Coaches, for the 10-12 age team what would you consider to be the best offense that is teachable and easy to understand in its simplest form and why do you think this? I am curious only because I usually Coach varsity ball but have since stopped per the request of my son and am now coaching for his team. I have know idea how long it is going to take these kids to learn the playbook or even basic position responsibilities. I like to start everything in its simplest form and move from there. Thanx
dear jr coach, Certainly an interesting question but I believe one with no definitive awnser. I have been OC or line coach on championship youth teams of that age and also "A" teams. We have been sucessful using Wishbone (PRECALLED DIVE OR OPTION), TWIN VEER(SAME), I, I with balanced/unbalanced lonesome end to wide side, run and shoot(Ellison with passing and quick option).
The most instructive was as an "A" line coach on a team which ran an I with a good but not great TB and 2 handoff adequate QBs, one a tough leader but both were used each game, little passing except swing to TB. Reviewing play sheet recently I was once again amazed that the 6 simple run plays suficed.
To what do I attribute the success? I dont know really but I worked hard on line blocking with leverage and not standing up. The lack of confusion by limiting the plays. The steady, consistent approach to practice, the player leadership encouraged by the head coach. For example the 3 coaches did nothing the first 30 or so minutes of practice. The players stretched and then ran their agility drills by themselves without us standing by them. I remember we had some sort of problem with a player; the HC spoke to the captains who then conferred with all the players who then met with the player and they set and layed out the conditions for suspension or return to the subject player. Problem was solved sucessfully.
By contrast I briefly helped a "C" team coach who told his younger players at the first practice that his offense would have 200 plays out of multiple formations. He also had 3 players fighting for the ball on fumble drills. I warned him it was too dangerous but he insisted and sure enough a broken arm occured and I left. Thanks to the defense they actually won 4 games but had a wealth of talent.
Bottom line make it simple for the linemen but drill good technique, often much neglected at youth level. limit plays but be sure to have a few counters and crossbucks. And in the new environment with participation rules, hope that you have not too many impossible players especially ones who dont want to be there.
The old rule of coach what you know still applys as well.
I also refer you to the blocking rules descussion and my post on "Area" blocking .
Kevin Thibault Varsity Line Coach Saint Clement H.S. Somerville, Ma
Speaking as a youth coach myself, the most difficult thing I encountered was line assignments on blocking. I have run both option and power football. Last year, when we played the last game, we had five runing plays I knew we had down cold, and that's all I called for the entire game (we won in OT). This was a power offense out of the offset I and we ran dive, FB trap, Iso, off-tackle Power, and sweep. We tried installing counter trey, load option, counter sweep, but the timing was not working out and we ended up not using it in games.
Oldreptile is right, linemen need to have simple assignments that can be remembered against different defenses. We taught the "concept" of the play instead of trying to have them memorize rules for blocking (e.g., on power, two players have to kick out the contain and force players). The players were usually able to block the play the way it needed to be blocked, even if it's not the way we drew it up by communicating at the LOS. The other thing he said was "coach what you know". I think any run based offense is applicable to youth football.
Very good point about teaching linemen why they are blocking a certain way rather than rules. The last two years we have run the wing-t offense at the youth level. Rather than teaching linemen blocking rules, we teach them why we are blocking a certain way. We teach the linemen that we need to have a block in, a block out, and a lead through at the POA. Then when we run certain plays we show them how we are going to do it, and why. This helps in game time situations, since most defenses at the youth level are just kids lining up and shooting into the backfield.
It is hard to explain to an 18 yr old how he should block and why but a 10 yr old, man this is gonna be fun. Should stretch my imagination a bit. and I am looking forward to all of it. Thanks alot guys.
One of the biggest annoyances I've run into at the youth level is I can X and O all I want based on what I know and have experienced through the college level, but it's uncanny how a kid without a clue on defense will somehow wander into just the right spot to hose up a a good call. The kids on D are indeed just linein' up and chargin' most of the time. This is a big reason why I'm sold on zone principles for this age group. It's a concept they can grasp: "Move playside because the play is trying to do this, and if you see color hit it. Back, find some daylight and hit it." Short and sweet, you just have to rep the heck out of the footwork.
Trying to coach "OK, you hit this guy aganist this defense, but if it's that defense hit this other guy unless it's this other defense you hit gotta go get that guy" is impossible to get right.
JrCoach2004 it will be a challenge for you, but it's a good one. I gotta share a quick story on this. We're playing a tight game we lost. We left at least three possible scores on the table because receivers weren't blocking. I look at the tape and my tailback gets a nice run that might have broke only to be hit and turned inside by #9 were the safeties finally pulled him down (he was a real tough kid). Where'd number #9 come from? He was covering my X, a kid named JJ, who just jogged off the ball and started watching the tailback by his second step. . I'm gonna kill JJ, I mutter to myself. Then that little guy that pops up on your shoulder from time to time did so and asked a revealing question: "When did you specifically tell JJ he has to go block that guy?" The answer: I never did. Right then and there I realized this was a whole different kind of coaching....
"The quality of a man's life is in direct proportion to his pursuit of excellence." - Vince Lombardi
Coach4Life, HA! That is great! I love It! It is funny actually that you mention that particular story. See, I Teach Autistic Children for a local school district and Man you have got to be as specific as possible. I mean "Sit down in the chair" the next thing ya know they take my seat or they sit on top of a kid thats in a chair already." It should be , Sit down in this chair right here". I guess what I am trying to say is that simplifying and at the same time being as specific as possible is what I normally teach so I am hopeing it will rub of on the kids. Who knows though I might just get that little guy on the shoulder just as often. Thanks,
Coach4Life, your story sounds kinda familiar! Getting receivers to block is definitely a challenge when coaching most kids at our level. I've given my receivers three different assignments (stalk, crack or run the defender off on a go route) based on where the ball is to be run.
If the ball is being run inside (anything other than a toss or sweep basically) they are taught to stalk block #1 on both sides (both X and Z).
If the ball goes outside on a toss or sweep, they are taught to crack #2 playside and to run off the DB covering them on the backside. I've found that cracking a lber or safety is a much easier task to accomplish than attempting to hold a block for several seconds on the corner. Our fullback will block the force defender in these situations.
These rules have worked pretty well in the past. Do you have your receivers simply block the defender on them or does anyone use anything similar to what we do?
Thanks for the participation on the forum guys!
Dave Hartman CYFL Coach
"It's not the will to win that matters - everyone has that. It's the will to prepare to win that matters."
Post by Coach Campbell on Jan 4, 2019 20:50:12 GMT
I focus every practice on the fundamentals and embracing an attitude of aggression, physical play and relentless pursuit of perfection. I know my players will make mistakes but heaven help them if they fail while giving less than their best.
My philosophy is pretty simple in that I believe that I set the tone for how we play. As a coach I am very demanding, I am rarely satisfied but I also know what it means to be a young adult so I am also very patient. I do not yell but I am direct with what I say and how I say it.
We will be the best tacklers in the state. We will tackle every day.
We will be the best communicators in the state. We will communicate in an effective way every day
We will be the most prepared defense in the state. We will study more ferociously than our opponent. We will apply this knowledge to our practices and games.
We will be the best-conditioned team in the state. We will give a focused effort to condition properly.
We expect our players to understand our philosophy, alignment, and assignment with such passion that they will thirst for success. Our scheme is simple but we expect our players to exceed their personal expectations in their commitment to what it emphasizes; discipline, effort, communication, and team.
Do not get beat around the edge
Do not get beat deep
Do not walk
If all else fails, knock the "crap" out of someone!
Daily Pursuit Drill
I really like the famous pursuit drill! I think it is great for teaching angles, effort, discipline, and communication. As it looks like most of the discussion post have revolved around this drill, I will talk about another pursuit drill that I like.
It is similar to the pursuit drill but it involves the passing game. I don't have a name for it (I'm sure someone, somewhere, does) but I started to realize that football schemes were starting to be more pass oriented. I found that, although having a "rabbit" run around the end is great for run plays, it wasn't helping my teams against those that pass.
Since I am at a fairly large school (we have about 150 kids in the program, 50 for each level) I am able to dive my team into at least 4 different "teams" of defenses. We will start with the starters and then the next team will be the backups, the third team will be third string and so forth.
Team one will start out on the field while the other teams line up behind the QB, which is always me because I like to do it and I want to see specific things. When I say "hike" the entire defense executes a burpee; this will give me time to either do a drop back pass, roll out, fumble, swing pass or QB sneak. I do not wait for my players to get up before I move, I want them to learn to find the ball.
If it is a pass, I will throw the ball fairly high which will, again, require the boys to find the ball while yelling out what they recognized (pass, ball, oskie). Once the ball is secure, everyone must run to where the ball is and start to pound their feet. They will continue until I let them stop. If they worked hard, the feet pounding is short. If they were lazy, they pound it until I get tired.
Upon completion of the drill, team one will SPRINT off while team two will SPRINT onto the field so that I can repeat the procedure. I love this drill because it is high intensity, high communication and it is a lot of fun. It usually takes about 20 minutes to set up the first time but after that, I feel like we can get a good drill for about 10 minutes.