assistant Principal/Athletic Director            249-2581