Working the Officials

“Working” the officials…

I have never been a big advocate of it… for a couple of reasons.

working the officialsI think that when you start complaining about the officiating, it gives the players on your team a built in excuse…. “We weren’t successful (on that play…during that game) because the officials were awful”.     I would rather that our coaches, players, and I felt accountable for the outcome of the game.

I have witnessed good officials while coaching Pop Warner football, and bad officials when I was at the collegiate level. While I admit that mistakes can be and are made, (even in the NFL) I think most officials are trying their best to do a good job.

The real reason that I have never spent much energy berating officials is because of an early experience of mine. When I was a player on the Blue Springs High School team, our coach, Fred Merrell, asked us to volunteer to officiate some youth (I believe it was YMCA) league flag football games on a Saturday.   I volunteered, thinking it would be fun helping during these youth football contests.

I was wrong… unfortunately the coaches and parents made it a bad experience for me, and pretty much everyone who volunteered to help that Saturday. I never volunteered again.

There were upset coaches and accusations of “favoring one team over the other”… of being prejudiced with my officiating. I distinctly remember thinking that “I don’t care who wins this game… I am just trying to do my best.”

I think most officials are legitimately trying to do their best…

Yes, even the crew who called back 7 touchdowns last year during one of our games… OK, I may have had a few words for that crew.

For a new perspective and appreciation, try officiating a youth league game!

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You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd –


Good coaches are good teachers.

I cannot tell you how many times I have been listening to someone in education discuss the next “new/ big thing” and think to myself “We (coaches) have been doing that for years

Differentiated Instruction is the new hot topic…. It is a philosophy for effective teaching that involves providing different students with different avenues to learning, often in the same classroom. Differentiation means tailoring instruction to meet individual needs. You probably have read about it, or even had a professional development session on the topic.

Differentiated Instruction is often characterized by:

  • Flexible grouping
  • Continual assessment
  • Allowing for different learning styles
  • Understanding and allowing for different readiness levels
  • Independent work or projects
  • Learning Contracts

The more I hear and read about this “new” concept, the more I think that this sounds like my (or a typical) Strength and Conditioning class or practice field.

IMG_4267 2

In the weight room:

I am sure we can all think of the same type of high quality teaching and learning, using Differentiated Instruction techniques, that takes place daily on your practice field.

Good coaches are good teachers.

Always have been… always will be.

You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd –

Your Toolbox

My father was many things (US Marine, WWII vet of the Pacific Campaign) but a skilled carpenter, handyman, craftsmen he was NOT. Although he never scrimped on material, his attempts at various projects were usually laughable, amateurish, and cobbled together…. not masterpieces in any sense of the word.

My dad literally had one small toolbox that contained:


  • 1 phillips head screwdriver, 1 flat head
  • 1 pair of pliers
  • 1 pair of vice grips (his “go-to” tool)
  • 1 regular (small) hammer, 1 ball peen hammer
  • 1 hand saw for wood, 1 hack saw for metal

And little else.

So while he often courageously attempted ambitious projects, with little or no instructions, and only a meager set of tools at his disposal, the results usually came up far short of his expectations.

When I told a lifelong friend (who knew my father and witnessed his “handiwork”) that I had just finished installing built in cabinets and closets in our bedroom, adding a sliding factory door, and laying hardwood floor in our loft, he looked at me and asked “since when did you become so handy?”

Here is the difference between my father and me… I am not smarter, nor do I use better materials. The main difference is that I have more tools in my toolbox, and availability to better instructions.

I have two large cases full of tools… sets of wrenches, power tools, tools for measuring, cutting, fastening, etc. I also have access to great instructions for any project I tackle via the Internet.

As coaches we all have similar “material” (our squad) but some of us have more tools at our disposal. A craftsman has to have the correct tools to create a masterpiece.

What tools do you have in your coaching “toolbox”?  Here are some that have helped me be a more efficient and effective coach:

All told, the links listed above have been downloaded over 10,000 times by coaches all over the world. I am not suggesting these are all or the best tools out there… but plenty of tools ARE out there… and fairly easy to find.

Create a masterpiece!

You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd –


Winning is hard and a measure of success…. at any level and against any opponent….

There are programs that make it look easy, week in and week out. Winning is hard for them as well. The “ease” typically is a product that stems from years of hard work and consistently great teaching and coaching…. often performed at every level of the program in a community … from youth sports to the varsity level.

We all know these programs…. you are probably thinking about a couple of them right now.

There are programs in the metro area that are trying to “turn” their programs around… some have been trying to figure it out for years… with some excellent coaches… Winning for these programs is unbelievably hard.

We all know these programs…. you are probably thinking about a couple of them right now.

And two weeks into the 2014 season there are programs that have been among the elite in the city that are currently winless… and struggling.

We all know these programs…. you are probably thinking about a couple of them right now.

To the consistent winners… Enjoy the wins… they are all hard fought and special.

To the programs trying to change directions… keep plugging away… continue to work hard, and find small victories.

To the coaches leading top programs that are currently struggling… know that you are the same coach that recently led your team to great seasons, playoff wins, and championships… you didn’t become a “bad” coach in the last two weeks.

To everyone… keep up the good fight… ours is an awesome job, with awesome responsibilities.


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You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you…. Don’t Believe It!

Jeff Floyd –