FNF Coaches Talk — Fundraising alternatives, NCAA guidelines, a QB-chess guru

FNF Coaches Talk

Happy Friday, Coach! Enjoy the weekend (after reading this stories).

1. The COVID-19 Impact: In pandemic and economic downturn, high school teams face challenges with fundraisers, if they have any at all (The Sentinel)

First of all, before we get into this story, we want to say we recognize that fundraising is a near impossible feat these days. So, we’ve tried to make it easier by setting up an online platform that will accept donations from your program’s supporters. Then, we’ll give you 90 percent of the proceeds with quick payments.

Here’s the link; you should try it out.

Back to the story …

In Pennsylvania, teams and booster clubs are left to wonder what options they even have to fundraise this year.

Bubblers football coach Brad Zell and Greyhounds baseball coach Brian Etter each expressed their disappointments in not being able to raise funds for some new equipment going into the new season — thanks in large part to the coronavirus pandemic making traditional fundraising efforts difficult or impossible and forcing an economic downturn that has lasted months.

“We will not fundraise any more than we have in the past,” Boiling Springs head football coach Brad Zell said. “It may have set us back some but that’s a minor setback. We are very lucky to able to fundraise the way we do and have the support of our community in doing so. We can’t overwhelm those people, especially with all that is going on right now.”

High school sports programs were allowed to start offseason workouts June 10, and athletic departments just got their safety guidelines approved at the end of June. Before that, teams were forced to shut down various activities they were doing to raise money for their club, like summer camps or community dine-in dinners where teams got a percentage of the sales.

In turn, the funds teams brought in to buy necessities or equipment for the new season dwindled.

“We really kind of discouraged any fundraising at this time,” Cedar Cliff athletic director John Kosydar said. “We’re trying to be really sensitive to the businesses in our area. We know there are a lot of businesses that are hurting. We’ve kind of told our teams and programs that we don’t want them fundraising at this time.”
“We don’t want to necessarily have our [teams] going out in the communities during this,” Mechanicsburg athletic director Seth Pehanich said. “A lot of times fundraisers come down to families [contributing].”

Read the entire story.

How are you making up for the loss of fundraising opportunities this spring and summer?

2. NCAA releases guidelines for return to play (NCAA)

The NCAA has released their latest plan and guidelines for a return to play plan.

The following guidelines and practices are things that schools should consider as they continue to develop their own plans for their athletes and athletic programs.

Key takeaways from the guidance include:

  • Asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic spread of COVID-19 is common in young adults.
  • COVID-19 remains high risk for certain individuals, including those with a Body Mass Index of 30 or greater.
  • Testing strategies should be implemented for all athletics activities, including pre-season, regular season and post-season.
  • Testing and results should be obtained within 72 hours of competition in high contact risk sports.
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) testing is the preferred method of testing, but alternative strategies will be considered as testing technology evolves.
  • Daily self-health checks should be performed by all student-athletes and athletics personnel before entering any athletics facility.
  • Physical distancing and masks/cloth face coverings are an integral part of athletics, and should be practiced whenever feasible.
  • Although face shields are not proven to offer the same risk mitigation as masks/cloth face coverings, they should be integrated into sport where feasible.
  • Universal masking should be observed on all sidelines, including when an athlete moves from the playing field to the sideline to confer with a coach.
  • Training should occur outdoors.  When not feasible, indoor training with good ventilation is preferable to indoor training with poor ventilation.
  • Hand sanitization, cough/sneeze etiquette, physical distancing and masks/cloth face coverings are key in COVID-19 risk mitigation.
  • Time-based strategies for resuming activities after positive test results should follow CDC recommendations.
  • All individuals with high-risk exposure must be quarantined for 14 days.
  • All student-athletes and athletics personnel should understand that COVID-19 risk mitigation practices should be observed at ALL times, including non-athletic related activities.

Check out the entire story.

What will you take from the NCAA’s latest guidelines?

3. Seth Makowsky takes quarterbacks’ thinking from checkers to chess (The Athletic)

This is a crazy story about a chess coach becoming a certified NFL QB guru.

Seth Makowsky never had any interest in football. He never even watched a game. A chess coach, Makowsky was 41 the first time the sport ever really caught his eye.

It was Feb. 4, 2018, and Makowsky had friends over at his Beverly Hills home watching Super Bowl LII between the Eagles and the Patriots. He kept noticing how one of the announcers, NBC analyst Cris Collinsworth, dropped what seemed like a half-dozen chess references over the course of the three-hour plus broadcast. Makowsky, who had been using principles he’d learned from chess to help his Poison Pawn business coaching and consulting clients boost their bottom lines, was suddenly intrigued.

“It just became clear to me that people saw it as just a metaphor for football, but it’s really more than that,” Makowsky said. “It’s real. It became so profound to me that it prompted me to go deeper and deeper.”

Just how deep? In the two years since he watched his first football game, Makowsky keeps popping up in the Instagram accounts of many of the sport’s top young quarterbacks and has emerged as a confidant and the most unique QB guru in football. He helped Dwayne Haskins produce a record-setting debut season at Ohio State in 2018, has become a go-to guy for Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson as his NFL career continues to ascend and has a pilot program running with UCLA football, where more than just quarterbacks swear by him for their development.

Read the full story.

How do you incorporate an outsiders’ point of view in your program?

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