Programs that have a system in place for a no-caucus offense will be ahead of the curve when football kicks off in the Fall II season (February 22 to April 25) this spring.
On Friday, the MIAA’s board of directors unanimously approved the sport for competition, with a number of changes in place as recommended by the football commission in accordance with state guidelines to limit the spread of the COVID-19.
In addition to the requirement for masks at all times, most of these changes focus on the administration of the game and the regulation of touch teams. The gameplay itself is largely intact, with the exception of the traditional caucus.
According to the official MIAA football changes document, caucuses require “spacing between players facing the same direction.” The changes recommend hand signals or key signaling and discourage regrouping where possible.
For these quarterbacks and countless other student-athletes who have struggled to enter the field, running a little more without a huddle is not a problem.
âFor us, 80% of our attack is already without a caucus,â said Lederman, who has pledged to play at Bentley University. âSo we will have an easier transition. But we know it’s a shortened season, so we’re going to be doing daily zoom meetings. We’re going to use the weeks we currently have as much as possible for everyone to learn about the new playbook. “
Pereira, a 6-foot junior from Auburn, New Hampshire, said he has been working with his talented players since the fall and will be ready to start this spring.
âI’m just excited that we’re playing,â Pereira said. âThey could have told us we had to play with a nerf ball and I would have been excited. I’m just happy we have a season.
As it stands, teams will need to train for 15 days (after three days of conditioning) prior to any match action, with March 12 being targeted as the earliest possible match date, potentially preventing teams from playing until. ‘to eight games. But the MIAA COVID-19 task force has scheduled a meeting with the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) in the coming weeks to review the requirement that all training be held outdoors. , inclement weather delaying potential debuts.
Either way, the season will be a lot shorter than usual, and the stakes won’t be as high without a state tournament, so some coaches see this spring as an opportunity to incorporate caucus-less concepts into. their program.
Justin kogler used a triple option system to guide Old Rochester to the Division 6 Super Bowl in 2018 before taking his multi-faceted approach for West Bridgewater, where the coach guided the Wildcats to the Division. 8 Super Bowls in 2019.
Now he will seek to make his system work without a caucus.
âTo be honest, it’s something I’ve always wanted to get all-in,â said Kogler, a 2001 Durfee graduate. âI’ve always had a stroke without a caucus, but I’m not a coach without caucus. I’ll take this opportunity to see if we like it. I am delighted to play with it.
With around 40 players in the West Bridgewater schedule, Kogler won’t have to worry as much about changes limiting game margins to 45 and field cohorts to 25 players in practices and games.
But a large program like North Andover – which typically has over 70 players and a dozen volunteer coaches – will need to adapt.
“It will be difficult to tell a kid who has trained every day, who has paid his user fees and who works hard, that he will not be on the match day list,” said the North Andover coach. Jean Dubzinski.
Still, Dubzinski said he was “ecstatic” to hear that the changes would not affect “the integrity of the game.” Former Everett assistant, who led North Andover to an unbeaten season and Div. 2 Super Bowl title in 2018, just hope his student-athletes demonstrate integrity off the court and avoid protocol violations that could cost games on the program.
âWe need to preach to the children that we are putting the faith of our season in their hands,â Dubzinski said.
âThey need to constantly remind themselves that you are not an ordinary student, you are a student athlete and people depend on you. There are other children who depend on you, and for some of them, this is their last shot.
Speaking on behalf of the Subcommittee charged with creating football modifications, the Associate Executive Director of MIAA Richard pearson said on Friday that âthere had been an in-depth discussion centered on whether the tackle would stay in the sport. Once players started grappling and were in close proximity, further modifications weren’t needed.
However, the MIAA seems adamant on the subject of indoor practices, stating clearly that “no football team activity can take place indoors.” This includes domes, bubbles, and other enclosed structures, forcing each program to shovel their land (if necessary) and come out by February 22 for a shot to play ASAP.
Training in cold weather when teams prepare for the playoffs is one thing, but running a training camp and preseason for 15 winter days could be difficult.
“In our normal preseason we are getting so much done,” Stoneham coach said Bob almeida, who led the Spartans past Old Rochester, 26-20, in the Div. 6 Super Bowl.
âWe have time for meetings, film work, time in the weight room, and the proper time to get in shape. You don’t start from scratch, you make a few adjustments and try to stay sharp for a game. “
âBut we talk all the time in football about being mentally and physically tough and that will never be revealed more than this season. We will do whatever we have to do, shovel the fields, everything is manageable. We will find a way.
âª The Massachusetts sports community has come together to support hockey player Bishop Feehan, AJ Quetta, who suffered a serious spinal cord injury during a match against Pope Francis last Tuesday. Since this weekend, more than 10,000 people and hockey teams have donated more than $ 680,000 to the GoFundMe page set up on behalf of Quetta, including large Patriots security donations Patrick chung, owner Robert kraft and several Boston Bruins players.
âª BC High Soccer Captain Anatoliy Berezyuk also received a wave of support while battling an aggressive form of brain cancer. On Sunday, the 18-year-old from Quincy had nearly $ 150,000 in donations on a GoFundMe page set up in his honor.
âª On Friday, the Boston City League played its first basketball games and its first non-hockey sporting events since last March. Boston Public Schools are starting a gradual return to live learning next week, and there are plans to host a City League tournament for basketball teams from February 23-27.