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Player/Parent Handbook



Buffalo Hockey is defined as follows.  A first rate organization that emphasizes a high level of skill development, competitiveness, speed and quickness, with players who carry themselves with class and dignity.

Experience: We want Buffalo hockey players to have the best possible experience.  Their time within our program should be positive when they reflect back on their hockey career.  We will provide encouragement and help players develop skills to make them not only quality hockey players but quality people.

Faith, Family, School, Hockey:  During the season, priorities should be considered in this order.  The only way a player can succeed on the ice is by having the others in place first.

Disciplined Play:  The little things turn into big things when you put them all together.  We teach our players to headman the puck when someone is open,  shoot the puck when the opportunity presents itself, pass to create not to avoid, hit to separate not to hurt, to not retaliate, and to act like you have done it before.  Our players will show confidence because we will have worked hard and competed in practice.

Demanding not demeaning.  We demand hard work, attention to detail, and unselfish play.  To accomplish this there needs to be mutual respect for everyone involved.  Being up front and honest with players and coaches is pivotal.  Everyone deserves praise when appropriate and at times players need correcting.  This is where we, as coaches, correct and teach what is desired,  emphasize the positives, and correct the negatives.

Developing Character: Coaches change lives.  Student-Athletes perform higher than those who do not participate in co-curricular activities.  The Buffalo hockey program works hard at all levels to develop character.  There is more to life than just hockey, and everyone’s career will end sometime.  For most, hockey will not pay the bills, therefore students need a solid foundation to draw from

Planning: There is a plan for everything we do.  This allows us to be flexible throughout the year while working towards our goals.  We are goal orientated and we need to figure out how we are going to achieve those goals.  Every year presents us with new challenges and we need a plan to overcome those hurdles.

Competing: Practices are carefully planned and organized.  They are created to be tough in order to prepare us for game competition.  Competitive drills are included so that when we encounter a game situation we’ve practiced it before.  We practice with competitiveness every day.

FUN! We enjoy everything we do. It’s great to be at the rink!

Maintaining a Competitive Hockey Program


Each Year brings different challenges and rewards.  A quality hockey program consistently works hard to instill pride in times of highs as well as lows.  There are many ways to measure success and having highly skilled, competitive, sportsmanlike teams that have traditionally been the trademark Buffalo Hockey is the perfect formula.  Players, parents, coaches, school, and community will be proud that this will continue for years to come.


 Youth Hockey: Players should play hockey because they enjoy playing hockey.  Our job is to take their excitement and energy and transfer it to a more organized situation.  We accomplish this by supporting and encouraging our youth players and by following skill progressions for Player and Coach Development guidelines already in place by USA Hockey.  The Buffalo Youth Hockey Association provides players with opportunities based on these guidelines.


 Athleticism:  We do not coach only hockey players, we coach athletes.  Participation in multiple sports and activities is highly encouraged.  Even though the continued hockey skill development is essential, there are many positives that transfer from one sport/activity to the other.  We do not support a twelve month hockey season, yet we do support the ongoing continuation of player’s hockey skill development.


 High School: This is the top of the Buffalo Hockey pyramid.  Players that play together will play hard, play smart and will showcase years of hard work and dedication.  Our goal at this level is to have players who love coming to the rink every day, play with effort, play with skill, and play unselfish.  Everyday is a great day for hockey!

Buffalo Hockey Lettering Criteria

  1. A hockey player who has played in one half or more of the varsity games.
  2. A hockey player who makes the section playoff roster.
  3. Coaching staff recommendation.

Other information of Interest

  1. Elimination Policy- Rosters may be filled to coaches’ discretion (ex. 7 forward lines, 11 defensemen, 5 goalies)
  2. Participation Policy- The coaching staff will attempt to put the best possible team on the ice.  We will continuously evaluate players using criteria stated in the Buffalo Hockey Evaluation sheet included in this packet
  3. Equipment- Buffalo High School will provide the following equipment: helmet, jerseys (practice, and two game jerseys), gloves, hockey shells, socks (practice and games) and a team bag.  All school issued equipment will be returned immediately following the season.
  4. Locker Room- The Buffalo Varsity and JV programs have the opportunity to use the Varsity and JV Locker Rooms during the season.  The locker room is to be used by current members of the Varsity and JV hockey teams.  The coaching staff monitors the use of the locker rooms on a daily basis and will not tolerate use by any individuals who do not follow the locker room rules. Rules are posted inside the locker rooms. 
  5. Schedule- See handout/iCal
  6.  Off-ice workouts- are not part of the season schedule.  The coaching staff will monitor and schedule off-ice sessions as they see necessary.   All training sessions will be announced at least 1 day in advance.  All players must wear workout shoes, workout shorts, and a workout shirt (preferably Buffalo Hockey).  Players who are not prepared for training sessions will be considered unexcused.

Bison Hockey Rules and Policies

  1. Eligibility forms must be turned in before you begin practice.
  2. No jewelry during any Buffalo Hockey function
  3. You must be on time to games, practices, meetings, breakfast, and lifting sessions.  Unexcused tardies will result in loss of game participation.
  4. All absences need to be excused.  A telephone call or an email from a player/parent are the only ways to excuse an absence (no text messaging).  Please inform coaches of your absence in a timely matter so we can make proper practice or game arrangements. An unexcused absence will result in not participating in the next game.  Three unexcused absences will result in dismissal from the program.
  5. Homework may not be used as an excuse to miss practice.  You have made the choice to be a student athlete, therefore you must manage your time appropriately to excel in both academics and athletics.
  6. All players, as representatives of Buffalo Hockey, shall treat others and others’ property with respect.  (players, opponents, officials, facilities, locker rooms, etc)
  7. All players must abide be the MSHSL rules regarding substance use and Buffalo High School’s academic eligibility requirements.
  8. An 11:00pm curfew will be enforced the night before games.  Missing curfew will have the same consequences as an unexcused absence.
  9. All players must ride the bus to all games.  JV players, have the option to ride home with your parents.  As a coaching staff we would like to see our players support our teams.
  10. JV players will be responsible for helping the coaching staff with videotaping and stats during varsity games.  Sign Up for games will be done at start of the season.
  11. If a meeting is requested with members of the coaching staff by a parent the player MUST be present.  The coaching staff will not talk about playing time or other members of the team.  A reason for the meeting must be stated upon the request.
  12. Team skate suits must be worn to all home and away games unless coaches notify otherwise.

Buffalo Hockey Evaluation


Name_____________________                                Grade_______________________
Position____________________                               Height________Weight_________


            1.     Shooting and Scoring Ability

            1          2          3          4          5

       2.   Puck Skills

            1          2          3          4          5

       3.   Passing/Playmaking Skills

            1          2          3          4          5

       4.    Skating

            1          2          3          4          5                                  Coaches Comments:

       5.    Compete Level

            1          2          3          4          5

       6.    Work Habits/Attitude

            1          2          3          4          5

        7.    Hockey Knowledge

            1          2          3          4          5

        8.    Coachability

            1          2          3          4          5


            1        2        3        4        5        6        7        8        9        10


Placement:     Varsity_______         
Junior Varsity_______           Cut_______