Inside ASU Football With Quarterbacks Coach Mark Helfrich

July 9, 2001







Coach Koetter has passed the pen to another member of his staff for a couple of weeks, Mark Helfrich. Coach Helfrich joined the ASU Football family last fall to continue his role as quarterback coach as he did the past three seasons with Koetter at Boise State. To learn more about Coach Helfrich click here, and enjoy his articles.

Malcolm Forbes, an arguably successful business leader, once said, 'If you don't know what to do with many of the papers piled on your desk, stick a dozen colleagues' initials on them and pass them along.' Believing that organizations, whether businesses or football programs operate on the same principles of success, Coach Koetter utilizes the powers of delegation on a daily basis.

Most of the tasks or items delegated will be passed on to one of the nine assistant coaches. Each coach, in addition to coaching his position players, has administrative duties ranging from coordinating summer jobs to arranging chapel services to maintaining honor boards and so on. So what do these guys do the rest of the year?

We have recently completed our calendar - one year in advance - and that's what we'll talk about today.

We will begin with what most people are familiar with - Fall Camp and the annual trip to Camp Tontozona. At this time, the assistants' main focus is preparing their players to be ready to go for the upcoming season starting this year with San Diego State. Installation of the special teams, defensive and offensive schemes takes priority. Starting September 1st, recruiting calls may begin to selected senior prospects - one call per week during this period.

Throughout the season, and in today's climate throughout the entire year, recruiting of some sort never ends. Written correspondence continues virtually all year, while contact with the prospect themselves is much more highly regulated.

On selected weeks, seven of the nine assistants will leave immediately following the Thursday practice and head out recruiting all day Friday, possibly catching a game and a late flight back to meet up with the team whether home or away. Those coaches who have children try to reintroduce themselves on Thursday and Sunday nights during game weeks - if they aren't out recruiting.

After the season ends - hopefully that occurs later rather than sooner - the real recruiting grind begins. The National Signing Day - the first Wednesday in February - is the culmination of that year's recruiting efforts, and the first day that someone can truly make their commitment official.

February and March are times of evaluation and preparation - evaluation of the previous fall, what worked and what didn't, and preparation for Spring Practice. As units, offense, defense and special teams, we will take a look at every single play from scrimmage and basically try to figure out what worked and what needs to be improved.

April and May are wholly consumed by Spring Practice and the Spring Evaluation Period, when coaches are out identifying and reconfirming their areas' top Junior prospects. There is some time in the afternoons and evenings of April to work on our administrative projects and planning for spring recruiting.

When June comes, we enjoy the chance to work with and observe the young men that are able to attend our camps and passing leagues held on campus. Throughout late May and June, we are viewing the thousands of videotapes that arrive from around the country, shuffling them back and forth to the appropriate coaches.

In late June and July, each coach takes three weeks vacation - or becomes an amateur scribe - trying to recharge for the upcoming season. Some coaches hit the lakes of Idaho, the coast of Oregon, or try to hit the ball at Karsten. The two or three weeks while the coaches are 'in' are spent preparing for fall camp, working on various aspects of recruiting, and keeping in communication with our current student-athletes regarding academics and their summer conditioning efforts.

Coach Monachino, our defensive line coach, said it best in a recent interview, 'Coach Koetter does a great job of making us feel like we're in charge of something. There's no doubt who's ultimately in charge, but we feel like we work with him and not for him.'

Our staff chemistry, equally important to having good team chemistry, is improved and utilized by the delegation of various projects which we dutifully complete - and will hopefully help lead to our success!

Go Devils!

The next two weeks of Inside ASU Football will be 'Viewer's Choice.' Submit your questions along with your name and hometown by e-mail to: mark.helfrich@asu.edu

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