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© April, 2014

by Brett Steuerwald
Retired Coach • Shenendehowa High School (NY)

This is the second of a three-part series on the philosophy and strategy of football by Brett Steuerwald. A legendary coach in upstate New York, Coach Steuerwald reflects on 54 years as a coach and 44 as the head coach at Shenendehowa High School in Clifton Park, NY. His overall record was 319-88-4. He received numerous local, state and national coaching honors and led his team to three state championships. This article is on being the best player you can be.

Don’t Be Satisfied

No matter how good you are right now, you can always get better. Everyone around you is working to improve and you must outwork them to achieve your goals. Football is a many-faceted game and offers numerous opportunities on both sides of the ball. Some players take a while to discover where they are best-suited to help their team and earn playing time. When dealing with high school boys, coaches need to remember there is a tremendous developmental change in young men from eighth grade to twelfth grade. An eighth grade fullback may become a tight end or center as a senior.

Players should learn as many varied skills as possible and be willing to adapt to both opportunity and desire. To illustrate that, at our year end meeting of returning players, I ask each athlete to write down on a 3 x 5 card their top five personal goals for the coming season. Then I ask them to flip the card over and right down team goals we should realistically aspire to for the coming season. I then ask them what would they do if their personal goal was in conflict with the team goal? Then, it is put in a more personal way. ...The full article can only be seen by subscribers.
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