Chip Kelly's practices are 'like nothing the NFL has ever seen'
We all knew Chip Kelly would bring a new look to the NFL in one way or another, and according to a piece by Yahoo Sports, his practices have a few twists that would surprise even the most well traveled NFL veteran.
During organized team activities and mini camp Kelly has made a few entertaining, and purposeful, additions to the Eagles' practice plan.
For example, it starts during warm ups when an assistant carries a camera to film running backs catching passes and taking handoffs from the field level during walkthroughs. Yes, they're paying close attention even during the walkthroughs with just the running backs and quarterbacks. Our guess is Kelly and the staff take the film and review the finer points of ball security, footwork, and the mesh points during film study and assess the back's ability to pay attention to the finer details.
Kelly and the Eagles staff have also equipped a few on the field coaching assistants with shoulder pads with giant nets attached to them. These are aimed at simulating the arm span of a 6-foot-4 defensive end during passing drills.
While other coaching staff's have their own way of simulating the same situation and getting the same effect, the contraption that Kelly and his staff came up with is the real story (see picture below, courtesy of the Yahoo article).
Along with the addition of music at practice with the occasional siren blaring, Kelly has also changed the options in the cafeteria. The menu has flipped from offering "great football staples of bovine products" to healthier options such as fruit smoothies.
And it sounds like his players are buying into all of the changes. Even the smoothies.
"Even if it doesn't do anything for you, you believe it will," defensive tackle Cedric Thornton explained, referring to the smoothies.
That's the power of Chip Kelly and the staff he's put together in Philly. We're looking forward to seeing how everything translates onto the field on Sunday's.
ESPN releases early-season B1G TV schedule
If you like your college football early, we have some good news for you. The Big Ten released its early-season TV scheule on Friday and it comes with a heaping helping of noon ET kickoffs.
ESPN's announcement includes nine new games, bringing the Worldwide Leader's total to 17 Big Ten games to this point. Any early-season game owned by the Big Ten's media package not included in the announcement will fall to the Big Ten Network, while the rest will be decided on as the season progresses.
All times Eastern.
Saturday, Aug. 31
Buffalo at Ohio State - 12 p.m. - ESPN2
Syracuse vs. Penn State (at East Rutherford, N.J.) - 3:30 p.m. - ABC/ESPN2
Saturday, Sept. 7
South Florida at Michigan State - 12 p.m. - ESPN2 or ESPNU
Cincinnati at Illinois - 12 p.m. - ESPN2 or ESPNU
San Diego State at Ohio State - 3:30 p.m. - ABC/ESPN2
Notre Dame at Michigan - 8 p.m. - ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Saturday, Sept. 14
UCLA at Nebraska - 12 p.m. - ABC
Bowling Green at Indiana - 12 p.m. - ESPNU
Notre Dame at Purdue - 8 p.m. - ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Saturday, Sept. 28
Iowa at Minnesota - 3:30 p.m. - ABC
Wisconsin at Ohio State - 8 p.m. - ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Saturday, Oct. 5
Minnesota at Michigan - 3:30 p.m. - ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Ohio State at Northwestern - 8 p.m. - ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Saturday, Oct. 12
Michigan at Penn State - 5 p.m. - ESPN or ESPN2
Saturday, Oct. 19
Iowa at Ohio State - 3:30 p.m. - ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Saturday, Oct. 26
Penn State at Ohio State - 8 p.m. - ABC, ESPN or ESPN2
Friday, Nov. 29
Iowa at Nebraska - 12 p.m. - ABC
Three and Out - London calling?
We started a new feature here at FootballScoop on Thursday, Three and Out. We're keeping things short and sweet - three observations, stats or otherwise noteworthy tidbits across the world of football.
1. Reading Jason La Canfora's report on the NFL's desire to expand its branding across the pond certainly seems like it's a matter of when - not if - the Jacksonville Jaguars permanently become the London Jaguars. This fascinates me from a coaching perspective. Would they hold training camp in the States, or somewhere in England? My guess is they'd do the first half in America (there would certainly be some available infrastructure in Jacksonville) and then go to London until the season starts. Would the London Jaguars have a harder time or easier time attracting assistant coaches? My gut says they'd have to doubly overpay for assistant coaches. Once to offset one of the world's highest costs of living and a second time because, well, it's 3,500 miles from the East Coast. Would the same thinking hold true for free agents? And, if so, what chance would the team have to succeed? Does anyone agree with me, or am I overthinking it?
Of course, none of this stuff is going to matter if the NFL's powers-that-be have their minds set on opening a new market to The National Football League. It's really hard to get NFL owners to see any other colors once they catch a glimpse of some green.
2. We promised stats in the introduction and have yet to deliver, so here's a stat to make you the smartest guy or girl at the pool this weekend. Longest FBS winning streaks by conference: Big Ten - Ohio State, 12; Sun Belt - Arkansas State, 8; Pac-12 - Stanford, 8; Mountain West - Utah State, 7; SEC - Vanderbilt, 7; Conference USA - Rice, 5; Big 12 - Baylor, 4; MAC - Central Michigan, 4; American - Syracuse, 4; ACC - Virginia Tech, 3.
3. Time can play some funny tricks on you. As of today we are now 12 weeks away from the first Saturday of the college football season. Seems like a long time, right? Apply the same amount of time from the season's first Saturday to the season's 12th Saturday, and suddenly it's November 16. Somehow 84 days feels like an eternity and a hummingbird's heartbeat at the exact same time.
Stanford becomes first FBS program to endow strength coach
Stanford announced earlier this morning that their football sports performance coordinator position has been endowed by John and Kathy Kissick in honor of their family, and the official title of the position has been changed to Kissick Family Director of Football Sports Performance.
That means that Shannon Turley, FootballScoops 2011 Strength and Conditioning Coordinator of the Year (and one of the most well respected strength coaches in the business), will now carry the endowed title. Stanford is the first FBS program in the country to endow their sports perfomance director.
"It is a tremendous and humbling honor to have our sports performance program and my role recognized with this endowed directorship. This is a powerful institutional commitment that is not only professionally rewarding but also personally gratifying to come from a great supporter and friend." Turley said in the official press release.
The Kissicks also spoke very highly of Turley, who they credit as an instrumental part of the culture change in Palo Alto.
“Nobody deserves this more than Shannon. Coach Turley has been, and is, a crucial, integral part of what Stanford supporters correctly believe is the biggest and most successful turnaround in the history of college football," John Kissick explained. "Shannon has executed on a key Stanford goal of making the team physically dominant and able to impose its will upon opponents.”
Congratulations to Coach Turley from the entire FootballScoop staff for this very deserving honor.
Art Briles explains what to focus on when you're short on resources
Rarely do you get your first head coaching job and marvel at all the resources that you've got to work with. Normally a first time head coach has to be creative with what's been left for him and focus on other areas of the program.
Baylor head coach Art Briles provided some advice for coaches short on resources during an interview with SB Nation recently. Coming from a guy who took over a few rural high school programs in Texas before eventually taking over at Houston and Baylor, it's safe to say that Briles knows a thing or two about taking over programs with fewer resources than many of his competitors.
Briles explains that the first thing that you have to start working on in that situation is the mind.
"Everything's about your mental attitude, and how you approach it, and how you get to where you wanna get. You have to understand that the field may not be equal from a lot of different standpoints — resources, facilities, support, fan support — but all those things, if you let them filter in, you lose sight of your focus."
"Our focus has always been that we're gonna be the standard, we're gonna do what we do and do it as well as anyone does it, and we're not gonna have any excuses or comparisons along the way. That's our motto: no excuses, no comparisons, and no compromises.
SB Nation's piece with Briles is worth taking a look at and includes why he decided to spread things out back in his high school coaching days, his recruiting pitch at Baylor, and what he looks for in a quarterback (spoiler alert: arm strength is not in his criteria).
Where do they come from? Previous jobs of all 32 NFL head coaches
Regardless of what some folks in SEC country might think, an NFL head coaching job is the most precious coaching position in all of football. With only 32 of them out there, the NFL head coaching fraternity is one of the most exclusive clubs in sports.And if you look the hiring habits of NFL franchises, the League certainly conducts its head coaching position like a members-only club.
NFL head coach: 5
NFL coordinator (promoted from within): 2
NFL coordinator (hired from another organization): 16
NFL position coach (hired from another organization): 2
NFL position coach (promoted from within): 1
College head coach: 5
CFL head coach: 1
As our study shows, if you have your eyes on an NFL head coaching job, you'd better already be an NFL coach. Preferably, a coordinator. With the kind of money at stake in NFL head coaching hires, owners tend to gravitate toward the same line of thinking. Of the 32 available jobs, 18 came immediately from the coordinator ranks. Three more were position coaches, though two of them held assistant head coach titles - Bill Belichick (who also had five seasons of head coaching experience to his credit) and Sean Payton.
The only NFL head coach to skip the coordinator rung on the NFL coaching ladder was the Titans' Mike Munchak, a lifer in the Houston/Tennessee organization. In fact, Munchak is one of only three NFL head coaches to be promoted from within, joining the Cowboys' Jason Garrett and the Vikings' Leslie Frazier.
While one-third of FBS head coaches were pulled from other FBS or NFL head coaching positions, the head coach-to-head coach hiring cycle works much differently in the NFL. Five of the league's 32 head coaches, right around 15 percent, were hired fresh off another head coaching job. Well, "fresh" may be a generous term. All five were hired after being let go from their previous jobs - much unlike the college ranks, where only seven of the 42 head coach-to-head coach hirings are retreads - and only John Fox and Andy Reid walked into new jobs without taking a season off.
As we noted on Wednesday, nearly two-thirds of FBS head coaches hail from the offensive side of the ball. That is not true at the next level, where each side is representented evenly in a 16-16 split. That balance may not last, though. In the 2013 hiring cycle, seven of the eight new coaches carry offensive backgrounds.
Dallas Cowboys: Jason Garrett - Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator
New York Giants: Tom Coughlin - Jacksonville Jaguars head coach
Philadelphia Eagles: Chip Kelly - Oregon head coach
Washington Redskins: Mike Shanahan - Denver Broncos head coach
Chicago Bears: Marc Trestman - Montreal Alouttes head coach
Detroit Lions: Jim Schwartz - Tennessee Titans defensive coordinator
Green Bay Packers: Mike McCarthy - San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator
Minnesota Vikings: Leslie Frazier - Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator
Atlanta Falcons: Mike Smith - Jacksonville Jaguars defensive coordinator
Carolina Panthers: Ron Rivera - San Diego Chargers defensive coordinator
New Orleans Saints: Sean Payton - Dallas Cowboys assistant head coach/quarterbacks coach
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Greg Schiano - Rutgers head coach
Arizona Cardinals: Bruce Arians - Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator
Seattle Seahawks: Pete Carroll - USC head coach
St. Louis Rams: Jeff Fisher - Tennessee Titans head coach
San Francisco 49ers: Jim Harbaugh - Stanford head coach
Buffalo Bills: Doug Marrone - Syracuse head coach
Miami Dolphins: Joe Philbin - Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator
New England Patriots: Bill Belichick - New York Jets assistant head coach/defensive backs coach
New York Jets: Rex Ryan - Baltimore Ravens assistant head coach/defensive coordinator
Baltimore Ravens: John Harbaugh - Philadelphia Eagles special teams coordinator/defensive backs coach
Cincinnati Bengals: Marvin Lewis - Washington Redskins defensive coordinator
Cleveland Browns: Rob Chudzinski - Carolina Panthers offensive coordinator
Pittsburgh Steelers: Mike Tomlin - Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator
Houston Texans: Gary Kubiak - Denver Broncos offensive coordinator
Indianapolis Colts: Chuck Pagano - Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator
Jacksonville Jaguars: Gus Bradley - Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator
Tennessee Titans: Mike Munchak - Tennessee Titans offensive line coach
Denver Broncos: John Fox - Carolina Panthers head coach
Kansas City Chiefs: Andy Reid - Philadelphia Eagles head coach
Oakland Raiders: Dennis Allen - Denver Broncos defensive coordinator
San Diego Chargers: Mike McCoy - Denver Broncos offensive coordinator
Start your Friday off with a sack highlight
When it comes to highlight films to get your morning started off right as a defensive coach, the only thing better than a sack highlight on a Friday morning would be a turnover highlight.
Since we can only play the cards we're dealt, here's a look at Louisville's sack highlight from last fall. They averaged just under 2 sacks per game, and coming off an 11-2 season and a likely top ten ranking heading into the fall, you can expect the Cardinals defense to bring it again in 2013.
Is this the most unique business card in college football?
Western Michigan head coach PJ Fleck is on a roll. He pulled in a solid rectruiting class in a few short months, has gotten in front of a camera crew a few times to promote his program and coaching philosophy. and has successfully taken the city of Kalamazoo by storm before his first game on the sidelines.
Now there's this. Below is a photo of Fleck's very unique business card, which goes great with his "Row the Boat" philosophy. Compare it to Georgia Tech's and James Franklin's, who have both taken very different approaches, to gauge who really has the most unique business card in college football.
So, who takes the crown?