Golden Eagle Defense: Plan, Preparation, & Practice Jamie Plenkovich, Ferndale H.S.

(WA) 2008 Nike Coach of the Year Clinic Saturday, March 8, 2008 ***1st session of 2-session presentation; see powerpoint of presentation for more info [“Def. Philosophy, Plan, Prep, Practice, Plenkovich, Ferndale (WA) HS”] Quality, not quantity ·not much football stuff in off-season – keeps them fresh for playoffs, mentally & physically (whet their appetite) ·fewer injuries Multi-sport athletes – will be better football players ·don’t make players choose between sports ·2005 state championship team – all 22 starters were multi-sport athletes;11 of 22 starters were 3-sport athletes Keep continuity in coaching staff ·as head coach, can’t have an ego ·want ideas & challenges from assistants Program Goals ·win our league title every year ·let chips fall where they may in playoffs ·known for sportsmanship & class Weight-training – get in class day so don’t have to have come in before school or conflict with other sports by opening after school Spring Football ·8 practices, no pads ·relaxed environment ·focus on offensive side ·work with demands of other sports ·finish with 7-on-7 tourney Summer Football ·no summer camp; has done in past for chemistry good for concerns ·team chemistry ·injuries ·seeing particular kids under fire ·money spent by kid/family ·weight room open 3 days/week; am & pm sessions; no roll taken ·QB’s & Rec.’s throw on own ·kids camp for 4th – 8th graders; HS players serve as counselors Program emphasis – Defensive team 1st Plenkovich 2008, p. 1

Defensive Philosophy Guess as little as possible (team mission statement) ·preparation ·scheme – keep it simple Defensive scheme ·disciplined, reading defense ·reset LOS @ offensive heels ·make sure sound vs. every formation ·gap control ·keys change week to week ·start with lower levels: no blitz, learn reads (O-line 1st, backfield 2nd), even @ cost of poor overall W-L record Don’t treat defense like offense ·not calling plays on defense ·don’t change just to change Be simple: don’t think – react Smarts, quickness, & playmakers valued over size 7- or 8-man front ·2 things determine what front to play: 1) key opponents on your schedule a. who do you HAVE to beat? b. adjust front vs. weaker opponents c. fewest front adjustments vs. best teams 2) personnel – be flexible Preparation ·film, film, film – 5 - 9 films per opponent; compare last 3 weeks vs. whole season – someone on staff see them live – send scout to EVERY game of key opponents – frosh coaches must scout ·bulk of practice time spent on defense ·player expectations – expect to know scout report – do homework: film study & scouting report – cut-ups to players – listen to players ·weekend work – no players over weekend; let them re-charge – Sunday: 8 a.m. coaches meeting film progression Plenkovich 2008, p. 2

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