Flexbone ... a community of coaches
At the Ardmore, OK Flexbone Clinic last weekend (Feb 8-9), I had the privilege to spend 2 days with Flexbone coaches from Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, and Kansas, as well as legendary option football coach Kenny Wheaton. There was a good mix of both veteran Flexbone guys and "newbies." During the introductions, one coach commented that the Flexbone "is a very special community," and in his experience it was "unlike any other network of coaches." I noticed several coaches nodding in agreement with those statements.
After analyzing my notes from this past weekend and evaluating the ideas discussed from an X &O's perspective, I was finally able to sit back and contemplate the overall experience and look at the big picture. My mind kept going back to that idea of our "special community." Of course, my initial thought was, "Yeah, we are a special community." Then the pragmatist took over and attempted to debunk that line of thinking with all the reasons why Flexbone coaches are the same as every other offensive coach (or defensive communist, for that matter) across the country. So after going round and round with myself, the argument ended, much like it had begun, with the idea that, "Yes, the Flexbone coaching community IS special."
And here's why:
1. We're special because we are a smart group of unselfish professionals, who are willing to share our best ideas with one another.
2. We're special because we will discuss the technique of a 6" up and over step (or any other technique) for four hours at a stretch in order to get it exactly right so our kids can have success.
3. We're special because we take pride in the fact that we are in this kind of quirky "fraternity" of coaching, committed to doing something that goes against the grain of what most teams do and the thing that fans would least like to see: running the football.
4. We're special because we root for one another, and if two Flexbone teams are playing, we're probably rooting for whichever team's offense is on the field at that time. (My exception would be the Army-Navy game. I'm always only rooting for Navy. Go Navy! Beat Army! USNA Class of '92!)
5. We're special because in my experience, every coach that runs the Flexbone KNOWS without a shadow of a doubt that they are giving their kids the best chance to be successful each snap.
A coaching friend of mine, not in the Flexbone, saw me at a clinic speaking with some other Flexbone coaches and said to me later, "You option guys are all alike. It's like you guys are in a special club or something, kinda like the Mafia. You guys all talk the same way." I took it as a compliment.