Yesterday, in Part 1 of the FootballScoop Virtual Clinic 2020, I shared some ways to give your program an edge while many of us find ourselves cooped up and quarantined during the COVID-19 outbreak.
We touched on topics and ways to stay engaged with workouts, developing and maintaining your culture, and ideas to utilize technology to teach scheme remotely to your players (or staff).
Today I decided to dive in with a few more additional ideas and things that we've done as a program in the past that would work out really well in the situation we now find ourselves in.
Here's Part 2 of the FootballScoop Virtual Clinic:
YOUR OFF SEASON CALENDAR:
While there are still a hundred unknowns for many of us at this point as far as the school calendar goes (like: Will we have to make up the time and add a few weeks into the summer?) this is really a great time to start to hammer out an outline of your summer schedule.
Pencil in important dates like your youth camp, reach out to local coaches about 7on7 dates, touch base with other coaches in the school to make sure there is minimal overlap between the sports - as most of us are sharing the same kids. It may require some tweaking once the final word comes out from state and local governments on what the rest of the school year will look like, but the sooner you're able to get a summer schedule to your kids, the less excuses you'll have to hear about why some guys can't make it to stuff.
Also, make sure you're giving your guys the time to be kids during the summer. We try to schedule everything Monday through Thursday, and largely give players and staff the weekends off during the summer months to allow them the freedom to work and be with their family and friends on the weekends. With a schedule like that (excluding 7on7 and other team activities), if you have one-hour workouts three times a week, you're essentially asking for a commitment equivalent of 2% of their summer for workouts. That is very do-able.
While a good number of parents still enjoy to get hard copies of the summer schedule, I have found it very efficient and welcomed to put all the activities on Google Calendar or iCal and give parents access to it. That way it is on their phones, and tweaks can easily be made. (Google how have parents link your calendar to theirs)
PASS HIT CHART STUDY: ASS HIT CHART STUDY:
One of the best things I did last off season was to embark on an off seasons study to understand how the teams on our schedule were attacking us in the passing game.
We broke down the top formations (2x2 and 3x1 spread formations) we saw throughout the course of the year, and charted the favorite receivers that offenses targeted based on their alignment. What we found after our 5-4 season where we struggled on defense is that teams really liked to throw fades and speed outs into the boundary against us. Heading into year two we kept an eye on that trend and put our best, most disciplined cover corner into the boundary, and our best tackling / most physical corner to the field because we found that is where teams threw 95%+ of their bubbles, plus screens and perimeter runs as well.
In spread 2 x 2 sets (called Dueces or Doubles by most coaches) we found that the #1 receiver to the boundary had the most receptions, while the #1 receiver to the field was targeted the most across our 9 opponents. We also found that in 3 x 1 detached trips formations the #1 receiver to the trips side was targeted just ONE TIME in nine games (and that happened to be on a tunnel screen), while the #3 receiver edged out the #2 receiver by one target, and both those guys had twice as many catches as the single receiver to the boundary.
Here is a link to the format that worked for us.
(You will be prompted to make a copy of your own upon opening the link)
With so many kids depending on school meals, I've seen a bunch of schools and community businesses step up to the plate to help bag breakfasts for those in need - and many of them are operating on a no-questions-asked basis, meaning you don't have to qualify for free or reduced lunch to take advantage.
As long as you're safely able to do so, volunteering in ways like this is a great way to give back to the kids and families in your school and community, and a little effort can go a long way.
Getting some of your staff together to pitch in to lend a helping hand is not only good for the soul, but is would also be a great way to build on bonds in the building while your food service folks may be stretched thin during this really tough time.
Got something you and your program are doing, or something you've seen other coaches doing worth sharing with the rest of the coaching community? DM me @CoachSamz.