Welcome back, Coaches. We’ve got a few stories for you, including an important one we put together today.
1. Your live database for high school football return dates (FNF Coaches)
This took some time to put together so we hope it becomes a resource for you!
All across the country, state athletic association administrators are being tasked with scheduling the high school football season in a safe and substantive way.
Some states are pushing ahead with high school football this fall, while others are rescheduling for the winter or spring seasons. Throughout the coming months, we will try to give you a one-stop shop to find out when teams from each state will be playing football — if at all — this school year.
As more information becomes available, we will update this list.
What is the biggest adjustment you’ll make this season due to the schedule changes?
2. H.S. football this fall: Is 7-on-7 the answer? (WCAX 3 Vermont)
When we were going through the state-by-state breakdown above, we discovered that Vermont’s athletic association has switched to a 7-on-7 touch format for the fall season.
The answer to limiting the spread of the virus is likely 7-on-7. 7-on-7 football is popular for both training purposes and competition throughout the country. It’s essentially a passing game, with no offensive or defensive lineman outside a center to snap the ball, and is also played without blocking or tackling.
St. Johnsbury head coach Rich Alercio is one of the biggest proponents of 7-on-7 football in Vermont. St. J has held a summer 7-on-7 tournament the past few years that has brought in teams from other schools in the state, and the Hilltoppers have also traveled to 7-on-7 tournaments in other parts of the Northeast.
Given the likely restrictions on close contact and other health and safety challenges that could be in place this fall, Alercio feels 7-on-7 would be the ideal way to get high school football on the field this season.
“The center snaps the ball to the quarterback, the quarterback as two seconds to go through their reads. There’s no running and you just pass the ball.”, says Alercio. “There’s almost no situation where there’s going to be a lot of people together and because seven on seven is usually played with one hand touch, the closest somebody gets to somebody else is an arms length and it happens and then they go in different directions. So you can play the game and socially distance.”
How would you feel about playing 7 on 7 this season if the choices are that or nothing?
3. Purdue coach Jeff Brohm’s spring football plan sparks optimism in Big Ten coaches (Big Red Today)
If you’re considering mounting a campaign for spring football, this is an important read for you.
Less than 48 hours after the Big Ten canceled its fall sports seasons, Purdue coach Jeff Brohm unveiled the most detailed plan to date Thursday for how two football seasons could realistically — and safely — be played during the 2021 calendar year.
Brohm, in his seventh year as an FBS coach, crafted a seven-page proposal that calls for an eight-game spring schedule from Feb. 27 through April 17. The ensuing fall season would start Oct. 2 — a month later than usual — and include 10 contests through Dec. 11.
The ramp-up to spring would begin with a two-week training period running Jan. 16 through 29, then a four-week training camp Jan. 30 through Feb. 26. The spring campaign would include no bye weeks, followed by two weeks until a postseason in early May.
The Big Ten spring schedule would feature six divisional games and two crossover games, taking rivalries into consideration. One possibility is for the eighth game to match the top teams from the East and West, the No. 2 teams on both sides and so on to determine a league champion. For weather purposes, southernmost schools would host games the first two weeks and northern teams would be at home Weeks 6 and 7.
Football games would be played Saturdays while college basketball games would follow Sundays.
What is the best plan you’ve heard for implementing a spring football season?
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