Welcome back, Coaches. We hope you enjoyed your July 4 long weekend.

1. Football Playbook: What Happens When Absolutely Nothing Works (Gobbler County SB Nation)

Coaches — We know the worst-case scenario for any game plan is when your team can’t execute on game day, and the first couple of series are just a collection of meltdown after meltdown.

But what happens when it isn’t exactly a “meltdown”; it’s more like a bowl of mush? Nothing that you try within your game plan is working. Your offense can’t get more than one first down in a row and you haven’t managed to cross their 40. What do you do?

Morale wise, it’s a good idea to get the players at the half, and be positive with them. Not Pollyanna, Joe Pep sort of silly clownish sort of positive, though. That sort of thing gets BS detectors going off and players lose operational respect. This is where it gets tough, and you are going to see what your players are made of, as individuals, units, and a team.

Staying positive is great, but it won’t mean anything unless you show the players how they can improve. To do this, you must have a different game plan for the second half.

Look, pride goeth before the fall. It’s obvious that your game plan is complete poo. It was a thing of beauty an hour ago, during the coach’s pep talk. So you remember that axiom from some old German general… von Moltke… “No plan survives contact with the enemy.” Maybe it’s time to take that advice to heart.

How do you approach the second half when your game plan was a disaster in the first half?

2. What is Nike AeroAdapt? (Nike News)

Here’s a new piece of technology that will interest you. It’s Nike’s latest breakthrough: proprietary material innovation designed to help keep athletes at their optimal temperature so that sweating, overheating or getting chilled won’t interfere with a workout.

Generally, air flow decreases in apparel as you sweat because fabric becomes saturated, but with Nike AeroAdapt it increases. That’s because the moment AeroAdapt senses sweat, the material’s moisture-reactive yarns open the fabric to release body heat and let air in. The wetter the material gets, the more it opens. As the moisture evaporates, the vents close to trap body heat, helping to prevent the athlete from feeling chilled or staying wet during a warm-up or cool down.

Nike AeroAdapt will debut in five garments within the new Nike Pro Collection from Nike Training and two Nike Football garments, expanding Nike’s adaptive product platform to apparel for the first time.

What type of material do your players wear on hot days when they’re not practicing in pads? How does it work?

3. The Coaching Conundrum (Flathead Beacon)

Summer is no break for high school coaches, many of whom are working nearly year-round to keep up with the competition and approaching their breaking point.

In Montana, high school coaches are allowed to work with their student-athletes beginning June 1, and for any coach who wants to field a winning team that means the start of the rigorous summer season, filled with camps, tournaments and travel, all unimpeded by class schedules.

Getting the team together after the school year ends, however, is not without its challenges. For one, the schools themselves are not permitted to assist with the summer grind, so the infrastructure (including activities directors) normally in place to help coordinate travel, equipment and meals, and to communicate with players and parents, is gone. Then there’s the matter of pay, or the lack thereof. No coach is required to get their team together in the summer, so no coach is compensated for the time, and many spend money out of their own pockets to subsidize the team. But no program with even a modicum of on-court or on-field success takes the month of June off, and no successful coach — all hypercompetitive by nature — would dare to skip the summer and forfeit a competitive edge.

Coaches — How do you motivate yourself to do the job year-round when you’re only getting paid for the fall 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!

 

About the author

Dan Guttenplan