Tag Archives: Coach Lane

Hell Week: Wednesday

Wednesday of Hell Week, the day after the day after soreness is the worst.  Kids would be so sore they wouldn’t even be whining.  They would think it would be a somewhat easy day since we were repeating the body weight circuit.  That is how a teenage boy thinks, it HAS to be easier today than it was Monday, doesn’t it?  But, with the soreness being worked out,  it was just as hard.  Then the hammer comes down in the form off upper body plyometrics,  military push-ups, side to side push-ups, wheelbarrows, push-up walk, walk the plank and around the world push-ups.  Whoa, makes me hurt just thinking about it!

Hell Week 2005

Wednesday

Winning is not a sometime thing, it’s an all the time thing.  You don’t win once in a while; you don’t do the right thing once in a while; you do things right all the time.  Winning is a habit.”         -Vince Lombardi

6:30-6:40  Performance Triangle: Nutrition, Hydration and Rest

6:40-6:50  Stretch Runs

6:50-7:05  Body Weight Circuit

Jumping Jacks 50
Push-Ups 20
Crunch Series – 10 center, right, center, left, center
Lunges- 10 each leg
Navy Seals- 10
Sit-Ups- 20
Squat Jumps- 20
Push Ups Side to side- 10
Walk the Planks- 3 down and back
Split Lunge Jumps- 12
Crunch Series- 10 center, right, center, left, center
Squat and Touch- 15
Walkouts- 10
Sit Ups- 20
Around the Clock Lunges
Supermans- 2 x 30 seconds

7:05-7:15 Upper Body Plyos
1.  Military Push-ups, Side to Side Push-ups.
2.  Wheelbarrows, Push-up Walk
3.  Walk the Planks, Around the World Push-ups

7:15 Hold the Rope – Sophomores
Inverted Wall Hold

Breakdown

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Hell Week: Tuesday

Tuesday of Hell Week was a day to actively recover from the shock of Monday.  Emphasis was put on warming up with our dynamic routine forcing oneself to obtain a full range of motion in the muscles.  Time to stretch out  the things we spent yesterday tightening up.  But don’t get confused thinking Tuesday was a vacation day.  It was simple, but it was hard.  Many kids this year still fondly remember the lunges up and down the hill at all possible angles.  The hill at Clay Center Community High School was (and still is) a real SOB.

Hell Week 2005

Tuesday

Winning is not a sometime thing, it’s an all the time thing.  You don’t win once in a while; you don’t do the right thing once in a while; you do things right all the time.  Winning is a habit.”         -Vince Lombardi

6:30-6:40  5 P’s  Purpose, Pride, Passion, Persistence, Performance

6:40-6:45  Stretch Runs

6:45-7:00  Hill Series (6 lines)
Runs- Forward and Back
Bear – Up and Down
Lunge Walk – Forward and Back, Diagonal Up & Down, Left and Right Across
Duck Walk – Forward, walk down

7:00-7:15  Four Corner Drill

7:15 Hold the Rope – Juniors Read
Team Cage Carry
1.  Seniors one lap.

2.  Returning lettermen, everyone else sits once then sit on cage.

3.  Whole Team

7:20  Abs – 50 Sit Ups

Breakdown

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Hell Week: Monday

Monday of Hell Week was designated as a “wake your body up” workout.  Not easy, but not too hard, just hard enough to make the kids conclude they needed to get to get in shape.  Below is the exact workout plan from 2005.  I think we had nine trash cans in the vicinity of the CCCHS gym and by the end of the second round of body weight circuit, they all had a young potential football player leaning over them.  Needless to say, the bodies were awake.

Hell Week 2005

Monday

Winning is not a sometime thing, it’s an all the time thing.  You don’t win once in a while; you don’t do the right thing once in a while; you do things right all the time.  Winning is a habit.”         -Vince Lombardi

6:30-6:40  Expectations
Make yourself better every day this summer…have fun and get better.
We need everyone to contribute in a positive fashion on and off field.
Find your niche and become great at what you do.

STAND TALL RULE
No bending over, sitting, leaning, kneeling…EVER
Bending over physically = Bending over mentally

6:40-6:50  Stretch Runs

6:50-7:05  Body Weight Circuit

Jumping Jacks 50
Push-Ups 20
Crunch Series – 10 center, right, center, left, center
Lunges- 10 each leg
Navy Seals- 10
Sit-Ups- 20
Squat Jumps- 20
Push Ups Side to side- 10
Walk the Planks- 3 down and back
Split Lunge Jumps- 12
Crunch Series- 10 center, right, center, left, center
Squat and Touch- 15
Walkouts- 10
Sit Ups- 20
Around the Clock Lunges
Supermans- 2 x 30 seconds

7:05-7:20 Agility Stations(~ 5min each.)
1.  Gate Drill
2.  5 Cone
3.  Full Moons/Half Moons
4.  5-10-5

7:20-7:30  Seniors- read “Hold the Rope”
Wall Sit 5 min.

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Hell Week: Introduction

Hell Week

I used to call the first week of summer conditioning Hell Week.  It was a name designed to catch the kid’s attention because it meant it was time to get back to work.  Enough of spring sports, enough of the school routine, enough of the school weights classes…time to get to work, gentlemen.  Hell Week was a re-introduction of one’s body to what is means to prepare to play Tiger Football, Coach Lane style.

Body weight was the weight of choice for the first week.  Why?  The most important weight you will ever lift is your body weight.  You can lift a freight train, but if you can’t move your own body, if you can’t move your body around like a weapon, if you can’t hit folks like a cannon shot, then you are dead in the water on the sports field.  Body weight exercises and circuits, agility runs, lower and upper body plyometrics were the fare of the day, every day.

I found  the file containing a typical Hell Week plan and I thought it would be pretty cool to introduce a typical week with  a series of blog posts.  So the next five or six posts will be an attempt to give a glimpse of how we used to approach our business.

Before we  get to the meat and potatoes, a couple good anecdotes from the past.

Cutting the Cord

My summer conditioning program used to scare the living daylights out of the mothers.  Every year I would get calls and have meetings with mothers, usually mothers of incoming freshman, who were concerned about the well being of their boys if they “let” them come to summer conditioning.  I would smile a warm smile and tell them “Don’t worry, I promise he will be okay.  Your son will work harder than he has ever worked before, he will hurt more than he has ever hurt, he will be more tired than ever before.”  And when their eyes were as big as saucers,  I would add, “And he will be a better human being because of it.”

 “It must be June”

One early summer, I was talking to a local businessman while we worked a local swim meet.  He laughed to me that he always knew the week we started summer conditioning even though he didn’t have kids in the program.  I asked how he knew.  He said, he always knew because all the high school aged football players were so sore they walked around town like old men all week.  Needless to say, I took some pride in that comment.

After one morning workout, I came home to change before going to work and my kids were laughing at me.  They said they were out in the yard and heard me and Coach Lane yelling during the workouts.  We lived seven blocks from the field…

The Things They Remember

This almost made me cry.  A senior, who was a Bubba back when he was a sophomore, wrote this as one of his high school memories in the school newspaper.  He is a great kid.  He will grow up to be a fine adult and it makes me happy he remembered this act of Coach Hays stupidity.

“I remember my sophomore year and Coach Hays told us we were doing sprints until someone got sick. (They could not pull their heads out of their butts one day.)  Then, I think Kyler W. threw his helmet down, stuck his fingers in his throat and puked all over the place. Coach Hays looked at him and said, “Never mind.” and we didn’t do sprints!”

Oh, boy.  No wonder the moms worried…

Next up, Hell Week: Monday

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Coach Lane’s Ball-On-A-Stick

Coach Lane’s Creations: Ball-On-A-Stick

Back when I was coaching football, if we coaches needed something, Coach Paul Lane would always find a way to take care of us. Always. The admins gave us a budget and support that could generously be described as nada.  But Coach Lane made the most of every penny, quite a few which were his own.

If I said, “Coach Lane, I could sure use a measuring stick to check offensive lineman splits on the fly during practice.”, lo and behold, a 5 foot long “T” PVC pipe Split-O-Meter would appear with a “T” piece our standard split length of 3 foot.  Plus he added a feature of a painted black region in the middle of the PVC pipe for measuring our shorter split of 2 foot.  Amazing!

If I said, “Coach Lane, I could sure use some pull-up bars that connect to the steel roof supports of the wrestling room.”  Presto!  I would show up Monday morning and there are half a dozen pull-up stations, made of iron pipe securely connected into the supports.  Remarkable!

When I needed some way to hang homemade gymnastics rings from those same supports, the chains disappeared from the Lane home’s porch swing and found themselves placed into action. (Poor Mrs. Coach Lane’s beautiful porch swing was temporarily out of commission. Sorry Mrs. Lane.)

But, one of the greatest Coach Paul Lane’s feats of engineering was the Ball-On-A-Stick.

Ball-On-A-Stick.  A ball, on a stick, that we used to simulate football snaps for defensive line drills.  We wanted our d-line to react to ball movement cues and not verbal or sound cues from the opposing QBs, so we used the Ball-On-A-Stick in our drills.

A few weeks ago, one of the last remaining players that I coached stopped by the house one evening just as I was arriving home from work.  He stopped his truck right in the middle of the street and got out smiling ear to ear.  He opened his toolbox and pulled out the Ball-On-A-Stick. I was so happy I was virtually moved to tears.  I thought it would be long forgotten and discarded.

“I saved it, Coach. Out of the trash” he said. “Thought you might want to have it back.” (Can you see why I loved coaching these kids?)

Well, ole’ Ball-On-A-Stick has seen better days.  Coach Lane made a beautiful marvel of football technology with the fresh-off-the-showroom version.  New and shiny NERF football silicone sealed to a brand spanking new broomstick (Sorry, again Mrs. Lane), a real work of art.

The ball is held onto the stick with athletic tape now.  Why you ask?  Because a certain young center who will remain nameless, once thought of the Ball-On-A-Stick as a golf club.  But, #58’s golf skills were lacking, his golf stoke similar to a rusty gate and he duffed his attempted swing across the ground breaking the silicone seal and sending the NERF ball fluttering to ground 20 yards away.  To say I was mad, well…

The Ball-On-A-Stick has been tossed, slammed, fought over and trashed.  The poor handle was even bent one practice during a Coach Hays temper tantrum incident.

But it survives.  The Ball-On-A-Stick now sits next to my desk.  It is a reminder of how much fun we had.  It is a reminder of how well Coach Paul Lane treated us, the coaches, the players and the entire Tiger Football Program.

Now, if we could just locate that Split-O-Meter…

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“Faith, Family and Football…in that order”

Rest Day Read (SR-37)
Gruden High School Camp 2010 ESPN Video Series
“Man, I love football, sincerely. It gives me the chance to give back to the game a little bit. Be around my son. I wasn’t a very good player when I played the game. I want to help these guys get better. I feel an urgency to do that and I am having a blast.” -Coach John Gruden

Part 1

Joy. That is the first thing I see in Coach Gruden’s eyes. Joy. Absolute, unadulterated football joy. Passion for the game. I can relate. I have been there. I have felt that joy. I have lived that passion.
Coach Paul Lane always preached the following on the priorities and perspective of football:

“Faith, Family, Football…in that order.”

Part 2

I no longer coach football. I miss it. It is like that phantom limb feeling you hear amputees describe about their missing arm or leg. It is there, but gone. The drive, passion and commitment hang in the air like a forgotten mist as I wonder where the young warriors have gone.

Part 3

I no longer coach football for a reason. What happened, you ask? The gory details are a rant for another day. But, the heart of the matter boils down to this simple fact: The 3rd F (Football) began to take too much away from the 1st F (Faith) and the 2nd F (Family). I allowed F3 to leap in front the the first two. I got off the track. I learned that F1 and F2 are what is really, really, really good and are what is really, really, really important.

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Coach P. Lane’s “Friday Night in America”

There are two football pregame talks from Coach Paul Lane that still give me the goosebumps.  Quote number one was from the very first Friday game of the Paul Lane Era at CCCHS in 2000.  We were home against Beloit.  I remember right before the National Anthem, with all the team and coaches in the south end zone, Coach Lane tell the boys how special it is to be right here, right now,  getting the opportunity to play football.

“This is Friday night in America. ”

(After starting that first season with my head spinning, feeling way out-of-place, I knew right then I was working for the absolute right coach.  I knew right then I would work my butt off to justify him taking a big chance to hire me.)

Pregame talk  number two was the last game of the 2007 season.  We had to win a district football game on the road at perennial powerhouse Holton Wildcats in order to make the playoffs.  We had a rough week leading up to this game.  Two starters suspended, a couple hurt and/or hurting and two seniors quit the team because I asked them to play scout team offense in practice.  We were underdogs on a good day and with all this other stuff, the dog was going even further under.   So, we loaded up the bus and headed to Holton.  After we arrive, Coach Lane has a relaxed air which pervades the entire team.  We go through our pregame preparations at Holton High School Stadium, one of the most underrated and often maligned high school atmospheres in the state of Kansas (I loved that playing in that old stadium).  I know it is not macho to describe a football game as “happy”, but it was just a “happy” atmosphere.   In the locker room, right before heading out for kickoff, Coach Lane lets these fly to the boys:

“The secret of success in life is for a man to be ready for his opportunity when it comes.” -Earl of Beaconsfield

You could just see the kids who were starting their first varsity football game sit a little taller, breathe a little easier and transform into varsity football players.  Then he addresses the team again:

“They don’t write children’s books to teach children that dragons exist…They write children’s books to teach children the DRAGONS CAN BE KILLED.”

The kids just sat there for a second.  The words began to sink in.  Then a determined group of football players strap on their helmets, walk to the field and compete with purpose, pride and passion.  Holton eventually wore us down for a couple late 4th quarter touchdowns to win.  I know we lost, I know parents, fans and administrators were disappointed, but I have never been more proud of a group of kids after a game as I was walking with those boys off that particular field on that particular night.  I will never forget that feeling.  The very essence of what high school sports are all about.

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