FNF Coaches Talk — Iowa State Coach on Lifestyle Commitments, the HS Coach of the Year, Twitter Influencers of HS Football

Good afternoon, Coaches. We hope you’re off to a productive start in your offseason. Here are three stories for you.

1. Iowa State wrestling coach talks about the downside of micromanaging athletes (IA Wrestle)

This isn’t a football story, but it is most certainly a coaching story.  What do you do when your athletes aren’t committing to a lifestyle that will help them achieve their goals in competition?

In the case of this team, the coach decides to micromanage his athletes.

Iowa State wrestling coach Kevin Dresser was a high school coach for 18 years in Virginia before he began coaching in college.

Starting Monday, he’s going back to his roots and will start coaching Iowa State like a high school team.

Iowa State lost to Oklahoma State 23-9 on Sunday, and Dresser didn’t like what he saw at most weights.

“I read this to them earlier this year, ‘Coaching isn’t about holding people accountable, it’s about teaching them to hold themselves accountable,’” Dresser said. “When you coach high school kids you have to teach them everything. You have to teach them how to put their sweats on and how to take their sweats off, you have to teach them how to measure their food out — you have to micro manage them like crazy. Hopefully by the time they’re seniors you don’t have to micro manage them as much but because of maturity reasons, some of them have to be micromanaged all the way through.
“You shouldn’t have to do that too much in college but this team, starting (Monday) morning at 6:30, is going to be micromanaged. We’re going to put them on the scale like ninth graders every day — multiple times a day.”

Dresser preaches about “the little things” which he considers things like weight management, sleep and doing the right things every day.

“I let them do it their way, and it’s not working,” Dresser said. “I’m saying that as an overall team — obviously we have some individuals that are doing some good things. But we have guys that need to be held accountable. We have guys that want to do it their way and their way isn’t working.
“It wasn’t that our effort was terrible today but you can’t fake it when you don’t feel good in the third period. It’s not one major thing that’s wrong, it’s a whole bunch of little things that add up in this sport that are getting us right now.”

What do you do when you have an athlete who is not living a lifestyle that is conducive to success on the field?

2. Georgia coach named 2019 Don Shula NFL H.S. Coach of the Year (NFL.com)

The NFL announced head football coach Matt Land of Dalton High School in Dalton, Ga., as the 2019 Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year.

The award recognizes exemplary high school football coaches for their character and integrity, leadership and dedication to the community, commitment to player health and safety and on-field success.

Nominees for the Don Shula Award from all 32 clubs were invited and recognized in special ways during the NFL’s week-long celebration of football at the Pro Bowl in Orlando. Throughout the week, coaches received VIP access at various events such as Pro Bowl practices, the Play Football High School Skills Showdown and Pro Bowl, where they were able to engage with fellow nominees and members of the football community.

“Just to be mentioned in the phrase Don Shula is an honor in itself,” said 2019 Don Shula NFL High School Coach of the Year Matt Land. “I think just the recognition of what the award stands for–it stands for integrity, achievement and making a difference in your community. That’s why I coach. I love wins. I love championships, but at the end of the day, I want to see kids’ lives changed. I thank God that this is the way that he lets me do it.”

Coach Land became a member of the Dalton High School family more than 25 years ago. A graduate of the 1988 class, he was a part of three football sub region championships, a 34-4-1 record, and was voted captain his senior year. Coach Land walked on at Auburn University as a defensive back, spending four years as a player, and one year as a student assistant coach to the defense. Not only a letter winner, he won the Eddie Welch Attitude and Effort Award in 1991. Upon college graduation, he returned to Dalton to work in a family business and become a community coach, being one of the first five in the state. He has coached at Dalton High School since then and has had more than 20 players who have gone on to play at the collegiate level.

Coach Land will receive $15,000 from the NFL Foundation, $10,000 of which will go to his high school’s football program. He will additionally attend Super Bowl LIV in Miami and walk the red carpet at NFL Honors, a two-hour primetime awards special to air nationally on February 1 on FOX, the night before Super Bowl LIV.

What are you doing this offseason to show your dedication to the local community?

3. 20 Twitter Influencers Every High School Football Coach Should Follow (BSN Sports)

We did a story like this in the fall, and this article builds out that list a bit. These are the high school coaches with the biggest followings on Twitter. Some of these coaches have started chats or other interactive opportunities for coaches.

We suggest you follow all of them. We just added two of three new coaches, but we were already following most of them.

How are you using Twitter to network with other coaches this offseason?

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