Three Cheap and Easy Fundraising Ideas for your Program

Like it or not, money is one of the most important parts of a football program. Without enough money to pay for equipment, a school cannot field a team, and many students may be unable to play. As school budgets become tighter and tighter, and many athletic departments continue to go with pay-for-play models, coaches are always looking for new and creative ways to bring in more money to the program.

That’s why I wanted to share a few things that I believe can work for you. If you’re already doing one or more of these, then you’re way ahead of the game. I hope you’re able to get at least one idea out of this, even if it’s something that’s not mentioned in this post. Learn more after the jump. » Read more

Chip Kelly Podcast Highlights

Chip Kelly recently made an appearance on Ross Tucker’s podcast and talked about the kinds of things the Eagles are trying to accomplish this year, along with discussions about what worked well and what they need to improve on.

As always, Kelly gives meaningful answers to questions without being long-winded, and his take on something has a tendency to seem like the most obvious thing in the world once he’s done explaining it, to the point where you’re wondering why you never thought of it that way.

1407084771000-USP-NFL-Philadelphia-Eagles-Training-Camp » Read more

Developing Leadership and other Tips for Coaches

Summer is upon us, and depending on the state where you currently coach, and depending on the level of competition, you may either have nearly unlimited access to your players or none at all. Regardless, now that the spring semester is coming to a close, most coaches minds have shifted to the fall and how best to prepare.

In the last email I sent out to subscribers, I wanted to know what kind of challenges your teams were facing at this time of the year. Some of the most common responses were about developing leadership, and the kinds of team-building activities a coach can put together for the team. » Read more

Social Media isn’t going away: Why you need to educate Yourself

We all know the perils of social media, especially when it comes to high school and college athletes. Two weeks ago, Pat Welch of Pembroke Academy in New Hampshire put out this tweet, and as a result was stripped of his Player of the Year Award.

Rick Pitino went on the record several weeks ago, putting it very plainly how he feels about social media and those who use it on a regular basis:BgwtvUHIIAAEtMA

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2014 AFCA Notes: David Cutcliffe on Winning

If I had to pick my favorite presentation from the most recent AFCA Convention, it would be a close race between the one Fred Farrier gave about career management and how to best use the convention, and the General Session talk given by Duke Head Coach David Cutcliffe.

The Blue Devils had an incredible season, winning ten games for the first time in school history, making it to the ACC Championship game, and nearly upsetting Johnny Manziel and the Texas A&M Aggies in the Chick-fil-a Bowl.

Anyone who really follows college football however has noticed that the quality of football being played in Durham has been steadily rising each year since Cutcliffe’s arrival in 2008. » Read more

The one mistake you’re making in player Meetings

I was fortunate enough, through a mutual acquaintance, to be able to spend some time with Jerry Glanville last summer, picking his brain about defense, player evaluation, and football in general.

Before we go any further, I can assure you that he is exactly the guy you’ve seen on those NFL Films highlights. He was every bit the wacky, hilarious, and fiery coach that football fans know him as, but make no mistake, the man knows football.FPI703010327AR_b

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Mark Dantonio on the secret to Michigan State’s Success

The Michigan State Spartans broke into the exclusive club of elite college football programs in 2013, winning the Big Ten Championship and the Rose Bowl Game on New Year’s Day, beating two very good football teams along the way in Ohio State and Stanford. The team in East Lansing has been one of the most consistent programs in all of FBS football, with six winning seasons in the past seven years, and beating in-state rival Michigan five of the past six seasons. It’s no accident that the Spartans’ return to prominence coincided with the hiring of Mark Dantonio in 2006. Dantonio has a reputation for a scowling demeanor on the sideline, as well as his membership in the Greg Popovich club of tough halftime interviews. That said, Dantonio is beloved by his players and his assistant coaches, and after listening to him speak at the AFCA Convention in Indianapolis this week, it’s not difficult to see why. » Read more

AFCA 2013 Notes: Gary Barnett on Managing your Players and Protecting your Program

Gary Barnett’s name hasn’t been used a lot on ESPN of late, but the veteran college coach has been around a long time, and had some useful advice for coaches at the Nashville AFCA Convention last year, especially when it came to making sure you’re protecting yourself (legally) as a coach. This is a subject that is not given enough attention in my opinion, since in today’s legalistic environment, a coach that has not adequately protected himself can easily find himself in the middle of a legal battle that basically comes down to hearsay.

Don’t make that mistake. Take Barnett’s advice, create a player handbook and require every kid on the team to sign it, showing that they understand the expectations you have set for them, and that you have taught them the proper way to handle themselves on and off the football field.


Gary Barnett

Former HC Colorado, Northwestern


A. Find out problems before you have the answers

– Don’t go into a new situation with problems from your last job. This will be a new situation with new kids. The only way you can know is by working in the day-to-day operations and by observation.

– “I realized I didn’t know the players at Northwestern. I just knew their names. I made sure by the time spring ball started at Colorado, I knew the kids, their parents, their expectations, by meeting with them and their families one on one.” » Read more

AFCA 2013 Notes: Bill O’Brien on “The Blueprint” and his Keys to Success

As of New Year’s Day, Bill O’Brien is the new head coach of the Houston Texans. There were probably several reasons for this, but it’s clear that a big motivation to leave Happy Valley was all of the political games that O’Brien was tired of playing.

Apparently fed up with all the “Paterno people,” O’Brien returns to the NFL, and takes over a Houston team that most assumed would be hosting a playoff game this weekend, and not hiring a new head coach.

Given all of the unprecedented drama of the past couple of years at Penn State, it’s probably fair to say that O’Brien did about as well as could be expected, since he had to field a Big Ten team with about half the scholarships of the rest of his opponents. Still, no matter what your feelings are about him taking another job before the Nittany Lion football team emerged from sanctions, there’s no doubt that at least in some small way, he has helped clean up the image of Penn State Football.

Read on to learn what he had to say at last year’s AFCA Convention in Nashville, fresh off an impressive season, and after winning Coach of the Year. » Read more