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        Beyond The Ball — football gloves

        What College Coaches Are Really Looking for in a Highlight Video

        What College Coaches Are Really Looking for in a Highlight Video

        Nebraska Director of Player Personnel Ryan Gunderson breaks down how to craft the best highlight videos - and some snags to avoid.

        Between managing his team, scouting opponents, performing video analysis and recruiting, a college coach’s schedule is generally jam-packed. With so little free time, something needs to be pretty special to catch his attention.

        This is why it’s critical for athletes to create quick, effective highlight videos. Make one or two mistakes and the coach is moving on.

        Hudl enlisted the help of Ryan Gunderson, the Director of Player Personnel at Nebraska, to learn how coaches watch highlight videos and what to avoid in the video-making process. The former Oregon State quarterback shed some light on things that coaches look for - and what they don’t want to see.

        Keep It Brief but Impactful

        Gunderson emphasized the importance of brevity. Time is one of a coach’s most valuable assets, and a coaching staff doesn’t have the patience to view 10 minutes worth of highlights for every player. A recruit has precious seconds to snare a coach’s attention before he moves on.

        “Always put your best stuff first,” Gunderson said. “Don’t save your best stuff for last. Put it up front. You may only get 30 seconds or a minute of somebody’s time and if that doesn’t impress them right away, they’re not going to turn your film back on.”

        Coaches rarely make it to the end of even the most impressive highlight videos. Gunderson said coaches will typically watch a good video for two to three minutes, then turn to game tape to see if the athlete is consistently dominant or just has a few explosive plays.

        Gunderson recommended keeping a highlight video to five minutes, adding that elite prospects need little time to prove their worth.

        “Depending on who the kid is, he may need to show only ten plays,” Gunderson said. “Some guys just need a ten-clipper or a five-clipper. It’s five plays and it’s not even hard to tell the kid is a stud. If you can get 25-30 plays on a tape, that’s probably plenty.”

        Take Derrion Grim’s video for example. The video is very long, but Grim starts his video with six straight touchdowns, all of which show off different strengths. A coach doesn’t need to wade through Grim’s entire video to see what he has to offer. It quickly becomes apparent why Rivals ranked him as the nation’s No. 37 athlete in the 2016 class.

        Add Variety to Your Highlight

        Athletes should use a host of different types of plays to put their full array of skills on video. It’s a mistake to include only plays that highlight one part of a player’s game.

        For instance, showing a series of 50-yard runs when a running back bounced to the perimeter shows off his speed. But to give a coach a full understanding of his skills, the back would be advised to include plays that show him breaking tackles, juking safeties and catching passes.

        “It’s good to showcase your speed, your variety, your change of direction, all that type of stuff,” Gunderson said. “You need to find the plays that highlight those things.”

        Josh Rosen provided a good sample of this in his senior video. He starts by displaying his arm strength with a couple of deep throws, but also proves he can execute seam, fade, corner and slant routes, and he has ability to move in the pocket and make tough throws under pressure.

        And show plays that conclude in the end zone, especially early in the highlight. Getting tackled isn’t a way to impress prospective recruiters.

        “Our wide receivers coach (Keith Williams) always says, ‘I don’t want to see you getting tackled at the beginning of your highlight film,’” Gunderson said. “‘I’m not impressed by you getting tackled.’”

        Consider the Music Selection

        Many athletes use background music to enhance their video or ramp up the excitement. For the most part, Gunderson said, that’s fine. Hudl allows users to create a unique highlight experience designed to wow friends and family.

        Just don’t expect it to get coaches too hyped up.

        Gunderson typically watches highlight videos on mute, so music doesn’t affect him one way or the other. But he has seen instances where a recruit includes a track with vulgar lyrics, a move that causes coaches to question his judgment.

        “You just think about it and you’re like, ‘You know you’re sending this out to college coaches and they’re going to watch it,’” Gunderson said. “‘Are you dumb? Why would you do that?’’”

        Quick Hitters

        Here are a few last tips Gunderson offered:

        ***Don’t interrupt a play to spotlight yourself. If you do use a spotlight, do it before the play begins. Pausing mid-play chops up the video and makes it tough to judge fluidity and athleticism.

        ***If you play both sides of the ball, feel free to share clips from multiple positions. For example, if a linebacker prospect also plays running back, Gunderson recommended including some highlights on offense. Those clips can showcase athleticism and catch a coach’s eye.

        ***Have a highlight video constructed before your senior season. But if you aren’t getting the offers you want, Gunderson recommended making another video from the first three or four games of your final year to try and generate new interest.

        Your highlight is often a coach’s first exposure to you as an athlete and can play a critical role in the recruiting process. Now that you know what coaches are looking for, it’s time to get started on your video. Any additional questions can be answered here.

        Original Article by: Dan Hoppen via Hudl.com

        How many scholarships do schools offer in a year?

        How many scholarships do schools offer in a year?

        Each coaching staff varies on how many scholarships they offer– some head coaches are conservative with their offers while others aren’t and offer several players for every scholarship slot available. In most cases, coaches offer more scholarships than they have available. The NCAA limits programs on the amount of scholarship athletes they are allowed to have on their roster, and those limits vary by sport. For example, NCAA Division I FBS football programs can have 85 scholarship players on their roster, and depending on how many players have graduated, quit or transferred, their scholarships numbers available for the next class will vary from year to year.

        For example, a coach may have one scholarship for a tight end but offers out to three similarly-talented players. Some coaching staffs will be up front with these recruits and tell them that whoever accepts first gets it, while other coaches may not be transparent about how many players have actually been offered the same scholarship.

        LINK: Key NCAA Recruiting Definitions

        The goal of each recruiting cycle is to sign the best player possible to each scholarship available. Many staffs don’t rush the process, they’d rather get it RIGHT than simply make it QUICK.

        Coaches break down each signing class and decide which positions on their current roster lack depth. Which positions are graduating players? Have players transferred? They may need to sign three WRs—who are their top 3, top 5, top 10 targets? They evaluate their needs as a team and then make allotments of how many players at each position they are going to sign.

        Once they evaluate their needs and scholarships available at each position—they are going to likely rank the players that they are recruiting — by position — and make scholarship offers in that order. They may be waiting on a player a little more talented to possibly commit or are still in the process of evaluating potential players at each position.

        I’ve worked with players who earned offers days or weeks before Signing Day. I’ve worked with coaches who don’t use all of their available scholarships until they are 100% confident in a player they offer. Coaches don’t just offer every spot unless they are SOLD on a specific player and they think they can help their team.

        In certain situations, a coach doesn’t want to offer a player they are sure will commit until they are 100% sold on that player and confident they will be admitted into school and be eligible through the NCAA Eligibility Center—so many players have had to wait months in order to have a decision from a coaching staff.

        Remember—you just need to find that one coaching staff who believes in you and you must be patient with the process, while not missing out on great opportunities out there at every level!

        LINK: Are Most Scholarships “Full Rides?”

        Original Article from: 1001RecruitTips.com

        Notebook: Ed Gainey is picking up the pace

        Notebook: Ed Gainey is picking up the pace

         Ed Gainey felt he was due.

        The Saskatchewan Roughriders defensive back has recorded six interceptions this CFL season — all in the span of the team’s past three games. Those six picks are one more than Gainey had in 60 career games entering the 2017 campaign.

        “Over the course of the years of my career in the CFL, I haven’t really been able to play defence like that,” Gainey said after picking off Matt Nichols twice in the Roughriders’ 38-24 victory over the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on Sunday at Mosaic Stadium. “The first four years, I played special teams mostly and I would come in on certain packages and play a little bit of defence.

        “Being in Saskatchewan, Coach (Chris) Jones and Shives (defensive backs coach Jason Shivers) and everybody, they really believe in me and they have my back. I’ve been able to focus that much more on my craft and focus that much more on my role as a defensive player.”

        Gainey began his CFL career with the Montreal Alouettes in 2012 and spent two seasons there. He played two seasons (2014-15) with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats before signing with Saskatchewan prior to the 2016 season.

        He had two interceptions for the Tiger-Cats in 2014 and three with the Roughriders last season. On Aug. 13, Gainey had a franchise-record four picks against the B.C. Lions before snaring two more on Sunday.

        His first-quarter interception led to a one-yard touchdown run by Vernon Adams Jr., that gave Saskatchewan a 17-3 lead. Gainey made his second pick in the Roughriders’ end zone with 2:16 left in the fourth quarter to snuff out a Winnipeg drive.

        His spree of thefts started after Jones talked to Gainey about picking up his play.

        “It probably had a lot less to do with me and more about him as the player recognizing the fact that, ‘Y’know what? He’s probably right,’ ’’ Jones said. “(It was about) going back to look at the film, putting the work in and trusting his ability to go make football plays.”

        In Gainey’s mind, he’s just repaying the trust Jones showed in him.

        “Before I came here my first year, I felt like there weren’t going to be too many teams that wanted to have me on their team,” said Gainey, who noted he felt like he had “a short leash” when he played with other teams. “Coach Jones showed that he wanted me here and I just took that and ran with it.

        “I heard that he was a good coach, I saw that he had won championships and he’s a winning coach, so I just wanted to come over here and play for him. I’m really just trying to make Coach Jones, Shives and all these guys happy about bringing me here.”

        **Ed Gainey had two interceptions this past weekend while wearing the Phenom Pro Solids.

        Original Article by: 

        Auclair’s Bucs Training Camp Diary: There Is No Pressure

        Auclair’s Bucs Training Camp Diary: There Is No Pressure

        Tampa Bay rookie tight end Antony Auclair was one of the most sought after undrafted free agents by Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht. In fact, the Bucs had a draftable grade on Auclair and were thrilled when he signed with the team because they wanted another “F” tight end – a tight end that could block and catch as opposed to a “Y” tight end like Cameron Brate, who is primarily a receiving tight end. Dirk Koetter’s offense features two- and three-tight end sets quite often, and with veteran Luke Stocker, who is 29, entering his seventh season in the league, finding two tight ends that could block was crucial for the future of the position, which is why Auclair, who is very physical blocker, was signed even though the Bucs spent a first-round pick on tight end O.J. Howard.

        Auclair, who has a thick French-Canadian accent, isn’t your typical tight end. He hails from Notre-Dame-des-Pins in Québec, Canada where he played at Laval Université where he caught 17 passes for 229 yards and two touchdowns. Auclair had six catches for 70 yards and a touchdown in Laval’s 31-26 win over Calgary in the Vanier Cup, which is the equivalent of the National Championship Game in American college football. While he was ranked as the second overall pick in the Canadian Football League, Auclair always had his sights set on playing in the National Football League.

        The Bucs were one of many teams to travel to Canada for his pro day after he opened a lot of eyes at the East-West Shrine Game in St. Petersburg, Fla. in mid-January. Despite a hamstring injury, Auclair ran a 4.82 in the 40-yard dash and bench pressed 225 pounds 22 times. Now that he’s in Tampa, Auclair has the challenge of quickly learning the game of American football and fighting for a roster spot with Alan Cross and Tevin Westbrook behind Brate, Howard and Stocker on the depth chart. Follow Auclair’s journey into NFL football in Tampa Bay in his Training Camp Diary exclusively on PewterReport.com – and learn to speak French-Canadian, too.

        There Is No Pressure
        By Antony Auclair as told to Scott Reynolds
        I’ve played in two preseason games now and it was an awesome feeling going out for my first preseason game. I was on the opening kickoff in Cincinnati, so I got to play on the first play of the game, which was great. I was a little bit anxious, but I feel like I had a great game. I actually think I played better in that game than I did last week in Jacksonville. Blocking-wise I was better in Cincinnati. I did a good job in Jacksonville, but sometimes my angles in that game weren’t as good as they were in the first game.

        On a third-and-short play against Jacksonville I took a bad angle and missed my block. I think my guy made the tackle, but you have to move on to the next play. That’s how it is. You have to forget the last play and move on, which I did. We went for it on fourth down and I had a much better block and we made the first down.

        I did make my first catch in Jacksonville, which was really cool. It was third-and-9 – a pressure play, and Ryan Fitzpatrick threw a low ball and I made a nice catch for nine yards and the first down. I was really happy about that. My game wasn’t perfect, and it wasn’t as good as the first one. I had a bad taste in my mouth after our last game.

        My roommate, Sefo Liufau, is now getting some playing time with the unfortunate injury to our backup quarterback Ryan Griffin. That’s how this game is. The next has to step up and he’s doing really well. He didn’t have many reps in practice at all and then in comes into the Cincinnati game and balls out. He’s doing great and I’m happy for him.

        I’m always working with Fitzpatrick on the second team and I think we are really connecting right now. We’re getting better together and I’m really excited about that.

        Everybody in our tight ends room is really good. I mean they are all good. It’s a good fighting group. Everybody competes hard and I can really learn from these guys. I have to compete every practice. It’s super competitive. With this heat, it’s really hard, but you have to grind every day. Training camp is a hard grind. I’m getting used to the heat, but sometimes it’s really hard to breathe. I’m glad we’re playing some night games in the preseason because this weather is crazy down here.

        I’m not really thinking about making the team. I’m focused on the next practice, the next game and always getting better. I always want to correct the things I did wrong and get better. I’m not thinking about making the team. I’m thinking about getting better.

        The fourth preseason game is where I will see a lot of action, but there’s no pressure on me. Football is fun. This game is fun and we play the game because we love it. There’s no pressure, just play and have fun.

        I really enjoy blocking and there’s only so much we can do in practice because it’s not like a game. I’m a physical player and a physical tight end and that shows up in the games. Where I have to improve is route running and I think I’m doing a better job at running my routes. I still have to get better, but I have to improve there. I also still need to work on my blocking, especially the right angles, which I didn’t do great in Jacksonville.

        The speed of our linebackers here in Tampa Bay is fast and I thought they might be the fastest, but I think everybody in the NFL has fast linebackers. The ‘backers in Jacksonville were also really fast. But going against our guys in practice is making me better on my cut-off blocks. They are fast, so I have to take better angles and that’s what I’m focused on.

        Our next preseason game is at home – finally – at Raymond James Stadium down the street. It’s going to be awesome. I’m looking forward to it playing at home, but I haven’t really thought about it until this week because I’m focused on the next practice. But it’s going to be great running out of our tunnel with our fans there.

        Auclair’s French-Canadian Phrase Of The Day
        I’m also going to teach you some French-Canadian in my Bucs Training Camp Diary on PewterReport.com. Here’s today’s phrase is “Où sont les toilettes s’il?” It’s a French way of saying, “Can you please tell me where the restroom is?” in English. After “What are we eating?” that’s the second-most important phrase!

        Original Article By: Scott Reynolds via Pewter Report