The following information should be questions asked and answered when considering your choices for the right school to be the head football coach at:
What is the administrative feeling towards athletics? What part does athletics play in the total educational program? What are the school’s philosophies, goals and objectives concerning athletics?
How is the continuity among coaches? Do animosities exist between coaches of different sports? How many of the current staff will be returning?
What is the administrative policy concerning discipline? Who has the final say in regards to discipline matters?
What is the breakdown of administration? Who am I responsible to? What is expected of me?
Does the faculty have a positive or negative feeling towards athletics?
What support does the school receive from the student body, parents, boosters, and community?
What is the attitude of the athletes? Are they familiar with a winning program? If a losing program how much time will they give you to turn the program around?
What current disciplines have been established in athletics concerning training rules, conduct, quitting, failure of classes, alcohol, drugs, etc?
What is the social atmosphere among the students? Are there complications due to cross-cultural rivals? What are the socio-economical backgrounds of the students?
What types of off-season programs are available? Is there a summer weight program and if one is in place what has been its attendance? Does the program provide athletic periods?
Must I keep from the old staff? Will I be allowed to bring coaches with me (offensive and defensive coordinators)?
When keeping members of the old staff they must be able to conform to a new philosophy and new ideas. A Head coach must determine if the old staff can be loyal to change and his ideas for running his program.
Does the district allow time off for professional development (clinics, seminars, etc.)? Does the school provide funds for coaching clinics? If not, may coaches use sick leave time to attend clinics without negative pressure from the administration?
What are the expectations of the Head Coach and the football program in regards to fundraising (How much)?
Are there any traditions that can’t be changed (are any sacred)?
What is the policy concerning budgets? What is the football budget? What are the procedures for outside fundraising activities?
What facilities are available?
Practice fields Equipment?
Game field (lights) Basic football gear
Locker rooms Sleds, Storage
Varsity room Football dummies
Training room Media – Video, editing systems
Weight room Game day headphones
Gyms or field house Training supplies
Coach’s offices Uniforms game, practice
If facilities are not available, can compensation be made through a booster club or maintenance department? Does the administration welcome improvements and ingenuity? A head coach needs to improve on his facilities annually.
What are the policies and procedures concerning scouting, travel, buses, equipment maintenance, field preparation, meals, filming, etc?
Does the school allow a summer camp? 7 on 7? May a fee be charged?
Does the school have any special regulations other than those specified by the district or state association with regards to eligibility?
What are the salary ranges for teaching and coaching? What are the other responsibilities accompany teaching contracts? (Club supervision, committees, etc.)
Is the school willing to support a strong winning football program? Do the administrators, teachers, students and community want a strong program?
A football program should be managed with a business like approach. It should be well organized to function in a smooth, progressive and systematic manner. It should support the philosophy of the school climate, highlighted by accelerated goals, ideas, and its people. The ultimate goal of the school and the football program should be to meet the needs of the community and to become the best it can possibly be in a highly competitive environment.
About the Author of this post:
Jerry Campbell has over 30 years of high school and college coaching experience. He has experience as a head coach, offensive coordinator, and various position coaches. He has written numerous football coaching articles in various publications, is the author of over 30 books on coaching football, and has produced 12 coaching video series. Additionally, he is a nationally sought after speaker on the coaching clinic circuit.