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An Inside Look Into College Coaching


The winner of the “Living with Sportz” Fan of the Day for November 16th is Steve Tate. Steve shares so many photos of his experiences every weekend following his beloved GB Packers. Steve has been a promoter and fan of Living with Sportz for some time. I am proud to call Steve a friend. Steve is definitely “Living with Sportz.” Congrats Steve!!!

DO NOT MISS—Living with Sportz Radio is Tuesday Night. The Radio Show will be on at 8ET/ 7CT/ 6MT/ 5PT every Tuesday. What a great radio show I have planned for Tuesday night. Special Guest, Fletcher Cockrell, will join me for an unbelievable interview. Cockrell is a former college basketball coach and is now a lawyer and agent. He was heavily involved in the New Mexico State scandal and will give an up close view of recruiting issues today. He authored the book, “Dismissed with Prejudice” that is a fictional account of illegal college recruiting. We will talk about stories of Reggie Bush, OJ Mayo, Maurice Clarrett and even Cam Newton. We also will talk about the Toledo point shaving scandal, the Baylor Basketball murder and so many more stories of the problems with college athletics. We will also have our weekly visit from Cool Mike. I will have my opinions on the NFL and College Football Seasons and the beloved BCS. There may be a surprise or two along the way.

I want to thank everyone that has donated to “Living with Sportz.” I know times are tough and for you to dig in your pockets to support “Living with Sportz” is very much appreciated. I will always keep your donations anonymous but please forgive me for wanting to thank you publicly. We are all “Living with Sportz” Hit that donate button–PLEASE

The Living with Sportz College TOP PICKS go 5-2 on Saturday and then the NFL TOP PICKS go 4-1. A Great Weekend going 9-3. The College Football Top Pick is 9-1 this season. Good Luck next weekend.

Coryell Factor: In 1975, the “Cardiac Cardinals” won seven times in the game’s last minute. Don Coryell, Hall of Fame 2011

Today’s article “An Inside Look Into College Coaching” was written by my son, Ryan. He is currently the defensive line coach at Chowan University in Murfreesboro, NC. Thank you for the article, Ryan.

As many devoted readers of LWS already know, I am following in my father’s footsteps of pursuing a career in the sporting world. Where my father’s passions led him to umpiring baseball, my passions have been in coaching football. This article is not to tell you the already well documented career I have had in college football. Rather, it is to expose the followers of LWS to an inside look at coaching that others don’t see.

I began my career in coaching at the high school level and, though I enjoyed it and it truly started my passion for teaching young men the game, the high school level was not where my heart was at. Growing up, when my father was no longer umpiring and instead working in the car business, I had free reign of the TV on Saturdays. Dad was always working and so I could have an inside scoop to the world of college football he could not. This is perhaps why my mock drafts and draft predictions were historically better than his and probably still are, haha. Regardless of how long his Saturday may have been, he was always home in time for the PAC 10 game of the week that night. We would sit at the TV and discuss Arizona’s quarterback play or how Washington States Defensive Backs weren’t pressing correctly and break down and analyze the games. We had no affiliation to any of these teams and so, therefore, we analyzed it as coaches would.

By the time Sunday rolled around, my father and I were in fan mode. I would throw on my Green Bay Leroy Butler jersey (I only wore defensive players jerseys growing up) and my cheesehead. My mother would set out a Kaukauna Cheese ball and crackers and the TV was football from sunup to sundown. I was in total “fan mode” which is different from coach mode. I suppose that is why the NFL has never seemed like a coaching league. To me, I always viewed the NFL as a fan and the college game as a coach. All of these were factors which led me to be a college coach and defensive coach at that.

As for coaching at the collegiate level, you may be used to seeing the glitz and glamor of Nick Saban and Urban Meyer. This is such a small aspect of what the majority of coaches have. I have coached at the division 1 level, as well as Division 2 and Junior College levels. The first fact is that, for the most part, we coaches are not football fans. Knowing so much about the inner workings of the game forces us to lose some of our love for it. Also, I cannot remember the last Saturday or Sunday that I had time to sit down and watch football. Football coaches find other sports to follow that exist in the off-season. The current staff I am on will have lengthy conversations in the off-season about Major League Baseball. We each have our teams and have the time to discuss things like Cy Young contenders and how far out of the Wild Card certain teams may be. Conversations about the NFL are short and sound something like “Did the Browns win last week?” followed by “I think so.”

This is not to say we don’t follow the coaching situations very closely. Every coach in America has http://www.footballscoop.com programmed into their favorites on their computer. We will discuss at length the job openings or the coaches on the hot seat or which Athletic directors are tyrants. As a college football coach, you are part of a fraternity and we all have each others backs. Which leads me to my next point; College football coaches do not hate each other the way fans do. This isn’t the era of the 10 Year War between Schembechler and Hayes. Nowadays, you will see Ohio State Coaches socializing and drinking with Michigan coaches at the AFCA (American Football Coaches Association) Convention. We are all about the gossip like a knitting circle and we share techniques and strategies openly. We realize that our ultimate goal is to win games but we also want our buddies to win.

My final subject that I will touch on is one which my father has presented and, as usual, I disagree with his opinion. I have recruited “problem kids” or questionable personality players. Heck, I have coached convicted felons. My father and many others feel that we, as coaches, should be punished or held accountable for a player that had a checkered past and continues on his problematic past. In some cases, this is probably true. I am an optimist. I see a kid who has struggled in the classroom or has made some bad decisions and it is usually because of a poor family situation. My optimistic mind believes that if we put him into our football family and I give the young man some guidance, he may reform. It is a risk I am willing to take because seeing a young man who came from nothing walk across the stage with a degree is an unbelievable feeling. Furthermore, there is a saying that the more “high maintenance” a kid is, the better football player he is. This is not 100% accurate but in many instances, it is dead on.

I hope you enjoyed this look into the coaching world and there is plenty more I could go into. If you are interested in more facts and tidbits, just send your questions or comments to my Dad and hopefully I will be able to do a follow up in the future. Thank you for your time.

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About livingwithsportz

I was a professional baseball umpire for 11 seasons from 1979-1989. I follow all sports and read and study everything to do with all aspects of sport. I am now a 50 yr old man who feels the need for a new career and am hoping to get into the sports information age. I love starting discussions about controversial sports and life subjects. I am originally from Wisconsin. I am a diehard cheesehead and have been a lifelong Packer and Badger fan. I have lived all over the country and hope to give an interesting perspective to sports.

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