Over 5,000 players from NJ, NY, PA, MD, VT, NH, CT have attended Alercio OLine Clinics since the inaugural clinic at The College of New Jersey on Sunday, March 17 2002. This year’s clinic, at The Hun School of Princeton on Sunday, May 2, marks the 20th year we have hosted an Alercio OLine Clinic in New Jersey.
While I would like to take credit for the idea, it all started with a suggestion by Jim Meert, who was the head coach at Hunterdon Central HS at the time. During a recruiting visit in December of 2001, while talking OLine play, he suggested I run an offensive line clinic for players noting most high schools do not have a qualified offensive line coach and the job often falls on the head coach. He followed by suggesting I host clinics in the Spring and not in the summer like most other player camps. Lastly, he suggested I invite the high school coaches to attend as my guests and observe the techniques, drills and schemes taught. It turns out Jim was a visionary. We had 333 players participate in our first OLine Clinic under the watchful eyes of dozens of their coaches.
March 17, 2002 was a great day for me professionally, but few knew the personal hardship I was experiencing that day. My father, who got me started as a football player by hosting a youth football camp along with NJ coaching legend Al Saner, had passed away only two days before that first OLine Clinic. Knowing how proud I was making him, was what got me through that day. In many preceding blog posts I’ve mentioned how much I’ve benefited from so many coaches who took the time to invest in me and help me grow. As fortunate as I consider myself in those circumstances, no gift compares to the love, encouragement, and confidence my father gave me. I work hard to make him proud every day but on those special days, give my OLine Clinics a little extra enthusiasm in his honor.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org and share http://www.olineskills.com with your colleagues and friends. Thanks for supporting this blog and joining our conversations, and as always, thanks for your time!