Jul 15, 2011
Tennessee’s Dooley Wants Change To Summer Coaching Rules

Derek Dooley already has made his desire for a larger coaching staff known publicly.

The Tennessee coach also wouldn’t mind giving the ones he already has something to do in the summer.

The Vols are plenty busy during the offseason with conditioning, workouts and throwing sessions during the summer semesters. But that work can’t be done with the instruction of their full-time coaches until camp opens in early August, which can leave those responsible for what happens after practice resumes perhaps a little frustrated while they wait to get started.

“I’d practice (in the summer), Dooley said during a dedication Wednesday at the UT Center for Athletic Field Safety. But that ain’t ever going to happen.

“I look at these high school guys, and they practice every day, all summer – and they develop. They do a great job developing them.

“The schools and the states that put a real emphasis on developing their teams in the summer, they’re out there coaching them during seven-on-seven or coaching their linemen, and they get better. I think it’s a positive thing. You can still put limits on hours. They do that anyway.”

The limitations on coaches during the summer are nothing new, with NCAA rules in place to prevent them from organizing, watching or participating in any “sport-specific” activities until practice officially opens.

That doesn’t keep the vast majority of players across the country who spend their summers on campus from working out with the strength coach or getting together to work on skills related to their position, but it does lock out the personnel that lead the players through them for the rest of the year.

For a program like UT, that puts the focus on Ron McKeefery instead of Dooley – which isn’t exactly a problem for Dooley, even if it’s not the ideal situation.

“It’s just something that’s part of the job, he said. You get used to it. You don’t know any different because that’s the way it’s been ever since we’ve been coaching.

“I have a lot of trust in coach (McKeefery). He’s done a phenomenal job and he keeps me well informed of the way things are going. If we need to sit down and visit with any of our players about any issues, then we’re on it right away.”

It might streamline the process to eliminate the middle man, just as it could potentially be a benefit to have a lower coach-to-player ratio on par with the NFL as Dooley suggested during the SEC spring meetings.

He hasn’t publicly pushed any specific policies about the summer workouts, and it didn’t appear as if he had any plans to do so. But the issue has come up in other programs this summer, including at Penn State, where legendary coach Joe Paterno stumbled upon a workout and inadvertently committed a secondary violation by talking about how impressive a player looked in it.

Paterno admitted the mistake during an ESPN broadcast along with Duke basketball coach Mike Kryzyewski last month, with both pushing for additional practice time and calling for the NCAA to “modernize” its rules.

Dooley has already made clear he isn’t afraid to speak up for change when it comes to coaching, and even if offseason workouts aren’t at the top of the list, they appear to be on there somewhere.

“I understand the rules, Dooley said. But it just seems a little bit odd that we can’t be around them other than socially for two months right before two-a-days.

“But that’s the way the rules are.”

Tennessee’s Dooley Wants Change To Summer Coaching Rules

GoVolsXtra.com, Austin Ward

http://www.govolsxtra.com/news/2011/jul/14/derek-dooley-no-fan-of-summer-rules/

Derek Dooley already has made his desire for a larger coaching staff known publicly.

The Tennessee coach also wouldn’t mind giving the ones he already has something to do in the summer.

The Vols are plenty busy during the offseason with conditioning, workouts and throwing sessions during the summer semesters. But that work can’t be done with the instruction of their full-time coaches until camp opens in early August, which can leave those responsible for what happens after practice resumes perhaps a little frustrated while they wait to get started.

“I’d practice (in the summer), Dooley said during a dedication Wednesday at the UT Center for Athletic Field Safety. But that ain’t ever going to happen.

“I look at these high school guys, and they practice every day, all summer – and they develop. They do a great job developing them.

“The schools and the states that put a real emphasis on developing their teams in the summer, they’re out there coaching them during seven-on-seven or coaching their linemen, and they get better. I think it’s a positive thing. You can still put limits on hours. They do that anyway.”

The limitations on coaches during the summer are nothing new, with NCAA rules in place to prevent them from organizing, watching or participating in any “sport-specific” activities until practice officially opens.

That doesn’t keep the vast majority of players across the country who spend their summers on campus from working out with the strength coach or getting together to work on skills related to their position, but it does lock out the personnel that lead the players through them for the rest of the year.

For a program like UT, that puts the focus on Ron McKeefery instead of Dooley – which isn’t exactly a problem for Dooley, even if it’s not the ideal situation.

“It’s just something that’s part of the job, he said. You get used to it. You don’t know any different because that’s the way it’s been ever since we’ve been coaching.

“I have a lot of trust in coach (McKeefery). He’s done a phenomenal job and he keeps me well informed of the way things are going. If we need to sit down and visit with any of our players about any issues, then we’re on it right away.”

It might streamline the process to eliminate the middle man, just as it could potentially be a benefit to have a lower coach-to-player ratio on par with the NFL as Dooley suggested during the SEC spring meetings.

He hasn’t publicly pushed any specific policies about the summer workouts, and it didn’t appear as if he had any plans to do so. But the issue has come up in other programs this summer, including at Penn State, where legendary coach Joe Paterno stumbled upon a workout and inadvertently committed a secondary violation by talking about how impressive a player looked in it.

Paterno admitted the mistake during an ESPN broadcast along with Duke basketball coach Mike Kryzyewski last month, with both pushing for additional practice time and calling for the NCAA to “modernize” its rules.

Dooley has already made clear he isn’t afraid to speak up for change when it comes to coaching, and even if offseason workouts aren’t at the top of the list, they appear to be on there somewhere.

“I understand the rules, Dooley said. But it just seems a little bit odd that we can’t be around them other than socially for two months right before two-a-days.

“But that’s the way the rules are.”






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