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Malibu
(@idaho-coach)
Silver
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 877
 

Not one person has said a coach shouldn't try to coach the kids well and be successful at the young ages.  Some of you are twisting it.  It is just different and in most definitions of serious, less serious.  For example, at the younger ages, I think all kids should spend significant time on ball skills, while at the older ages most if your lineman spend very little.  At the younger ages it is about developing the kids as an athlete and not pigeon holing them (and, yes, maybe not being quite as good in terms of winning.  Not saying that winning shouldn't be a goal). 

It is like youth basketball coaches that take a tall 7 year old and put them in the post and don't work much on "guard" skills.  Completely wrong and not helping a kid develop in the sport.

Plus, the "fun" element (I'm not saying grab ass fun- nobody would advocate that), should be much bigger at the younger ages.

It is about keeping it in perspective.


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Test Account
(@test-account)
Kryptonite
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 13421
 

I really respect the youth coaches that have to deal with coaching with parents of the players.  It is bad enough just dealing with parents at the high school level.  I have thought of coaching youth as I am taking time off from coaching high school to spend more time with my newborn.  The biggest problem would be dealing with the over-bearing parents/coaches that think their kid is the next Barry Sanders, when he's more like the next Ned Flanders.

Anyone coach a team all alone here?

Please don't PM or respond to this Member. It is an account for all of the posts from abandoned or banned Member Accounts.


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GP
 GP
(@gpenn44)
Gold
Joined: 9 years ago
Posts: 1670
 

Anyone coach a team all alone here?

i did last year - don't recommend it.

"Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated." - Lou Holtz


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mahonz
(@mahonz)
Kryptonite
Joined: 12 years ago
Posts: 23171
 

I really respect the youth coaches that have to deal with coaching with parents of the players.  It is bad enough just dealing with parents at the high school level.  I have thought of coaching youth as I am taking time off from coaching high school to spend more time with my newborn.  The biggest problem would be dealing with the over-bearing parents/coaches that think their kid is the next Barry Sanders, when he's more like the next Ned Flanders.

Anyone coach a team all alone here?

S

You should try coaching Semi Pros just for grins someday.

The Parents are the Players.  ???

Think about that one for a minute...oh the stories I could tell.  ::)

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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CoachT
(@coacht)
Copper
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 5
 

To the original poster:  I have to say, I pretty much stopped reading your 10,000 word novel when you said "I coach 6 yo flag"

That is essentially babysitting with grass and a funny shaped ball. The guy sounds like a total douche, but don't you think you are taking it a little too seriously yourself?


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jrk5150
(@jrk5150)
Diamond
Joined: 12 years ago
Posts: 6431
 

To the original poster:  I have to say, I pretty much stopped reading your 10,000 word novel when you said "I coach 6 yo flag"

That is essentially babysitting with grass and a funny shaped ball. The guy sounds like a total douche, but don't you think you are taking it a little too seriously yourself?

Haven't we already been through this?

Your bio says 12 and under.  Bet you I could find dozens of HS coaches who will dismiss what YOU do as babysitting on grass, and ask why you take it so seriously...


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17889
 

John, the guy's been a forum member for 3 years and his first post is this?

--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)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17889
 

Bet you I could find dozens of HS coaches who will dismiss what YOU do as babysitting on grass, and ask why you take it so seriously.

John, "dozens" is a conservative estimate.

--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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jrk5150
(@jrk5150)
Diamond
Joined: 12 years ago
Posts: 6431
 

John, "dozens" is a conservative estimate.

--Dave

Yeah, I limited it to the ones I could find, LOL.


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CoachT
(@coacht)
Copper
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 5
 

Maybe I was a little harsh, but I stand by what I said.

Just as a way of introduction, I have enjoyed this site for a while now, and there are a ton of great posters.  Like any forum, there also are a ton of folks I wonder about.  You can put me in whatever category you want.

I've been coaching football 8 years, ranging from 6 yo flag to Middle School Tackle.  I've coached 12 teams during that time period, 7 of them as head coach (yes, I coached two teams several of those years  - head for one and assistant for the other - not recommended unless you really have a good staff and a good head coach you trust on the other team - I have mostly been blessed with both).  My teams have gone undefeated and 1-7 and everything in between.

I am also on the board of the largest youth football program in our area; we have 40-50 teams across six age groups.  Our park's teams have won dozens of area championships, state championships and national championships.  It is the finest group of people I have ever had the privilege of working with.

I doubt there are many parent issues I have not seen before.  Virtually every year we have to tell a coach he can't coach next year because of behavior issues.  Another half dozen or so we have to sit-down during the season to counsel.  We take our job very seriously when it comes to protecting the experience of the kids.

So when I see folks obsessing about the performance of a bunch of Kindergartners and 1st graders playing flag football, it sends up huge red flags for me.  Yes, you want to teach them skills, and yes you want them to be competitive, but mostly you want them to have a great time.  I absolutely guarantee that not a single one of them cares one bit whether they won or lost 30 seconds after they go to the concession stand.  What they remember is did they pull a flag and did they get to run the ball.  If you are doing anything other than sharing the wealth at that age, you are doing it wrong.

I'll give you an example.  A couple of years ago, we had a Dad totally obsessing about his 6 yo flag team.  Long practices (longer than allowed, but we didn't catch it until half-way thru), only a few kids ran the ball most of the time, could complete pass plays, they went undefeated and won the championship.  Great job, right?  Instilled competitive spirit, taught fundamentals, won, what more could you ask for?  Well guess what - he did not coach for us next year.  Besides violating our rules, he had the lowest rate of returning players than any other coach.  The team in "last" place?  2nd highest rate of returning players.

I'll tell anyone that listens, if you don't instill the love of football at the youth level, then you are not doing your job.  I can't tell you how many kids that were just average players in our youth program go on to be outstanding at the high school level after the hormones kicked in.  And the reverse is true too - "stud" 10 yo become just average when their peers hit puberty.

Keep it in perspective guys.  Or don't.  Remember, I'm just that guy with one post (two now).


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Dusty Ol Fart
(@youth-coach)
Diamond
Joined: 8 years ago
Posts: 7701
 

I really respect the youth coaches that have to deal with coaching with parents of the players.  It is bad enough just dealing with parents at the high school level.  I have thought of coaching youth as I am taking time off from coaching high school to spend more time with my newborn.  The biggest problem would be dealing with the over-bearing parents/coaches that think their kid is the next Barry Sanders, when he's more like the next Ned Flanders.

Anyone coach a team all alone here?

Homerism.....Stupid Flanders 😛

Not MPP... ONE TASK!  Teach them!  🙂


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17889
 

I am also on the board of the largest youth football program in our area; we have 40-50 teams across six age groups.  Our park's teams have won dozens of area championships, state championships and national championships.

--With what organization?  PW, AYF, something else?

Virtually every year we have to tell a coach he can't coach next year because of behavior issues.  Another half dozen or so we have to sit-down during the season to counsel.

--You fire coaches every year because of behavior?  Do you mean from several different orgs in your region or conference, or from a specific org?  Is there not some kind of training program for coaches?  Do you allow a first-year guy to be a HC?  In our org, you must have served as an AC for at least one season before you can even apply for an HC position, and even then a spot has to be open.  By serving at least for one season, we have some idea as to the kind of personality the applicant has for coaching.

So when I see folks obsessing about the performance of a bunch of Kindergartners and 1st graders playing flag football, it sends up huge red flags for me.  Yes, you want to teach them skills, and yes you want them to be competitive, but mostly you want them to have a great time.

--So who doesn't want the same?  Having known the OP for several years, I can promise you that wanting his kids to have a great time is at the top of his list.

I absolutely guarantee that not a single one of them cares one bit whether they won or lost 30 seconds after they go to the concession stand.

--I'll agree, if you don't teach them that winning is important.  Now whether or not you think that's worth emphasizing at that age level is up to you.

If you are doing anything other than sharing the wealth at that age, you are doing it wrong.

--Wow.  Okay...

we had a Dad totally obsessing about his 6 yo flag team.  Long practices (longer than allowed, but we didn't catch it until half-way thru), only a few kids ran the ball most of the time, could complete pass plays, they went undefeated and won the championship.  Great job, right?

--No, he sounds like a cheater to me.

Instilled competitive spirit, taught fundamentals, won, what more could you ask for?  Well guess what - he did not coach for us next year.  Besides violating our rules, he had the lowest rate of returning players than any other coach.  The team in "last" place?  2nd highest rate of returning players.

--If he cheats to win, then his agenda was clearly about him.  I imagine that's why he had so few returners.  I doubt that being competitive was the reason.  However, if that was his sole reason for coaching, I can understand why players didn't return.  As for the team in last place, sounds like that header did a great job of keeping his kids' morale afloat so that they wanted to return.  But I'd hardly applaud him for finishing in last place with a flag team. 

--Some coaches see their job to coach, others see it as a "keep them busy" service.  The OP sees his job is to coach.  Nothing wrong with that.

--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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CoachT
(@coacht)
Copper
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 5
 

I am also on the board of the largest youth football program in our area; we have 40-50 teams across six age groups.  Our park's teams have won dozens of area championships, state championships and national championships.

--With what organization?  PW, AYF, something else?

Virtually every year we have to tell a coach he can't coach next year because of behavior issues.  Another half dozen or so we have to sit-down during the season to counsel.

--You fire coaches every year because of behavior?  Do you mean from several different orgs in your region or conference, or from a specific org?  Is there not some kind of training program for coaches?  Do you allow a first-year guy to be a HC?  In our org, you must have served as an AC for at least one season before you can even apply for an HC position, and even then a spot has to be open.  By serving at least for one season, we have some idea as to the kind of personality the applicant has for coaching.

So when I see folks obsessing about the performance of a bunch of Kindergartners and 1st graders playing flag football, it sends up huge red flags for me.  Yes, you want to teach them skills, and yes you want them to be competitive, but mostly you want them to have a great time.

--So who doesn't want the same?  Having known the OP for several years, I can promise you that wanting his kids to have a great time is at the top of his list.

I absolutely guarantee that not a single one of them cares one bit whether they won or lost 30 seconds after they go to the concession stand.

--I'll agree, if you don't teach them that winning is important.  Now whether or not you think that's worth emphasizing at that age level is up to you.

If you are doing anything other than sharing the wealth at that age, you are doing it wrong.

--Wow.  Okay...

we had a Dad totally obsessing about his 6 yo flag team.  Long practices (longer than allowed, but we didn't catch it until half-way thru), only a few kids ran the ball most of the time, could complete pass plays, they went undefeated and won the championship.  Great job, right?

--No, he sounds like a cheater to me.

Instilled competitive spirit, taught fundamentals, won, what more could you ask for?  Well guess what - he did not coach for us next year.  Besides violating our rules, he had the lowest rate of returning players than any other coach.  The team in "last" place?  2nd highest rate of returning players.

--If he cheats to win, then his agenda was clearly about him.  I imagine that's why he had so few returners.  I doubt that being competitive was the reason.  However, if that was his sole reason for coaching, I can understand why players didn't return.  As for the team in last place, sounds like that header did a great job of keeping his kids' morale afloat so that they wanted to return.

--Dave

The program goes back to the 60's.  We've been part of Pop Warner (that was the national championships) and other orgs.  Currently we are part of 30 team regional league.  Even in the PW years, our national championships deserve to be in "quotes" though that was the best and largest national organization at the time.

The way we are structured is we have travel teams that are "select" teams drawn from all the kids registered in a particular age group.  They practice more and for longer periods with typically our best, most experienced coaches.  The rest of the kids (which includes some very good players that just miss the cutoff or don't want to travel for whatever reason) play in the park against each other in age and size restricted leagues ranging from 5 to 8 teams per league.

New coaches are rarely, if ever, given head coaching responsibilities right out of the gate (exception is our flag program, which is only for the youngest kids 1st grade and younger and is staffed by parents).  We do have a training program in place for all coaches in connection with area high schools and USA Football.  It could be better, and is something we are working on.  Generally, we look for coaches with several seasons coaching (with good references) in another sport if an applicant has no football coaching experience.

We have never really had a problem with Coaches not wanting to win.  The competitive drive is there.  It is usually the other way around - Coaches being too focused on winning at all costs and not developing MPPs.  Don't get me wrong.  We get our share of crappy, disorganized coaches.  They don't get invited back either.  We are a dual goal park.  Be competitive and win, but also remember to keep perspective and work to insure all your players improve and have the best experience possible.  We also have a unique MPP rule for our in-park leagues, but that is a topic for another post.

Like I said, I was a little harsh, and I am sure the OP is really a good guy. We want our flag kids to develop skills - they are the future of our park - but what we really want is for them to develop a love of the game.  And in my opinion, the way you do that is let them run the ball and experience life at all the positions.  I'm not saying run your slowest guy just as much as your your 6 year old Bo Jackson, but he should run it at least once per game.  I've seen feedback from 1000+ parents who put their kids thru flag.  They almost always applaud coaches that do that vs. ones that focus on winning.  Things change quickly enough.  By 4th grade, winning is much more a priority of the parents (and the kids).

Thanks for the questions.  I'll try to add more to the discussions in the future if you guys want.


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mahonz
(@mahonz)
Kryptonite
Joined: 12 years ago
Posts: 23171
 

Like I said, I was a little harsh, and I am sure the OP is really a good guy.

T

He is...starting over with a new team at the entry levels. He is a veteran coach and why he is really into it.  😉 Hence the 10K word post about 6 yr old flag. I wish he was coaching my #3 Grandson right now....his coach is much like the one you described in a previous post.

What is beautiful, lives forever.


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CoachDP
(@coachdp)
Kryptonite
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 17889
 

I wish he was coaching my #3 Grandson right now

Mike, agreed.  He'd be on my short list to coach my kids (if I had them).  Chris is definitely one of the good ones.

--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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