Season Complete 6-2 - Super Smurfs
Our org hadn't run the Tiny Mite Division the last 2 years, numbers came in @ that age (was suppose to have 9U, but not enough kids) so I took the Little Guys. We beat everyone we should have, got thumped by a clearly better team and lost the one game that was pretty evenly matched (turned it over once and couldn't get a stop). A couple of things I learned/would have done differently.
1.) Form Running emphasis - I did a bit of this early on but got caught up in other priorities. About week 4 I was on the field thinking we just don't run to the ball well. Next Monday @ practice watching warm ups it clicks for me, 3/4 of them don't know how to run: short strides, no arm movement, head looking all around. Spent about 2 hours worth of practice time over the next 2 weeks just working on form running with them. Improved some but should have done it from the start, emphasized in warm-ups, and allocated 20 a week in season. Seems simple but got caught up in other things.
2.) Getting up off the ground - You can time some of them with a sun dial. First week in pads should have done drills, races, etc from their back, from their bellies, etc. We chewed up a lot of practice time clearing drills, helping up, telling them to get up, etc.
3.) Defensive Position Priorities - Came in thinking fill DE/LB spots then DL. We had a true DT type. Plays develop so slow at this age that a good DT is a must. By mid season we had moved our better LB type to the other DT spot. Also kids loved DL.
4.) It's still Football - The team that blocks/tackles the best (hits hardest) wins. We got better as the season went on but the aggression came and went (sometimes in the same practice/drill).
5.) Building Depth is tough - Just adding a second blocking assignment/play can over load their minds (We didn't add Sweep until week 4 cause the WB head would have exploded if he wasn't blocking FBI and even then we had to add a Tag "NAME, BLOCK THE DE".
I did an average job, lost my own mojo in midseason a bit, had some family friends have some very serious health issues (Motorcycle crash and ALS diagnosis) that had me questioning weather this was the best use of my time. Still ground it out but was distracted a bit for a couple of weeks, costs us a bit. Coaching the little ones is helpful, you really have to understand what you want and how to explain it as simple as possible. Everyone should do it once (not sure I would again). Got complimented by a couple of other opposing staffs, referees and had zero parent issues.
Best Story from the year:
3rd Game of the season (7th Week of Practice/Games) 58 minutes into it. We come back from 2 TDs down and are trailing by 1, 2:00 Minutes left, 4th and 1. We get 2 on the Field to assist. Exciting game, crowd into it, players oblivious. Me and the AC are getting into it quite a bit and going through the players as they align telling them this is it, got to go as hard as you can, couple of them understand. My WB mentioned above turns around to me and asks "Are we Tackling or Blocking". Put it in perspective a bit and I just had to laugh a bit. We got the stop and went on to win but I will remember that the rest of my life.
Nice job R. This age group certainly does put things in perspective.
Hope you get your health back soon.
What is beautiful, lives forever.
Coaching the little ones is helpful, you really have to understand what you want and how to explain it as simple as possible. Everyone should do it once
I couldn't agree more.
not sure I would again
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My WB mentioned above turns around to me and asks "Are we Tackling or Blocking". Put it in perspective a bit and I just had to laugh a bit. We got the stop and went on to win but I will remember that the rest of my life.
I had a player ask me that this year also. It just made me smile.
Several years ago coaching 4, 5, and 6 year olds....
We were getting blasted, probably losing by 3 or 4 tds to 0, We sub in a TE (4 years old, little guy), Offensive line coach lines him up on the right side as I call a toss right. Defense lines up strong to our left, I smile, Center Snaps the ball, QB turns and makes a nice pitch,TE pancakes the even smaller kid in front of him, RB catches the pitch, only has to beat the corner for a TD, the TE turns around, sees the Running back, and makes a beautiful tackle... UGH! :'(