2024-25 Exceptional Player Request (Owen Sound Minor Hockey Group)

2024-25 Exceptional Player Request

Exceptional Player Request


The purpose of the Exceptional Player Request is to provide an opportunity for members to request their player move up to a team in a higher age division. This procedure ensures that players are given a fair review and that the association is only moving players out of their age division with due diligence.

Consideration will be given to the physical, emotional, and social health of the child, in addition to hockey skills. To be an “Exceptional Player” one must possess hockey skills that are superior to players in his/her own age division and be capable of competing with the highest ranked players in the next age division. In addition to hockey skills, the exceptional player must also possess physical maturity, mental-cognitive and socio-emotional skills that match the age division they are applying to enter. The player must be well rounded in all aspects of their development.

Risk Management

The OSMHG has a responsibility to ensure the safety and well-being of their members (physical, developmental, and social). Placing player(s) on a team to play against opponents older than them is often deemed unsafe. In the situation of any injury or incident occurring, an insurance provider will complete an evaluation process to access the playing environment and the appropriate placement of the players. As a risk management practice, insurance providers strongly recommend that when someone plays outside of their age division, placement is done very carefully.


The OSMHG adopts Hockey Canada’s recommendation that players develop and play within their age division. However, a player may seek exceptional status to try out for a team in the next highest age division per OMHA regulation 3.6a). The OSMHG will consider any such request and may grant exceptional status, on a season-to-season basis, based on exceptional player ability (considerably advanced for his/her age and playing at a level consistent with the top players one age division above) and maturity level. The OSMHG will also consider the overall impact of any movement on the teams involved as well as the safety of the player. For a player to try out for a team in a higher age division, the player must:

  1. Complete the Exception Player Request form, a minimum of 7 days in advance of the first scheduled tryout.
  2. Pay all tryout fees in full before the tryout begins.


The following procedure and criteria will be used by the OSMHG when determining whether a player is eligible to play in the next highest age division:

  1. The OSMHG Tryout Committee (as determined by the Director of Player/Coach Development) will meet to evaluate if the player warrants a tryout in the age division above. This consultation may involve meeting with the family or the player. If no committee is available, the Director of Player/Coach Development, Director of Representative and President of the OSMHG will form the Tryout Committee and meet to make the decision. No member of the Tryout Committee shall have any affiliation or relation to the team or the player in question. As part of the decision, both coaches will be consulted to determine the overall impact to their teams. The move cannot come at the detriment of any team in the way of player numbers or overall team competitiveness.
  2. If deemed to be appropriate to participate in the tryout at the higher age division, a member from the OSMHG Tryout Committee will attend the first tryout of the higher division team to assess the player and determine, in their opinion, if the player should continue to attend tryouts at the higher level. If the decision is that the player should not continue, the parent/guardian will be notified before the second tryout session.
  3. If the tryouts are highly attended and the “exceptional player” continues beyond the first session, in order to be deemed an appropriate placement by the OSMHG Tryout Committee, the player must be a top line forward, top pairing defenseman or the top goaltender in the higher age division player evaluation process.
  4. If there are roster positions open due to low tryout numbers, and the original age division of the “exceptional player” applicant has a sufficient roster, the OSMHG may access the appropriate placement of the “exceptional player”, even if they do not meet the criteria of the point 3.
  5. The decision of the OSMHG Tryout Committee is final and no appeal will be heard.
  6. The player must continue to attend the tryouts for his/her own age division in addition to the tryouts for the higher division team during the tryout process, if these ice times do not conflict.
  7. The maximum number of players that would be moved in to any one age group from the lower age group is one player per season per position.

Player Information

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Contact Information

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