Okay....so we're drawing near August.
Obviously, it signals the time for a new football season.
After going the last 7 weeks or so of off-and-on practices and 7-on-7 matchups, the kids are receiving a week break of organized activities.
In the first year of a new (spread / 5-wide) offense, and with marginal development in our quarterbacks....it was decided early in the summer that we were sending our quarterback to the Peyton Manning Passing Camp or the Darin Slack Quarterback Academy in July.
We were blessed to have a new player arrive via basketball in early June who showed considerable promise, so we moved #1 QB to defense where he would make the greater impact and solidify a key position.
As the date grew closer, we had two candidates that were going to go. Two weeks out, we had yet another promising candidate arrive (freshman) with loads of potential.
I was supposed to be helping out at the Les Miles Youth Camp Tuesday night, but committed an hour before (asked) to take the quarterbacks down to the Slack camp.
Probably the best decision I've made in a while (can't remember the last GOOD decision I made).
I started making arrangements to take our promising young athletes to the camp, got a great deal into the planning, then realized that I had lost my wallet two weeks earlier......kinda hard to check into a hotel without your ID or drivers license. This now helped pull in the services of our offensive coordinator, who was supposed to be attending the Louisiana High School Coaches Clinic in Baton Rouge during this time. It was probably best that things worked out the way they did, though.
Day OF, as the 11th hour approached, our Freshman phenom was no where to be found and his parents were talking of moving to another school. Plan B! Go with the former QB who is now playing well on defense....well, lets just take him instead - we'll make a good backup better. Calls to his parents reveal he is planning on moving out of the state!
Cripes! Get back to fundamentals.
We ended up taking our starting quarterback who had a shoulder injury for more than 3 weeks, and his #1 receiver (who would now be our #2 QB in a pinch).
The conversation at 20 minutes to departure went something along the lines of, "Good morning.....Get up.....you're going to Lafayette for two days .......we're picking you up in 15 minutes!"
Two good student-athletes that were able to receive top notch quality instruction at the hands of unequivocally THE BEST football instructor in the world, Darin Slack.
My friend and I were greeted by a enthusiastic Coach Slack, who knew exactly who we were (from submitting video of our QBs prior for analysis), and let us know that this was the beginning of a partnership / relationship in the development of young men....who happen to be quarterbacks.
The first 45 minutes of introduction were the most passionate arguments for athletic and character development I have ever heard. The kids were pumped and steered in the proper path to achieve greatness.
The next 24 hours would be filled with hands-on instruction and correction of the proper mechanics and thought-process for quarterbacks. All the quarterbacks had to be stripped of their ineffecient and sometimes dangerous throwing habits. Not only were they taught how to correctly throw, they were taught WHY this was an efficient method for throwing - as well as being able to pinpoint when and where errant throws happen.
Of course, one cannot travel on I-10 without taking in some of the finest cajun cuisine.......
For a more complete write-up of our encounter with Coach Slack in Lafayette, check out;