(East Los Angeles, CA) [From The Editor’s Desk]: On June 1st, the Los Angeles Rams took time-out during this phase of their 2023 pre-season period to conduct a unique, multi-phased High School Varsity Football Clinic for Head Coaches, who represented a multitude of programs from the Southland.
This FREE event took place at the Rams Training Facility located on the campus of Cal Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, CA.
The day started at 10:30 am with opening remarks by the Rams High School Football Associate Manager, Ghalee Wadood, followed by a presentation from an NCAA representative to discuss college entrance requirements for student-athletes. Lunch was then provided by Black-owned business Not Your Mama’s Kitchen, for all participating coaches, courtesy of the Rams.
Following lunch, the second phase of the Clinic began with Rams Head Coach Sean McVay welcoming the coaches with his remarks before they were then divided into nine small groups to take part in 45-minute breakout sessions focused on the key aspects of coaching and player development with Rams’ position coaches including Special Teams Coordinator CHASE BLACKBURN, Tight Ends Coach NICK CALEY, Running Backs Coach RON GOULD, Defensive Line Coach and Run Game Coordinator ERIC HENDERSON, Defensive Backs and Pass Game Coordinator AUBREY PLEASANT, Quarterbacks Coach and Pass Game Coordinator ZAC ROBINSON, Linebackers and Pass Rush Coordinator CHRIS SHULA, Offensive Line Coach RYAN WENDELL, and Wide Receivers Coach ERIC YARBER.
The last phase of the learning experience took place from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm, and was introduced as part of the NFL’s initiative to promote CPR education by ensuring that coaches have the proper training and equipment to respond to medical emergencies.
With the collaboration and leadership of the American Heart Association, their staff provided the learning and training opportunities on how Coaches could understand the basics of applying Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) techniques as well as the implementation of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) to a player in need of either one of those life-saving actions.
As the NFL and all fans know, much more CPR awareness in the sport now exists due to last year’s very chilling situation that surrounded Buffalo Bills’ Cornerback, Damar Hamlin. On recalling that heart-wrenching and life-changing night, due to the rapid response by the EMTs on duty, Hamlin was quickly transported to the hospital for the critical emergency treatments rendered by the Medical Specialists and Teams that were assembled, and who ultimately went on to save his life.
That same awareness and life-saving action has now initiated even more attention to the high school level, where this very same issue could present itself on any given Friday night high school football game. So, now is the time that all schools and organizations should begin preparations for the possibility of a similar situation occurring in their program. And, although it was an unfortunate and unexpected game situation, Damar Hamlin, after being removed from the intensive care unit, was extremely, and forever thankful to his first responders for helping to save his life.
This Rams training day for High School Coaches also helped to kick-off the “National CPR and AED Awareness Week,” spotlighting how lives can be saved by knowing CPR and how to use an AED device.
In closing our story and for our viewers information, last season, the Rams launched the High School Coaches Shadow Program to elevate coaches’ philosophies, practice schedules, and player development strategies. The program kicked off at the team’s Training Camp where (55) local high school football coaches had the chance to learn first-hand from the Rams’ coaching staff.
Let’s all give a huge Congrats to the Rams for leadership in bringing its community and youth outreach programs such as this one, to our Pop Warner and High School Football programs.
Through our accompanying photo gallery of this Coaches Free Clinic, courtesy of the Rams, we hope you will get a good idea of how the day went for the coaches who came out to be better informed and trained for their teams and their players, should any of these types of injuries warrant their implementation during a game, or for that matter, at practice sessions.