Assisting to be a better Head Coach in Youth Football

You must learn how to serve first to be a great leader.  I’ve always heard that philosophy but I was not a true believer until this football season in Keller Tx just North of Ft Worth.  I moved to Keller this past summer and was too late for a Head Coaching spot.  The HC of my oldest son’s team asked me to assist with the offensive line after 3 games of poor blocking.  I also helped a bit with my youngest son’s Keller Select football team.  Since I was not a Head Coach this season, I told myself to watch, listen and learn this season, and that’s what I did.

Here are a few quick points I learned as a parent and an assisted coach to be a better Head Coach:

  1. Over Communicate and then communicate again
  2. Organize practice before practice
  3. Assistant coaches can not read the head coach’s mind
  4. Adjust coaching staff if it’s not working
  5. Each player has a different motivation
  6. You can’t coach everyone the same
  7. Head Coaches can not be late to practice or games on a regular basis
  8. Different coaches see different player skills
  9. Parents want feedback on their children – report  card
  10. If you don’t practice that situation, you will not perform that situation well in a game
  11. Repetition, Repetition, Repetition
  12. Head coach is not perfect and neither am I

What have you learned from serving as an assistant coach that you will implement as a head coach in youth football?

Coach Parker
Keller, TX

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  1. #7 Surprises me. Coach P was always the first to practice and the games.

    #2 has been an issue for every head coach I have worked with. In fact, I actually had someone criticize how detailed I planned out my portion of the practice. Thing is, I always got in what I wanted to cover in the amount of time that i had 🙂 No ‘padding’ for me unless the other coaches were still flailing around trying to finish their drills.

    #5 – I wish so many of them werent playing to please their overbearing parents. It kills me to see a kid who is not really having fun but is being pushed by their parent.

    #10 – PREACH! Special Teams and hurry up offense are not something that kids will just know how to do if you dont practice it!!!

    #11 – I started getting less and less indie time with my line as the season went on and the little things that we did very well at the beginning of the season started getting sloppier and sloppier. Stance, start, fit….all that stuff has to be in EVERY practice for the line or they just start freelancing.

    Great notes coach! Good luck in the spring! I am buried in DW sites trying to see how I need to change my drills for that offense.

  2. What I have learned as an assistant that made me a better Head Coach was the I was allowed and encouraged to give input. By giving input I felt more involved in the game and its outcome. I was more than a bench coach, I had my assignment and was expected to coach it well. I was accountable to it to the Head Coach. Since I became a Head Coach I gave the same responsibilties to my assistants. I had the final say, but I was not a dicatator. I give them input and was able to attract the best coaches because of this philosophy! The Team wins!

  3. Im new at this bloging thing but i need to get my point out to people some way. Hi my name is Devin and I want to play on my local youth footbal team. I have everything down pack but the coaches realy dont want me on the team because im a girl and they underestimate my strenth. At my school when they think of strong people i get ranked up with most of the boys, in gym im the fastest running and climbing. I can trough so far but im not a strong catcher. I dont know every little rule and play of footbal but i know the basics. and what i dont know the coach can teach me i dont even expect any kind of special treatment. im not shure if i should even try and sign up agin this spring.

    1. I am old school on this issue. I think girls should play against other girls. I don’t think there is anything wrong with you wanting to play football. Find a girls football team and play. Thanks Coach Parker

  4. #12 well stated………

    It takes some people longer to understand some things and shorter to understand others. Always remember that you are a volunteer and that friendships are way more important than 4th and inches…well most of the time…lol

  5. I have been coaching youth football for 15 years and I was always content to be an assistant coach. I would tell my head coaches I have no desire to be a head coach. I didn’t want to have to deal with the politics of the league and the head aches of dealing with the parents. All I wanted to do was go out and teach the youth the game of football (selfish maybe but honest). But last year my head coach was put in a position where he had to give up a team WE had worked so hard to build and at that point I had to make a decission. Let the team be dissband or take over as head coach. So after consulting with my family (because after all they would be making the biggest sacrafice) I would just be doing what I love I made the choice to step up and take the job. My head coach and friend reassured me that I could handle it. Long story short I took my team to the BOWL game and we had a fantastic season. I found that after so many years of working with great coaches and being an assistant really made this change a blessing for me. I brought in a couple new assistants and re deligated a couple of the existing assistants lined out our goals and turned them lose. I of course monitored and interjected where needed. But for the most part I let them do there job. Something my friend and previous head coach had done for me. I absolutly agree with the list put together but I must say Coach Parker didn’t need to be an assistant to learn these things. These are things he had already done but maybe didn’t know it. You see I can say this for fact as Coach Parker is the head coach that had to leave our team.

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