Good Defense for an...
 
Notifications

Good Defense for an undersized High School  

Page 2 / 3
  RSS

blockandtackle
(@coacharnold)
Silver
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 847
February 7, 2019 3:32 am  

I think we should caution the OP about emphasizing scheme as the way to improve his defense, though.  "Scheme" matters, but not in the way that a lot of inexperienced coaches may think.  You just need to be sound and you need to coach your players up on how to execute.  Being "sound" has a lot of elements to it, including just knowing how to adjust to offenses.

I would be willing to bet money that if this school has won 1 game in 5 years, it's not because they ran the 4-3 or weren't "contrarian" enough.  I'd also be willing to bet money that it's not just because their kids are too small or unable to play in a popular defense.  That kind of historical badness is almost always the result of non-existent or poorly taught fundamentals.  When I see schools like that... heck, when I've *coached* at schools who had been like that... the reasons they were so bad on defense were usually:

A.)  Missing fundamentals--either spilling without a force player to spill to or no contain player in a "boxing" defense, no rules for keys or reads, etc.

B.)  Nonexistent technique--DL don't know how to defeat a block or are coached to just fly upfield

C.)  Too much complexity--confused kids miss adjustments or assignments, leading to frequent busts

D.)  Defenses of the Week--When you think "We had a Wing-T team last week so we needed to be a 6-2, but this week we're playing a Spread team so we better run a 3-3 stack and blitz," you're going to wind up confusing yourselves and starting from zero.  Pick one solid foundation, then just tweak that.  It's easy to make a 4-4 look like a 4-3, 4-2, or even a 5-2 just by moving people around.

E.)  Poor coverage--not just talking about pass coverage, but also how they tied their coverage into run defense.  DBs playing soft and dropping deep while a runner is hitting the line, CBs letting the ball get outside of them vs. the run, DBs abandoning man coverage at the first hint of PAP.  S not knowing how to force or fit.  The back end is easily the worst coached part of defense at the HS level, but it's really the part that sets up everything the front can do.

It's good to be contrarian and do different stuff, but emphasizing scheme can also be a trap for coaches and a distraction from fundamentals.  They think "well, our kids can't do X, Y, or Z so we need to scheme around that" rather than getting better.  That can lead to coaches trying to scheme around bad fundamentals, rather than fixing fundamentals and getting better at those.  Unfortunately, there's no way to scheme around pursuit, bad technique, and other poor defensive fundamentals.

Football isn't as simple as "4-3 defense beats Spread but Wing-T beats 4-3."  This isn't Pokemon.  It isn't Techmo Bowl.  You're just not going to win a guessing game or magically defeat opponents with sheer whiteboard wizardry, but unfortunately that's where your attention might lead to if you're worried about being contrarian.  A well coached 4-3, while a common defense, will still be a lot more effective against just about any offense than a fundamentally unsound 3-3 stack or 46.

Years ago when I coached small HS ball, the 2nd smallest school in our state with a football program was a conference opponent.  Traditionally, they were terrible (as you'd probably expect from a rural school with only 80-90 boys in the building), but when I was coaching against them they were coached by the most successful coach they'd had in decades.

How did he play defense?  He had 2 fronts (a 5-2 and a 4-3) and 1 coverage (Cov. 0) that used the same 11.  They got really good at fundamentals and sent a heavy pass rush against the pass.  You'd look at them on film and think "we're going to shred this!" but thinking and actually doing it on grass were 2 different things.  They weren't world beaters, but they went from a team who might be lucky to win 1-2 games a year to a team who won 4-6 and beat the teams they could beat.


ReplyQuote
CoachCalande
(@www-coachcalande-com)
Diamond
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 7059
February 7, 2019 3:54 am  

I think we should caution the OP about emphasizing scheme as the way to improve his defense, though.  "Scheme" matters, but not in the way that a lot of inexperienced coaches may think.  You just need to be sound and you need to coach your players up on how to execute.  Being "sound" has a lot of elements to it, including just knowing how to adjust to offenses.

I would be willing to bet money that if this school has won 1 game in 5 years, it's not because they ran the 4-3 or weren't "contrarian" enough.  I'd also be willing to bet money that it's not just because their kids are too small or unable to play in a popular defense.  That kind of historical badness is almost always the result of non-existent or poorly taught fundamentals.  When I see schools like that... heck, when I've *coached* at schools who had been like that... the reasons they were so bad on defense were usually:

A.)  Missing fundamentals--either spilling without a force player to spill to or no contain player in a "boxing" defense, no rules for keys or reads, etc.

B.)  Nonexistent technique--DL don't know how to defeat a block or are coached to just fly upfield

C.)  Too much complexity--confused kids miss adjustments or assignments, leading to frequent busts

D.)  Defenses of the Week--When you think "We had a Wing-T team last week so we needed to be a 6-2, but this week we're playing a Spread team so we better run a 3-3 stack and blitz," you're going to wind up confusing yourselves and starting from zero.  Pick one solid foundation, then just tweak that.  It's easy to make a 4-4 look like a 4-3, 4-2, or even a 5-2 just by moving people around.

E.)  Poor coverage--not just talking about pass coverage, but also how they tied their coverage into run defense.  DBs playing soft and dropping deep while a runner is hitting the line, CBs letting the ball get outside of them vs. the run, DBs abandoning man coverage at the first hint of PAP.  S not knowing how to force or fit.  The back end is easily the worst coached part of defense at the HS level, but it's really the part that sets up everything the front can do.

It's good to be contrarian and do different stuff, but emphasizing scheme can also be a trap for coaches and a distraction from fundamentals.  They think "well, our kids can't do X, Y, or Z so we need to scheme around that" rather than getting better.  That can lead to coaches trying to scheme around bad fundamentals, rather than fixing fundamentals and getting better at those.  Unfortunately, there's no way to scheme around pursuit, bad technique, and other poor defensive fundamentals.

Football isn't as simple as "4-3 defense beats Spread but Wing-T beats 4-3."  This isn't Pokemon.  It isn't Techmo Bowl.  You're just not going to win a guessing game or magically defeat opponents with sheer whiteboard wizardry, but unfortunately that's where your attention might lead to if you're worried about being contrarian.  A well coached 4-3, while a common defense, will still be a lot more effective against just about any offense than a fundamentally unsound 3-3 stack or 46.

Years ago when I coached small HS ball, the 2nd smallest school in our state with a football program was a conference opponent.  Traditionally, they were terrible (as you'd probably expect from a rural school with only 80-90 boys in the building), but when I was coaching against them they were coached by the most successful coach they'd had in decades.

How did he play defense?  He had 2 fronts (a 5-2 and a 4-3) and 1 coverage (Cov. 0) that used the same 11.  They got really good at fundamentals and sent a heavy pass rush against the pass.  You'd look at them on film and think "we're going to shred this!" but thinking and actually doing it on grass were 2 different things.  They weren't world beaters, but they went from a team who might be lucky to win 1-2 games a year to a team who won 4-6 and beat the teams they could beat.

We have been very bad at defense for the last few seasons. My analysis
1- gap discipline, poor fits- inexperienced and free lancing play, revolving door at the dline coach spot has hurt - injuries creating situations where rookies or fresh and Sophs are forced into duty way too soon...
2- can’t get off blocks AND still get into position to make a tackle- agile defenders needed, athletic ability
3- missed tackles- shifty athletes in space, something we have been unable to duplicate in practice, QBs who shed our tnt like they were gnats...

Our attempts at fixing issues...

1- I make sure to Coach the TNT more myself, I clinic with the dline coaches repeatedly, film study with kids and coaches showing where gap discipline issues are killing us, consequences for wrong gap...

2- shed and tackle drills, using zone to get more kids to face the play, reducing the one and done series.
3- need one coach to always focus on making experiences for newbie players ( ie we have kids from China starting on our varsity, they have NEVeR played ball) - reps reps reps, teach teach teach...patience
4- turnover circuits....we need to create turnovers...
5 pressing the state to take the large class teams off our schedule because we lose 3-4 guys in those games and it kills our season.

There’s more but I’m out of time...we are using the same schemes as we have used for our most successful seasons and I think I’m a better coach....but I’m also dealing with new staff every year or two....so there’s a learning curve.

MOJO    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtcRmKnRcsAGo to WWW.COACHCALANDE.COM  for Double Wing DVDs, Playbook, Drills Manuals, Practice footage and emagazines. Ask me about our new 38 special dvds!


ReplyQuote
Dusty Ol Fart
(@youth-coach)
Diamond
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 7617
Illinois
Other
Club Admin
February 7, 2019 4:29 am  

I can attest to being undisciplined with regards to position responsibilities will hurt even the best defense, regardless of scheme.  I have used mainly Jack's 6-3 for years at the youth level with varying results.  Whats the reason for the variation? The biggest culprit is a Breakdown in Role Discipline! 

The Rock said "Know Your Role!"  😉   

Not MPP... ONE TASK!  Teach them!  🙂


ReplyQuote
gumby_in_co
(@gumby_in_co)
Platinum
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 4180
February 7, 2019 4:48 am  

As Mahonz has pointed out, we're fielding a team of undersized Freshmen this Spring in an 8th grade league. Weight limit for Freshmen is 165lbs. For you Pop Warner guys, this is nothing new. I guess this is what that whole "older/lighter" thing is about. Mahonz has asked me to take the defense, so I'm going to try something new and different. It's based on the 335, which we sometimes morph in and out of the DC46. Well, I guess it's just a twist on the "stack" element of the 335. I figured that if our DL is out weighed by 40-50 pounds, then it isn't going to be productive to put guys on the LOS with their hand in the ground. So, I'm going to back everybody off. I gave some thought about why we traditionally play at credit card depth in a low, 3 point stance and came to the conclusion that we expect a collision between an OL and a DL. If both come off the ball with the same speed, then the OL will gain half the distance between him and the DL. Having a lower center of balance, in theory stops the OL from gaining any more ground. Therefore, if we play a DL at 3 yards, then he is already sacrificing 1.5 yards before contact is even made. But . . . what if we (DL) have no intention of being part of any collision?

We had that "cowboy" call with our bandits (aka dogs aka spurs) one year, playing  them at 3 yards and having them come off the ball as if shot out of a cannon. The original reason for trying this was having under sized bandits. It worked very well. So why not do that with the rest of the DL?

I drew it up and came up with 3 configurations when we are in Stacks/taps:

1) Standard stacks/tap n go. We've used this for years. I've personally observed that it's a good change up, but loses its effectiveness over the course of a game if you stay in it too long.

2) Stunt. I'm going to put the down lineman in a gap and the stack backer will be at 3 yards over their "guy" (OT for outside stacks, C for middle stack). Based on the backer's tap, DL will either hit his gap or cross the OL's face to the far gap. Stacker will hit the opposite gap of the DL.

3) Ghost. Both DL and stacker will "amoeba", playing at 2-3 yards. They will still have a "tap" relationship, knowing which gap they are hitting, but will be in constant motion, feinting, shifting and bouncing around right before the snap.

In all 3 configurations, they are shot out of a cannon. I'll be stealing from the 33 guru, DP and using the "invisible OL" theory. Find the ball immediately and get to it. You still have responsibility for your gap, but only if the ball comes through it. Otherwise, find the damn ball and play football.

I'll let you all know how it goes.

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


ReplyQuote
Geoketc
(@geoketc)
Copper
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 25
February 7, 2019 4:49 am  

The third you didn't tell us is what you want to accomplish first year.  Setting goals is very important.  But you always want to set achievable goals.  The higher the goals you set the less likely you are to achieve them.  Failure to meet goals is failure to win.  From your post, I would say your goal is to get more kids to turn out your second year of coaching to get your numbers up.  What win-loss record do you think you need to do that?  If you won two games would more turn out?  Or must it be four or five?  Because the second is probably not very realistic.  But suppose you won two games next year and three or four the next, would you get the numbers you need third year?  Can you wait that long?

These are good questions. First as you guessed, my first priority is to grow the program with more players wanting to play. I feel that first and foremost if they see that the coaching staff is preparing the best they can then they will be more apt to "buy in" to what we are trying to do. As far as win-losses goes, I feel that if the players can tell that there has been a change in the environment with the program, more players will sign up. I have already gone through the cafeteria like Coach Calande suggested and talked to my 8th graders that played for me here at the middle school. My first question to them is, "Do you want to play football next year?" Every one had the same response. " I don't think so coach" So I follow that up with a second question. "Would you play if there was a JV team? Every one immediately said "yes definitely" So I believe that by starting the JV program, which they have not had in a long time, will start bringing more players in. (Of course winning would help)

I will be the first to admit that I do not everything about football. I know just enough to be dangerous. But I do have a passion for football and a willingness to learn as much as I can to help this football program. I am a special needs teacher so I know I am good at learning and I am good at teaching. I have patience and can read kids very well. I am getting as much information as I can and soak it all up. Because it will be a whole new coaching staff next year, we will be basically starting from scratch. That is my main goal in asking for advice on schemes. Because we are starting from scratch (whole new staff), I can go in any direction I choose. So my goal is to 1) decide on an offense and defense then 2) learn as much as I can so I can teach it the best I can when I am allowed to start.

I will find out at the end of February if we get the green light on the High School program. As soon as I get the green light there will be a weight program starting in March. A three day a week program (something they do not have right now). Hopefully that will start peaking interest and start bringing in new players as well.

I have decided to use the DW so I have already bought material and have spent many hours studying that already. My next goal is to decide on a defense. I am leaning toward the 46 GUTS that coach Calande has suggested. I just want to get the material now so that I can study as much as I can so I can teach it when it is time. I agree with everyone that it does not matter what schemes you run. If you do not teach technique, nothing will work. I enjoy the technical side of both offense and defense, I will enjoy teaching that part of the game.

Thank you for all the advice and direction.


ReplyQuote
blockandtackle
(@coacharnold)
Silver
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 847
February 7, 2019 5:02 am  

These are good questions. First as you guessed, my first priority is to grow the program with more players wanting to play. I feel that first and foremost if they see that the coaching staff is preparing the best they can then they will be more apt to "buy in" to what we are trying to do. As far as win-losses goes, I feel that if the players can tell that there has been a change in the environment with the program, more players will sign up. I have already gone through the cafeteria like Coach Calande suggested and talked to my 8th graders that played for me here at the middle school. My first question to them is, "Do you want to play football next year?" Every one had the same response. " I don't think so coach" So I follow that up with a second question. "Would you play if there was a JV team? Every one immediately said "yes definitely" So I believe that by starting the JV program, which they have not had in a long time, will start bringing more players in. (Of course winning would help)

I will be the first to admit that I do not everything about football. I know just enough to be dangerous. But I do have a passion for football and a willingness to learn as much as I can to help this football program. I am a special needs teacher so I know I am good at learning and I am good at teaching. I have patience and can read kids very well. I am getting as much information as I can and soak it all up. Because it will be a whole new coaching staff next year, we will be basically starting from scratch. That is my main goal in asking for advice on schemes. Because we are starting from scratch (whole new staff), I can go in any direction I choose. So my goal is to 1) decide on an offense and defense then 2) learn as much as I can so I can teach it the best I can when I am allowed to start.

I will find out at the end of February if we get the green light on the High School program. As soon as I get the green light there will be a weight program starting in March. A three day a week program (something they do not have right now). Hopefully that will start peaking interest and start bringing in new players as well.

I have decided to use the DW so I have already bought material and have spent many hours studying that already. My next goal is to decide on a defense. I am leaning toward the 46 GUTS that coach Calande has suggested. I just want to get the material now so that I can study as much as I can so I can teach it when it is time. I agree with everyone that it does not matter what schemes you run. If you do not teach technique, nothing will work. I enjoy the technical side of both offense and defense, I will enjoy teaching that part of the game.

Thank you for all the advice and direction.

This sounds like a solid plan, coach.

The first step in taking over any new program is to bring enthusiasm to get kids out.  Really, a lot of that just comes down to building relationships and what kind of experience you have to offer them.

A guy who just retired from one of our big programs in my state would do annual home visits before the season for every single kid in his program to help accomplish that.  He always had over 120 kids (school of about 2000) but he made it work.  Just remember that if you are there for your kids, show them that they are valued, and make the experience feel meaningful to them, you are a great coach in their eyes.  Period.  It's a lot like teaching SPED--I teach SPED Inclusion myself.

Once you're on track there, the second step is to "stop the suck," which is where the weightroom and doing sound, basic stuff is going to help.  If you can go from getting embarrassed every week by 50 to keeping games competitive into the second half and win a game or two, that's going to be huge.  If you're going to run the DW, I advise you to take over the OL and learn how to practice blocking in circuits and things so you can make practice more effective without any other competent coaches around.  The DW actually adapts decently to that sort of thing.

Defensively, If you can't find a decent DC, learn the most basic thing you can coach and run that just to keep your own head from spinning, then name yourself LBs coach (so you can work with the DL on run defense and then with the DBs on pass coverage and secondary run fits).  You may need to coach defense with just 2 guys, which is ok--the other guy can just be a "Defensive Asisstant" who can put DL through some basic indy drills while you work with the DBs and then put the DBs through some while you work with DL.

That's why I stress simplicity above all else here.  You're still learning but you're also going to be the "expert" coach and maybe the only guy you can count on.  Start by wading into the shallow end of the Xs and Os, which will also mean you have to learn how to teach and practice fewer techniques and concepts yourself.

Even if you don't win at all right away, just focus on doing good things and good things will eventually happen.  That's "the process" Saban talks about.  Work on showing good body language--bad teams will want to hang their heads and quit as soon as something goes wrong--be strong, stoic, and confident at those times to lead by example.  Make sure your assistants do the same.  It's not a bad idea to coach the players up on how to be good teammates and be confident/project confidence.


ReplyQuote
gumby_in_co
(@gumby_in_co)
Platinum
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 4180
February 7, 2019 5:11 am  

As far as win-losses goes, I feel that if the players can tell that there has been a change in the environment with the program, more players will sign up.

My advice would be to understand the importance of the football experience. X's and O's and weight room are important for sure, but being part of your team needs to be something special. A buddy of mine is a local HS varsity HC. He is always talking about the importance of HS sports in general and football in particular as being part of a complete HS experience. On our team, we call it "Mojo". In the Marine Corps, we called it, "Espirit de Corps". It's achieved through rituals, a sense of family, our practice/game environment, inclusiveness, and most of all, love for each other.

This is going to sound cliche as hell, but what I'm most proud of since I've been coaching with Mahonz isn't the trophies, wins, or ppg. It's the fact that our players and parents are our best and most passionate recruiters. It came full circle last season when we picked up a brand new team of 2nd graders. We had at least 3 kids on the team who were sent to us by our former parents or players. It means a lot that a complete stranger would trust us to coach their 6 or 7 year old based on the recommendation of someone who's been with us. Especially in today's environment of CTE panic.

Give your guys the kind of experience that compels them to patrol the halls and cafeteria looking for future teammates.

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


ReplyQuote
CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17466
North Carolina
High School
February 7, 2019 6:17 am  

I would be willing to bet money that if this school has won 1 game in 5 years, it's not because they ran the 4-3 or weren't "contrarian" enough.  I'd also be willing to bet money that it's not just because their kids are too small or unable to play in a popular defense.  That kind of historical badness is almost always the result of non-existent or poorly taught fundamentals.  When I see schools like that... heck, when I've *coached* at schools who had been like that... the reasons they were so bad on defense were usually:

A.)  Missing fundamentals--either spilling without a force player to spill to or no contain player in a "boxing" defense, no rules for keys or reads, etc.

B.)  Nonexistent technique--DL don't know how to defeat a block or are coached to just fly upfield

C.)  Too much complexity--confused kids miss adjustments or assignments, leading to frequent busts

D.)  Defenses of the Week--When you think "We had a Wing-T team last week so we needed to be a 6-2, but this week we're playing a Spread team so we better run a 3-3 stack and blitz," you're going to wind up confusing yourselves and starting from zero.  Pick one solid foundation, then just tweak that.  It's easy to make a 4-4 look like a 4-3, 4-2, or even a 5-2 just by moving people around.

E.)  Poor coverage--not just talking about pass coverage, but also how they tied their coverage into run defense.  DBs playing soft and dropping deep while a runner is hitting the line, CBs letting the ball get outside of them vs. the run, DBs abandoning man coverage at the first hint of PAP.  S not knowing how to force or fit.  The back end is easily the worst coached part of defense at the HS level, but it's really the part that sets up everything the front can do.

That's a great list.  I'll follow that with the number of times I've seen a ball-carrier run 80 yards for a TD, while defenders are doing a lousy job of tackling and pursuit; only to hear a coach complain about the type of defensive scheme they're running. 

Missing fundamentals has nothing to do with a particular scheme.

Nonexistent technique has nothing to do with a particular scheme.

Too much complexity has nothing to do with a particular scheme.

Flip-flopping from defense to defense has nothing to do a particular scheme.

Poor coverage has nothing to do with a particular scheme.

I'll add "placement" to this list.  And this is most common at the younger ages, where the defense will have 10 or 11 in the box with no outside contain and the opposition runs a sweep that goes untouched for a score while the defensive coaches berate their players.  If defensive players are in the right position, it can negate an opponent's speed advantage.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


ReplyQuote
CoachCalande
(@www-coachcalande-com)
Diamond
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 7059
February 7, 2019 6:25 am  

My advice would be to understand the importance of the football experience. X's and O's and weight room are important for sure, but being part of your team needs to be something special. A buddy of mine is a local HS varsity HC. He is always talking about the importance of HS sports in general and football in particular as being part of a complete HS experience. On our team, we call it "Mojo". In the Marine Corps, we called it, "Espirit de Corps". It's achieved through rituals, a sense of family, our practice/game environment, inclusiveness, and most of all, love for each other.

This is going to sound cliche as hell, but what I'm most proud of since I've been coaching with Mahonz isn't the trophies, wins, or ppg. It's the fact that our players and parents are our best and most passionate recruiters. It came full circle last season when we picked up a brand new team of 2nd graders. We had at least 3 kids on the team who were sent to us by our former parents or players. It means a lot that a complete stranger would trust us to coach their 6 or 7 year old based on the recommendation of someone who's been with us. Especially in today's environment of CTE panic.

Give your guys the kind of experience that compels them to patrol the halls and cafeteria looking for future teammates.

This is SPOT ON! I was talking with a senior player yesterday as he prepares for states on the swim team...” football....the football team....those are my brothers....we are so tight”....the kids will sell the program...

Sadly, the real cancers can drill a lot of holes in the boat faster than you can patch them....and when numbers and actual ability are issues...you have a lot of teaching to do...

MOJO    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtcRmKnRcsAGo to WWW.COACHCALANDE.COM  for Double Wing DVDs, Playbook, Drills Manuals, Practice footage and emagazines. Ask me about our new 38 special dvds!


ReplyQuote
blockandtackle
(@coacharnold)
Silver
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 847
February 7, 2019 6:36 am  

My advice would be to understand the importance of the football experience. X's and O's and weight room are important for sure, but being part of your team needs to be something special.

Give your guys the kind of experience that compels them to patrol the halls and cafeteria looking for future teammates.

GOLD!  Absolute GOLD!

This is the #1 aspect.

I once coached at a place that had Xs and Os and the weight room on lockdown, but the experience the players had was garbage.  The coaches acted entitled towards the players, players hated the coaches and bickered with each other, parents were organizing awards banquets and things for the players because the coaches didn't.  Meanwhile, the coaches just sat back griping about how selfish and soft the kids were and how Wrestling (which was competing for state championships) was taking "our kids."

That whole staff was full of coaches who knew their Xs and Os--we had a few former HS head coaches there and other guys who could have been HCs anytime they wanted--and we had talent that would make some small colleges jealous, but we were barely a .500 team.


ReplyQuote
CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17466
North Carolina
High School
February 7, 2019 6:44 am  

What win-loss record do you think you need to do that?  If you won two games would more turn out?  Or must it be four or five?  Because the second is probably not very realistic.

I don't know about George's middle school, but in my experience MS is pretty lacking in quality coaching.  Coaching against the Band teacher, or Science teacher isn't really much of a challenge.  The CHALLENGE is in finding out how good of a coach are you?  If George does a solid job, there's no reason he can't win straight out of the box.  If it's the high school that George is referencing, they played against only 4 teams with winning records, last year.  Again, a solid coaching job should have a winner right away, based on schedule alone.  I know some of the challenges of that high school (they're here in North Carolina, and a coaching friend of mine knows their AD).  Every school has it's own set of unique (and some not so unique) challenges, but winning isn't a goal; it's a by-product.  And I don't know why you can't be successful right away.  There's no opponent that prevents you from being a good coach.  I agree that goals are important, but I think you shoot for the highest level of success possible.  2-3 wins isn't aiming very high.  I've never gone into a situation thinking that we'd only win a couple of games.  Do you have to know what the issues and challenges there are?  YES.  Do you have to be a great problem-solver?  ABSOLUTELY.  Do you have to know how you will attack the various challenges of that school so that they won't impact you in the same way they impacted the coaches before you?  OF COURSE.  But success is a by-product.  You determine how good of a coach you are; not your opponents.  And if you're willing to put in the work and make the commitment, there's no reason you can't be a good coach.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


ReplyQuote
CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17466
North Carolina
High School
February 7, 2019 7:10 am  

my first priority is to grow the program with more players wanting to play. I feel that first and foremost if they see that the coaching staff is preparing the best they can then they will be more apt to "buy in" to what we are trying to do. As far as win-losses goes, I feel that if the players can tell that there has been a change in the environment with the program, more players will sign up. I have already gone through the cafeteria like Coach Calande suggested and talked to my 8th graders that played for me here at the middle school. My first question to them is, "Do you want to play football next year?" Every one had the same response. " I don't think so coach" So I follow that up with a second question. "Would you play if there was a JV team? Every one immediately said "yes definitely" So I believe that by starting the JV program, which they have not had in a long time, will start bringing more players in.

--Agree that having a JV team is paramount.  We didn't have one at KHHS and freshmen don't enjoy getting thrown into the deep end of the pool.  But only talking to kids isn't enough.  Talk to the teachers, administrators and parents.  If they understand that what you are selling is beneficial to their child/student, then they will encourage kids to play.  I've seen many coaches screw this up by trying to cheat the system in order to get and keep players eligible.  That doesn't help you with anyone.  Make sure they know what you stand for, what your plan is and give EXAMPLES of everything you claim you can and will do.

I will be the first to admit that I do not everything about football. I know just enough to be dangerous. But I do have a passion for football and a willingness to learn

--That's a good start.  I would say a passion for teaching young men is even more important.  If your passion for the game outweighs the importance of your players, that probably puts you in with the majority of coaches, unfortunately.

I am a special needs teacher

--Welcome to the club.  I was a one-on-one special needs teacher for three years.  It's tough and demands a lot of patience.  I also ran I.S.S. at two high schools.  That's tougher and requires even more patience.

That is my main goal in asking for advice on schemes. Because we are starting from scratch (whole new staff), I can go in any direction I choose. So my goal is to 1) decide on an offense and defense then 2) learn as much as I can so I can teach it the best I can when I am allowed to start.

--Deciding on and learning a scheme will be one of the easier tasks.  The challenge is in learning how to teach a scheme (to coaches and players) well.  I've been speaking English for more than 50 years, but I am in no way qualified to teach it.  LEARNING and KNOWING HOW TO TEACH a scheme is far more important than deciding on a scheme.

A three day a week program (something they do not have right now). 

--I'd go with a Mon-Thur 4-day minimum and make Friday an optional "special day."  If you're waiting until March, you're already behind.  Our Varsity at EWHS "shot low" by working out only 3 days a week.  The header wouldn't do Fridays because "I don't want to ask them to show up, and then nobody does."  I told him, "The best way to insure that no one shows up on Fridays is to not have work-outs on Fridays."  (He was lazy and wanted his 3-day weekends.). We went 5-days, kids had a great time and we made real gains.  Being successful takes a COMMITMENT.  Personally, I don't think 3-days a week is much of a commitment.  But that's just my opinion.  I'm sure there's many 3-day guys who are successful.  I just don't know any.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


ReplyQuote
CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17466
North Carolina
High School
February 7, 2019 7:11 am  

It's the fact that our players and parents are our best and most passionate recruiters.

B I N G O.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


ReplyQuote
CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17466
North Carolina
High School
February 7, 2019 7:13 am  

I once coached at a place that had Xs and Os and the weight room on lockdown, but the experience the players had was garbage.  The coaches acted entitled towards the players, players hated the coaches and bickered with each other, parents were organizing awards banquets and things for the players because the coaches didn't.  Meanwhile, the coaches just sat back griping about how selfish and soft the kids were and how Wrestling (which was competing for state championships) was taking "our kids."

That whole staff was full of coaches who knew their Xs and Os--we had a few former HS head coaches there and other guys who could have been HCs anytime they wanted--and we had talent that would make some small colleges jealous, but we were barely a .500 team.

And Coach, I'll offer that that's the rule, not the exception.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


ReplyQuote
CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17466
North Carolina
High School
February 7, 2019 7:20 am  

Give your guys the kind of experience that compels them

Great advice.  Football no longer sells itself.  It used to, but those days are long gone.  Nowadays, we have snowflakes being raised by snowflakes, CTE, sports I've never heard of like lacrosse, video games/computers/cell phones which encourage kids to stay inside, in addition to really bad coaching.  If you take the advice that Lar states above, not only do you increase turnout, you give the players an experience they'll love and most likely not be able to duplicate ANYWHERE else.  That will make your program special.

--Dave

"The Greater the Teacher, the More Powerful the Player."

The Mission Statement: "I want to show any young man that he is far tougher than he thinks, that he can accomplish more than what he dreamed and that his work ethic will take him wherever he wants to go."

#BattleReady newhope


ReplyQuote
Page 2 / 3
Share: