What Do High School Coaches Do To Get Players To Come Out For Football And Prevent Attrition?
A major concern for high school coaches is getting enough players on the team to be competitive. Bigger teams allow for more players to specialize on one side of the ball, help make practice more effective, and give coaches access to more potential playmakers.
There are two sides to the battle, getting kids to come out in the first place, then keeping them interested and preventing attrition. We asked HS coaches how they effectively deal with building and maintaining a big roster. You can see their responses below.
The most popular method is to meet with athletes (both prospects and team members) and their families and use that opportunity to advocate the benefits of being on the team. Skip RIley, Head Coach at Durham HS in California, encourages kids “to come out and be part of the family”.
Other coaches make a special emphasis to make football, and especially practice, fun.
Getting involved in the feeder programs and youth leagues are equally important. Jason Rivers, Head coach at Dracut High School in Massachusetts, has a lot of creative solutions to build up that pipeline. “I do a meet and greet with the incoming Freshmen at their school at the end of 8th grade. I make myself available to our youth program and invite them to our games as well. We take a couple of the kids (youth players) out for honorary captains each home game.”
Dan McClean, Head Coach at Detroit Country Day School, has private meetings with prospects and gets to know them as people, not just football players.
While there were some differences in approach from coach to coach, the one thing that 98% of coaches surveyed agreed on is that you need to do something.
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