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The Top Reasons That Teams Lose Games

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CoachDP
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The Top Reasons That Teams Lose Games

1. Not teaching authentic schemes or plays. Their playbook is a collection of what the coach has either invented or bastardized.  Often with the excuse of "simplifying" things because his players are "too young" to learn the concepts of down blocks, pulls, traps, etc.  I hear, see and read these excuses all the time about why coaches have weakened the power and effectiveness of a play, with the excuse of simplifying (actually for themselves), when they just don't have the knowledge and experience to teach the play the way it's designed.

2.  Teaching a real scheme, but cutting corners.  Example: The play is designed for a reach block, but instead they base block it.   The play is designed for a zone block, but they base block it.  The blitz scheme is designed for a defensive line "twist," but it's never taught so the offensive line stay in good position to maintain blocks and minimizes the LB's blitz.

3.  Penalties.  Penalties are often regarded as just "bad luck" when the truth is that they can be actively coached against.

4.  Turnovers.  These are also considered "just bad luck," yet the coaching staff offers little more instruction than to just "hold on to the ball!" or, "Don't throw it when he's covered!" 

5.  Mindless conditioning.  A monumental time-stealer if you don't know: a) why SPECIFICALLY you're doing them, and b) what SPECIFICALLY you're getting out of them.  Jumping Jacks, Push-Ups and running laps are the most abused, least bang for your buck warm-ups ever designed, yet they are a practice warm-up staple.

6.  Mindless scrimmaging.  The only thing that more commonly wastes time than a poor warm-up routine is scrimmaging.  Nothing wrong with scrimmaging, when you're not using it as a time-filler.  It can serve several purposes.   However, it's most often used as a way to simply fill 30 minutes.

7.  Kicking off or punting to their deep man.  This is the most predictable bad idea in all of youth football.  There's a reason he's their deep man.

8.  No emphasis or expertise on the fundamentals.  It's one thing to drill blocking and tackling every day.  It's another thing to drill them with expertise, knowledge and know-how.  There's a difference in a mechanic who says, "You probably need a new fan belt, but you'll have to take it somewhere else because we don't do those here" and the mechanic who says, "It's not your fan belt.  It's your water pump and I can install a new one in 30 minutes."  Both may be mechanics, but only one of them knows his job well.  Why aren't fundamentals better taught?  Because too many coaches aren't detailed enough to break down a fundamental.  They want to see an end-result, not the first 1/3 of a play.  That's one reason so many coaches don't focus on WHY something is happening during a game, they just focus on the result.  They don't understand that the result comes from several things that happened DURING the play.  Instead of being able to diagnose WHY the play failed, they just rant about "not blocking," "Kids just didn't come ready to play," "No one wants to hit," etc.  If you don't break down your fundamentals to "several parts of a whole" in practice, it will be practically impossible for you to diagnose why a play isn't working in the game.  And if you can't diagnose it, then you can't possibly fix it.

9. No blocking scheme (aka, "Just block somebody"). There's not one real play in football that offers that as an instruction or philosophy.  Yet, in youth ball, it's modus operandi.

10.  Defenders out of position.  As common as the day is long.  Why is misdirection so popular in the youth game?  Because it's vastly successful.  Why is it successful?  Because it pulls (undisciplined and poorly coached) defenses out of position.  But even when we look at plays without misdirection, I see defenders literally "wandering" all over the field reacting to what they think may happen.  Why are they reacting?  Because they haven't been given a specific responsibility, or the responsibility they were given was ridiculous.  Defenders being out of position is the number one reason that touchdowns are scored in youth ball.  Not poor tackling.  Not lack of speed.  Not lack of aggression.  Being out of position.

11.  Accepting the status quo.  "Hopefully, we can get to .500 this year."  "Our kids are just...too young/too small/too inexperienced/too intimidated/not aggressive enough/don't want it, etc."  If YOU don't hold the bar high, then how can you ever expect to have success?  Just hope you get lucky in the draft and catch lightning in a bottle?  If you're good at what you do, you're not worried about capturing lightning.

12.  Complaints about everything beyond your control.  This is often seen when coaches complain about who else is in their division but shouldn't be.  "They should be in Division 1, but instead they're in our division." "We don't have the kids who can compare with their kids."  "They've stacked their team with all-stars."  The referees, the venue, the nastiness of the opponent, their parents, the number of home games you got, the number of home games you didn't get, the draft, whose team got to pick the good kid, what conference/division/league we got placed in, what teams shouldn't be in our league because they are too good, etc.  Never have I seen so many supposedly competitive "alpha males" exist in a sport where they were afraid to compete because the table isn't laid out exactly as they'd like to see it.  We're supposed to be able to lead young men by example.  How do we set a positive example of courage and fighting "once more unto the breach" when we're complaining about everything that's beyond our own team's control?  It's as if coaches want to play the game only if they have all the cards stacked in their favor.  

13.  Not filming/bad film.  If you don't film your game, then you have very little reconnaissance to scout yourself with.  Your film is a confidential gold mine of information that can accelerate your team's learning and improvement.  Film is not a luxury; it's a mandate. If you can't "find someone" to film your games, then you can film your practice scrimmage or your half-line, or your Oklahoma's.  My practices were filmed AND we filmed our games.  Many coaches here have seen our practices of Whose Ball, Fight Club, X-Factor, Tee Time, etc.  Bad film is often as inexcusable as no film.  Not every field has a good venue to film from.  However, I've never understood why a team is playing at a nice high school stadium, with a press box to film from at best, or the top of the bleachers from the 50-yard line at worst, available at their disposal but instead their camera is placed at field level from the 30-yard line.  If you can easily get a better perspective, then why wouldn't you?  

14.  Not keeping stats.  Stats are often misused in social media puffery ("Take a look at my son #36 who has run this season for 1,723 yards and 63 touchdowns.  He's currently averaging 46.8 yards per carry. #BeastMode"). This is not helpful information.  I'm talking about stats that say your Will Backer had 6 tackles, but his sub (an MPR) had 5 tackles in 8 plays and 2 TFLs.  Stats make you pay attention to aspects of your team you might otherwise miss.  "Why did we average 7.8 per carry on Power Left, but only 2.6 on Power Right?"  Stats are a lot more work, and often because of poor angles or bad venues (fields not marked), it makes it difficult (if not impossible) to do it all accurately.  But just in taking the time to record accurate statistics requires watching a certain play over and over to "see if that was #78 or #73 making the tackle," the repetitiveness of the film study will reveal other helpful information.  Even though I always compiled stats, when I would assemble our highlight reel at season's end, I would still find new things that I had overlooked in-season.

15.  If your team is prepared, then you won't be blaming a loss on the quality of your opponent.  You'll be blaming the loss on what you didn't do, that you should have done, because you know you had a good team.

There is NOTHING on this list that has anything to do with how talented your opponent is.  That's the good news.  Because none of what I've listed here requires player talent.  It requires coaching talent.  But if you don't have coaching talent, you are RELEGATED to depending on player talent.  If you're successful at teaching what you're supposed to teach, in the way that you're supposed to teach it and don't do the stupid stuff, then you will inherit victories in most of the games you play.  Most conferences  (from youth to college) are made up of 1 or 2 elite teams, mostly mid-talent teams, and a couple of bottom-dwellers.  If you just beat the bottom-dwellers and the mid-talents, then that will result in a positive won-loss result.  And if you aren't doing any of the stupid stuff listed above, you won't be a mid-talent even if you have mid-talent.  

--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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Coyote
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Well written.  I'll be sending a copy of this to the rest of our staff and adding this to our playbook, if that's OK with you.

Thanx

Umm.... why does that 6 ft tall 9 yr old have a goatee...?


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CoachDP
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Posted by: @coyote

Well written.  I'll be sending a copy of this to the rest of our staff and adding this to our playbook, if that's OK with you.

If you think it's helpful, then by all means.  

Be prepared for some eye-rolls and some "But he never had to coach our kids."

--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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gumby_in_co
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Posted by: @coachdp

The Top Reasons That Teams Lose Games

1. Not teaching authentic schemes or plays.

I don't think we fall into that category. As you know, Mahonz and I experiment a lot. We use Spring football for that. I will probably experiment a lot less now that he's retired. I lean toward "take what we do to another level".  We went into the season with the plan to run Flexbone. We as a staff weren't up to the task. We always run Empty. Running game out of Empty exceeded expectations. Passing game was a let down. Next season, I will commit to running 60% Beast, 20% I and 20% Empty in game situations, then spend the same ration of practice time on them.

2.  Teaching a real scheme, but cutting corners. No problem there. One of the cornerstones of my coaching philosophy is "Have a reason for everything you do (or don't do). Example: OC wanted to change our counter to an outside hand off when under center because he was concerned with penetration. My approach: Fix the line so there's no penetration. Other OCs in the past wanted to send a sniffer to the backside in Beast to stop the short side pursuit. My approach: Fix the back so he can't be caught from the back side.

3.  Penalties.  Had some offensive procedural stuff early in the season (movement, slow snaps, too many men, illegal formation etc.) addressed it and fixed it. Holding . . . some games we won't have a single holding penalty. Other games we get 3 or more. I go back to film and the ref was clearly wrong. Seriously considering X-man for this year. Need to get with you a) confirm the fit and b) see how it works in space. 

4.  Turnovers.  Point of emphasis this season. We weren't perfect on fumbles, but we were much better than years past. Taking it even further next year with the way we carry out fakes. I want the ball carriers and non-ball carriers to look identical. That means 5 points of contact in the carrying arm and the non-carrying arm across the chest. Interceptions were due to bad play calling. I'm calling the plays next year. If I can't do a better job, I'll stop throwing the ball. Despite teaching them how to strip the ball and drilling it, we weren't good at causing fumbles. I'll re-visit that and either get better at coaching it, or spend time on other things.

5.  Mindless conditioning.  Not a problem.

6.  Mindless scrimmaging.  Not a problem and we scrimmage a lot. In fact, we scrimmage every day, but it's with purpose.  We run our offense against the scout defense and vice versa. We identify any issues an upcoming opponent might cause, we develop solutions and we teach the boys those solutions. A rep every 15 seconds. Coaches have about 10 seconds to correct as they run back to do the next rep. We get all of our subs in so they get reps as well. We scrimmaged a neighboring team every Thursday, but I will have to re-evaluate that arrangement. I run exactly what their upcoming opponent does on film and I run it fast. If they struggle, I run it again and help the other team fix it and run it again until their staff is happy. They, on the other hand, sometimes try to "win" the scrimmages with trick plays that we never see on film, take super long huddles, etc. Their header is aware of this and is working on it, but he's got some insubordination issues to work out. If he doesn't fix it, I think that will be the end of our scrimmages.

7.  Kicking off or punting to their deep man.  Not a problem. I often say, "He's not back there because he sucks." I was called a "Piece of sh*t" this year because I onside kicked with a lead.

8.  No emphasis or expertise on the fundamentals.  No problem there either. I'm big on details and teach my ACs the same way. Do not be a results-oriented coach. Be a process-oriented coach. Coach: "You gotta hold on to that ball, Jimmy!" Jimmy: "Really? I thought I'd just fumble it again. It worked so well last time." How about, "Okay Jimmy, remember 5 points of contact. Show me 5 points of contact. Good. Do that and you are far less likely to fumble." MY ACs have made great strides in this area. The hardest thing for them to get is "If you don't know why he failed, then don't say anything. Watch him carefully, find the WHY and fix it with specifics. Oh, and do it quickly." On the other hand, I'm guilty of telling a kid to get a better stance and focus on his first 2 steps being perfect if I didn't see why he failed. 90% of the time, it fixes it, plus it doesn't hurt to be better at your stance and your first 2 steps.

9. No blocking scheme (aka, "Just block somebody"). Hasn't been a problem for me since 2007 when I tried to convince a group of "coaches" that we needed a blocking scheme. Going back to bullet point 1, we build our offenses around our blocking schemes. We take it so far as we demand our o-line and backs "identify" by pointing to their block on every play. "Aren't you worried that your tipping off the defense?"  me: "Nope"

10.  Defenders out of position.  I took this to heart and thought about it all yesterday and this morning. In a couple of games, we got too "cute" adjusting to a team and it burned us. Troy was one. When his flanker went in jet motion, I auto-blitzed that side's CB. (Mahonz' idea). Troy picked up on that and hit us on a wide open fade to his short end. In another game, I was convinced that they never ran inside, so I sold out to stop their stud from sweeping. Their stud happily gouged us off-tackle. In another, I was convinced the other team never ran to their short side when unbalanced. When I sold out to their long side, they ran short side and gouged us. Did the same thing on Troy last year. That's when I found out he had "Power Weak" in his toolbox. So no more of that. I also discovered another aspect to this. I believe that due to lack of confidence in their tackling ability, some of our defenders took themselves out of position, or took steps to not be in position to make a tackle. Form tackling every day has fixed that issue. Toward the end of this season, our defenders were competing with each other for tackles.

11.  Accepting the status quo.  I just won a championship that means nothing to me personally. Happy for the kids and their parents, but not where I want us to be.  We finished year 1 of a 4 year plan and took a big step forward. I am committed to overcoming the talent gap with skill. Our staff is 100% onboard with this. 

12.  Complaints about everything beyond your control.  One of Troy and my competitors has apparently been permanently banned  from our league for illegally stacking his team. His top talent will undoubtedly go to another coach in his org who is all in on stacking to improve. I had 2 kids illegally poached from my team this year and passed on the opportunity to do something about it because it would cause those 2 players to get suspended. I am committed to focusing on MY team. Continue to teach superior schemes, tactics and techniques that can overcome DNA. Continue to improve as a staff so we don't get in our players' way like we did this season.

13.  Not filming/bad film.  Last off-season, I bought  new camera that can be controlled by my cell phone. I mounted it on top of a 25' telescoping pole, secured by a tripod that I bought from an amateur radio website. I have extremely high angles where I can see everything. EVERYBODY comes to me for film, even Troy. I watch my own film on average about 10 times. After we destroyed our championship opponent, my parents reported that their parents accused us of cheating because we filmed them, which I find hilarious. I was actually insulted 3 plays into that game when it was apparent that they didn't bother to scout us. I take film to a "weird" level.

14.  Not keeping stats.  Sold. Never kept stats. Will start this Spring. Moneyball!!!

15.  If your team is prepared, then you won't be blaming a loss on the quality of your opponent.  I'm more likely to say, "We're not quite there yet, but we'll keep working." Again, I'm all in with the guys I've got.  Otherwise, "The most important thing about football is Family" is BS. We're not where we want to be yet and it's unlikely we'll be there next year. I'm not that coach yet, but I am always looking to be smarter, faster and more efficient.

 

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


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CoachDP
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@ Coyote

And lest they think it was written by some know-at-all high school coach who's just trying to show how smart he is, you can tell them no, I only coached high school football for 10 years.  I've coached youth football for almost twice that long (18 years) and middle school ball for an additional 3.  If they think I've never coached at their age group, I can break that down:

Mitey-Mites 7-9s (5 years; 4 as a header)

Jr. PeeWees 8-11s (6 years; 4 as a header)

PeeWees 9-12s (5 years; 3 as a header)

Jr. Varsity 10-13s (1 year)

Varsity 12-15s (1 year; 1 as a header)

Middle school:7th & 8th grade (3 years)

I don't write this stuff either to impress or insult, but to show others what the possibilities are, if you just aren't as dumb as the guy across the field.  I've written ad nauseam about what our teams accomplished in my years as a youth header and AC (13 CFF Championships, 11 undefeated seasons, 7 times Top-16 in nation, 33 consecutive-game winning streak, 34 consecutive-game winning streak, undefeated at home for all 12 seasons as a header, only undefeated 12-15s team in org history).  While most of this experience was with the same org, we went 8-1 in my only year at Knightdale in 2018 (8-11s) and 7-0 (10-13s) so far, this year with Cap City.  So it's not just the good fortune of being with the right org, at the right time.  Nor is it a result of finding a good group of kids, and getting to stay with them as they progressed up the age ranks.  On only two occasions did I "move up" with my team (in 2002-2003, when I moved from Mitey-Mite to Jr. Pee-Wee and in 2006-2007 when I moved from Jr. PeeWee to PeeWee). Our org prevented any HC's from moving with their team unless the position desired had already been vacated and you were voted in to that position.  I applied for an open position at PeeWee in 2006 and was denied.  The position was given to someone who had no HC experience.  He lasted one season before being released.  I re-applied for it in 2007, was hired and won 3 more CFF Championships (2007-2009) before applying for the Varsity position in 2010, my final season as a header there.  

It's youth football.  You aren't competing against Lombardi, Belichick or Walsh.  You don't have to do this full-time to be successful.  You can have a 9-5 job.  You can be a dad.  What you can't be is stupid.  Our success over the years is not based on any incredible insight or genius.  I researched how others were successful through clinics, phone calls and meetings.  It's because I figured out the way to build a better mousetrap is by not doing the bone-head things I've listed above. Because when I did them, we lost.  When did we lose them?  My first year as a header (1999), we went 5-3.  We beat 5 teams we should have beaten and lost to 3 teams we could have beaten.  In hindsight, the roster of my 5-3 team was as good as any I've coached.  They should have gone undefeated and it shouldn't have been close.  In 2016, I was the header at GHHS.  We went 8-1.  The game we lost (34-28) was on a punt return, where we didn't kick it OOB.  He returned it for a touchdown.  There are other instances...

Because I do have game film of every game I've ever coached as a header, I can look back over the years and see what we were running and how we were running it.  And I can see (even in our most dominant undefeated seasons) certain approaches, plays and philosophies that are cringe-worthy and that I could kick myself for.  Even though we were successful.  But it still could have been done better.  If I'd known then, what I know now...

--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
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Posted by: @gumby_in_co
Posted by: @coachdp

1. Not teaching authentic schemes or plays.

I don't think we fall into that category. As you know, Mahonz and I experiment a lot. We use Spring football for that. I will probably experiment a lot less now that he's retired.

--Mike is a nomad.  He can't stick with something long enough before becoming bored with it.  I'm not that brave.  And I don't grow bored easily.  But I am a firm believer that you cannot be a jack of all trades, or of all offensive schemes.  Becoming excellent at a particular scheme can take years of study and application.  Why?  Because we only get 8 or so opportunities per season to apply what we've hoped we've learned.  When Nick Rolovich got fired this season at Washington State, I heard their AD comment that they were very concerned about how their Run & Shoot was going to work the rest of the year, because the remaining coaches on staff didn't really know it.  These guys all specialize.  That's why when an offense struggles, they don't just change to the Wing-T or the Air Raid and keep the same coordinator.  The coordinator usually only knows one scheme really well.  I know a variety of legitimate offensive schemes.  But there's only one that I know really well.  Yet every time I thought I was reaching proficiency with the Double Wing, I'd go to a clinic and watch Jack Gregory's team, or Phil Bravo's team, or Hugh Wyatt's team and learn more about how much I still didn't know.  Or still didn't do very well.

I lean toward "take what we do to another level".  We went into the season with the plan to run Flexbone. We as a staff weren't up to the task.

--So if you lean to "take what we do to another level," explain your dalliance with the Flexbone. 

2.  Teaching a real scheme, but cutting corners. No problem there. One of the cornerstones of my coaching philosophy is "Have a reason for everything you do (or don't do).

--Yet when you were asked about whether to crowd the LOS in or not (in Beast), you said it wasn't an emphasis for you.  So what was your "having a reason" there?  Because I would consider that "cutting corners."  Some guys run GAP schemes while crowding the LOS, but most won't because of the pulling and angle separation that recessing gives you.  I didn't used to recess, but once I found the value in it, we always have.

3.  Penalties.  Had some offensive procedural stuff early in the season (movement, slow snaps, too many men, illegal formation etc.) addressed it and fixed it.

--Most teams are easier to beat earlier in the season because they haven't gotten all the kinks worked out.  I realized early on that if we were mistake-free early in the season, most of our opponents wouldn't be.  We usually had close games early in the season rather than late.  But their mistakes gave us the opportunity to win.  The issues you pointed out are fixable, as you know.  But they're also preventable.  (That's another thread, but I can address each of those.)

4.  Turnovers.  Point of emphasis this season. We weren't perfect on fumbles, but we were much better than years past. Taking it even further next year with the way we carry out fakes. I want the ball carriers and non-ball carriers to look identical. That means 5 points of contact in the carrying arm and the non-carrying arm across the chest. Interceptions were due to bad play calling. I'm calling the plays next year.

--I find it interesting that you delegated that.  For me, that's like giving someone my financial decision-making ability.  If I'm hiring them to do it, I'd better have proof that they are waaaay better at it than I am.

Their header is aware of this and is working on it, but he's got some insubordination issues to work out. If he doesn't fix it, I think that will be the end of our scrimmages.

--Interesting that you're a proponent of scrimmages, but also close to ending them.  At our practices, I'm not there for another team.  I'm trying to squeeze as much juice out of tonight for my team as I possible can.  There's no way I can do that if I'm trying to accommodate someone else.

7.  Kicking off or punting to their deep man.  Not a problem. I often say, "He's not back there because he sucks." I was called a "Piece of sh*t" this year because I onside kicked with a lead.

--Whether you are or aren't has nothing to do with onside kicks. lol

The hardest thing for them to get is "If you don't know why he failed, then don't say anything. Watch him carefully, find the WHY and fix it with specifics. Oh, and do it quickly."

--The "Do it quickly" was a difficult challenge for me for years that I didn't worry about as a header, but became a real problem for me as an AC because I was working for someone else's schedule.  I've worked very hard to eliminate as much verbiage as possible when I coach and keep it to bullet points.

10.  Defenders out of position.  I took this to heart and thought about it all yesterday and this morning. In a couple of games, we got too "cute" adjusting to a team and it burned us. Troy was one. When his flanker went in jet motion, I auto-blitzed that side's CB. (Mahonz' idea).

--Mike under the bus! ?

Troy picked up on that and hit us on a wide open fade to his short end.

--Troy either "picked up on that," OR he was setting you up the whole time.  Regardless, that's the risk when you sell out.  I won't play that game unless we're way behind or way ahead.

In another game, I was convinced that they never ran inside, so I sold out to stop their stud from sweeping. Their stud happily gouged us off-tackle. In another, I was convinced the other team never ran to their short side when unbalanced. When I sold out to their long side, they ran short side and gouged us. Did the same thing on Troy last year. That's when I found out he had "Power Weak" in his toolbox. So no more of that.

--Sell outs leave you vulnerable.  If the game's not in doubt, there's no need to take the risk.

I also discovered another aspect to this. I believe that due to lack of confidence in their tackling ability, some of our defenders took themselves out of position, or took steps to not be in position to make a tackle.

--Common.  See it a lot.  Especially when you offense is the hunter.  Defenses aren't used to that.

We finished year 1 of a 4 year plan and took a big step forward. I am committed to overcoming the talent gap with skill. Our staff is 100% onboard with this. 

--What is a 4-year plan?

12.  Complaints about everything beyond your control.  One of Troy and my competitors has apparently been permanently banned  from our league for illegally stacking his team. His top talent will undoubtedly go to another coach in his org who is all in on stacking to improve. I had 2 kids illegally poached from my team this year and passed on the opportunity to do something about it because it would cause those 2 players to get suspended. I am committed to focusing on MY team.

--Cheating is cheating and should never be allowed and banning (even for a first time offense) is suitable.  Regardless of whether the rule is stupid or not, if you don't go by the rules you are exploiting children for the sake of victory and using them as co-conspirators.

I take film to a "weird" level.

--I've bought hunter's stands, pickup truck camper shells, van with roof rails, indoor cameras, outdoor cameras, rain cameras, extra battery packs, arriving 3-hours early to get a good "spot," climbed on top of school buildings with extension ladders without permission, etc.  Preaching to the choir.

--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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gumby_in_co
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Posted by: @coachdp
Posted by: @gumby_in_co
Posted by: @coachdp

--So if you lean to "take what we do to another level," explain your dalliance with the Flexbone. 

I will explain it. You won't like it, but I will explain it. We have a coaching culture of delegation and ownership. You coach what you are willing to own. My OC is more of a "Co-HC" with me. We've known each other for years and trust each other. So when I asked him what he'd like to do for our 3rd offense (3 headed monster), he said, "Flexbone". I researched it and thought it would be a good fit, so I told him I'd help him install and run it because it made sense to me and it made sense for my team. As soon as reality set in and I saw it floundering, I pulled the plug. I mean, I had a dalliance with the I formation that turned out fantastic. I am a bit of a nomad, but not as bad as Mahonz. When I coached with Kent, we were in 2 situations that made me so uneasy, I said "Never again as long as I have something to do with it.". One was getting out-Mojo'd so bad, we were asking cheerleaders and little brothers/sisters to play QB. The other was watching our carefully crafted DW attack get absolutely stopped. What I learned under Mahonz is that if you run something so vastly different than what is expected, you only have to be barely competent to stress a defense. So . . . I dally and I learn.

--Yet when you were asked about whether to crowd the LOS in or not (in Beast), you said it wasn't an emphasis for you.  So what was your "having a reason" there?  

I don't believe that setting my line back or up gives me any advantage or disadvantage. To me, it's one more thing to harp on that doesn't deliver value, especially since we're in a 2 point stance and helmet breaking the plane of the center's hip has a completely different meaning. I could be wrong. Next time we're messing around with Beast, I'll move them back and see what happens. Dallying.

--Most teams are easier to beat earlier in the season because they haven't gotten all the kinks worked out.  I realized early on that if we were mistake-free early in the season, most of our opponents wouldn't be.  We usually had close games early in the season rather than late.  But their mistakes gave us the opportunity to win.  The issues you pointed out are fixable, as you know.  But they're also preventable.  (That's another thread, but I can address each of those.)

Much simpler than that in our case. Procedure, movement, etc: We took it for granted and turned our back on it. It came back to bite us. Too many men: OL coaching issue. I gave my OL coach more responsibility than he was ready for. Illegal formation: When you have one few linemen on the field, you probably don't have 7 on the LOS.  I joked with a ref or two after getting flagged for 12 men: "Give us a break. Half the time we only play with 10, so it evens out." Fixed those problems.

4.  Turnovers.  Point of emphasis this season. We weren't perfect on fumbles, but we were much better than years past. Taking it even further next year with the way we carry out fakes. I want the ball carriers and non-ball carriers to look identical. That means 5 points of contact in the carrying arm and the non-carrying arm across the chest. Interceptions were due to bad play calling. I'm calling the plays next year.

--I find it interesting that you delegated that.  For me, that's like giving someone my financial decision-making ability.  If I'm hiring them to do it, I'd better have proof that they are waaaay better at it than I am.

I didn't delegate that. What I was doing wasn't effective. Need to change that. Fakes? I was watching a bunch of Power T stuff this week on Youtube and figured I could kill 2 birds with one stone. Fakes are good. 2 hands on the football is better.

Their header is aware of this and is working on it, but he's got some insubordination issues to work out. If he doesn't fix it, I think that will be the end of our scrimmages.

--Interesting that you're a proponent of scrimmages, but also close to ending them.  At our practices, I'm not there for another team.  I'm trying to squeeze as much juice out of tonight for my team as I possible can.  There's no way I can do that if I'm trying to accommodate someone else.

We run a lot of Team. Starting O vs scout D and vice versa. I will never end that. With the scrimmages vs the other team. You're right. Mistake on my part. I thought we'd have a quid pro quo with them, but it ended up being quid pro minus quo. I think going forward if we are going to scrimmage them, I'll run my O and D at them. 

7.  Kicking off or punting to their deep man.  Not a problem. I often say, "He's not back there because he sucks." I was called a "Piece of sh*t" this year because I onside kicked with a lead.

--Whether you are or aren't has nothing to do with onside kicks. lol

Here's what's absolutely stupid about it. We scored 7 TDs that day and only recovered 1 onside kick. We kicked deep on them twice and that netted us 16 points. 1 TD because we recovered the deep kick on the 2 yard line, 1 safety where they tried unsuccessfully to onside kick from their own 12 yard line (!!!!??????) and a TD because we took over on their 15.  Onside kicking was doing them a freaking favor.

The hardest thing for them to get is "If you don't know why he failed, then don't say anything. Watch him carefully, find the WHY and fix it with specifics. Oh, and do it quickly."

--The "Do it quickly" was a difficult challenge for me for years that I didn't worry about as a header, but became a real problem for me as an AC because I was working for someone else's schedule.  I've worked very hard to eliminate as much verbiage as possible when I coach and keep it to bullet points.

I have to be a jerk about it, or we'd waste 20 minutes a day on, "Joey, when ever you line up and see the offensive tackle wearing blue, you need to look back and  . . . . blah blah blah". Meanwhile, 21 kids are picking their nose waiting for the next snap. They are getting better, though.

10.  Defenders out of position.  I took this to heart and thought about it all yesterday and this morning. In a couple of games, we got too "cute" adjusting to a team and it burned us. Troy was one. When his flanker went in jet motion, I auto-blitzed that side's CB. (Mahonz' idea).

--Mike under the bus! ?

Sounded like a good idea. Troy had a better one.

Troy picked up on that and hit us on a wide open fade to his short end.

--Troy either "picked up on that," OR he was setting you up the whole time.  

Most likely. He has an answer for most of the stuff I do. He's been running the same damn offense since 2011 that I know of. He's also seen every stupid adjustment in the world and knows how to counter it. To be fair, I watched his highlight video and at least 3 other teams were autoblitzing their corner and he made at least 2 other teams pay for it in the same manner.

--What is a 4-year plan?

D1 Carnation Bowl in 8th grade via building the players we need with the players we have. If it happens sooner than that, super cool. I have a lot of growing to do as a HC. I had no idea and it showed on game day.

--Cheating is cheating and should never be allowed and banning (even for a first time offense) is suitable.  Regardless of whether the rule is stupid or not, if you don't go by the rules you are exploiting children for the sake of victory and using them as co-conspirators.

I reported 3 instances of cheating this year. Haven't heard anything back on 2 of them. Third was "nothing we can do".

I take film to a "weird" level.

Found a guy willing to sell me 2 deer stands for $70 each.  24 foot pole made for some great video, but pain in the butt to set up and vulnerable to lightning and wind.

 

 

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


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CoachDP
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Posted by: @gumby_in_co

I will explain it. You won't like it, but I will explain it.

--It makes no difference whether I like it.  The value is in whether it works.

I mean, I had a dalliance with the I formation that turned out fantastic.

--But there's a massive difference between the implementation of the I-Formation and that of the Flexbone.  Surely, you can see that...

What I learned under Mahonz is that if you run something so vastly different than what is expected, you only have to be barely competent to stress a defense.

--Exactly.  Which is why the Double Wing becomes a facemelter.

Here's what's absolutely stupid about it. We scored 7 TDs that day and only recovered 1 onside kick. We kicked deep on them twice and that netted us 16 points. 1 TD because we recovered the deep kick on the 2 yard line, 1 safety where they tried unsuccessfully to onside kick from their own 12 yard line (!!!!??????) and a TD because we took over on their 15.  Onside kicking was doing them a freaking favor.

--Oh I get it.  It's like when we throw the ball when leading 35-0, but all of our TDs have come on runs.

Found a guy willing to sell me 2 deer stands for $70 each.  24 foot pole made for some great video, but pain in the butt to set up and vulnerable to lightning and wind.

--Oh, lightning, shmitning!  Either you want good film or you don't. lol

--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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Troy
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@coachdp  Yep. Needed to be reminded of a few if these.

The longer I coach, the lesser I know.


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J. Potter (seabass)
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I haven’t been around any coaches who know the fundamentals and decide not to teach them. I have been around a LOT of coaches that don’t know any fundamentals and therefore don’t teach them. Typically if a coach takes the time to learn the fundamentals it’s because he knows their value. 


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Troy
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Posted by: @seabass

I haven’t been around any coaches who know the fundamentals and decide not to teach them. I have been around a LOT of coaches that don’t know any fundamentals and therefore don’t teach them. Typically if a coach takes the time to learn the fundamentals it’s because he knows their value. 

 

I think it was Bud Wilkenson who said, "The most common mistake football coaches make is thinking they can out manuever an opponent rather than out fundamental them."

The longer I coach, the lesser I know.


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gumby_in_co
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@coachdp

We’ve seen mercy rules that say once you’re up by 40, no passing and no running outside. Everything must be between the tackles. How do you think we got up by 40?

When in doot . . . glass and oot.


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CoachDP
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Posted by: @troy

I think it was Bud Wilkenson who said, "The most common mistake football coaches make is thinking they can out manuever an opponent rather than out fundamental them."

Troy,

This junktastic message board will not allow me to send you a PM.  Can you email me at coachdmp@aol.com ?  Thank you.

--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
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Posted by: @gumby_in_co

@coachdp

We’ve seen mercy rules that say once you’re up by 40, no passing and no running outside. Everything must be between the tackles. How do you think we got up by 40?

I've given up wondering about the IQ of those who are complaining about us using plays that we haven't scored with, instead of complaining about us using plays that we have scored with.  It doesn't matter because they're whiners and excuse-makers which means, "it's just what they do."

I remember in one game where I was yelling out to our offense, "Run it again" and "Same thing," meaning to just run the same play over again.  Then I was accused of trying to embarrass their players by announcing to everyone that we were running the same play.  When actually I was letting their defense know what was coming.  You can't win over a whiner/complainer/excuse-maker.  I used to worry about that kind of perception from our opponent.  I gave up when I realized it didn't matter what we did, or how we did it, they were going to be equally angry with us.

--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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mahonz
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Posted by: @gumby_in_co
Posted by: @coachdp
Posted by: @gumby_in_co
Posted by: @coachdp

 

10.  Defenders out of position.  I took this to heart and thought about it all yesterday and this morning. In a couple of games, we got too "cute" adjusting to a team and it burned us. Troy was one. When his flanker went in jet motion, I auto-blitzed that side's CB. (Mahonz' idea).

--Mike under the bus! ?

Sounded like a good idea. Troy had a better one.

Troy picked up on that and hit us on a wide open fade to his short end.

--Troy either "picked up on that," OR he was setting you up the whole time.  

Most likely. He has an answer for most of the stuff I do. He's been running the same damn offense since 2011 that I know of. He's also seen every stupid adjustment in the world and knows how to counter it. To be fair, I watched his highlight video and at least 3 other teams were autoblitzing their corner and he made at least 2 other teams pay for it in the same manner.

-

 

 

I saw that on film. Few fully understand auto blitzing. Your CB's were now making tackles at or near the LOS and stopping the short side plays but you forgot the most important thing...exchanging....and you gave up an easy TD via the pass.  Next year rather than making it a special install....make it an always thing. You will love it for teams that long motion often. Pacheco and DiOrio both use it. 

One CB actually executed really well when they came in flat. The other was too slow and deep. Cant remember which was which but there was exactly zero exchanging going on. Troy long motions for a reason. Give him a reason to stop doing that. 

It is also a deadly means to defeat motions to cracks. Have not really seen that yet that I can remember but one would think its coming soon to a field near you. 

Another trick if you don't want to exchange the coverage....post up the motion side TE.  This does not allow a free release, occupies him for run blocking and forces the football to bounce to the blitz. 

What Troy does better than most teams is attack all areas of the field. Take away his short side with autoblitzing. Dirt clowning his wedge has been established so what's left?....all those deadly QB follows long side. 

For that I suggest playing 12 Defenders. Maybe Brad wont notice. ?

Finally...there is no getting "cute" while playing Defense. No single base Defense defends all Offenses unless you have 11 Ray Lewis types. You have to be willing to add a tool into the tool box every now and then... even if its for only one game. ? When I asked you about blitzing Aragon on the goal line and you said you had no blitz calls....I was a bit shocked but I get it...its more teaching....more complexity and your plate was full. 

Taps fixes that. Something you understand like the back of your own hand. 

Your autoblizing looked really good for the first time out. Now you have to complete the teach which is pretty simple. Then you can start using it as a call vs no motion plays when the formation allows. We dabbled with this when Lonnie was the Pitbulls DC because Ean and Cade were the absolute masters and Max was a GREAT exchanger OR.... Jodell had enough ass to post up TE's vs certain looks.

When Keenan ran the 46....autoblitzing CB's went in in August and never came out. Its deadly. When he moved to the 353....it worked even better. OC's have NO PLAN for autoblitzing CB's....including Troy. You just think he does. ( wink wink )

Now Troy has something to think about this offseason.

Your welcome ?

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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