FNF Coaches Talk for Friday, Nov. 23

Happy Friday, Coaches. We hope you had a great Thanksgiving. Here are some of the stories we’re talking about today in our newsroom.

1. The ‘Sneaking Leftovers’: Play Calling Advice For Your Thanksgiving Turkey Bowl (CBS Pittsburgh)

Receiving play-calling advice from a coach of a back-to-back league champion never hurts, and in this case, the advice comes from Pine-Richland High (Pa.) head coach Eric Kasperowicz. CBS Pittsburgh asked the back-to-back 6A WPIAL champion coach to share two play calls for coaches who have games on Thanksgiving weekend.

Kasperowicz first offered an offensive play call for a team facing man coverage.

Designed to defeat man coverage, he first drew up “Raptor.” It’s a pick route where the center runs deep down the middle. That’s a decoy. Your main receiver uses that route to lose the defender in coverage.

In short-yardage situations, Kasperowicz recommends a call that Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll dialed up — infamously — in a Super Bowl against the Patriots.

Need to convert a third and short? On the goal line and need to score? Bring your receiver in motion and dial up “Rub.” “Two slants, creating some picks or rubs. Ideally, this guy is going to be chasing him across and he’s not going to be able to get through this,” said Kasperowicz.

If you could share one play with coaches who are still vying for state titles, what would it be?

2. Patience, social media fame pays off for Reynolds’ Jhari Patterson (Citizen Times)

Here’s an interesting story that high school coaches might want to consider when it comes to a talented player with college football aspirations who isn’t receiving much playing time. We always struggle to find a bright side for talented young players who are stuck behind veteran leaders on the depth chart, but the case of Reynolds (N.C.) junior Jhari Patterson offers inspiration.

As a sophomore receiver, Patterson wasn’t getting much playing time, but he did get opportunities on special teams as a kick returner.

The popular Twitter page Overtime – a sports site that distributes top high school football and basketball highlights from across the country – shared a 15 second clip of Patterson’s kickoff return touchdown in an Oct. 12 win against Asheville High. The video shows Patterson using quick cuts and speed to elude several defenders and on the way to the end zone. As he enters the end zone, he throws up a peace sign to a trailing defender. It was a statement to the entire area: No one is going to catch me.

Patterson has since received a slew of D1 offers, so it appears a bit of self-promotion paid off. Perhaps coaches should encourage young players who aren’t getting much playing time to make the most of their opportunities — and then promote themselves through social media when the situation calls for it.

Here’s the video of Patterson’s return.

How do you use social media to promote your program and players?

3. Football coaches’ wives have a calling, too: ‘It’s very helpful that we get it’ (Greenville News)

We all have experienced the pitfalls of trying to balance coaching with family, and this article provides a nice look at how some coaches have successfully pulled it off. Greenville (N.C.) coach David Crane encourages other coaches to be intentional about creating a schedule at home, and make sure they’re making up for lost time outside of the fall season.

“I like to think we make a pretty good team,” David Crane said. “In the fall, she kind of runs things on the home front and lets me do my football deal, and then in the spring when it’s softball time, we kind of tag and switch roles a little bit, and I try to take care of some things on the home front.” “We do run into some issues in the offseason, so in the summer we really have to keep a family calendar of who has to be where at what time,” Elizabeth said. “But we have tremendous support from our family and our friends.

Crane’s wife, Elizabeth, also shares a common source of tension for coaches and their wives: complaining parents. Elizabeth has learned that sometimes it’s better to get up and walk away rather than to respond to the critics.

Few coaches are immune to the scrutiny of fans, and because football is the most high-profile of sports, the level is elevated. “For me, there are days when it’s really easy for me to sit and be quiet and not really get too involved in what other people have to say, and then there are days that I have to get up and walk off for fear that I’m going to say something that I probably shouldn’t,” Elizabeth Crane said.

What advice would you give young coaches in regards to balancing football and family?

What’s driving the conversation in your locker room? Email Managing Editor Dan Guttenplan or Tweet us @fnfcoaches. Don’t forget to use that hashtag #FNFCoachesTalk!