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The ALFCA Convention : A Blast from the Past

The first Alabama Football Association Convention was held in January of 2006, the first year of the association. Executive Director Jack Wood will tell you today that football coaches running such an endeavor should never happen. There was a lot of learning and a lot of mistakes. But the clinic portion of the ALFCA Convention was a complete success.

One of the most popular speakers at that first convention was Alabama defensive coordinator Joe Kines. Coach Kines had been around Alabama football for several years and was familiar with the gathered coaches. He had a full house at the Embassy Suites when he gave his clinic talk about defensive football. His raspy voice and country North Alabama expressions were the hit of the conference. Here is a sampling, courtesy of Tom Ensey of the Montgomery Advertiser in those days, who wrote an article about Coach Kines' speech the following Monday.

Here is the original article by Tom Ensey from Monday, January 30, 2006. If they are writing about your convention in the newspaper, you must be doing something right was the thought of the ALFCA in 2006.

  • "I thought a 40 yard dash was cross country." - On the irony that he now jogs with the other Alabama coaches.

  • "When they invented football, I wish they'd have decided to give one point for a touchdown. I don't know how they came up with this six." - On the way the game might be improved from the standpoint of a defensive coach.

  • "We brought the whole house on the first knock." - On using the all out blitz against Texas Tech on the first play of the 2006 Cotton Bowl.

  • "That's dangerous." - On using the all out blitz against Texas Tech on the first play of the 2006 Cotton Bowl.

  • If it's funny we are going to laugh. If it's sad, we are going to cry." - How to build team unity.

  • "I told him, "De Meco, the game starts at 2:30 Saturday afternoon." - On the most valuable contribution he made coaching All American De Meco Ryans.

  • "This is 1952. It ain't modern." - On his old fashioned coaching philosophy, repeated many times.

  • "Step on his toes, knees bent, head up. Strike down the middle of the cylinder, punch through the ball. Grab high cloth and pull down." - On tackling technique.

  • "You can't tackle on a railroad track. Widen your base, buzz them feet." - On the importance of leg drive in effective tackling.

  • "It's very scientific: put the big 'uns with the big 'uns and the little 'uns with the little 'uns." - On personnel groupings for practicing fundamentals.

  • "That guy has the ball. But this guy's got a butcher knife." - Why tacklers should focus on the blocker (this guy) instead of the ball carrier (that guy).

  • "This ain't nothing but the wishbone!" - On the moment he realized that Texas Tech's offense was just a triple option passing attack.

  • "Take out your pencils and a piece of paper. Write this down. This is the complex game plan for how we are going to stop Texas Tech. If it's zone, play zone. If it's man, play man." - What he told his players on the first day of preparation for Texas Tech's system.

  • "Beat the system with a system." - On defending Texas Tech, and defense in general.

  • "Don't be a hero. Superman died. Kryptonite killed him." - On executing assignments rather than trying to make a big play.

  • "I'd rather you hit me in the face with a wet well rope than jump offside on a hard count." - Self explanatory.

  • "If one jumps offside, I make all 11 do up downs. Them in the back will get them in the front straight a lot quicker than I can." - His method of dealing with the off side problem.

  • "If you can't do something right, you can always serve as a bad example." - Prelude to a confession about his parenting failures when he was a young coach spending too much time at work.

  • "You learn other folks' kids, who play for you. Learn and love you own children. The veer zone, hook and three wides will take care of itself." - Advice on how to avoid the mistakes he made.

Thanks to the Montgomery Advertiser and Tom Ensey.


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