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Everything posted by Johnp2

  1. It was a lesser-skilled player, but as mentioned I give to them in hopes of not running up the score (i.e. I have some that can score most anytime they have the ball so try to keep it out of their hands while up big late). We are equal with our ball touches, so there really is no "make-up" so-to-say to do in the waning minutes of the game. Said differently, my lesser-skilled players get the ball as much as the stronger players throughout the game. I can think of one time about seven seasons ago where I noticed I did not get one of my players a touch (I felt aweful)--it was one of those games where did not get many offensive plays as we scored easily each time we had the ball. We were up with about 10 seconds to go. I called a time-out so as to get him a touch. I knew there was no way this kid was going to score (and would have been very embarrassed had he). I explained to the coach after the game why I did that--as I could see at first he was a little muffed. Each coach has his own style of course. I personally do try to be cognizant in showing what I feel is good sportsmanship. I agree game experience is always valuable. This is an interesting topic, as it comes down to of that right balancing act between keeping players sharp, and also dispelling any doubts that we are doing it the "right way."
  2. You've made a point about limited reps and your obviously not doing it to show up the other team (which is the REAL reason to dislike it). Do you normally tell the opposing coaches why you are doing that? Honestly, I would probably dislike it if I were the opposing coach---but I do understand your reasoning---I imagine some might not. In a lot of our games it's kind of odd, as I too give it to my lesser skilled players once we have the game in hand. The reason for this, however, is because I'm always very concerned about running up the score and want to keep the ball out of my best athlete's hands. In fact I'd say in the majority of our games, my lesser-skilled players get MORE carries than the stronger players. Thus I might have a strong player get three carries and score twice, and lesser-skilled player get six carries but not score--it evens itself out, I believe. I learned my lesson two or three seasons ago. We were up big in final seconds. I was going to take knee. I told the coach "Let's just let the time run out", and he said, "No-no, go ahead and run your play." (I can respect that.) I called the most vanilla play in our playbook--simple hand-off up the middle, and of course my player took it the length of the field. I felt HORRIBLE after that. I could not apologize enough to him, and even went to the opposing team's parents and assured them I was not trying to run up the score. They were all very gracious about it, and appreciated the fact I took time out to explain what transpired and why---and they knew I was congnizant of displaying sportsmanship.
  3. We did just move up a division (10-12). However, our team is comprised of SIX nine-year olds and five 10-year olds, so I am not sure how well we will do this season. We are 1-0, and will fight like dogs in all of our games...but I imagine we'll take a few spankings. My players are all prepared for it. They jumped around like they all won the SuperBowl after our first game---which is odd coming from a team that won two of the past three championships...but they know what's going on. Heck, all I do is hammer into their brains how their only chance is based on how crisp they can execute a complex scheme...which they have done over the years (we are not talented from top to bottom).
  4. The funny thing about this is that the opposing coach had TWO time-outs left...but he obviously did not know it. A lot of time an official might say something like, "Coach, you know you have some time-outs left, don't you?" and I was lucky this official did not remind the other coach. I did not make a big deal out of the play clock (I subtly milked so not to jog the coach's memory about his time-outs). We usually crank out our plays very quickly and have an extremely up-tempo offense, so I was little worried he would notice that we went from calling plays in about five seconds down to 30 seconds. Regardless, we got the win, and the kids were all jumping around for joy after we upset this team. I'd have to go back and look, but I believe we are 21-2 over the past few seasons. I got a look at the team we are playing next and it will be a miracle if we pull off that upset. My goal this season is to just win two games, so at least we are half-way there after the first week. :-)
  5. We had our first game today. It was amazing (a little funny) to see how much bigger/faster our opponents were. We were lucky however, to squeak out a win 13-12. We actually out-played them but in the fourth quarter their coach hit the panic button a little and started giving it to his best player a lot. He scored both their TDs (both the length of the field). With that, we were up with about two minutes to play, and I milked the clock. Honestly, I don't ever recall doing that, but I did so for two reasons: 1. We will be hard-pressed to win many games this season (I could be wrong), but wanted to at least secure one victory for the boys). 2. It was obvious he would have given it to this player had he one more possession, and all it would take is one break-away and we lose. I waited until the play clock ran down to about five seconds then we ran the play. We had fourth down with fifteen second left on the clock, so I just let time expire. I can see doing this in a playoff game, but this was the first game of the season. Just curious what you guys think. Would it have irked you to see an opposing coach milk the clock out for the victory?
  6. One thing I learned a few seasons ago...we had a drill called "Trail of Death", which was a make-shift obstacle course for the kids to run through things. All the kids loved the name. However, after finding out the hardships that some of the kids have gone through, I changed the name to "Trail of Honor" (not really specifying why). If anything, everyone should learn from my mistake in that I had to learn the hard way to be more congizant/respectful of my players' backgrounds. Said differently, you never know what you are dealing with in players whose families you do not know well.
  7. Agreed, tough one. Very tough one. While I have a zero-tolerance philosophy toward "disruptive" players, each situation is unique. I would assume the child is struggling in other areas (i.e. school) with his behavior, and I can imagine the burden the mom must feel each time a teacher/coach approaches her about his behavior. Years ago I dismissed a player from my team prior to the first game, but it was warranted. He did not want to play, and simply flat out refused to do anything. I tend to agree with Rob here in that I would not invite the player back. The easy question to ask is, "Can I enjoy my season having him on my team?" If the answer is "no", then you are doing a disservice to yourself and the team by having him back. Also keep in mind that it is highly unlikely he will suddenly change and be a well-behaved child. Best case scenario is he goes to a new team with a coach who can tolerate it for a season as you did. Worst case scenario is he comes back and you have to follow through on your edict that he does not play because he cannot behave himself---no one wins. As we know, this is the tough part about coaching. My first year coaching, one of my player's dad died in an auto accident...I've had a player's dad deployed to Iraq...I have a player whose mom is deceased...and I had a player whose little brother died (in 2008). Teachers are more apt at dealing with this, but it can be a real strain when you are simply a volunteer parent.
  8. So here is a question for everyone, if you were on your league's "competition committee", would you allow it?
  9. So he is saying how/when a game ends is a judgement call. Wow. Additionally, why are they changing his schedule so he does not officiate one of your games? Was this your request?
  10. I'm surpised that is a legal play--but it they allow it--go for it. I'm sure I could come up with some pretty cool things to do if that were allowed in our league (oh, to dream...) ;-)
  11. Based on my usage of it, if you could get your quarterback to roll with the flood and then throw back against the grain, I think you can do it very well against all except the most well-disciplined zones. A rollout with the center would be sniffed pretty quickly. Yea, we've run it for about 4-5 seasons now (mainly with x or z) but never more than 10 yards. I LOVE the idea of having the QB roll-out with the flood (as we have a lot of plays where he rolls right and throws right).
  12. We are going to make the drag route a weapon in our offense this season (via the "flood pass"). We're looking to make it a deeper pass (15+ yards). I'll see how it goes. It takes a good receiver who can delay and sneak his way in the seam. I'm sure I'll find the right receiver to run it, and then switch him around a little. We have three more practices, plus a scrimmage before our first game. I'll have to pay particular attention to which plays are more crisp than others by then.
  13. Nice to hear from you again, Orange. Regarding the C Drag (your classic) it was interesting to see, as I always though you sent a receiver to the right on a Medium In (with the C running a short Out-right). That is the way we run it as it helps draw any defenders on that side back to the middle. Attached is our version of it. Thoughts? Does it differ much from yours? C Drag.doc
  14. Team unity has been--and will always be my number one goal. We ended up developing a team handshake. It's pretty elaborate, but the kids all LOVE it. It's very entertaining to see the kids congratulate each other in this manner on the field. Everyone (including the crowd) appreciates it. ;-) The kids know it is not show-boating, but instead enjoying each other success.
  15. I think you handled it the right way. Just keep making a big deal out of this in practice this week, and see how they respond the next time they are faced with it.
  16. I agree with "Coach Fun" that having a primary (and even a secondary) receiver on each play will really help. Other than that...it just takes experience at the position. Years ago when my son started playing QB, he threw tons of INTs. Now, I think he's only thrown one in the past three seasons (I know he had none last season, one the season before, and I think none the season prior to that). FWIW, what helped with me was to simply let him start making his own decisions. Back in the day I was on the field and would say, "Throw it now", etc. He told me it distracted him so I stopped. Additionally, another thing that helps is to tell your QB once he feels he can make the throw to make it. If he hesitates or bird-dogs, it will increase the probability of an INT. Regarding switching him, that's a tricky one. Is he your only QB? If so, perhaps get a second one and split time? Or simplify the offense. Regardless, I'd think most players new to the position will have to go through growing pains and take their lumps throwing INTs. Good luck!
  17. Good stuff, coach. I particularly liked the double-reverse back to the QB. I assume he's looking to throw first (it appeared that way in the video) and if his primary his not open he takes off? I might try this play this season. Seems like it would be good set up by running the reverse a few times first, then double it back to the QB. Thanks
  18. I would keep them in the 2-1-2 and have all the kids stay in their zone. By that, cover the field instead of the players, and let them beat themselves. At a maximum, shift the players over a little to the strong side--but stay in the 2-1-2. I'm not sure what trouble you are facing against the Trips formation. Is the offense hitting quick screens to that side? We are 6v6, and we run a "Quad" formation (which would be the same idea as Trips in 5v5). Depending on what how the defense lines up is the play we run. If they put most of their players on the strong side, we'll just hand it off to the Center going to the weak side or something. What I don't like to see when we run this formation is the defense staying put. If they do, I'll send a player in motion to the weak side and send him on a drag route. Regarding switching schemes, we use hand signals to run one of three types of zones. However, we only switch if the offense is beating us out of a particular formation--other than that we stay with our base. By that, the offense has to give us a reason to respect the formation.
  19. So worst call I ever had... Years ago, one of my players scores a long TD on fourth down to win game with seconds remaining. No whistles or flags on the play. After the play, the official nullified the TD. He said my player's flag came out. Turns out it was a defenders flag. The official said he "was confused" and the play still didn't count. I asked if we could at least replay the down, and he said "nope---game over". He just wanted to get home. I seriously almost stopped coaching after that.
  20. We have three practices in the books. I have two new players. Both are players I do not know, but requested me--and this left out other players who played on my teams in the past. I am not happy about that. I was told I had more requests than players allowed unless I wanted to take on three more--that was it. Of course even though we are in a 10-12 league, both new players are nine. Thus, seven players on my team are 9-years old and the rest are 10-years old. One of the new players got a little cheeky with me today when I assigned him to Center. "I don't want to play Center--I want to play QB". One reason I put him at Center is that I lost my Center from last season. With that, the Center position is a key cog in our offensive playbook. I think our Center scored about five TDs last season. I am looking for great athletes at this position. I actually had to bite my lip and explain how important the Center is to me. Frankly at this stage in my 'career' I felt like saying, "Tell ya what. I don't know you or your parents, but you requested to be on my team. If you don't want to be my Center than TYA.." (and dismiss him from the field). In fact, the next time he pops off about it, that is my suggestion to him. However, I took a deep breath and talked to him about how important the Center position is to me. He still displayed a sassy attitude about it. After practice, his dad approached me, "We've heard such great things about you, thanks for taking us on your team" etc. I explained the situation, and his dad seemed surprised. Of course, he was very courteous and professional about it, and the fact they are friends with parents of one of my staple players does mean a lot. I'm unsure if his dad was surprised because his son was assigned to Center, or because his son displayed an attitude about it. I feel it is the latter. If it was the former, he then we have a real problem. I told him we will "try it for a few weeks and see how he feels about it then". His dad said, "Oh don't worry. My son can learn any new position." Long story short--I am no longer "proving myself" to parents or even players for that matter. I know this sounds conceded, but I have a waiting list to be on my team. If the kid/parents are not completely on board with our approach--then the best thing to do is move on without them. Sorry to vent.
  21. I think everyone agrees it is a bad call. What concerns me is the opposing coach. Did he not have the sportsmanship to say, "let them run another play" Or...would it have fallen on deaf ears? I'm sure you will find many of us coaches on here have seen the absolute worst calls imaginable. Back in the day I would literally lose sleep over it. You bust your hump all week to get your team prepped, and some lazy official who is just there for a paycheck changes the entire game with a poor call. You must go to the league and let them know what is happening. Of course, I've never been one to be "all over the official". In the end we all just have to suck it up and set a good example, which it sounds like you did. So yes. Bad call. Football 101...the game cannot end on a defensive penalty. The official should be dismissed of his duties, and your focus should be on that right now.
  22. With our defense, I agree that the most important thing to do is for the Ends to maintain their zones. The second most important thing is to have a very smart/disciplined Safety. My first four or five seasons I switched a lot of kids in/out of the position until a few seasons ago I found a great one. 99% of the teams in our league put their best defender at Safety. I can't say I do, but just like with the Ends, this position for us requires a lot of focus. I forget the age group you are coaching. A few suggestions for the one(s) whose mind wanders (I had one last season that was like this). IF you are allowed on the field, stand by him when the play starts. With my player who was a LB, I'd say (very softly) "Wait..wait...wait...okay, go!" After getting the feel of tempering his natural urge to get after it until the ball has crossed the LOS a few times, it came fairly easy to him--of course offense was a completely different manner.
  23. As I'm always looking for ways to employee cohesiveness with my players, I'm thinking of implementing a team "handshake" this season. It would be cool to see all the players celebrating on the field with a "team-only" handshake. Nothing too cheesy. Something like slapping hands side-to-side then fist bump, or anything to that affect. I'll ask the players at our first practice if they even want to do it, and assuming they do we will come up with one. To me it seems like it would be cool and fun to do. I've not seen another team do this, but curious if any of you have done this, and/or what you think of the idea. Thanks!
  24. I can imagine how frustrating it is. I've been extremely fortunate to have an incredibly focused group of players---who do execute things exactly as drawn up. If it doesn't work--then it's on me--as they did precisely what was asked. Over the years, I've had two players that I did not invite back because of focus issues. Last season was one of them. I had a player whose focus was sorely lacking. Great athlete (and good kid--he was not disruptive or anything), but I could not give him any sort of semi-complex responsibilities. He was left in the dust, and I had to really dumb down his plays for him. It might sound rude not to invite him back, but the one thing I require (along with gentlemanly conduct) is focus. I'm actually friends with his dad. He could see it was an issue as well, and even told me, "I don't think he has the mental discipline for football yet". He does awesome in other sports, but really struggled on our team. I agree to be up front with them--and make them have a chip on their shoulders. While we've won two of our last three championships, I know this season we will be extremely challenged to win a few games (half our kids are nine and the other half 10 in a 10-12 league). I've explained to my players that they already know they are champions, but this is the season we will have to take our lumps, and in a season or two we will be back to dominating. I think there are times where you just know you have a very slim chance of winning. Fooling the kids into thinking they can win can really backlash. HOWEVER, telling the kids they have NOTHING to lose and to just go in like a pack of wild dogs, celebrating every little success they have during the game will keep that passion instilled in them, and they will not get caught up in winning, but will fight tough the entire game and let the chips fall where they will. We went 11-1 last season, and EVERY game I went in thinking we were going to lose. I know it's odd--but it's what drove us.
  25. I'm going into my eigth season coaching flag football, and just tried the "C end-around" this past season (thanks to being convinced on this forum). I have other plays for the C, but was looking for something new. We've never really had trouble scoring, but this play was gangbusters for us this past season. I believe I started a post on how I modified it (Quad-left, audible into either a fake or real-reverse depending on how the defense reacts--sending the z reciver in motion.) Check it out or I am happy to give you my long-winded version of it. ;-) The idea is to obviously tailor it to your teams' strengths. We are going up to 10-12 this season. I imagine we'll see quite a few HB passes--more kids can catch now, which is the real key to a deep passing attack, IMO.
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