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Moving forward, here are the 6 most important factors to your team's success this season

By this point in the year, teams across the country have put in the work during the off season, staff's are solidified, and coaches have a good idea of what the roster looks like. As the saying goes, "the hay is in the barn" - at least for the most part - and there are a limited number of things you can control as kickoff approaches.

Moving forward, the success of the upcoming season comes down a few important factors. Here are the six most important factors laid out.

1 - Have they bought into you and your staff's vision for the program, and on offense, defense, and special teams?
As coaches, we all spend a lot of time looking for the perfect offensive styles, and schemes to fit our personality and players, but in all reality, the style of offense, defense, and special means next to nothing compared to whether the team has fully bought into what you're doing. If they're fully bought in, your chances of success are much higher than if there is dissention and doubt among your roster. It's the job of you and your staff to make sure sees, understands, and shares your vision on what your team will look like on game day.

2 - Your team, and staff, have - and continue to - invest time and sweat in their craft during the off season
Unfortunately, your kids working their tail off in the off season doesn't always equate to wins. However, one thing that sweat equity in the off season does accomplish is it makes people less likely to be to throw in the towel when things get rough because they're so invested, and it also serves as bonding time among teammates where they develop trust, camaraderie, and a unique bond. The same goes for your staff. Good programs don't say goodbye to one another after the last game and then reunite come two-a-days expecting success, they bond at clinics, talk about schemes, and maintain that bond over the off season.

3 - Your kids genuinely care about each other
Football is a game where nothing can accomplished unless you care about the men next to you. Selfish teams perennially underacheive, while teams who are made up of selfless indiviudals who don't care who gets the credit often overacheive.

4 - Leaders emerge, and the team gets behind them
Successful teams without leadership simply don't exist. Great teams often happen when the leaders of the team are also the hardest workers. However, none of that means much if the rest of the team doesn't get behind those trying to lead.

5 - Your team executes
This one is the most obvious, but regardless of how talented your team may be, it's impossible to win games if you're guys don't go out there and execute. Many teams that are short on talent find ways to win because they believe in their system, and execute it to near perfection. Your brilliant scheming means nothing if your players don't believe in it, and can't execute it.

6 - The relationship that you and your staff project
Equally as important as the previous five factors is the relationship that you and each and every member of your staff projects to the kids. If the team sees dysfunction among the coaches, and constant bickering, that often times gets passed on to the players. On the same taken, if you and your staff present a united front, players are going to recognize and emulate that.

Is there something you feel I've left out? Email me at or via Twitter @CoachSamz.

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