Not Just for Players…

The Alercio OLine Clinics are designed to teach OLine Skills to players but they are not just for players.
2019-04-04 St J Oline Clinic Pic
We welcomed scores of coaches to our New Jersey Clinic to attend at no cost.  This Sunday, at the Alercio OLine Clinic at St Johnsbury Academy in Vermont, we will welcome coaches from Vermont, New Hampshire, and Connecticut who will be attending along with their players.  We will also welcome two coaches from Canada who sat in on one of my sessions at the New England Nike Clinic, and a former Vermont Coach who just wants to stay current with offensive line play.  These coaches are just attending as a professional development opportunity, and investing in themselves and their teams.
This past Sunday, while driving back from attending a spring practice at UNE, I was listening to a USA Football Coach and Coordinator podcast with Jim McNally, the legendary NFL offensive line guru.  Coach McNally commented to host Keith Grabowski that one of the issues with high school football coaches is that “50-70% of them do not take the time to learn anything more than they already know.”   This Sunday, April 7, at St Johnsbury Academy, is an opportunity to learn something you may not already know and do it at no cost.  You just have to make the trip to the Northeast Kingdom.

We’re only 3 days away from the Alercio Oline Clinic in Vermont. Come on out and play!

Get your brochure here: 2019 OLINE CLINIC BROCHURE.

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends.

Thanks for your time!

18th Annual Alercio Oline Clinic ReCap

Rich and ToddIt was a great day at the 18th Annual Alercio OLine Clinic.  200 offensive linemen, representing schools from all over New Jersey and three boroughs of New York, learned and trained OLine Skills under blue skies with 60-degree weather and great facilities at the Hun School.  Personally, I had the opportunity to reconnect with three former high school teammates and a half a dozen former players from West Chester University, Trenton State, The College of New Jersey and Castleton State.  Perhaps the best part of the day came after my 6-hour ride home.  I received the following text from the mother of a player who attended:
“Rich, You Rock!  Nick had a fabulous experience at his 1st Alercio OLine Camp, as did his other 8 teammates from Westfield High School.  Coach DeSarno is going to be thrilled when he finds out that 9 of his O-Linemen attended your camp because there is no one who does it better and teaches the techniques in the trenches like You!!!  Thank you for everything!”  Gratefully, Lori Mase
oline Drill
Mothers are the future of football.  If moms do not let their sons play, participation numbers will continue to dwindle.  Coach DeSarno is obviously doing more than just winning state championships in Westfield, NJ.  He has created a culture that has everyone on board.
As a side note, this may be the first Alercio OLine Clinic Coach DeSarno has missed in 18 years.  He had a family commitment that kept him away.  Family First.
As we’ve done in previous years, the following photos show some of the dedicated young men and coaches who came to sharpen their skills at this past weekend’s clinic.
Group 1Group 2Group 3Group 4Group 5Group 6Group 7Group 8

We’re only a month from the Alercio Oline Clinic in Vermont and looking forward to building on this past weekend’s success. Come on out and play!

Get your brochure here: 2019 OLINE CLINIC BROCHURE.

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends.

Thanks for your time!

18th Annual Alercio OLine Clinic Is Here!

2019-03-21-alercio-oline-clinic-1On Sunday March 24, the Hun School of Princeton will host the 18th annual Alercio OLine Clinic.  For almost two decades, we have taught over 5,000 players from New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland the techniques and skills of offensive line play.   We will welcome perennial state powers who bring dozens of players every year as well as individual players who come all by themselves representing some of the smallest schools in the region.  We also open the clinic to any coach at no cost.

Those in attendance will learn the following:

  • 2 & 3 Point Stances
  • Run Steps:  Base, Reach, Angle and Bucket
  • Pass Steps:  Kick and Power
  • Run & Pass Punches
  • Visual Targets & Strike Points for Run and Pass Blocks
  • Run Blocks:  Base, Reach, Combo, Double Team
  • Pulling Techniques:  Flat, Lead, Skip
  • Run Schemes: Man, Zone, Gap
  • Pass Sets
  • Slide Pass Protection

It is a pet peeve of mine when my fellow coaches refer to quarterbacks, running backs and receivers as “Skill” players.  I have 3 boys and all of them have been able to throw, catch and run with a ball since they were 2 or 3 years old. Those things listed above are skills that have to be taught, trained and mastered in order to achieve success.  

We’re only days away from the 2019 OLine Clinic in New Jersey and a month from the clinic in Vermont!

Get your brochure here: 2019 OLINE CLINIC BROCHURE.

You can also find an Alercio OLine Clinic brochure on XandOLabs accompanying an article on our Screen Pass Options: SPO Article

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends.

Thanks for your time!

 

Evidence Based Decisions

“It’s not about what we think or feel… I care about what we see.” 

That is something I have told coaches on my staff for years.  We do not make decisions regarding playing time or position on depth chart based on emotions or personal feelings.  All decisions must be evidence based. As Vince Lombardi said, “Potential is interesting, Performance is everything.”

Our Defensive Line and Tight End Coach, Travis Bugbee, came back from the Boston Glazier Clinic with the term EBD (Evidence Based Decisions).  We are implementing that term during our Spring practices.  It is a much simpler way of stating what I have said for years.  

As teachers and coaches, it is natural for us to feel for those kids in our charge who work the hardest or have endured the most hardships, but we must put those feelings aside when decisions need to be made. Each of us volunteers to put team before self and acknowledges decisions will be made on evidence and in the best interest of the team. Easier said than done, but as a coach, we have the responsibility to establish, cultivate, and reinforce the culture our team espouses. If we tell our players, parents, and staff EBD is the basis for decision making, one can bet all eyes will be on decisions and our actions and personal example must reinforce our words.  EBD will be repeated often in our football office as we come out of Spring Ball and evaluate our current roster.

We’re only one week away from the 2019 OLine Clinic in New Jersey and a month from the clinic in Vermont!

Get your brochure here: 2019 OLINE CLINIC BROCHURE.

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends.

Thanks for your time!

Even Legends Share Perspectives

2019-03-06 Rich & Coach MajorsBefore speaking at the New England Nike Coach of the Year Clinic, I had the pleasure of speaking with football legend Johnny Majors.  But when we shared contact information, I came to know that he refers to himself as John T Majors, not Johnny.

The former All-America, Heisman Trophy Runner-up, two-time SEC MVP, and national champion coach went into great detail on two different punting techniques his father taught him over 80 years ago.  He then informed me that punting was an option for the quarterback on any down and distance back in the 50s.  When I told him that we are a 4th & Go team and try to never punt, he shared a story about playing Georgia Tech.  With time on the clock waning, Tennessee (Coach Majors’ team) had the ball on their own 15 facing a 3rd and 3.  At his Single Wing Quarterback position, he noticed the Georgia Tech Safety playing deep for the punt so he called a run, rushed for 4 yards and got a fresh set of downs.  On the next play, with 1st and 10 on the 19-yard line, he saw the Safety up close to the line of scrimmage so he decided to punt it away.  69 yards later, he had changed field position and secured a 6-0 win.

Punting on 1st Down?!  It is amazing how much the game has changed.  Coach Majors informed me that in his time, field position was much more important than possession of the ball.  Philosophically, we do not care where we get the ball on the field as long as we gain possession.  We believe that we can score from anywhere on the field.  When a team wants to punt to us, we gladly accept it.  We do not try to block the punt and often tell our returner that if he cannot catch it cleanly just get out of the way.  Do not do anything to allow them to regain possession of the ball by jumping offsides, roughing the punter or muffing the punt.  If they want to give us the ball, we will gladly accept it.  What has not changed over the years, is the willingness coaches have to share their knowledge and expertise.

A teacher, coach, and mentor to NFL Hall of Famers like Tony Dorsett and Reggie White, Coach Majors still makes time to share insights, experiences, and understanding after all these years. As Coach Majors shared his insight with me, I gladly shared two presentations to the coaches in attendance at the New England Nike Coach of the Year Clinic.

We’re only a few weeks away from the 2019 OLine Clinic in New Jersey and a month from the clinic in Vermont!

Get your brochure here: 2019 OLINE CLINIC BROCHURE.

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends.

Thanks for your time!

USA Football Conference Recap

At every conference or clinic, I have ever attended, a coach like Noel Mazzone is followed around by scores of coaches trying to get close to him in hopes of gleaning insights, opening doors, and potentially advancing their careers. Coach Mazzone’s reputation as an NCAA Division I offensive coordinator and quarterback specialist precedes him and always attracts attention.

At the USA Football National Conference, Coach Mazzone 2019-02-28 Rich at USA Fottballsat in on my presentation then introduced himself sharing how much he enjoyed it. What a thrill to think I may have contributed a bit to the perspective of a fellow coach who has succeeded with athletes as talented as NFL Quarterback (and likely future hall of famer) Phillip Rivers, and conference leaders across the Country. To make it even more exciting, he later frequently referenced my presentation during his session.  Maybe we will see our SPOs (Screen Pass Options) added to his NZone System at Arizona next fall!

The 2019 USA Football National Conference had an impressive lineup of speakers including NFL and college coaches, military leaders, and high school coaches addressing more than 1,000 people in attendance.   I was honored to be listed as a featured speaker on Day 2 of the conference and share our SPOs with coaches from all over the country. Since returning home, I have been contacted by coaches from Idaho to Maine, and Minnesota to Arkansas requesting more information.  I look forward to hearing how our SPOs impact their programs in the 2019 season and am privileged to carry on the legacy of sharing with others the way so many coaches have cared to help my staff and me.

Spring practices begin here next week as we’ll most certainly begin implementing concepts and lessons learned during my weekend in Orlando. We will be a better and safer program, from Varsity to our new Youth Flag Program, thanks to USA Football and their National Conference.

As February closes, I am off to the New England Nike Coach of the Year Clinic in Hartford, CT. for a 3pm presentation on Friday, March 1.  My topic is entitled “One Scheme, Multiple Plays.” Once again, I look forward to sharing, learning, and teaming with so many others who share the same passion for this game and the very best it brings to student-athletes, schools, and communities across the nation.

We’re only a month away from the 2019 OLine Clinic in New Jersey. Get your brochure here: 2019 OLINE CLINIC BROCHURE.

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends.

Thanks for your time!

Shaping the Future of the Game

USA Football has established and continues to promote unmatched standards of safety, education, and support for coaches and players. 2019-02-21 USA Football logo

As USA Football continues to shape the future of the game, I am honored to be a small part of it.  Saturday, Feb 23, Day 2 of the USA Football National Conference in Orlando, will begin with my 9am presentation entitled “Adding  SPOs To Your Offense.”  RPOs (Run Pass Options) are based on putting a defensive player in a conflict or in other words, a decision dilemma.  Most often, the player put in conflict is the one most challenging to block in the running play called, thus creating a pass option off of the run. Therefore, if he plays to defend against the run we pass, or if he plays the pass, we run. We try to create a dilemma for the defender and an opportunity for our offense.

We have now brought that same thinking to our screen game with SPOs (Screen Pass Options).  2019-02-21 SPO DiagramWe identify the Sam LB (strongside inside linebacker) as the most difficult player to account for in our 2-count, 3-man screen plays, making him the player we target to put into conflict.  Instead of just calling a screen to one side, we offer the QB another pass read off of the conflict player, to the side opposite the screen.  We do this with dropback, bootleg and sprint out passing schemes.

As a high school football coach and athletic administrator, I appreciate all that USA Football does in establishing safety standards for players and educational opportunities for coaches.  The future of football is in good hands as USA Football continues to evolve and grow the sport.

Coach Rich Alercio is available to discuss coaching philosophy, X’s & O’s, or teach his O-Line “techniques in the trenches.” Contact Coach at richalercio@gmail.com and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends.

Don’t forget our clinics in New Jersey next month and Vermont in April. Get your brochure here: 2019 OLINE CLINIC BROCHURE.

Thanks for your time!