FNF Coaches Talk for September 21

It’s Friday. It’s game night. Let’s get it on.

Here’s what’s fueling our conversations today.

1. 5 Core Exercises Young Athletes Should Be Using Instead of Sit-Ups (Stack.com)

If you know any real hardcore gym rats, you’ve likely gotten a mouthful of this before. Most “core training” for young athletes is just sit-ups, sit-ups, and sit-ups, followed immediately by more sit-ups. At best it’s inefficient, and at it’s worst, it can do lasting harm to the athlete.

Strength and conditioning coach Erica Suter writes at Stack.com:

“The functional anatomy of the core is a multitude of muscle groups working together to transfer force (whether that force involve changing direction, throwing, kicking, etc.) or resist force (holding off opponent, decelerating safely, etc.). Very rarely are sport-specific actions done with the core moving into as much flexion as a Sit-Up.”

Again, nothing you haven’t heard before. But what we’re digging about Suter’s guide is that it isn’t just another article telling you “you’re doing it wrong,” nor is it a vague list of tips and tricks. Suter has assembled a complete and detailed list of exercises and activities that can be put together and incorporated however you need into your existing programs.

Own Up: Are you still building programs and training on the All Sit-Up Diet? How do you help your players work on their core in a way that more efficiently meets the needs of their play?

2. Recruiting Column: South Dakota State football coach John Stiegelmeier talks recruiting (USA Today)

This one gets straight to one of the core pillars of the job: putting your players in a position to succeed at the maximum level possible. That means recruitment.

Here Playced‘s Ross Hawley talks to South Dakota State’s football coach about “How would a recruit go about landing on your radar?”

“It’s through their high school coach. It really is that simple for us. High school coaches are the lifeblood to college football.”

Hello. You’ve got our attention now.

“We honor and take the relationships we have them very seriously. If a high school coach wants us to look at one of their guys, we’re going to put sometime into evaluating that young man. We will definitely communicate our assessment and feelings about the player and make sure that high school coach is getting what he needs from us. Without a doubt, if you want to land on our radar, have your high school coach reach out to us.”

And there it is. It’s on us.

You know the player. You’ve seen their development, you’ve lived through their performance. You own the wins, the losses, the growth, and the setbacks. When you speak, the recruiters listen.

Look Forward: Who on your squad is standing out this season? Do you know who to reach out to on their behalf? What’s your role in their future?

3. Touchdowns Against Cancer: Coaches fight back (MaxPreps)

Finally, it’s Friday, so let’s cap it off with some good old fashioned Good News. Kevin Askeland has done some excellent reporting at MaxPreps:

“Maberry’s and Mauk’s stories are similar to the stories of many high school coaches throughout the country who battle cancer. The sport they coach is very much a part of the healing process, whether it’s the support of the players and the community or the motivation to get back on the sidelines.”

Askeland tells the story of these two coaches, and how the sport impacted them each individually.

“I despise cancer, but I also view it as a blessing in my life,” he said. “I was truly overwhelmed by the support of the community and the coaching fraternity. God used them to pick me up time and time again. The amount of support I received was unbelievable. I saw the goodness in people and how they can love on you! I also enjoy every moment so much more! I had the best summer ever with my family because I appreciate them so much more now.”

What’s more, MaxPreps has teamed with St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital as part of their Touchdowns Against Cancer program. You can get involved with your team here.

Personal Reflection: How has your involvement in the sport affected your life? How have you succeeded thanks to the support of the coaching community?

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!