High School Coach

Moving on from Coaching High School Athletic to College Athletics

While you may enjoy coaching your high school team – it is natural for some coaches to crave more. The “more” being moving up the coaching ladder and eventually reaching the level where they can coach college athletics as well. However, the dream could become a reality seeing how many college coaches started off as high school coaches early on in their careers, a few examples being Gus Malzahn of Auburn University and Chad Morris of SMU. Though the process of breaking into the college football scene can be a challenge, intimidating, and downright hard at times – no matter how successful your high school football team may have been.

Despite the challenges and the constant competition, there are a few tasks that aspiring college coaches can do to help themselves and to increase their chances of getting the job of their dreams: all of which will be detailed below for your convenience.

1) Become humble and realize you’re going to have to make some sacrifices

Many high school coaches are stuck in the mindset that since they have put in years of hard work and training – and that is shown by their team winning or losing – that they do not have to put the same amount of effort in when they are trying to become a college coach. However, the sooner a high school coach realizes that they’re going to have to work even harder, and sometimes not even get paid for their work, the more they start to appear that they truly want to advance and become a dedicated football coach.

2) Off-of-the-field jobs can be your friend

While you may want the job as being a full-time coach under the head coach of a college team, sometimes it might serve you well to ask for a job that if off the field. This is mainly because head coaches are more willing to hire prior high school coaches for off the field work due to their prior knowledge of the game, how to interact with the players, and the inner working of plays. Plus, it is easier to work your way up the ladder instead of charging in and demanding a certain job.

3) Commit to your current job as if it was your dream job

It’s okay to have higher aspirations than to teach high school football – do not become one of the coaches that strive to climb the coaching ladder that they begin to neglect their current team and current job title. Especially considering being known as the coach who is only looking for the next best thing makes his character look undesirable. Plus, no college is going to want to hire a coach willing to let his current team down just for a newer and bigger opportunity.

4) Standing out is the best thing to do

Many high school coaches strive to become college team coaches in their future. Which means there’s more competition in the field. So, finding a way to stand out is going to be ne of your best option if you want a high chance to climb the coaching ladder. The best way to do this is to start adding more to your resume. Or, just by getting creative and sending something alongside your resume to get it noticed. An example of this being a basketball coach having his resume laser-etched to a basketball and handing it directly to the head coach office – and this method worked for him.

5) Always be willing to learn

While having years of high school coaching experience under your belt can help your chances of becoming a college coach – the best coaches are the ones who realise and accept that they do not know everything about the sport. College coaching is a new beast, and it takes learning new skills to perfect and master it. Having a passion to learn and a will to be the best coach for the team will ultimately help your journey of becoming a top rated and well-known college coach.

Coaching High School Sports

Coaching sports requires many talents. Coach must be a teacher, a mentor, a disciplinarian, highly organized, competitive and motivating.

A high school sports coach manages the many different aspects of a team. As the coach you’re expected to be a role model for your players. You must teach positive spirit and encourage sportsmanship. You’ll have to teach your players respect and how to keep your composure. The best way a coach can teach his players these things is by modeling them himself.

There are many difficult aspects of being a high school sports coach, most of which don’t have anything to do with the game. Coaches must handle difficult parents and unruly fans. Coaches sometimes have to cut players from a team. This is probably the most difficult aspect of being a coach. Sometimes student-athletes have their heart set on being a member of a team and a coach must break it to them that they haven’t made it. Telling a student that they haven’t made the team requires tact and compassion. Occasionally, following a cut, coaches must deal with the parents of students who haven’t made the team. Coaches must also spend a large amount of time coaching. They must attend trainings, practices and games. Most high school coaches have another job, so coaching causes them to spend a large amount of time away from their families.

On a more positive note, coaches can have a huge impact on the development of the student-athlete. Imparting the values of sportsmanship and teamwork can have a lasting impact on the character of the student-athlete. This is where coaching High School sports versus coaching athletes of other ages differs greatly. Student-athletes are still in the developmental stage and lessons learned are very important.

Coaches also must manage a huge variety of factors that require a tremendous amount of organizational skills. There are statistics, schedules, rosters, injury protocols, academic ineligibility, just to name just a few aspects of coaching that require attention to detail.

Then of course, there is the game. Coaches must learn the tendencies of the opposing player as well as the tendencies of their own players. They must select the players they believe to be the best at each position, they must set up an offense and a defense and make adjustments on the fly. A good coach will be very good at time management and learn the proper time to make key substitutions. They must deal with the officials in a respectful and calm manner, again, modeling for their athletes.

Coaching at the high school level is an essentially thankless position. Coaches take all the blame when their team is losing and receive very little credit when their team is winning. Parents and fans are generally unaware of the teaching moments that student-athletes experience with their coaches. To be a high school coach you must be willing to constantly give of yourself for very little reward. Except, of course, the reward of successfully mentoring young men or women.