FNF Coaches Talk for Oct. 31

Happy Halloween, Coaches! We hope your kids share plenty of candy with you tonight. Here are some of the stories we’re talking about in our newsroom.

1. WATCH: Mike Leach shares his thoughts on Halloween, and they’re as hilarious as you’d expect (Saturday Down South)

We figure we’ll start you up with a Halloween-themed funny coaching video. This is Washington State coach Mike Leach sharing his Halloween memories with a pack of reporters during a press conference earlier this week.

The part about stripper costumes got everyone’s attention, but we actually love his breakdown of the preferred functionality of a costume.

“Mobility, make sure you have mobility with your costume. Make sure you can get around.”

As always, funny stuff from Coach Leach.

How will you incorporate Halloween into a team-building activity this year?

2. Alabama Coach L.C. Cole boasts a football life unlike any other (oanow.com)

Would you have any interest in reading a story about a lifelong coach who was recruited by legendary coaches Tom Osborne, Bo Schembechler, Lee Corso and Woody Hayes, then served as a position coach under Nick Saban, an intern under Bill Belichick, and has held more than a dozen coaching jobs since? If so, this story about Loachapoka High (Ala.) coach L.C. Cole is a must-read.

The anecdotes really make the story, particularly this one about serving as a running backs coach under Saban at Toledo in 1990.

Cole’s responsibility was guiding the players through a jump rope session. Saban took notes as he walked among the different stations of players, which included Cole’s group of tripped-up and flustered men.
Cole entered a coaches meeting later on and found the only empty seat was the one stationed beside Saban’s. He soon realized why, as the head coach began the conference by blasting Cole for the lackluster performance of his Double-Dutching dudes.
“That next morning, those guys were turning that rope, I can guarantee you that,” Cole said.

For those that have seen Saban ream out assistants on the sidelines in recent years (i.e. Lane Kiffin), this story doesn’t seem so out of character for Saban. Here’s another Cole memory that falls pretty much in line with what we’ve heard about former Ohio State coach Woody Hayes.

Cole flew to Michigan for a visit with Wolverines head coach Bo Schembechler and returned to Dayton as the proud owner of a gold shirt with “Michigan” emblazoned across it. Cole was so enamored with the shirt that he decided to wear it on Monday; Hayes, who likely caught wind of a Buckeye target checking out Ann Arbor, decided to show up at Paul Dunbar that day.
Cole was oblivious to what was going on when the school’s intercom ordered him to the teacher’s lounge. There, he came face-to-face with Hayes, who was less than amused with Cole’s outfit choice.
“As soon as I came in with that Michigan shirt on, he grabbed me,” Cole said. “He picked me right up off the ground and asked me, ‘What the hell are you doing with that Michigan shirt on?’ I couldn’t even talk. I just told him, ‘If you put me down, I can explain.’”

The story is packed with anecdotes like those, so give it a read if you like behind-the-scenes looks at some legendary coaches.

In what ways have your mentors influenced your coaching style?

3. Why is football helmet reconditioning important? (USA Football Blogs)

We’re getting close to the end of the season for many teams, so it’s a good time to take stock of your equipment. USA Football published a blog this week about helmet reconditioning. Helmet manufacturer Riddell recommends having this done every year.

“Throughout the course of a season, helmets endure the rigors of football – practice, games, heat, sweat, scratches, lockers and damage to decals. To ensure proper safety, it’s important that helmets are inspected and tested in multiple ways, multiple times, including air liner tests and meticulous shell inspections,” Riddell Vice President of Sales Kyle Borland said.
“Annual maintenance prolongs the effective life of the equipment, advances player protection, stabilizes budgets and can reduce athletic program costs in the long run. Annual reconditioning ensures that every athlete is issued clean, sanitized, inspected, repaired and recertified equipment.”

The price of reconditioning helmets is negotiable through Riddell, depending on whether you decide to ship individual helmets or the entire team selection. If you choose to recondition all of the team’s helmets, the price is about $40 to $50 per helmet.

“Reconditioning costs are determined based on individual helmet assessment by Riddell staff to determine need for replacement parts, painting, cleaning, and re-certifying,” Borland said. “Typically for individuals reconditioning their helmets, they’re anywhere from $60 to $100. Whole team reconditioning can differ, but average cost per helmet is around $40 to $50 and can be less for entry-level youth helmets.”

What is your process for having your helmets reconditioned?

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!