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Now & Next Level Soccer

Frequently Asked Questions About Rush Union

Review the FAQ below and if you still have questions, reach out to us at [email protected] 


WHY DID GEORGIA RUSH AND CHIEFS FC DECIDE TO COMBINE FORCES?


Georgia Rush and Chiefs FC came together to create Rush Union in order to provide better, next level options for players, coaches, and parents.  Next level options include: the option to play at the highest levels close to home; better options for leagues, tournaments, and competitions at all levels—for all players; more location options, improved coaching interaction with players and parents, and improved facilities.

Rush Union is your hometown club, designed to give residents a close-to-home option for rec, pre-academy, academy and select players. The combination helps bring and keep families together on fields close to home, eliminating the need to drive long distances to receive high-level coaching, advanced play options, flexible rec schedules and player development.

Rush Union is positioned to provide those opportunities—in your community. Minimize traffic headaches, stay close to your community and consider the various paths for your athlete. It’s right here. We|R Rush Union. R|U in?

WHAT IS MEANT BY ‘NEXT-LEVEL’ SOCCER? WHAT ARE THE OPPORTUNITIES FOR ELEVATED PLAY?

 

Rush Union is a US Club SCCL member, SCCL Premier member, USYS NL and GA Soccer member. Rush Union will have three full-service locations and the club will more than double in size. Importantly, Rush Union thinks it is important for players to be able to practice and play games as near to home as possible. All players including rec, pre-academy, academy, and select players will also have better playing opportunities in leagues of our choosing for new next level competitions for players looking for more options. Teams can be fielded from the three locations to allow more advanced competition such as elite tournaments, such as Disney or The Jefferson Cup for our most advanced players; and for others, a chance to potentially move from Athena C to Athena B level or Classic 4 to Classic 2 in local tournaments.  





Rush Union believes in developing the player to build the team to strengthen the club. The legacy Rush National relationship provides national level player ID opportunities. Rush Union will provide ODP, and tryout options with Atlanta United and NWSL teams. Recreational teams will be able to play more teams at their level from nearby locations. R|U ready for the next level of soccer close to home? R|U in?

 

HOW WILL THE COMBINATION AFFECT MY TEAM? 

 

As a general goal, Rush Union would like to keep all current teams together playing in their desired locations. We will be adding teams at the Dunwoody location (Brook Run Park) at which players can choose to play as well. Rush Union will provide additional competition opportunities for teams and players at all locations.

WHAT WILL IT COST TO PLAY FOR RUSH UNION?

 

Rush Union fees may be variable by location but will be in line with current fees.

WHAT IS THE TIMELINE FOR THE COMBINATION? WHEN WILL WE BECOME RUSH UNION?


Both Georgia Rush and Chiefs FC boards voted to bring the organizations together effective immediately. The organizational transition will be ongoing so that we are able to operate as one club, Rush Union, starting in the Fall 2020 season, with more details to follow as the date nears.


WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR RUNNING THE CLUB?


The governing body of Rush Union is the Board of Directors with Neil McNab as CEO in charge of all operations. Neil has been serving as the Executive Director for Georgia Rush and the Chiefs FC so a smooth transition is expected. Neil is a former professional soccer player with the Utah Blitz, Long Island Rough Riders, Syracuse Salty Dogs and Wilmington Hammerheads; and long-time coach at various programs throughout the United States. He’s a decorated, accredited professional with USSF A, UEFA C, USC Premier coaching licenses, the USC Director of Coaching Diploma, and the USSF Grassroots Instructor License but first and foremost leads a program guided by shared core values between the Chiefs FC and Rush Soccer.


Those values include critical feedback and contribution from our communities, parents, players and coaches. We believe in open, accessible, respectful communication; collective unity in program objectives; honest dialogue and constructive feedback; player, leadership and coaching development; a focus on the players who build the teams and strengthen the club; and above all, a love of the game. These values brought us together and we will continue to play by those values as Rush Union grows. 

WHO ARE SOME OF COACHES AND STAFF WHO WILL ALSO PLAY A PART? 

 

Rush Union will leverage the exceptional coaching and staff from both legacy organizations. Meet our Directors and Lead Staff.


  • Matt Holmes will serve as Managing Director.  Matt enjoyed a professional career with Birmingham City FC, Kettering Town FC, Nottinghamshire FA and English Schools Football Associations as well as the British Universities of Sport. Matt is an experienced director at various levels; College, ODP, GSA ECNL, NL, Silverbacks W-League and Elite Youth, and High School.
  • Juan Castellanos will serve as Technical Director. Juan is originally from Bogota, Colombia. He has put his degree in Exercise Science to good use as a strength and conditioning coach for youth and professional clubs, including the Atlanta Silverbacks.
  • Brian Smith is the Tournament Director. Brian attended San Diego State University and left the sunny west coast to reside in Georgia. He’s been coaching for more than 17 years for various clubs, and currently coaches Pre-Academy Girls, 2011 Girls, and 2004 Boys for Rush Union. 

  • Riley Sumter is the Director of Player Development. Riley played his club career in Georgia and moved on to play College Soccer at Clemson University. As a coach, Riley joined the Chiefs FC Coaching team in 2011 as a member of our After School Soccer Club staff and worked to move into our Academy and Select programs. 
  • Mark Bailey is the Recreational and Indoor Playing Director. Mark attended Georgia State University and is a USSF National C License coach. He’s spent the last 32 years at clubs in Florida, South Carolina and Georgia, managing rec through Select/Academy U5-U19 Boys and Girls. 
  • Steve Reid is the Recreational Director. Steve played his club soccer in Georgia with DDY and TYSA. He played for Tucker High School and went on to play club soccer at Florida State University. He has 20 years of experience and has won multiple coaching awards, including Rec Coach of the Year.  
  • Cara Murray is one of the club's Administrators. Cara has been with Georgia Rush since 2015. She is the Administrator for our Recreational, Indoor, as well Pre-Academy Programs. Cara also is the coordinator for our TopSoccer Thunder Program and a mother of four. 
  • Juliet Melvin is a club Administrator. Juliet grew up in DeKalb County, where she played soccer starting at age 10 and has been involved in soccer ever since.  Juliet worked at Georgia State Soccer Association after graduating from Florida State University until 1999.  

WHAT IS THE MEANING BEHIND THE RUSH UNION NAME?

 

A ‘union’ is defined as a club, society, or association formed by people with a common interest or purpose. The name Rush Union is the product of like-minded clubs, families and players coming together to elevate soccer in communities in Georgia. The Rush Union leadership agrees the best long-term future for our organizations is to unite as a single club, working together to combine resources and maximize geographical advantages with four club locations. Rush Union brings together two proud, long-standing organizations whose common purpose is to promote youth soccer in a unique way, with community in mind.   

WILL WE CONTINUE TO MANITAIN ALL OF OUR EXISTING FIELDS? WHAT ARE THE PLANS FOR FUTURE FIELD DEVELOPMENT?

 

Rush Union will maintain all existing facilities currently operated by Georgia Rush and Chiefs FC. In addition, Rush Union will being offering new soccer programs at Brook Run Park in Dunwoody where athletes will train and play on two new lighted artificial turf fields.

WILL THE COACHING, TRAINING, OR PLAYING STYLE CHANGE?


The collective group of coaches and leadership will continue to oversee the program, with a steadfast commitment to player and coach development. Improvements we have implemented in these areas will continue and advance. Coaching, training and playing style at Rush Union aims to instill a love of the game, and a desire to continue to improve for years to come. We believe that winning is a side effect of proper coaching, not a focus. We expect and encourage experienced players to take on increased responsibility for their own development; and we coach to ensure player safety.

WHAT WILL THE COACHING STAFF LOOK LIKE? WILL MY CHILD LOSE HIS/HER COACH?


Rush Union believes that BETTER COACHES = BETTER PLAYERS and that means investing in our coaching staff with professional development and training opportunities so that kids and teams have coaches who are truly the best fit. Rush Union will continue to use a formal recruiting process which involves screening potential candidates for unique coaching abilities, experience and interpersonal communication skills.


Our coaching development program is a tried and true approach used by Chiefs FC for many years. The program aims to attract and retain the best coaches—young professionals and those with years of tenure—who share our core values and want to grow with the program. Though we’re in an industry with frequent turnover, our goal is to minimize movement by offering unparalleled professional coaching development.

WHAT DOES RUSH UNION DO TO SUPPORT BETTER COACHES=BETTER PLAYERS?  

 

Once on board, Rush Union provides continued development and opportunities for our coaches, both in-person and virtual if needed, so that they want to stay with the program. Rush Union has designed the coaching program holistically to encourage personal and professional development that is passed to each player. This helps attract and retain the best talent, long-term with minimal interruptions to the players. Coaching benefits: 

  • Internal development sessions such as webcasts, classroom training and 1:1 brainstorming sessions
  • Training and coaching programs specific to age groups
  • Official USSF Pathway / training roadmap


Our objective is to structure the coaching staff in such a way that keeps players with familiar coaches, while also introducing new faces/coaching styles to players/teams. We understand this familiarity with the trainer(s) coaching your team is a matter of utmost importance, and we will announce more information as it becomes available.

WHICH LEAGUES WILL WE PARTICIPATE IN? WILL WE CONTINUE TO PLAY IN OUR CURRENT LEAGUES?

 

One of the advantages of the combination is that it makes Rush Union eligible, from a size standpoint, to play in any league we choose. Decisions on which leagues in which to play will be made soon and with input from coaches, parents and players.

HOW WILL THE TRYOUT PROCESS WORK? HOW WILL THE TEAMS BE SELECTED?


Rush Union tryouts will be held in late May/Early June. Players have two location options: Georgia Rush’s Milton location;  and in Dunwoody at Brook Run Park for all Dunwoody and Pleasantdale park teams. All players will be evaluated by members of the Rush Union coaching staff. Rush Union is a community club—your club.  The goal is to find a team for every player that fits his or her playing ability. We desire to keep all of our playing families together at the location most convenient to our families. Rush Union will try to keep current teams together as much as possible. Visit the websites for additional information on tryouts.

WHAT ARE THE EXPECTATIONS REGARDING TRAINING, GAMES, TOUNAMENT, AND TRAVEL?


Rush Union will publish schedules for all of teams, ability levels, and genders. Training schedules will be published soon after tryouts. Games schedules for Academy usually will come out in July and Select schedules usually are published by the leagues in August.  Rush Union will seek to limit travel as much as possible for all, while providing unique and advanced travel and playing opportunities for players and families who are interested in those opportunities. This includes advanced and elite tournaments, European trips, Rush National trips, ODP play and trips, and many other next level opportunities.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR OTHER PARTNERSHIP PROGRAMS AND PLAYING OPPORTUNITIES OUTSIDE OF RUSH UNION?


We are evaluating all previous partnerships and will update players and families in a timely manner of recommended playing opportunities outside of Rush Union.

Field Status

Open Open

Brook Run Park - New Dunwoody Location (11:21 AM | 09/22/20)

Open Open

Stars Soccer Complex (home of Georgia Rush) (11:21 AM | 09/22/20)

Closed Closed

Pleasantdale Park (home of the Chiefs FC) (04:45 PM | 07/24/20)