Varsity sports take priority over JV

The Patriot explores the differences between JV and varsity teams in terms of attention, importance, coaching, and practices to see if these distinctions makes teams more divided or more unified


Karly Horn

Varsity and JV volleyball girls face-off. In a Patriot survey, 47.6 percent of students agree that varsity teams get more attention than JV teams.

“I wouldn’t say [coaches] like the varsity team better, but they rely on them more, and all the JV kids, they look up to the varsity kids for what they want to become and as motivation,” sophomore Mitchell Hopkins, a cross country runner, said.

In a survey by The Patriot on Oct. 17, 85 percent of students agreed that varsity teams are seen as more important than JV teams, while only 61.9 percent agreed that varsity sports teams actually are more important.

“The students pay more attention to varsity,” senior Jordan Martin said. 47.6 percent of students agreed in the survey that varsity teams unfairly get more attention than JV teams.

Some students defended this in the survey, saying that varsity sports play a key role in school spirit and that JV sports are vital to the development of individual players.

Martin finds both teams equally important because JV “can get you ready for varsity” by providing the opportunity to meet people and improve skills.

For freshman Grace Mottley, varsity is supposed to be more important.

“People who are better get more attention, and those who aren’t have to work harder to get attention,” Mottley said.

Some students agree with both Martin and Mottley.

“Even though the varsity teams get more attention, that is because they are better and play better teams. That’s why JV kids play hard to get onto the varsity teams and get more attention,” one student who responded to The Patriot survey said.

Senior Zane Van Pelt runs cross country as well as indoor and outdoor track. According to him, one special aspects of cross country is that JV and varsity practice together.

“What I see as far as interaction may be unique to the small team, but we joke around with each other all the time, and typically if something happens to one member of the team we all feel it, for instance when a team member’s cat died this season,” Van Pelt said.

Van Pelt realizes that this type of closeness many not be typical, and people who responded to survey noted that “it is different for each sport.”

In the past, Van Pelt played lacrosse for JC. According to him, “JV, where I played, was mostly a unit and varsity was a different unit.”

Despite this separation, it did not affect the social aspect of the team according to Van Pelt.

“On a social, who-plays-what level, it’s pretty even in a sense that nobody judges based on what level you play, at least not in a negative way. When it comes to team support, the typical dynamic isn’t unlike every other school, where varsity is the superheroes of each sport. From my viewpoint on things, the JV guys are like varsity’s little brothers,” Van Pelt said.

Not all students agree, however. One student response said that “JC sports are extremely political and make people feel left out and judged.” Another student from the survey reported that “JV players are treated poorly and looked at less than what we are.”

Coaches affect sports practices through their personalities and the environments they create.

67.6 percent of students disagree with the statement that coaches do not care about JV teams, and 73.1 percent disagree that you do not have to focus or play as hard on JV teams.

Sophomore Hailey Siemak, a volleyball and lacrosse player, said that she found practices for varsity are often “more intense,” particularly for lacrosse. 56.2 percent of other students agree that varsity teams have more challenging and intensive practices than JV teams.

In Siemak’s opinion, coaches on varsity don’t “care more about them,” but “they just push [the players] harder.”

This may not be true for everyone.

One student who responded to The Patriot said, “From my personal experience, the difference between JV and Varsity soccer is crazy. Varsity had intense practices and a very structured set-up while JV was basically a joke and nobody took the team seriously.”

Hope Kelly is the Editor in Chief for The Patriot and