Bring back the scrimmage games.
Okay, I realize that we are already a week into the IHSA football season so this stroke of genius might be a bit too late.
But when I stumbled across a recent Division III scrimmage between Wartburg College and University of Wisconsin-Platteville it came to me.
What happened to the IHSA football scrimmage games against other teams? And why not bring them back?
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I realize that the many recent IHSA football detractors will say that adding a live, full-speed scrimmage is just adding another chance for injury and concussions.
Allowing this kind of competition against someone other than your own team can be beneficial on several different levels.
We preach about the importance of teaching proper tackling and making sure that kids are doing the correct things. But most coaches will tell you that their annual 'Red and Black' or 'Green and White' in-house scrimmage are nothing more than a dress rehearsal, and not exactly a great moment for teaching and evaluation.
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How about allowing IHSA football teams to have one controlled scrimmage game against another school, say, a week or so before the start of the regular season. Allow coaches to be on the field, giving them the chance to teach kids during proper live, full-speed action. Chance for injuries to players? There's no question every time you take the field you have that chance, just like in any other IHSA sport.
Yet if you want to make sure that your kids are tackling properly, why not allow the coaches to have a chance to see and evaluate kids in a live scrimmage?
It seems that the trend is to take away contact days in the name of safety (which no one involved in the sport would argue against), but why not allow a live scrimmage and give the coaches a chance to make the most out of those limited contact times?