Saturday, September 27, 2008

Ticked off

We played Tinley Park and got an old fashion butt whooping. The day started out bad when the Bulldog A.D. would not let us warm up on the baseball field. All the other teams had warmed up there but for some reason that was not shared with me we were unable to use the area. The game was close at the half, we were trailing 8-0. Something happened that I've seen for the first time with this team, they gave up on themselves. Quiting on yourself is a bad thing and is a trend that was addressed during practice.

The week before a relative was seen at a football game, this relative is angry at the world for reasons that are absurd and unrealistic to any person that deals with reality. My wife and myself have tried to mend fences because we cared about this person and if their was the slimmest of margin that we had done something to offend, then we should make things right. On this day my daughter who loves this person (and everyone in the family) went to give a hug and was given a cold shoulder. My daughter does not know how to react to this and is confuses, and I think this family member also did not know how to react to the affections of a little girl and was cold.

Now yesterday this person was seen at yet another football game and snubbed my daughter for a second time. I truly believe that it is time for this person to pull their head out of their ass and take a breath in the real world and realize that the only person that they are hurting is themselves.

If later on in their small petty insignificant shallow life they decide to reconnect, I just hope that all the people that they shut out are still willing to take them back in. The list is starting to grow.


Sunday, September 7, 2008


WE had our second game and lost to the New Lenox Mustangs. The Raiders came out strong and scored first. We were not all that strong we drove on two plays, play one was a run by our 4 back who got bottled up in the middle and had the presence of mind to break it to the outside for a long gain. Play two was a shovel pass to the tight end who had a great run into the end zone.

The Mustangs blocked well, got into their man and the backs read the block and ran well every time. The Raiders would get into their man but not move their feet and a stalemate would be created on the line of scrimmage, making the backs go sideline to sideline looking for an opening. I could say this is because the players I have a smaller than the other team but it happened the previous week on occasions. This leads me to believe that it is coaching that is missing to help this team achieve.

In the beginning of the year I said I would drive in the basics, BLOCKING, TACKLING, AND RUNNING. Until the coach starts to drive in the basics, no matter how boring they can be, we will be a bad team with poor skills.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Practice game - First game

We had our first practice game and did reasonably well. Our offence sputtered and did not get a first down until the third quarter, when we decided to block and drove the ball down the field. We finally got on the board with .10 seconds left, but a to many men on the field call and a false start pushed us back on the extra point and we did not convert. I was happy with a tie, until with .10 seconds left they threw a pass to our corner back and their receiver pulled it out of his hands and scored. I could only laugh because we played such a good game to be taken away at the last moment. Oh well, just a practice game.

Orland Park: our first game, let me start buy saying that the week leading up to this game our starting 3 back got a knot on his knee the size of a golf ball and sat out until game day. Not to be out done our starting 2 back injured his heel and could barley run, on that same day the starting left tackle informed me that his dad is taking his family on vacation for the long labor day weekend and will miss the game, the starting left guard was sick miss practice (team rule: miss one practice miss one quarter), O.K second team guard. No, he has some kind of allergic reaction to something he ate and misses the next three practices. (team rule: miss three practices you are probably to sick to play)
There are 26 kids on this team, all this means is some other player is going to get some more meaning full playing time, but at one point I did say that kids develop at different rates. So the player filling in will be less skilled than the one he is replacing.

We came quick out of the gate and fumbled the ball on the first play of the game. (second team back, game day jitters) After we got the ball back we drove the ball to the 10 yard line and fumbled, we drove the ball to the 15 yard line interception. We had some good drives but would do something to kill the drive. The game is coming to an end quickly and the Pioneers are on their 40 yard line, punt team. We block it and get the ball back on the Pioneer 30. Now let me start by saying that I told the team know matter the score of the game our third unit is playing the fourth quarter. So I call out the third unit, we make a couple mistakes but we also gain some ground, back to the 30. 9.7 seconds left on the clock, time out, coach Joel asks "can I have the first unit in." I respond "NO!" How about the first unit backs? O.K. Joel and Bobby Turner put a pitch pass in during the time out.

Carma: with 9.7 seconds left we score a touch down. What makes this play great is the players that need the most work blocked and held out the Pioneer defence to allow this play to develop.

Game ball- Coach Joel & Coach Bob

Sunday, August 24, 2008


We had our first practice game yesterday and we did well. We lost on the last play of the game when a receiver out jumped three of our defenders and ran in for a touchdown. This team is small buy the standards set up by the league, they are out weighted and out sized, but only in stature. When it comes to heart this team is a giant. We played a team that is allowed ten more pounds then us and we smashed them in the mouth. When behind this team never gave up. I wish I could say it is from coaching but you can't teach heart. It is something that you are born with, a drive, a never say quit attitude. Even though we lost the game I am very proud of the way this team played. We need to make adjustment in our blocking and more conditioning, but with heart this team will do well.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

My Team

It has been a busy August with football, family and life. The team I have this year is quiet with a few exceptions, and what I found out is if I do not address each player individually that they do not get the message I'm trying to convey.

The hardest part of coaching is to develop each player and since each player learns at a different rate repetition is the best way. This makes it boring for the kids that have it figured out early on, so I throw a drill in hear and there to break up the mundane. With some kids you can see the joy in there face at the idea of contact, and others the terror that they have to hit some one. Teaching is a challenge no matter what the subject, I guess the key is to keep the attention of the group you are teaching and to make it as much fun as it can be. You always remember the best part of things and forget the rest, so why should football be different.

Ten, twenty, thirty years from now the player are not going to remember there records, but they will remember the fun they had and if it was a positive experience.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


In church last Sunday we learned about pride, and how it is one of the sins. We also learned about humility, and what it mean to be humble. You my ask what does this have to do with football.


Parents have a sense of entitlement when it come to their children, that has to do with pride.
We should teach our children to do their best and no matter the outcome putting your out best effort is what matters.
Football is a team sport and not just the players on the field decide the outcome but the players that pushed each other all weak decides the end result.
Everyone on the field is doing their best. The coaches, refs, and anyone else does not start or finish the game thinking how can I screw this team.

Love, discipline, fair play should replace pride.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Happy day

It was 21 years ago that my wife and I were married. We celebrated with pulled pork sandwiches while the kids were at a birthday party. We got to hold a conversation with out interruptions. Let the good times role.

Love you (.)(.)
you have :)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

What the Blog

I'm not sure what I want this blog to be about. I read other peoples blog and they are full of wisdom, humor, personal insight, and deep thoughts.

I read my wife's blog and she taught me how to make marsh mellows.

I want this to be about football, not the nuts and bolts that make it work, but what you gain by learning, practicing, and playing the game.

I hope to be an enthusiastic coach, and the players catch that enthusiasm. The best time I had as a player I gave my all, left everything on the field and went undefeated. the best time I had as a coach I gave my all, tried to make practice fun while teaching the game and we were 0-9-1 and not one player misses a practice.

I've played football in one form or another for 15 years, I've coached football going on 20 years, and have been married going on 21 years, and I'm 44.

I love this game, I love seeing player excel at something that you taught them, and my favorite is when you see them later and they have fond memories of the sport.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


1. Quarterback, opens up to the dive back that will run over the guard opposite of the option.

2. Dive back will fake a dive (or receive the ball in the case of option dive) over the opposite guard that the option is called.

3.Option back will take a jab step away from the play then run parallel to the line of scrimmage.

4. Quarterback will challenge the defensive end (who is unblocked) and determine whether to keep the ball or option to the back.

5. Tight end will arch to block the farthest outside man.

6. A split man or man out of the backfield will block second man in second tear of players usually inside line backer.

7. The offensive will dive block head going to play side hip.

8. In the case of a dive all the key will be played out as if running the option.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Get the ball rolling

I've come up with six formations, and need to make the plays that I want to run work out of each formation.

Or motto this year will be K.I.S.S (keep it simple, stupid)

So our formations will be the vowels A, E, I, O, U, and sometimes Y.
We will progress from option, to power, to pass.
But most of all I want the kids to learn the game of football and to have fun.

5, 10, 15 years from now each kid will look back and say I had fun, and hopefully come away with something. The very least I want each player to leave with good memories.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Coaches clinic

The Raiders were invited to a coaches clinic at Halas Hall, and 11 of use attended. I was pumped to see the great facilities that my beloved Chicago Bears train in. Other than a finally manicured field, I was greatly disappointed. The facilities did not live up to the expectations I thought a NFL team should have. In fact some high schools and most colleges have better facilities.

I was not there to view the campus I was there to get coaching ideas. I got a few and the day was not a total disappointment. I did get to meet 149 other coaches with the same passion that I have for the game of football. I hope to put these ideas into a package for a successful football season.

I leave in a couple days for the happiest place on earth, and when I get back it will be time to put all the pieces together.

Sunday, May 11, 2008


From the end of the season 2004 the Erickson's have not had a break from work, football, marathon training, or iron man training. So a well deserved vacation to the happiest place on earth will be a great distraction. When I return home back to the grind of every day life, the plan will come together.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Control Freak

As a coach you want to call your offence or defence the way you think it should be run. It is an ego thing. Not many coaches would say that their plays are not good, it has to be the players execution of the play that makes it fail. How do you get coaches involved in a game? One coach call offence the other defence leaving other coaches to look on and suggest plays that may work. That's why we need to game plan and work on the basics

If you control the line of scrimmage on ether side of the ball.......... you win! That takes blocking and tackling. Control your man, know your assignment, because the game is won during practice. That is how I need to get coaches involved...................IN PRACTICE.

RULE #3 You play like you practice

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Coaching Tips

Attitude; it is contagious. After each season I reflect and try to grade myself. I have never given myself a positive grade. The 2007 season was my worst. I coach football so the kids I coach remember to have fun in the boundaries of the game. I also want each kid to feel that he is part of the team and not a practice player. I failed to get all the players into some games, and follow our teams minimum of four plays. Most of the players deserve more. They attend all practices and give maximum effort. I got caught up in wins and losses, and player suffered because of it. If my attitude was different the wins and losses would take care of themselves and all the kids would have fun and feel as if they belong. So :

RULE #1 Attitude (Mine = Yours)
RULE #2 Time + Effort = more playing time

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Back to the drawing board

I can't get motivated to set up the offence, there are to many other things that come up, distract or just take up my time. Last year at this time I had everything in order. I need to start over from zero and work up. Number one, why do I coach? Some times I seem to loose sight of the reason I began coaching. I want this to be a game and to be fun. Personally I would like to win along the way, but having fun, especially at this level is the most important. I think both can be accomplished with the right offence, key on the basics, and the right attitude. The basics can be boring, blocking and tackeling, especially when doing them over and over. I guess this is where the right attitude comes in. Time to get started.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Finding the right Offence

  • I'm using this time to create formations for an offence that is simple enough for the kids to learn, but not so simple that another team can scout us and determine what we are running by formation. We need to be able to spread the feild along with using tight power formations. Most of all I need to find positions for kids that are not as skilled as others so that they can get quality playing time, a task that I did not accomplish last year. This will be my 20th season as a Raiders coach, and from time to time I need to be reminded as to why I dedicate my time to the progam.

    I will use this Blog to keep parents posted as to what we are doing from week to week. This week I am going over plays for Power I..........................................................................................