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Old 08-27-2008, 05:48 AM   #101
Poli
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Join Date: Apr 2002
15 at practice today, Ray and Layne didn't make it. Layne's birthday was yesterday, a lame reason to miss, but I understand. Ray, not sure why he was missing.

It did hamper my idea of 8 on 8, so I went 8 on 7, with the extra guy on offense. Ryan, the center, played center for both squads. David worked at tackle initially, and then moved to fullback. Ashanti started at tight end and was actually willing to move down to tackle to help out. Nolan played defense for both squads.

Ashanti and Bryce each started their squads at defensive end. They were both very timid initially. They didn't charge up the field and box. I got in each of their face and told them if they weren't going to do it, that I'd run the sweep on them all day. I turned around, ran the sweep, and they were there after that.

Nathaniel worked at linebacker initially, which meant he had to take on a double team. He was a little softer than I initially thought he'd be. He fought through it, but let it be know it was 'hard'. Connor did a much better job fighting it off his turn around.

Corners weren't much help at all. At least they followed the motion man across. They weren't physical enough at all. Defensive line looked like they were working hard.

Offensively, we scored 3 touchdowns. Two by Bryce, one by Carlos. Carlos seems to be working very hard offensively to replace JD. Noah led the first team and had an early fumbled snap, but after that was reliable. Nathaniel and Ryan constantly fumbled snaps, so they'll work on that during our tackling drills today.

David struggled making the right blocks at tackle, but soon picked up on it when Coach Travis pointed it out. I was missing it as I was watching the DE/FB action for the most part.

Overall, not too bad. Offense did well at times, defense did well at times.

We're ready for the Trojans and the scrimmage Thursday.
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Old 08-27-2008, 09:05 PM   #102
Poli
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Practice was light again tonight. 13 total.

Missing:
Layne
Carlos
Connor
Noah

I knew where Layne and Noah were, no idea about the others. I'll be making calls tomorrow.

It was relatively light today hitting wise, as we're getting ready for tomorrow's scrimmage. I lined up the perimeter defense against some of the Wing T that I know. Coach Steve's presence helped make that happen.

We had a major attitude problem occur. Nolan shoved Hunter from behind to the ground. Immediately everyone got in the pushup position and my former Navy disciplinarian voice came out. I'm sure I got their attention as well as the parents attention. Quite honestly, I think I got the attention of other teams out on the field as well. I wasn't going to put up with that.

Speaking of, I think Nolan's days may be numbered. He clearly doesn't want to contribute. I think his parents went through a divorce recently, which may cause him to not want to do anything...period. He was upset when he came to practice, crying and all. I pulled him aside and gave him a pep talk, but I can only do so much on that front.

His mom later came over and talked to me as well. She understood I can't keep pulling him off to the side and try to get him motivated. He clearly isn't interested in playing football and she doesn't want him to...but the dad does. Difficult situation overall.

We need to get the whole squad together, at the very least the starting lineup. It's a little frustrating.
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Old 08-28-2008, 12:00 AM   #103
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Geez it must be frustrating always having 2-4 kids miss with that small a squad. I am willing to place a small wager they all show up for the scrimmage though...
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Old 08-28-2008, 05:42 AM   #104
Poli
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Yeah, that'll be tough. I'm sure that if I had advertised "scrimmage" on Tuesday they all would have been there as well.

It's going to be even harder if we lose Nolan, who at the very least is another body in the scrum.
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Old 08-28-2008, 07:58 AM   #105
Barkeep49
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It's my understanding from the program here that it's quite common to lose kids who discover football is more physical and tougher than they thought. Is that the way it is there?
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Old 08-28-2008, 02:52 PM   #106
Poli
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I think you're correct.

Nolan played last year for the first time as one of the biggest 8 year olds in the 6 through 8 year old league. While he's still a hefty 9 year old for our standards, he's now facing older, bigger boys, and I know he doesn't like it.
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Old 08-28-2008, 04:04 PM   #107
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When does your regular season start and how many scheduled games do you have?

We started here in late July and our 1st game was last week.

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Old 08-28-2008, 04:43 PM   #108
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Wow, way too hot here for August ball. Our first practice is Sept 2, and out first game in the 20th. Finish up December 13, play 9 reg season games, and up to 3 playoff games and one pro bowl.

Do you have your schedule yet, poli?
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Old 08-28-2008, 09:42 PM   #109
Poli
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I'll post my thoughts and comments about tonight's scrimmage tomorrow. For now, all I have to say is:
1. I LOVE THIS GAME.

2. I WAS MEANT FOR THIS.
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Old 08-30-2008, 09:37 AM   #110
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Loving this thread.
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Old 08-30-2008, 10:22 AM   #111
Poli
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike1409 View Post
When does your regular season start and how many scheduled games do you have?

We started here in late July and our 1st game was last week.

Our regular season starts September 6th. This week will be the last of our 3 day practices. After this, we're only allowed two a week.

Our regular season consists of eight games, unless I'm mistaken. From there, I believe every team is seeded in the playoffs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Senator View Post

Do you have your schedule yet, poli?
We don't have a schedule yet. I suspect I'll know who and where we play Wednesday.

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Loving this thread.
Thanks!
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Old 08-30-2008, 10:22 AM   #112
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Looking forward to scrimmage thoughts.
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Old 08-30-2008, 10:23 AM   #113
Poli
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Looking forward to scrimmage thoughts.
Coming up shortly.
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Old 08-30-2008, 10:54 AM   #114
Poli
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Our scrimmage wasn't on a regulation field, instead we used the practice field and snapped the ball in about the same location every time. In games, one coach is allowed on the field, so I was in the huddle with them the entire scrimmage.

Our snap count being 'ready, set, go, go", we started the scrimmage with an offside. Surprisingly, we didn't get another offsides penalty.

We were facing a 5-3 defense with crashing ends, corners up on the line but wide.

Our best play was the wedge. We 'scored' once with it, and didn't lose yardage at all running it. Crashing ends made the tackle once or twice, which tells me we should run the sweep.

There were a few problems there. 1. The wing wasn't making a great block on the crashing end. 2. The guards weren't aggressive in their pulling. 3. The quarterback/center exchange was seemingly a little slow, which caused us some problems in the backfield.

We still 'scored' on a sweep, but there's obviously some things to work on.

The Toss experienced similar problems. The crashing end gave our fullback some problems, but even still, I'd expect the pulling guard and tackle from the weakside to help out. Instead, like the sweep, we didn't seem very motivated or aggressive in our pulls or blocks. We 'scored' on one, but overall, a bit of a mess. Additionally, we fumbled one of the tosses, which is unacceptable.

Our other two core plays, the counter and pass, were ran once each. Obviously, there's a reason why. Our backs are having a problem with running the counter with a full squad. In 'skill offense' practice, they'll run it correctly, but with a full squad they lose their mind and go sprinting, sometimes inside the quarterback, sometimes out. The problem there is timing. Carlos fumble the ball when Nathan turned around with it and Carlos was on top of him. I didn't call that play again.

Similarly, Carlos killed the 24 Pass as well. I told him before the play to make sure he faked 24 and went after the defensive end and that we needed to make sure he was blocked. A few seconds later, Noah was on the ground at my feet, compliments of Carlos's defensive end. Carlos was 5 yards downfield and coming back to the huddle. When asked what he was supposed to do, the "I don't know" answer resulted in pushups for the entire unit. Based on that failure, we didn't run the pass again either.

Honestly, I wanted more practice with the toss, sweep, and wedge, anyhow.

There were definitely things to work on that we'll take care of on Tuesday.

1. Quarterback footwork. I need a good solid spin out of that toss and toss fake.

2. Center snap. We botched a few snaps, which is unacceptable. During our tackling drills, the centers and quarterbacks will now be working on the snaps and the toss/spin with Coach Steve (Hunter's dad) and me if I'm available. Tackling will be given to Coach Bryan and Travis when possible.

3. Motivated, aggressive pulling. Part of that problem is equipment related. We still don't have dummies or blocking pads. I was told after the scrimmage we'd receive two pads and a dummy. With that, I believe we can get the boys ready to pull and hit their man if Coach Steve and I are holding the pads ready for the blow.

4. Backfield action. Our backs missed numerous holes and were at times too excited about getting where they need to be. I'd rather they play a little more under control.

5. Too much chatter in the huddle, boys were wanting to tell me what to run, asking me what to do after I already told them, and just general chit chat as well. We've got to lock that down.

Finally, offensively, Jacob isn't going to help us as a wingback. Both carries for him resulted in Jacob jogging to the hole, where he was subsequently plastered. I'm not sure where his dad believes he's the world's greatest athlete. I'd like to use him as a 'blocking' wing if I can, but I'm not sure that's at all possible, either.

Defense to follow.
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Old 08-30-2008, 11:12 AM   #115
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Defensively, we were very, very solid. Ray splattered the running back off tackle on the first defensive play after a yard gain that resulted in the boy running off the field crying. The boy, Seth, was the Trojans first pick among the 10 year old boys.

Things didn't get much better for them as they tried to test our defensive line. I can understand why they thought it would work. With just Ray behind the defensive line and five yards back at that, it would appear fairly easy to beat us up the middle. They never gained more than a yard up the middle, though.

Off tackle presented a few problems. We allowed a big run once there and a few decent gains. Nathaniel struggled at linebacker. Ashanti might be the better option there. That might allow Nathaniel to be a corner instead. I'm disappointed about that move, but it might be the better option. We'll keep those options open for now.

We got beat for scores twice on the sweep. THE FLIPPING SWEEP. The first was because COACH BRYAN told his son to crash down on the end, which is exactly NOT what I want them to do. However, allowing the touchdown was exactly what we needed. Coach realized he screwed us up on that, and the ends never crashed again. The second score was based on the back bouncing around our end and making a few boys miss. I can take that one a little easier than going untouched for the score.

Corner wise, Carlos did a great job on a reverse. He followed his man in motion, ran with him across the field, and stopped the play for a loss. The loss is what surprised me. Carlos, who caused me a number of headaches offensively, really turned on the jets with that. Nick T. did a solid job, though he totally ignored his assignment once and got caught up in the moment of the quarterback scrambling for his life. Nick ended up with the sack, though if the quarterback had seen the man open, we would have needed Ray to make the stop. Noah did a decent job, but still didn't hit well. Jacob is quickly becoming the bane of my existence. After not looking good offensively, he looked just as bad defensively.

Our ends had 3 sacks as well. Bryce came up with one, Nick C had the other two. Very good job out of them. Ashanti wasn't as good as they were; he may move to linebacker.

With linebackers, Connor clearly did the best. Nathaniel struggled with attacking the end, and wanted to complain about small things to me afterward. David worked in with the unit, but wasn't anything spectacular.

Ray did well as the monster, but I would have liked him to be out there on those sweeps. I think he reacted just a hair too slow.

Defensive line was outstanding. JD, Hunter, and Layne combined for two sacks as well as clogging the middle. Nolan and Alex did a pretty decent job. Nolan actually outperformed Alex on the defensive side. He did exactly what I asked of him. Alex wants to squat rather than line up in a 4 point stance.

Overall, I'd say we won the 'scrimmage' handily. Outside of their two 'scores' and the big gain, they got nothing accomplished. Their quarterback was 0-2 with six sacks.

Offensively, despite our 'problems' we still 'scored' three times as well as had very good gains on about half our plays.

I just need to tune them up to get the other half rolling.
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Last edited by Poli : 08-30-2008 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 08-30-2008, 11:29 AM   #116
Poli
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After the scrimmage I realized why they were so 'good' off tackle, though good is a bit of a stretch.

They were lined up illegally in a sense. With the tight end over on the split end's side, our linebacker would try to line up over their 150 lb tackle. That's an illegal formation, as the tackle would be eligible.

I knew something was off. We were having problems covering everyone.

Essentially the offense looked like this:




Nothing we all haven't seen in a game of NCAA football, but with their illegal tackle at tight end, we had problems lining up correctly. Nathaniel and Connor looked at the ends as an eligible receivers, when that wasn't the case.

Based on this formation, we'd line up a corner wide, a linebacker on the slot, a linebacker over the left end, and shift the defensive line over as well.

The first time they ran this, they got the big gain and I was instantly confused as to what happened. The slot motioned without anyone covering him, Nathaniel was over the ineligible tight end. Connor was blocked out by their 150 tackle, the fullback took out our B gap tackle, the slot picked off the corner, and the tailback ran for 15 yards before Ray caught up to him.

I instantly wondered why the slot motioned over without anyone covering, but didn't have a solution based on one play.

Bryce, the defensive end, was smart enough to see it the second time. Instead of boxing, he sprinted over with the motion and made the stop. Not the plan, but at least he knew something had to happen.

That's when it hit me that they were in the over set.

When we started ignoring the end, we did a better, but not great, job of stopping the play.

It didn't dawn on me until later that they were using an ineligible player as a tight end.
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Old 08-30-2008, 12:54 PM   #117
Barkeep49
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This is indeed an encouraging start. The game situation is a great way to get your team to figure out that practice matters, always an issue at this age.
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Old 08-30-2008, 01:50 PM   #118
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Quote:
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That's an illegal formation, as the tackle would be eligible.
...
It didn't dawn on me until later that they were using an ineligible player as a tight end.

So... is that something you mention to the opposing coach, or let him find out at his first game as he gets flagged /every play/?
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Old 08-30-2008, 02:31 PM   #119
BYU 14
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What am I missing on that formation? Is it bacause they had a kid over the weight limit playing outside of the tackle box?
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Old 08-30-2008, 02:44 PM   #120
Poli
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So... is that something you mention to the opposing coach, or let him find out at his first game as he gets flagged /every play/?
Since it was the guy I was working with before, I let him know today.

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What am I missing on that formation? Is it bacause they had a kid over the weight limit playing outside of the tackle box?
Their tight end was essentially the 2nd tackle in that diagram (which I ripped from ESPN.com). Their tackle didn't move over, the tight end did. The tight end was probably a 70 pounder, their tackle was about 150. Our 80 pound backer had a tough time against the 150 lb tackle.
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Old 08-30-2008, 09:39 PM   #121
Poli
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I think we have a gameplan on how to use Jacob and not have him hurt us. Similar to the Nolan Plan (which is now out since he can help us on defense), the Jacob Plan consists of three plays.

Backside TE on the sweep, where he runs out for a non-existent pass.

Wing on the wedge series where he won't touch the ball and on the counter, where he'll 'take' the fake.
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Old 09-03-2008, 10:27 AM   #122
Poli
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I think we accomplished quite a bit yesterday. Coach Travis worked with his boys, Nathan and Noah, on their proper footwork over the weekend, and I witnessed them going through those motions before practice. That was a good sign.

Ashanti was the only one missing from practice, outside of Coach Bryan. Fortunately, his son Bryce was there.

We started through warmups, where I emphasized getting in our stances at 'ready' instead of 'set'. They bought into it quickly when I explained we'll go on 'two' until we run that wedge and we'll smash them in the mouth on 'set' instead. They loved that idea.

From warmups, we went into tackling. Tackling was sort of a race to a set of cones, designed to have the ballcarrier go in between to 'get a first down.' Pushups were 'awarded' to the person that lost, three to the tackler and two to the runner. It wasn't very sharp, but we didn't have many whiffs, either.

We went to, and stayed in, skill defense from there. Coach Travis and Steve stayed with the defensive line, whereas I think I would have liked Travis to come over and help with me. I ended up with the rest of the gang on my own. I worked ends and backers together, explaining that I may ask an end to sub in at linebacker. I gave them a few reps with the rest of the team acting as backs and linebackers to see how they read the play.

From there I moved to the corners and monster, where we still have problems. I seemingly can't get through to these four boys (Noah, Carlos, Jacob, and Nick T) the importance of protecting us from that inside release or about how to bump and run with the receivers. I sure hope that teams don't actually use real wide receivers on us, or we'll likely be hurting. If I wasn't seriously considering using Nathan at corner before, I certainly am now. Carlos and Nick did better after I showed them again what I wanted, but Jacob and Noah were clueless even after the individual attention.

I can already tell I have to get back over and work the defensive line again. I saw too many boys getting pushed back when I glanced over there. We're getting sloppy without me being there. Steve and Travis must not be emphasizing the bear crawl enough.

At this point, it was 7, so I knew I was over my allotted time. They went for water and we set up for skill offense.

I can't vouch for how they looked in the backfield as Travis took them. Steve and I worked the offensive line. We did, in fact, get two blocking pads, which helped tremendously in getting the kids fired up and aggressive in their pulls. They were splattering Nolan and Alex (or David) depending on who was in at left tackle. All the boys enjoyed it, including the boys that were splattered.

We ran through our plays, splattering the two boys as the pullers made their way around. I worked on our wedge blocking and I think it's even sharper than before.

We got the team together at 7:30 and ran through plays. Nathan struggled with his footwork and we weren't getting the toss out correctly. He lost his composure and Noah went in. After a few plays, Nathan came back. We continued running our sweep and toss...finishing with one pass and a counter. Nathan, unfortunately, turned the wrong way on the counter initially. He got it right afterward and we stopped offense.
We went to special teams after that, where we focused on our kickoff and kick return. We won't be attempting a field goal or extra point, ideally, so I won't worry about practicing that. They can't rush punts, so our punt team will be a glorified kickoff, and it'll be nearly impossible to set up a return. Additionally, I'm told 'we don't punt much in this league'. So, working a punt return might be a waste of time as well.

Our kickoff, punt, and kick return will always be setup to go to our sideline. On kickoffs and punts, we'll line up with five of our best athletes on our sideline. We'll kick it their direction, and attempt to cover/recover it there. The other 5 five boys will offer contain from the far side of the field, running five yards up, and then angling in to the play. On kick returns, we'll have 6 of our best boys up front, followed by four of our best non-linemen types, and Bryce as the deep guy.

Jacob lined up as our kicker, a spot I thought he might be harmless at. Kick it 10-15 yards downfield, toward our sideline. What's he do? Kicks it as hard as he can, a line drive bouncer that goes 25 yards downfield. I warned him if he doesn't shape up he'll be off the kicking team like that. I have six boys on the sideline that'll kick it right. He kicks the 2nd one a little better, but still deeper than I'd like. That's when I see Hunter loafing as he runs to the ball. I jumped his case and when he returned to his spot, he did a little flip as he arrived. I really dug into him after that. He wants to jog as one of our top 5 and then do flips after the play is over? I told him he'll find a spot on the bench very quickly if he keeps that up. I didn't have that problem after that. By the way, our 'top 5' currently consists of Ray, Hunter, Bryce, Connor, and JD.

Kick returns didn't really cause a problem they attacked the ball and covered it up quite nicely. I was pleasantly surprised.

My plan for punts is to use Hunter as the punter and use it like a kickoff. Nothing really different there. We'll literally try to punt the ball as deep as possible AND out of bounds, though.

Our punt return plan is to use our regular defense, subbing Ray in at defensive line and Bryce as the returner. The ten guys on the line find someone to get in front of, pummel the boy, and let him go. The last thing I want is someone like Noah, Jacob, or Nolan, running back to set up some sort of return for a punt that could literally go anywhere and any distance. That ball is just as likely to hit one of them in the head as it is to get to our returner. I'd rather be safe than sorry in that regard.

After that, we got the team together, and I made a judgement call. I called practice for the heavy rain that's going to hit us today from what's leftover of Gustav. We'll have four boys at the weigh-in anyhow, so we'd likely be down to 11-13 boys anyhow. Rather than try to work around not having a starting wing, his backup, and either of my starting tackles, I decided we'll just call it. Instead, I encouraged the boys to take some time and make 100% sure we know our five plays. I explained we're starting our fifth week of football this week and not being able to get our core five plays down is unacceptable. If we had bothered to just make sure we knew a play a week we'd be masters by now.

Thursday the rain's not expected to let up at all. I let them know we're likely going to have practice cancelled by the league that day so instead we won't plan on practicing that day, either. Instead, we'll be meeting at my house and watching a highlight tape of a junior high team running the double wing, a high school game with a team using the offense, and possibly some youtube videos if I can figure out how to display my laptop on my bigscreen TV. That'll take a little converting of my living room in order to get all the boys in there, but fortunately, my living room should be big enough when I move the furniture to the walls.

I just couldn't stomach losing another practice without doing something. I couldn't do something with them if we get soaked for 10-15 minutes before the admin comes over to cancel our practice, either. So, the plan is to stay dry, chalk out our plays, watch our plays on the screen, and maybe get a little more confidence in ourselves that way.

I was told last night we'd have schedule e-mailed out late in the night. As of this morning, I still haven't seen them.

Saturday's looming, so is a sore throat. I'm getting a little sick. That won't stop me from being amped up for this game, though!

Go Vols!
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Old 09-03-2008, 09:09 PM   #123
Poli
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Ray and the three others weighed in today.

Ray hit the scales at 198.

One other note: Schedules still haven't been released.
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Old 09-03-2008, 11:35 PM   #124
BYU 14
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Originally Posted by Poli View Post
Ray and the three others weighed in today.

Ray hit the scales at 198.

One other note: Schedules still haven't been released.

Holy crap, Ray could play guard for me
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Old 09-04-2008, 01:51 AM   #125
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whoa! We only had 1 - 200 pounder out of 315 kids and he was moved up to senior league. That is huge for a 10 year old.
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Old 09-04-2008, 05:39 PM   #126
JonInMiddleGA
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Ray hit the scales at 198.

Maybe I'm confused but ... isn't he playing LB for you? If so, wouldn't his size make him more of a DL? Not a lineman mind you, but at least one whole side of the line?

Also, I notice where you had him listed among your top five on KO's. If he could develop a really scary warface (complete with scream) I'd say you'll recover some kicks just from the receiving team running in the other direction when they see him coming.
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Old 09-04-2008, 09:41 PM   #127
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Maybe I'm confused but ... isn't he playing LB for you? If so, wouldn't his size make him more of a DL? Not a lineman mind you, but at least one whole side of the line?

Also, I notice where you had him listed among your top five on KO's. If he could develop a really scary warface (complete with scream) I'd say you'll recover some kicks just from the receiving team running in the other direction when they see him coming.

He's too quick to just have him on the line. He'll make tackles from sideline to sideline. Putting him on one side of the defensive line is just inviting the team to try and run away from him.
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Old 09-04-2008, 10:41 PM   #128
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We can't play anyone over 115 off the line of scrimmage, which means no linebacker. I envy you.
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Old 09-05-2008, 06:11 AM   #129
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If I had to, I'd probably try and play him in the B gap, or as a strong side linebacker on the tight end.

I'm hoping we can get a big enough lead in our games that I can start moving Ray around just for fun.

I did find out our first game is against the Bulldogs, the team that practiced a few of their plays in front of me. The team that 'protected' a boy named Elijah illegally. I'm so ready to play them it hurts.

Yesterday's practice was cancelled due to field conditions. Good thing I had the backup plan in mind. I had already set up the house to accommodate the boys. I'd moved the furniture against the walls or just further back, figured out how to hook my computer to the big screen via my HDMI cable, as well as a junior high team running the double wing on DVD ready.

We spent about 75 minutes on offense, talking through our plays and watching the junior high team just pummel kids. We then chalked them out on the whiteboard. I challenged them to see if they knew their assignments, I'd sometimes draw the play incorrectly.

We moved on to defense, where I showed them the PowerPoint I sent some of the parents a week or two earlier. We briefly talked about what we needed to do to be successful, and then I showed them a Youtube video of 9 and 10 year olds running our defense.

They absolutely loved it. During the video, I kept praising their defensive ends and linebackers. Those guys need to understand that in order for us to be successful we have to do our job.

I finished the night off by showing them my 'scouting report' of the Bulldogs. I diagrammed out the six plays I saw, again reminding the linebackers and ends that if they do their job we'll have an easy day out there. Four plays, in particular, the defensive end should be hitting their ball carrier without being blocked.

I'm excited and ready to go.
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Old 09-05-2008, 10:09 AM   #130
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Putting him on one side of the defensive line is just inviting the team to try and run away from him.

At his size (and apparently speed, which tends to equal velocity) they may try to "run away from him" regardless of where you put him. And I mean run away.

Roy Reigels anyone?
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Old 09-05-2008, 02:56 PM   #131
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I've seen videos of kids turning around to try and find somewhere else to run. I definitely stressed backside pursuit last night.
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Old 09-06-2008, 06:35 AM   #132
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Less than 4 hours out of my debut. I'm not nervous, but I am ready to get this kicked off.

I'm concerned about scouting, since I don't know who I'm playing next week. It turns out there are 19 teams total in our 'league', after today I could be playing any of the other 17.

Games today are being held in five locations. I'm somewhat 'lucky'. My game is the first of the three in my location, so I can watch the next two games and get a feel for those four teams.

Ideally, my friend Jeremy, who happened to be the best man at my wedding 10 years ago, would be scouting the location with two games, but he hasn't returned a call in the past week. I think I'm going to miss out on those. The other locations have just one game each.

I have an agreement with Scott and the Trojans to exchange tapes as needed, I'm hoping to enter into one with Terry and the Bulldogs after today's game.

There's an outside chance I could drive up to one of the other three sites, their game starts at 2:30 according to the schedule, but without knowing if they're even on my schedule...I'm not sure it's worth it.
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Old 09-06-2008, 06:57 AM   #133
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GO VOLS!

Btw, can you upload some videos later? i want to see Ray in action
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Old 09-06-2008, 06:58 AM   #134
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go for it
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Old 09-06-2008, 07:00 AM   #135
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GO VOLS!

Btw, can you upload some videos later? i want to see Ray in action
I'll see what I can do. I don't have a dedicated video guy, but I'm going to get some from the parents. Might be a day or two.
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Old 09-06-2008, 03:15 PM   #136
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We lost today, 12-6. I'll add more later today/tomorrow, whenever I can get some gametape.

Needless to say, we nearly had this one. In fact, I can think of three plays in particular that if we do our job we win, 24-12.
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Old 09-06-2008, 03:57 PM   #137
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Sounds like a tough one but some foundation to build upon nonetheless.
Strap 'em back on & go get 'em next week.
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Old 09-06-2008, 04:24 PM   #138
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In close games there is always one, two, or 12 plays that could make a difference. Hopefully you'll have some player buy-in to improving those areas before the next week.
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Old 09-06-2008, 04:28 PM   #139
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Sorry to hear that. But you know what they say, you win some and lose some.
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Old 09-06-2008, 05:28 PM   #140
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In close games there is always one, two, or 12 plays that could make a difference. Hopefully you'll have some player buy-in to improving those areas before the next week.

Yeah, that was one of Lombardi's all time favorite things to say. 2-3 plays over the course of a game are what creates the win or a loss.

I am positive you will make the adjustments, and get them next week.
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Old 09-06-2008, 05:58 PM   #141
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Crud....sorry you didn't win...you'll get 'em next week.
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Old 09-06-2008, 08:32 PM   #142
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Thanks, guys. It's a little frustrating. I wish I could be watching game film right now.

We arrived on the field and began warming up at 9:30, with the 10 am start...which actually was pushed back to 10:30.

Connor and Nathaniel were the captains and were the 'home' team for today's game. We won the toss, Connor deferred, and we were kicked the ball. Sweet.

Our kick return unit is a 6-4-1 look, with the 4 backs being 10 yards behind the other 6. Hands, hands, hands. After instructing the boys routinely to fall on any ball that's not kicked to our returner, David takes the opening kickoff 2 yards as an upback and is tackled.

24 Toss is the name of the game, and Bryce apparently forgets that the 4 means to head over the right tackle. He bounces outside, we lose a yard. 45 Toss is the next call and we gain a few yards with it. We sweep outside and gain more, netting a 4th and 2. We go for it, since it's near midfield. I hear a lot of commotion, which surprises me considering what I've heard about the league. We wedge and get it plus some. First down.

Our next play is a counter to the left, and it's horrible. JD fumbles the ball, but Hunter, who failed to make the block, recovers. We come back with the sweep the other way, and Carlos takes it to the 5 yard line.

We're in business. Connor runs the Wedge on SET instead, and we score from 5 yards out, his first touchdown ever. We botch the snap on the wedge for 1 point, and we go to kickoff.

We nearly recover the kick, which incidentally was too deep. It went about 20 yards downfield, another special team wonder.

They score 2 plays later, running to our sideline and outside.

We take the next squib kick and recover it near our 45. After 3 plays of, well, 2 yards or so, we punt. Hunter, the punter, fails to punt the way I'd like, which is out of bounds to our sideline. Instead, he punts the ball about 15 yards down the middle.

The boy out there doesn't fair catch and is hit as the ball arrives. The ball pops out, and we recover.

We take over on their 45 and wedge to the 37 or so. That's when we run a sweep that was quite interesting. Bryce had a helmet issue he didn't bring up until he got to the line of scrimmage. Carlos runs in for him, I whisper the play to him...all while our 25 second clock is running. Carlos takes the ball and scores, only to have the play called back for a block in the back by our tight end, Nick C.

We still gained enough for a first, but we wouldn't move the ball past that. On 4th and 7, we get 5.

45 seconds left, they run two more plays or so, and pop outside down our sideline again for a touchdown.

12-6 at the half.

We take the 2nd half kick at our 45 again, only we don't move the ball again. 4th and long, I have Hunter punt to our sideline again. He does a better job of it, though it's shorter. Ray clobbers both the returner and Layne. They're both down for a bit, before getting back up.

They get a big run for a score, but it's called back for three penalties: a coaching penalty for telling a player what to do during the play, a hold down the field as well as a block in the back down the field. The coaching penalty, while only 5 yards, benefits us the most and we take it.

They follow that 1st and 15 play with a sweep that's actually stopped. He runs back the other way into Nick C. Nick dumps him for a 15 yard loss. They get a decent play on 3rd, but it's still 4th and 12. For whatever reason, they go for it and fail. We take over again, about on our 40.

As our offenses are eating up a lot of clock, at this point, we're in the 4th quarter. Bryce pops out on a sweep and gets to the 12 yard line before being tackled. Bryce goes off to the sideline, in comes Jacob.

Mind you, Jacob has yet to carry the ball, and I'm determined to get him a carry a game to pacify his father. That, and to clearly show he has no business running with the ball, either.

First down, we wedge and gain about 5. 2nd and 5 on the 7. We counter, and we completely screw it up. Nathaniel is tackled waiting for the wing to take the ball, and in the process is hurt. Enter Noah, the backup.

It's 3rd down, and I know I need to get Jacob the ball here. Time's running out, there's only about 3 minutes left. I give Jacob the best pep talk he's ever had, he tells me he's ready. Jacob takes the ball on the sweep, stops, thinks about what he's going to eat after the game, wonders if he has his homework done, contemplates the meaning of life, and is plowed by a linebacker for a loss. Additionally, surprisingly, he's also hurt.

He would pout the rest of the game, head down, seemingly asking for another shot.

4th down, Carlos and Bryce in, we'll sweep left and score. We can do it. Bryce blocks the end perfectly, if Hunter blocks the corner we're in business. Wait, where's Hunter? He ran the wrong way. The corner stops us for no gain.

They run the clock, breaking another big run outside on us in the process. We call timeouts inside a minute...when I learn that I actually have 3 timeouts per half, not the two I thought I had. I learn that lesson, unfortunately, after about 20 seconds have passed.

We take over around our 40, with 10 seconds on the clock. Carlos sweeps outside to the right and gets 20. Superior clock management shows only 2 seconds off the clock and Carlos stepped out of bounds. Sweep it one more time, Carlos may break it. He tries his hardest, but is stopped at the 20.

Game over.
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Old 09-06-2008, 08:42 PM   #143
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Lessons learned:

Plenty.

1. Bryce needs to know what to do if he's not carrying the ball. He asked me what to do every play he wasn't getting the ball.

2. Hunter may be my biggest headache on the offensive line. I still have to work with the line to get them to understand when to double team a player as well.

3. Carlos = Probably my best back. JD may find himself 3rd when we play the next game.

4. Jacob = fail. Poor kid. Next week he's carrying the ball in the first half. That, at least, is my fault.

5. Work on special teams more. We have just 2 practices a week from here on out. We have to get sharp on those.

6. Focus our defense on outside contain. The ends were getting pushed out of the play. They have to hold their ground. Linebackers failed to fill. We'll line them outside shade from now on. Corners may actually line up outside defensive ends in order to shift our focus to the outside contain.

7. Corners have to be more physical. As you can imagine, Jacob may have been our worst corner as well. Noah may have been a close 2nd. Nick T wasn't very physical, either. Carlos clearly had the best day.

8. Quit letting Coach Bryan make 'helpful' moves to our defense. At one point, he tried using Ray at defensive end. Ray had no motivation to try and play it properly, he'd never practiced there. I later found JD lined up at corner. Honestly, I like that move, but that hurts us up the middle.

9. Inside defense = rock. They did a great job.

10. Monsters took poor angles to the ball. Our last line of defense often got swallowed up somehow.

11. Move our 4 backs on the kick return up to 5 yards behind the 6.

12. Make them run the counter 12 times in a row next week.

13. Re-emphasis the hole for the toss play off-tackle.

14. Emphasize no one gets through our wedge blocking. I think the boys got so excited players were breaking through.

15. Timeouts, I have 3 of them. Remember that. (I do know I was told somewhere it was just two. I was sitting there thinking how much it sucked to have just 2 when I heard Bryan saying we had another)
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Old 09-06-2008, 08:47 PM   #144
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After the game, I got a lot of praise from the opposing coach, as well as the Tiger coaches, who as it turned out, had the game right after us.

I found out later from Coach Haug, my former head coach, (who happened to be in earshot of some of these guys earlier in the day) is that they were expecting to roll over us.

Not so fast my friend.

My brother and his girlfriend made the trip as well. I was glad to have some support out there.

Coach Haug's praise meant the most to me. He even understood the reasoning for giving Jacob the ball, which helped me believe I'm not crazy.

Honestly, despite my 15 lessons learned, we did a pretty good job. If we just learn our assignments, we'll be even better.

I can't wait to watch the film and get working on next week. I'll post stats if I can as I get them tallied.
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Old 09-06-2008, 09:22 PM   #145
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Tough loss Poli, but it sounds like the kids fought hard and should gain some confidence from the game. Getting the counter firmed up will be huge for you.
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Old 09-07-2008, 05:19 PM   #146
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I just got off the phone with the Bulldogs coach. Apparently, his parent's video cut out in the 2nd quarter, and was in a poor location.

So, there goes that. Dang it.

Edit: Turns out David Crocker's family may have some tape of it. I'll cross my fingers.
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Old 09-09-2008, 04:24 PM   #147
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Our schedule's in. Last week's game wasn't a 'home game' for us, but we play four of our first five on the road. We finish with 3 home games.

We might make a few changes defensively, looking to get our best 11 on the field.
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Old 09-10-2008, 07:05 PM   #148
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Our schedule is kind of weird. We don't play those bastage Tigers, which lends itself to another interesting situation. We were immediately asked for a scrimmage yesterday afternoon at practice. I declined, I'd rather get some work with the boys on at least one day.

Below is the schedule. Date, time, Home or Away, League and team.

9/13 10:30 Away SCAC Tigers 1 (1-0, Won 20-0)
9/20 12:00 Away HYFA Blue Hawks (1-0, Won 22-14)
9/27 9:00 Away TCYFA Trojans (1-0, Won 41-6)
10/4 10:30 Away JCYFA Raiders (0-1, Lost 0-39)
10/11 9:15 Home JCYFA Titans (1-0, Won 39-0)
10/18 10:30 Home HYFA White Hawks (0-1, Score Unknown)
10/25 12:00 Home JCYFA Steelers (unknown)
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Old 09-10-2008, 07:09 PM   #149
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SCAC and the JCYFA tend to load up the top teams at the expense of the others. Our first opponent, the Tigers, won convincingly while the other two SCAC teams lost. I'm assuming we're getting the talent-laden team.

I'm not scared of the Blue Hawks as of right now, they beat one of the other SCAC teams for their victory.

The Trojans, well, that's the team we faced in the scrimmage. Nothing to be overly concerned about there. They won big, but over what was likely a JCYFA scrub team.

Of course, I'm looking forward to the Raiders game. That could be a nice one for us, but the following game against the Titans is likely the best JCYFA team. I didn't see the White Hawks game, but I'm told they were unimpressive.

Finally, I have no information at the current time for the Steelers.
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Old 09-10-2008, 07:19 PM   #150
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Changes:

Carlos took over as our right wingback in our offense. Ryan was out with an injured knee, although I don't know how serious it is as of yet. Layne moved to center. Alex moved in at right guard. That could hurt us on the offensive line. I hope Ryan's healthy on Saturday.

Defensively, we moved Ray to linebacker over a tight end. This allows Ray to pummel someone every play (hitting the tight end). I felt Ray got a little exposed on the sweeps to the wide side. He'd get there, but maybe a second too late. I'm planning on using him as a wide side linebacker.

With Ray at linebacker, Nathaniel made the move to corner. He felt it was a demotion, but I convinced him we needed him at corner to help us on the outside. Bryce was moved to monster. One of our fastest kids, he did make a tackle, as a monster, on one of the wide sweeps to 'save' a touchdown. That frees Ashanti up to be a defensive end, where he still struggled at times with his responsibilities.

Defensively, I've become contain crazy. We're moving our corners up, essentially looking like a 10-1. Our corners will now help with that contain responsibility, allowing our ends more freedom to crash. There are situations where we'll call that off, and I think the boys understood that for the most part.

With Ryan out defensively as well, Alex and Nolan switched in and out at the tackle position.

Early results were positive. We'll see on Saturday.

Offensively, we put in a new 'play'. "Crunch" involves our tight ends, fullback, and right wing lining up on the right side. We snap the ball on SET and run behind the crease of a seemingly swinging gate.

The boys picked up on that faster than any play they've ran thus far this season.

The rest of our usual plays actually looked pretty crisp with the first team in there. I wish they had been that sharp Saturday.

Finally, JD was noticeably shaken about his demotion. He run on a toss play ended up way wide. His next attempt resulted in a fumble. I talked to him about why he was moved down after practice. I hope it was enough to keep him motivated.
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