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CoachRJ
(@rjohns99)
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Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 296
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This is my first year aspiring to be a truly competent coach.  Last year I had no idea what I didn't know and just made everything up.  We just finished game 3 and my lessons learned list grows every week.

One of the things that gives me the most difficulty is game day management.  I have the manual, a to-do list, AC responsibilities assigned, etc.  Once the game starts I get "helmet fire", as fighter pilots say, and get overloaded.  Headcount, alignment, adjustment, quick pointers, edge count, play call, D reaction, D&D, substitution, repeat all while fretting the play clock.  I don't think I have actually done a proper edge count yet.  I am on the field with them and still have a hard time processing it all.

I had some major failures this week, all rookie mistakes.  Too many on the field once, too few once. I called TO and said to my AC, get them some water and they run off to the bench.  Had to call another one to get them back on the field in time (that would be funny but for the panic it caused me).  First quarter, the opponent has driven to our 5 and at the snap I am watching my NT for penetration. He unloads on the G rather than the A gap and in full practice mode I jump in and start giving correction mid play.  Got chastised for that one. :-[

My question is, how long (games, months, years) does it take to get a handle on game day management?

RJ

"There's no system of play that substitutes for knocking an opponent down.  When you hit, hit hard." - Pop Warner


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Andrew76
(@andrew76)
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Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 572
 

7 years and I'm still asking the same question.  I get better all the time, but still feel like I'm terrible at it.  Film study helps a lot.


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mahonz
(@mahonz)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 23130
 

This is my first year aspiring to be a truly competent coach.  Last year I had no idea what I didn't know and just made everything up.  We just finished game 3 and my lessons learned list grows every week.

One of the things that gives me the most difficulty is game day management.  I have the manual, a to-do list, AC responsibilities assigned, etc.  Once the game starts I get "helmet fire", as fighter pilots say, and get overloaded.  Headcount, alignment, adjustment, quick pointers, edge count, play call, D reaction, D&D, substitution, repeat all while fretting the play clock.  I don't think I have actually done a proper edge count yet.  I am on the field with them and still have a hard time processing it all.

I had some major failures this week, all rookie mistakes.  Too many on the field once, too few once. I called TO and said to my AC, get them some water and they run off to the bench.  Had to call another one to get them back on the field in time (that would be funny but for the panic it caused me).  First quarter, the opponent has driven to our 5 and at the snap I am watching my NT for penetration. He unloads on the G rather than the A gap and in full practice mode I jump in and start giving correction mid play.  Got chastised for that one. :-[

My question is, how long (games, months, years) does it take to get a handle on game day management?

RJ

RJ

Football is a unique game. Things happen fast with many players all at once.

I'd have to say never. I have been coaching a long time and am good for at least one bonehead decision every game.

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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HaRDBaLL
(@hardball)
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Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 70
 

A definite must-have for me is willing assistants.  When I try to watch everything, I see nothing at all.  When I watch the game film later I wonder how I could have missed so many obvious problems/keys/missed assignments/etc.  One game I couldn't figure out how we had so much backside pursuit all game long and at the same time was wondering why my playside blocking back wasn't blocking anyone.  I totally spaced an easy Wrong call that would've had him shut down the backside.  Trying to do too much and I got nothing done.

Have to at least have one assistant on each side of the ball who is willing to coach during the game, instead of resort to being daddies on the sidelines and following the ball.  One guy watch near-side line and the other watch lead blockers...  at a minimum.  Then coach them up on the sidelines when they come off.

Sounds simple enough, but I've only accomplished it once.  I had 8 assistants that year, and they all had prior experience and bought in to the program to the best of their abilities.

 


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Wing-n-It
(@robert)
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Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 3872
 

I have been coaching for a little while and I just assumed everyone was as clueless as I was/am

Hope this  helps

2 Things my offense will always have is a Wing and a Wedge


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bigshel
(@bigshel)
Gold
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 1497
 

I don't know. I haven't gotten to the point where I feel competent yet.


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Dusty Ol Fart
(@youth-coach)
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Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 7683
 

Let me say this.  I have things on paper that I hand to assistants as far as who and where kids go.  This season was kinda frustrating for me as, to their credit the Dads did their best to swap kids on and out, but it seemed to be at the most inopportune times.  I tried and tried to keep them interested and involved but, since they aren't necessarily "football savvy", I found myself improvising kids a lot on the field to make things work. 

So feeling "comfortable" is still a mystery in many ways. 

Last Season I coached with a group of very knowledgeable folks, that is about as comfortable as I have been in a long time.  Even then we had our share of "WTF'' moments.  😉 

Not MPP... ONE TASK!  Teach them!  🙂


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RoyalFlush18
(@royalflush18)
Bronze
Joined: 10 years ago
Posts: 192
 

I am on the field with them and still have a hard time processing it all.

I haven't made it to the sidelines yet either. I'm fully convinced that coaching from the "huddle" is far more complicated than being on the sidelines, it's similar to some of the threads sidelines vs box. You are overloaded with information and the kids look to you for reassurance and generally anything. You have to call for substitutions etc. They depend on you instead of on each other. I've got one that only plays RT, at least 1/2 the time he comes back to the huddle and lines up @ the LT spot in the huddle. I probably should address this in practice time (did early in the year) but have stuck other things as a priority over that.

You have a great view and all too often I get stuck watching the play instead of checking what the DEs are doing or watching the pulling guard to see if he is going hard and picking up a block. There just seems to be too much going on. Luckily for us most of our problems are simple:

Did we get a good snap - Center Snap and Back's stances?
Did we run inside the kick out block?
Did the WB wig out and block the DE confusing the BB on whom to block?
Did our BB follow the wedge or immediately run outside directly into the unblocked DE?
Did our RT remember to WEDGE or fly out to a LB after I reminded him we are wedging 5 times in the huddle and whispered again in his ear as we come to the line?

We do these things we have success, we don't bad things happen. That's where I focus my attention.

Fun bobblehead stories from this week.

Player down on the opponents side of the field. All the kids standing around staring while I check on the player. Tell them to huddle up. Finish attending to player and get him up and off. Look up, they are huddled up......@ our 10 yard line about 50 yards away  ???

Finally start expanding a players role and give him a few carries on POWER. Runs it beautifully, hits the hole like a freight train and is 15 yards down field with one player to beat angling toward him, not even close yet. Sees player and takes a hard right straight out of bounds about 10 yards deep running through our opponents bench. Just no awareness where he was on the field.

At this age you have to have a bit of a sense of humor or you will loose your mind. You (at least me) simply can't teach them everything and I think because of this it makes it hard to feel competent. Could you could always fix/handle something else but at the expense of what?


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hharris
(@hharris)
Bronze
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 123
 

This is my first year aspiring to be a truly competent coach.  Last year I had no idea what I didn't know and just made everything up.  We just finished game 3 and my lessons learned list grows every week.

One of the things that gives me the most difficulty is game day management.  I have the manual, a to-do list, AC responsibilities assigned, etc.  Once the game starts I get "helmet fire", as fighter pilots say, and get overloaded.  Headcount, alignment, adjustment, quick pointers, edge count, play call, D reaction, D&D, substitution, repeat all while fretting the play clock.  I don't think I have actually done a proper edge count yet.  I am on the field with them and still have a hard time processing it all.

I had some major failures this week, all rookie mistakes.  Too many on the field once, too few once. I called TO and said to my AC, get them some water and they run off to the bench.  Had to call another one to get them back on the field in time (that would be funny but for the panic it caused me).  First quarter, the opponent has driven to our 5 and at the snap I am watching my NT for penetration. He unloads on the G rather than the A gap and in full practice mode I jump in and start giving correction mid play.  Got chastised for that one. :-[

My question is, how long (games, months, years) does it take to get a handle on game day management?

RJ

I was reading your post and wondering what I would do to correct some of your problems if it was me.  Have you ever tried running your practices at game speed and intensity?  Could you spend the last 10 minutes or so of practice in a game simulation mode?  Do you have enough players to run 11 on offense and 11 on defense?  If not, can you get enough coaches to stand with bags to give them targets?

I would try to simulate the game environment into your practice.  For example, have a play clock that is running to ensure you can call plays under this pressure (or have a coach with a watch).  Coach from the sideline during the practice to simulate game situations (including play calls from the sideline).  Rotate players in and out from the sideline.  Call special teams at any moment in the simulation and force the players to line up on time and run the play (punt, punt return, kick, kick return).  When you want to make a correction with alignment, do it from the sideline like in the game.  When you want the players to get water, call a time out and do it like you would in a game.  Do everything in this 10 minute "scrimmage" like you would in a game to get yourself and your players acclimated to game situations.  As the coach, this puts you in control of the environment.  They will work at the pace you set.

I run my practices at a frantic pace.  No one has time to screw around and no one has time to stand around.  I want my practices to be harder than the game.  In order for this to happen, I push the pace in everything we do.  We do a dynamic warmup, then aggression drills, give a quick demo, then fundamental position drills, then go into team which is basically a fast paced scrimmage.  I coach on the fly at this point because most instruction is done prior to this during the fundamental position drills and I want the players to get the sense of what it is going to be like during the game.

Just a thought - you need to turn it up a few notches in practice to get yourself and the players ready for game day.


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Dusty Ol Fart
(@youth-coach)
Diamond
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 7683
 

Bottom line is I think confident is one thing "comfortable" is too cocky for me.  In my mind I want the discomfort because it means I am still engaged in whats happening.  It means I am still up for the chess match.

I am going to out think the guy on the other sideline.  I want the challenge regardless of the Gray hairs involved. 

😉 

Not MPP... ONE TASK!  Teach them!  🙂


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17794
 

I haven't made it to the sidelines yet either. I'm fully convinced that coaching from the "huddle" is far more complicated than being on the sidelines, it's similar to some of the threads sidelines vs box.

So you're in the huddle?  Why?

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


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
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Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17794
 

My question is, how long (games, months, years) does it take to get a handle on game day management?

Are you talking about keeping up with the administrative duties of game day?  The coaching duties?  Or both?

--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


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CoachDoc
(@collin)
Bronze
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 340
 

So you're in the huddle?  Why?

Dave

Very common in Bobblehead ages to have one or two coaches on the field with your team.  We have it in the U8 division.  I guess that doesn't mean he has to be in the huddle, though, but it is common in our league at least. 

For the question at hand, I think it comes down to trusting the kids to execute what you do in practice and work on game time intensity/pace.  However, I can't relate, as I have never even seen U6 tackle football (we start at age 7).  From my experience with Soccer, some kids  even forget which way to go half the time when they get that young. 


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mahonz
(@mahonz)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 23130
 

So you're in the huddle?  Why?

Dave

Dave

If a coach wasn't on the field at the Super Shrimpie Smurf levels the games would never end.

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17794
 

Very common in Bobblehead ages to have one or two coaches on the field with your team.

I understand that.  I coached 7-9s for five years; 4 as a header.  I was on the field to see where my opponent's defense lined up.  I asked why the coach was in the huddle.

--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


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