The Turnaround – Day 2

Lubbock High School WR Davontae Greathouse. Photo courtesy of Abby Reed Photography

Lubbock High School WR Davontae Greathouse.
Photo courtesy of Abby Reed Photography

by Jason Strunk
Lubbock High School Head Football Coach
Follow @WestTXCoach

Day two. It came and went. I still find it hard to be amped up for practice when I know there is still no contact to be made. I am a hitter; I like the sounds of helmets and shoulder pads clacking! Thankfully, I am older now and realize even though there is no hitting, solid work is still being done.

We are focused on installing, timing, technique and fundamentals. These first four days are a great time to work on those essentials. In our staffer this afternoon I touched upon alignment, assignment and stance. It just served as a reminder to the coaches as to what we are looking for.

Overall, we are doing what we need to. The tempo is there. The effort is there. The strides can be seen. I remember back when we first started here and we couldn’t line up, had no tempo and didn’t have a quarter of the amount of players we have now. We have come a long way. The Turnaround is on the right track.

IT’S BUMPIN
I like to keep things loose. I like to see the kids have fun. What is a better way to add some fun and juice to a practice? Bring in your own DJ! The Westerners have one (Johnny Ambriz) and he has the music bumpin during practice. It has added a great deal of energy to our practices. When the kids feel good, the coaches feel good. Music seems to have been a great touch!

Lubbock HS head coach Jason Strunk (left) and Davontae Greathouse Courtesy of Abby Reed Photography

Day 2 of Lubbock Westerner fall camp
Courtesy of Abby Reed Photography

HELMET SHORTAGE
I have a good and bad situation all in one. Since we have tripled the size of the program (no signs that this will stop) we have had to increase our helmet order every year. Just when you think you got ahead of the curve, a coach comes to you and says, “Hey, we need more helmets”. I had to place another helmet order with Shutt today. Got some brand new matte blacks on the way. Awesome that we have grown so much. It’s just hard trying to project now much you need when you keep growing.

TEAM, FAMILY
Team and family. Two words often used in football that can be somewhat of a cliche at times. But this team, so far, has shown me some great characteristics. They have become a unified front. I cannot rattle them. It is one of the best things a coach can see. I ended practice tonight with some conditioning. The idea was to break them or at least see how close I could come to it. They never wavered. Sixty strong across the goal line. Back and forth they went, never letting up. Yeah, we are on our way!

Lubbock HS Westerner QB James Garcia

Lubbock HS Westerner QB James Garcia

 

THEMES
Every day I address the team at 6:50 p.m. Each day is a theme. Day one was SELFISHNESS. I talked about how selfishness can derail a team and there is no place for it. The message was eliminate selfishness in your teammates. They met that challenge. Today the theme was MENTAL TOUGHNESS. I wanted to see how far we could push them. Again, challenge met. I think our Marine training had something to do with it! Great work!

RANDOMNESS
– The Yankees have a losing record at home; pathetic. This is about as random as it gets so I am calling quits on this section for the night.

Day 3. Needs to be better than day 2. Lets get it!

Until next time….

About the Author

Jeff Fisher
Jeff is an award-winning journalist and expert in the field of high school sports, underscored with his appearance on CNBC in 2010 to talk about the big business of high school football in America. Jeff turned to his passion for high school football into an entrepreneurial venture called High School Football America, a digital media company focused on producing original high school sports content for radio, television and the internet. Jeff is co-founder and editor-in-chief of High School Football America, which is a media partner with USA TODAY High School Sports.