Some 40 of the brightest next generation football coaches convened in Vestavia this past Saturday to hear the wisdom of 14 of the state's most successful football leaders. The event was organized by David Lundberg and J.D. Atkins of #ALFBChat with the help of the Alabama Football Coaches Association.
The purpose of the day long seminar was to allow some of the state's greatest coaches to mentor assistant coaches and even some of the state's youngest head coaches. After an introductory meeting, ALFCA President Jack Wood spoke briefly to the group and pledged the association's help financially and in any other way to the event. Lundberg and Atkins are in their second year of #ALFBChat. The Twitter chat room fires up on Thursday night's with a different topic that is of interest to high school football coaches. The NEXTGEN Academy idea arose from their willingness to get coaches together to learn the game.
"David and J.D. have done a great job with their Twitter chat and the idea of something like this academy is something we have talked about in our association for a long time. Our board is fully committed to being a part of this and hope we can be of help in anyway possible in the future."
The event was held to 40 participants to keep the groups small and allow for the best possible interaction. There were five rooms with each room having three mentor coaches and 7-8 participants in each group. The sessions lasted an hour each and the participants would then rotate rooms.
Although each group of mentors had a topic area, the younger coaches were encouraged to ask questions about any football subject on their mind except Xs and Os. Here is a list of the mentor coaches and their topics:
1) Branding and Promoting Your Program - Coaches Erik Speakman and Jamey Dubose
2) Staff Development and Management - Coaches Bill Clark, Scott Basden and Ben Blackmon
3) Program Organization and Schedules - Coaches Bryan Moore, Keith Etheredge, and Steve Smith
4) Culture Development and Program Identity - Coaches Bob Godsey, Adrian Abrams and Danny Horn
5) Off Season Programs - Coach Jamie Riggs, Terry Curtis and Chris Yeager
Lunch was provided and raffles were held at the end of the day. David Lundberg encouraged everyone who participated to fill out an online survey "so that we can improve this event and make it even better in the days to come."
#ALFBChat and NextGen Academy founders J.D. Atkins (left) and David Lundberg (right) speak to the coaches.