Post by Coach Campbell on Aug 29, 2013 11:49:20 GMT
Nick Garrett ( HFC ) USC -Trojans- 2014
VISION: Every team in the United States needs some form of foundation underneath them to start. (PROTECT YOUR TEAM) - Clear Expectations: We will have a clearly defined "line", in which we expect our players to walk - Clear Beliefs: We will have GREAT CHARACTER and INTEGRITY - New Energy: We will be overly positive and overly encouraging ( GREAT POSITIVE INFLUENCE ) EVERYTHING WE DO IS A JOB INTERVIEW !!!!! THOUGHTS: WE MUST DEVELOP RELATIONSHIPS FOR LIFE - Re-Establish community involvement (VIA) Church, Shelters, Multiple Organization, Outreaches and ETC. - Develop relationships with the entire school - Fundraisers for our staff, players and athletics department IDEAS: OUR PROGRAM ON BOTH SIDES OF THE BALL WILL REDEFINE THE (LOS) - Offense: Attack not Survive - Defense: Relentless Effort (*) BIG KEY: Recruiting- we will get the top talent in Los Angeles and California, after we have reached our goal in state ! We will go after the top talent in the country! Identity:
Team Philosophy: Mentality: We will wake up everyday with a purpose to "BE AS GREAT AS WE POSSIBLY CAN" -Smart: Our football IQ must be high and we must exercise our football mind daily -Fast: We will play at a speed that is uncontested, LESS THINKING MORE REACTIVE -Efficient: WE WILL PLAY "THE TROJAN WAY", in all phases of football REALITY: WE WILL DOMINATE THE GAME, BY DOMINATING OUR DAILY OPPORTUNITIES
Post by Coach Campbell on Apr 30, 2015 2:43:13 GMT
Here is a in-depth look at the Monarch Football program over the course of 365 days. In this post, you will notice four phases that comprise our total program, including off-season workouts and the character lessons I teach to our team each year. Enjoy!
Philosophy: We are a run first offense, utilizing a downhill running game, along with a complimentary option perimeter attack. Monarch Football's team identity is to establish the run, amassing yards as we work down field. The passing game uses a variety of play action passes designed of our downhill running attack. Bootlegs and seam routes allow our QB to see the field while the defense hesitates, playing the run first. Our offensive formations are a split backfield, with each running back 6 yards deep behind the guards. Our backfield balance allows us to disguise our running attack.
Our run plays are based on girls' names. "Vicky" satnds for veer. "Gigi" is our power scheme meaning Gap on down, Guard pulling around. "Mary" is our midline option attack, and "Sally" is our speed option attack out of a spread formation. In each play there is an option the QB can execute. When running Vicky for example, the playside back immediately runs downhill to the A Gap. If the LB vacates the area, the QB gives to the playside back on a dive. The QB also has a choice to keep the ball and option to the edge, where the backside back follows, becoming the pitch option on the perimieter. By designing plays with three options built in, our QB has total control and is able to make decisions that will net our offense the most yards in the moment.
Our passing game has the play action element, mentioned above, but also a traditional approach our of base or spread formations. One of our basic pass plays outside of the play action passing game is our "Quick 2" or slant. This can also become a "Sluggo" or Slant and Go, allowing for big play possibilities. We also run "Shouts," seven routes and outs. This is executed using twin receivers where the outside WR runs a deep seam, a 7 route in our passing tree, and the inside WR stems at 8 yards to cut outside, working toward the boundary. Shouts helps our WRs catch defenses making choices, opening passing windows for production.
Philosophy: Monarch Football is a "bend but don't break" defense. We teach our players to be fundamentally sound in tackling and gap responsibility. Our base defense shades the center, has a three technique in the B Gap, and a two high safety look. The two safeties allow us to roll an extra man into the box for run support without making us vulnerable in the passing game. Blitzes are occasional and timely. We work on tackling everyday and to attack by keeping their outside should free. Our pursuit drills help our team rally to the football, as we strive to get 11 hats to the ball on each play.
Philosophy: Special Teams are vital to our team! We want to give as many kids playing time on special teams as possible in order to rest our starters and give younger guys reps and a chance to contribute to the team. Special Teams is practiced everyday, sprinkled into transitional periods and situations a we work on Team Offense and Team Defense in our weekly preparation.
Inseason Theme and Schedule:
Our season official begins in August with our Team Camp. We practice Monday through Friday in early August from 6 pm - 8 pm that first week, practing in PE clothes, installing our scheme at a high level. The week our high school team is in camp, our high school athletes run drills for our youth camp, operating Monday, Wednesday, Friday that week from 2 - 3 pm, then our Middle School camp all five days from 4 -5 pm.
When practice offically opens the following week, we run a ten week Theme of the Week. Each theme has a character lesson that is facilitated by a different coach that uses bulletin board material and a culminating character lesson with a movie scene and team discussion questions. Each character lesson is built around Character Counts, an Iowa state endorsed character education program that we use in our school. The ten themes we use for the season are:
Week 1 - Responsibility. Movie: "Rocky Balboa" - Life is about how many times you get hit and keep getting up.
Week 2 - Physicality. Movie: "Facing the Giants" - The Death Crawl scene.
Week 3 - Camaraderie. Movie: "42" - The scene in Cincinnati where his teammate stands with Jackie while being booed.
Week 4 - Sportsmanship. Movie: "Seabuscuit" - The scene where the jockey forces another racer into the rails.
Week 5 - Trustworthiness. Movie: "Scent of a Woman" - The courtroom scene at the end of the movie where Charlie is on trial for what he saw.
Week 6 - Respect. Movie: "Dances with Wolves" - The scene where John Dunbar interacts with the Lakota Sioux for the first time, inviting them into his fort for coffee.
Week 7 - Fairness. Movie: "Sandlot" - "You play ball like a GIRL!" scene. Then, the Always commercial from this January's Super Bowl about what it means to play like a girl.
Week 8 - Caring. Movie: "The Pursuit of Happyness" - The scene where Chris is interacting with his son, then the scene where he has an interview, ultimately getting the job.
Week 9 - Citizenship. Movie: Taylor Mali on YouTube - The Dinner Guest monologue.
Week 10 - Finishing. Movie: "Cool Runnings" - the Gold Medal race where the Jamaican team crashes, but finishes.
These character theme lessons help us teach MORE than football throughout the season. Our weekly football schedule is as follows:
Monday - JV Game. Varsity lift and game plan walk through.
Tuesday - Work Day! Offensive oriented, physcial, 2.5 hour practice.
Wednesday - Team pre-practice lift. Work Day! Defensive oriented, physical, 2 hour practice. 5:15 release for Church night activities.
Thursday - "Play the Game Thursday!" Walk through.
Fiday - Game Day! Freshman game at 5 pm, Varsity kickoff at 7! GO MONARCHS!
Saturday - Team Film and Run at 7 am.
Sunday - Coaches Meeting.
Off-Season Character Leadership Academy:
Beginning in January, we run a 9 Week Monarch Leadership Academy. This is an off-season lifting and character program that follows our Theme of the Week Inseason model and uses the 17 Laws of Leadership. The Monarch Leadership Academy meets from 7 am - 8 am on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday in January, February, and the first part of March. Athletes are divided into two teams and lift and run. Each practice they are exposed to a different Law of Leadership and on Friday watch a character movie scene that ties into that week's theme. Here is our 9 week program theme list:
Week 1 - Belief. Movie: "Jerry Maguire" - "SHOW ME THE MONEY!"
Week 2 - Unity and Accountability. Movie: "Young Guns" - Where Billy the Kid reminds his outlaws what "Pals" is.
Week 3 - Discipline and Attitude. Movie: "A Few Good Men" - "YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!"
Week 4 - Vision and Commitment. Movie: "Tombstone" - "You tell 'em I'm coming and HELL'S COMING WITH ME!"
Week 5 - "Don't Talk About It, Be About It." - Usher. Movie: "Field of Dreams - The voice scene and when he actually builds the field.
Week 6 - Know Where You Stand. Movie: "The Shawshank Redemption" - The scene where Andy says he is innocent. "It's Shawshank. Don't you know, everybody's innocent?"
Week 7 - Depth. Movie: "Hoosiers" - The scene where Ray is benched for not listening to Coach.
Week 8 - Perseverance. Movie: "Tin Cup" - The scene where McAvoy hits ball after ball into the water, going for the green.
Week 9 - Courage. Movie: "Dances with Wolves" - The opening suicide ride scene.
The final phases of the off-season entails Summer workouts. We utilize a ROWE approach - Results Only Work Environment. Our strength and conditioning coach opens the weight room and our kids are responsible for another 9 week lifting program that follows the Leadership Academy model. I am not present in the weight room very much in the summer, but check in with each player once a week at least. This gives me time away and our athletes a break from me. Since it is becoming harder and harder to motivate athletes 365 days a year, this also gives us a fresh slate for the following season. The ROWE allows me to see who has put in time in the summer and who has not. This phase of our program helps our staff determine positions for the upcoming season. As the end of July approaches, wrapping up the Summer ROWE program, we find ourselves Inseason, and the process begins again. This is a comprehensive look at our Monarch Football program 365 days a year. I avidly look forward to your comments and seeng your 365 day programs. It has been a great term! Thanks for all of your feedback, support, and encouragement throughout our time together! If I can help you in any way, please don't hesitate to reach out to me! Kepp up your great work in the greatest sport ever created!
Post by Coach Campbell on Apr 30, 2015 2:46:24 GMT
Aloha All and thank you for the great class, discussion and feedback. Glad to see there are so many great coaches all around the country. If anyone is ever interested in traveling/bringing a team to Hawaii or hosting a team from the islands on the mainland, please let me know. On my CUI or Yahoo! (Robertshklov@yahoo.com) Email accounts.
Days 1-120 - The off-season
I would want to conduct exit interviews as soon as possible. Get the outgoing seniors to share some honest feedback as they turn in their equipment and gague which juniors are ready to step up to leadership roles and which sophomores will take the leap.
Meeting with the JV/Intermediate Coaching Staffs: We would want to make a rough outline of our off-season activities, get some dates straight and check on each other's availability. JV coaches will recommend players for call up.
Call up coaches and schedule non-league pre-season games for all three levels. If we are traveling, confirm plans with administrations from both schools.
Meet with the parent committee on community service, fund-raising ideas and other team-bonding events.
Conditioning/Workouts will be organized and administered on the following days: MTWR-7am-830am or 330pm-5pm My expectation is not groundbreaking; I want each player to improve their strength and conditioning by showing numerical progress in their lifting routines. However, I believe it is important that we practice our camaraderie as well so I will be mandating attendance at least twice a week, but the expectation is that you are working out four times a week. My rationale is that some players do better work when away from distractions at school. Some may have rehab work they cannot complete on campus but there is no other way to build team unity than to be together working towards a common goal.
Meet with the equipment managers and discuss any potential repairs or new equipment we should be ordering.
Meet with the training staff to make sure each injured athlete has an action plan to get healthy. Share any concerns with coaches of second season sports who have a football player recovering from injury.
Have a season ending meeting with my AD. Discuss any staff changes and receive feedback for the previous year. Outline current season's plan.
Meet with program coaches to discuss football philosphy> I want to make sure the Intermediate/JV football coaches know they have my full support no matter what, but I would want them to run as close to our system on both sides of the ball as possible. I do not want to tie a coach down if they have injury or roster concerns. (EX. If they don't have a nose-tackle, I don't want them playing a boy out of position where he might get hurt just because I demand they run a 3-4.)
Defensive Philosophy: In Hawaii, the offensive lines are generally pretty big. and In my experiences, Linebackers have usually been the best athletes on the team, so I would definitely lean to a defense that featured 4 linebackers or the safety acting as a rover. 3-4 or 3-3-5 would be ideal in that you can counter the beef on the offensive line with speed. In either defense, the defensive lineman need to focus on occupying the OL and controlling their assigned gap. The LB's will use their speed to be the play-makers. I favor a man free on the goal-line and a cover 3 as a base d.
I want our defense to be Aggressive: I want my defense to fly to the ball and be able to quickly diagnose plays. I would want to blitz from everywhere to keep the offensive line guessing. I want my defense to look to create turnovers, not to just bend but not break. I would love to be able to have sub packages if the opposing team/our depth allows. My defenders should come out of the game tired not because of lack of conditioning but because of the full effort exerted. I wouldn't necessarily pull my studs, but I do want to be able to give as much on-field ownership over our success as possible. I believe that if you have guys that can play, there is no use saving them until they are worn down, if someone can give me 100% effort mentally and physically and I trust him, that is better than wearing down someone so they are functioning below capacity during crunch time. That is just my philosophy though and it requires depth and trust, luxuries not always afforded, but hey, this is my ideal defense right?!
I want our defense to maintain their Discipline: It may sound a bit contradictory but I want my defense to be disciplined as well. Despite wanting to blitz and take chances to create turnovers, I want my defense to know and understand the scheme of each call so they can make a judgment as to whether or not the risk is worth the reward. Because I want to play a lot of guys, this requires each player to be responsible for learning terminology and studying film/concepts. One thing I hate are controllable penalties. Unsportsmanlike and off-sides penalties are not to be tolerated and the offending player will be pulled immediately. Depending on the severity, it will be up to my discretion as to whether he can gain re-entry to the game. (I know some penalties are bogus but I want to discourage even putting ourselves in positions to give away 5 or 15 free yards.)
Finally, I want our defense to have Accountability: I want to make sure my leaders know it is ok to demand accountability from themselves and their teammates. When someone messes up, its always OUR problem. WE will make sure to talk about it and learn from the mistake. There is never any need to be negative with someone, but the offending party also needs to know WE all count on them and finding ways to share that collective responsibility is a great way to ease the burden of a disappointed player who messed up.
Offensive Philosophy: Again, to match personnel so a broad outline of my ideal offense would be to play fast, dictate tempo and take care of the ball. I like the old-school running game, being able to just line up and run straight ahead and feel like its demoralizing for a defense to keep having to take on blockers and make hits. However, I also favor the spread passing concepts, taking the edge, overloading a zone, optioning defenders etc. While I initially thought this represents two different visions, it doesn't have to. In fact, being known for two distinct offensive traits may cause the opposing team to throw fits all week in practice preparing for our various schemes. I love to rotate out specialized groups and will try to utilize each player's strengths in different ways.
Begin our off-season leadership academy that coincides with our lifting program. The month by month breakdown includes the following themes:
Discuss format with coaches and talk about which players we may want to try out at different positions or how to share two-way athletes.
Formulate Depth Charts (IN PENCIL!) And ID potential Special Teams players.
Install Skeleton Base D/) and concepts.
Make decisions on whom to invite to camp.
Spring Community Service Event
Days 128-158 Team Building/Character and Leadership Education
Continue off-season workouts. Can supervise but no footballs. (Dead Period)
At the end of this month we run our kids camp. We will also do a campus clean up the following day.
Work with the coaches to develop our special teams strategy. Now that we have seen what we have, we can decide what types of teams we want to run. My hope is that we have enough depth to give players who aren't starters a role. If we don't, starters playing is a risk that needs to be taken to make sure our special teams are solid.
Days 159-219 Summer Workouts
Participate in pass leagues and camps.
Make sure players who have college football aspirations are working on their applications, videos and contacting coaches. Inform them of camps that could be helpful.
Work out Team Camp Schedule with coaches. (Who will be staying overnight, when people are available, activities, guest speakers etc.)
Find team managers.
Make cuts/send down to JV
On the eve of camp:
Pre-Season Parent Meeting
1. Outline Expectations for Player and Parent
-Policies on missing practice.
-Communication is so important.
-No disrespectful comments to anyone.
-Go over player contract.
2. Explain My Role
-Coach, mentor, teacher
-Go over the in-season character education
3. Introduce Assistants, important personnel. (Trainers, AD's, other staff)
-Make sure the parents know who is responsible for what and what is appropriate to talk to whom about.
4. Introduce Parent Committee with a Team Parent being named and secure more volunteers
-Go over major team events and calendar.
-Emphasize no preferential treatment comes with extra volunteer work.
5. Give out my Contact Information
-email, cell and appropriate times to call
6. Have them read, review and sign a Parent's Code of Conduct:
-Includes a 48 Hour Rule where they cannot talk to me until 48 hours after a game.
-They Must Attend a PCA Parent Workshop for their son to be eligible.
-They are held to the same standards as their boys. So no cursing at officials, or other players/parents.
-They may NOT talk to me about another player on the team that is not their son.
Days 220-227 Camp
Two Field sessions a day and one classroom session. At the end of the week, we'll have a pre-season game and a potluck with both teams to celebrate the beginning of the new season.
Days 228-339 Regular Season
Get to our routine! Scout-Prep-Practice-Play!
During the year we will have a value of the week and a corresponding activity. It will be broken down like this:
To run and maintain a successful program it takes a huge commitment from all of the coaches. Assistant coaches are subdivisions of the Head Coach and the Offensive and Defensive Coordinators. We must respect and be loyal to the other coaches, players, and the school we work for. We must work and learn from our coordiantors as if we were going to take over for them next season. If any issues arise with another coach, make sure to handle it behind closed doors and not get in ANY altercations in front of the players. To gain respect from someone else one must earn it first. Remember, our attitude and demeanor is a straight reflection back on our program. As coaches we must always be optimistic, “the sky is always blue”. Being a coach is a tough job that takes a lot of commitment to the program, the players, and the other coaches. For us to be successful, we must be loyal to one another and develop a family culture within our staff. Problems will occur but we must discuss and resolve these issues right away to prevent them from splitting our staff apart. The following rules are the expectations on and off the field for the assistant coaches.
On The Field Expectations:
1. Be a positive role model
2. Be organized and communicate with your coordinator what drills to run
3. Coach your position group only (technique & footwork)
4. Be passionate and bring up the energy level in practice
5. Be dressed in SFU attire (no previous schools or professional teams)
6. If you see mistakes happening from another position group then inform their position coach in a positive manner so that they can correct the mistakes
7. Coach mistakes with positive criticism (ex: good initial break, but finish through the ball carrier)
8. Attention to detail is key (There are no little mistakes. Everything matters)
9. Have a practice plan
10. Be on time (to practice, running drills, etc.)
11. No player is above the team. Coach everyone up and work on their fundamentals
12. Treat everyone with respect
Off The Field Expectations:
1. Be positive and approachable
2. Have set times in the day for meetings or questions
3. Be prepared for staff meetings
4. Discuss any problems with other coaches behind closed doors
5. Do not go out with players to clubs, bars, etc.
6. Be organized and communicate with the coordinators about any problems with schemes, techniques, or issues you or your position group may have
7. Always be respectful
Our staff has to be a collective group working toward the same goal, which is making our student athletes, the best well rounded person they can be. It is our job to build them up, coach them up, and push them to succeed. We are only as strong as our weakest coach and player. If at any time you have a question about something, whether it be football related or not, then ask the question. To be a successful program we must love coming to work everyday knowing that we get to work with one another. Lets make this journey one we will never forget.
We will Be a Competitive, Consistent, Championship Culture-
Competitive- We will PLAY TO WIN in every game, every practice, every play, every rep!
Consistent- We will form habits for success in all we do!
Championship Culture- We will practice, play, train, learn, and live like champions!
To Build Excellence Everyday-
It must be our mission to form habits of excellence in everything we do. Whether it’s on the field, in the weight room, in the classroom, at home, or in the community, our actions will define us as players and as men. When we make it a habit to be excellent in everything we do, it becomes a part of who we are. That is the first step to achieving greatness.
Phase 1 (November-January)- Exit Interviews with coaches and players. Organize for the Off-Season. Awards Banquet. Begin Leadership Academy. Strength and Conditioning
Phase 2 (February-April)-Begin Skills camp once per week, coaches meetings once per week, and finding passing games and linemen competitions. Continue Leadership Academy and Strength and Conditioning.
Phase 3 (May)- Begin Spring Football 3 times per week. Continue coaches meetings, Leadership Academy and Strength and Conditioning.
Phase 4 (June and July)- Begin Summer practices. Continue coaches meetings, Leadership Academy and Strength and Conditioning. Equipment.
In-Season (August - November)- Continue Leadership Academy and Strength and Conditioning. Begin Fall Practices.
Offensive Approach- Be Consistent, take care of the ball, take calculated risks.
Defensive Approach- High Risk, High reward. Keep the pressure on the offense to make mistakes.
Special Teams Approach- Be sound in our approach, have at least one exotic per team.
Assistant Expectations- Be all-in. Be about the kids and not your ego. Model Championship Culture.
Post by Coach Campbell on Dec 2, 2018 19:28:45 GMT
Eric Gunnarson Core Values "To grow as a person, you have to make yourself uncomfortable."
In order to elevate student-athletes to achieve personal and team-based success, a coach must instill in the athlete a clear understanding of what is to be expected; not only for themselves as athletes but from the coach leading as well. The focus should entail having a fun, winning and working hard.
The reason many people participate in sporting events is that they want to have fun, experience success, and enjoy the feeling of accomplishment. In order to have the most fun, ultimately, a team must win. As a coach, my priority must be teaching my athletes to compete and prepare well enough that they will (within the rules of the game) win. Winning is not the most important aspect of participation in sports, but it is the foundational purpose for playing the game. Winning does not come to the weak; it is for those athletes willing to work hard, sacrifice and commit themselves to their teammates. Learning the basic skills/rules of the game, physically and mentally pushing athletes to their limits, and instilling the discipline necessary to compete will create greater opportunities for success.
Integrity: Having integrity means respecting the game, the people involved, the individuals that support us, and the process of participation. When we have integrity, we are not competing for outside adulation; we are competing against ourselves and are becoming the best that we can be.
Discipline: Discipline is one of the greatest values that can be obtained by participating in sports. Having discipline creates opportunities for athletes to discover their personal values, their commitment level, and mental toughness.
Sacrifice: Successful athletes must make sacrifices to contribute to the success of the team. This might involve the sacrifice of time with friends and family. Sacrifice might require less sleep or personal glory; learning to make appropriate sacrifices will help athletes realize their part in the universe is small compared to the “big picture.”
Teamwork: The acronym T.E.A.M: together everyone achieves more is a solid team building block. Using football as an example, the quarterback might get the most praise (and sometimes the most scrutiny), but without the offensive line to block or receivers to catch or running backs to run, there would be no overall team success.
Post by Coach Campbell on Jul 25, 2019 15:50:38 GMT
I believe the pros of a leadership academy far outweigh the cons, but there still are obstacles and challenge that you and your team will have to overcome to make this work. The cons include having players that are in other sports that do not get to participate in the activities or feel left out. As a program you do not want to pull athletes out of the season that they are in to be a part of your leadership academy because you are then sending a message that what they are doing does not matter or is less important. This is why we have the message to our athletes that we want them to compete and if they participate in other sports we fully support them doing so. They are getting better and becoming better leaders by competing and being part of that team. This helps solve some of our issues that we run into. The other major con is the time commitment that enforcing a leadership academy takes with the players, as well as, the head coach and assistant coach. One way we try to solve this problem is by incorporating it in team activities we are already having, such as lifting times or conditioning times.
The leadership activity that we have put into place follows the same ideas used by major college programs such as Ohio State football, as well as, other college football programs. It is the Unit leadership model. We had the awesome opportunity of having Tim Kight, a motivational speaker and leadership guru, who has worked with major companies and schools like Ohio State (which is located about 25 minutes south of our high school) come and speak to our staff and students. His message was about E + R = O, developing leadership units, and how we measure leadership through a player’s R factor, or response, to an event that will produce a desired outcome. So, as a staff, we took this idea and ran with it in creating our leadership academy and what we wanted out of it. The first thing we do is break the team up - freshman through juniors (or to be seniors) - and we place them on teams. Each team will have different position groups and players of all ages and abilities. We want this because we do not want the players to focus on their friends or people they feel comfortable with; we want them with people that they can grow a bond with and become better teammates with. Once we have the teams, which usually consists of 12-14 players, they are assigned a head coach. The head coach for each unit is in charge of that unit and is responsible for the one on one work with the unit. This is comprised of all the position coaches in program. If we have less units than coaches, then coaches will double up with a unit, or if a coach coaches another sport two coaches will be with that group for when they are gone. These units will stay the same and will only add players to them as seasons end and we get through the summer into the following fall football season. We start this journey in December and it ends the following August 1st with the beginning of two a days.
Each unit has a few important aspects that they all do and all have to follow. Each unit will come up with a nick name, slogan, and team colors. Once they have done this t-shirt will be made for the unit to wear on competition days. Each unit and unit coach will meet twice a week for an hour each day. The groups will meet on Tuesday and Thursdays after school from 3-4 before any skill work practice is done. It is the opposite days of our lifting program. It is also up to the individual leadership units what time fits best for everyone’s schedules. If they want to go before school on those days that is fine as well. If they want to stay past 4 and continue the discussions and talk or set up times to meet we encourage that, but we have a designated time that is mandatory to meet at. The first day is for unit grade checks and progress reports. We check in on how each athlete is doing in school, lifting and conditioning attendance, and personal issues that need help being resolved. The unit works together on these issues and finds solutions together helping each other out. The second time the unit meets they have a theme of the day - this happens on Thursdays. The unit leader, or coach, comes up with an activity or reading about leadership, communication, or teamwork that the group works on together and to have a discussion. Everyone is to participate and be involved. This gives equal leadership opportunity and the ability for players to show themselves to their teammates through talking and action. The units also compete together during our workouts/workout finishers or competitions and this is when you see the comradery and leadership really being to show itself. Every Friday, at the end of our workout, we have competitions and these can be one-man competitions, team competitions, or small group competitions that the teams get points for that build up through the off season. We see players who do not want to let their units down compete at high levels, as well as, groups pulling and cheering and leading each other through difficult tasks to see group success because of the relationships they have built through the unit meetings.
Through all of this we are still working to build a strong and unified team, but we are able, because of these leadership units, to create leaders and build relationships that will help us tremendously throughout the season and in crucial moments in games. To do this you have to have complete “buy in” from your coaching staff. They have to lead by example because how the players will be hooked is the coaches showing enthusiasm and pride in the unit and work to make each player in the unit better. Players start to develop an understanding of what it takes to be a leader and, most importantly, how to lead and this gets back to the R factor we talked about and is a big part of our unit philosophy. You can control your response and that is what we are trying to teach them. Is your response going to have a positive impact on the program and be something that lifts players up so that we get our desired outcome? Or is your response to an event going to be individualized and self-centered and why me? Because that is going to have a negative impact on the team. We are two years into this leadership academy at our high school and we have seen great success and have seen the impact that it has had on individuals and the overall team.
When establishing a new program or taking over for an existing one, a new coach usually brings a new attitude & a new excitement. Boosters, administration, team, and the community want to know what you and this “new” program are all about. Have an idea for the identity that you and you new program will be known as and for. Below are a few things to consider establishing before your take over a new program:
What will your program “hang your hat on”? Work ethic, weight room, speed, discipline, extra effort, character, passion, hard-nosed attitude, etc.
Season theme or slogan: “No excuses, Get it done” “Proud Tradition, New Attitude” There are several. But something to bring a fresh feeling of change.
Uniform or decal changes. Might seem like a little thing but, HUGE for high school kids. Just make sure that you are sensitive to school traditions.
New traditions: Big Brother programs, 5th quarter, Strong man competitions, team camps, passing league tournaments, team retreats, etc.
Offensive & Defensive scheme: Are you known as a Fly guy, an option guy, wing-t, power, spread, odd-stack, 4-4, 3-4, you name it. Players and fans want to know what they are getting into.
Can you get a company to sponsor your team? (Nike, Adidas, Under Armor, etc)
The more excitement that you can generate, the more many people will get excited about the transition. You must start off and continually sell your program. As much as you do not want to admit it, you are in marketing. It can be a very fun and exciting time for you and the school!!!