Team Name: River Valley Jr Falcons
Age: JR Peewee; ages 7-9, USA Football
Head Coach: Willie Burns
Coach Willie Burns has been coaching youth football for 10 years, 2 years with his current group. These kids have had great success the past few seasons. They have not lost a game in two years! They also play in a very competitive and talent littered Northern California football league. After talking with Coach Willie for some time, it was apparent that he has real passion for coaching youth football. He is one of the most passionate youth football coaches I have ever met. He has a lot of football knowledge and experience and most importantly he really knows what youth football is about. Coach Willie mentioned that he has an excellent coaching staff that gel together really well.
Willie Burns (Head Coach), Chris Sachs (Offensive Coordinator), Hugh Baker (Offensive Line), Vincent Pallett (Offensive Line Asst.), Jeff Ellsworth (Defensive Coordinator), Millard Totman (Defensive Line), Darrin Eaves (Defensive Backs/Wide Receivers), and Keri Sachs (Team Mom), Amy Burns (Asst. Team Mom).
The River Valley, Jr Falcon Jr Peewee football TEAM is focused, disciplined, hardworking, and a group of players that are committed to each other. They come to work hard every practice and every game! I can tell you one thing I learned after talking to the Jr Peewee Falcon
coaching staff and that is, you can bet the Jr Falcons football players will play fundamental football and play with swagger. You can bet that they will come right out and get after you from the first whistle to the last whistle! Try and stop these kids!
(#9) Arnold, Jacob DL,OL
(#50) Avila, Jonathan CB, WR
(#24) Baker, George LB, RB
(#49) Breceda, Brock CB, WR
(#54) Burns, Keandre DE, OL
(#20) Caracciola, Anthony DL, OL
(#3) Casimiro, Don Carlo LB, RB
(#38) Cetko, Nickolos DL, RB
(#72) Cotterman, Parker DL, OL
(#40) DeAltonaga, Mathius CB, WR
(#80) Eaves, Evan CB, WR
(#8) Ellsworh, Niko LB, QB
(#88) Flores, Dylan DL, OL
(#81) Hall, David LB, RB
(#44) Hill, David DL, OL
(#60) Hodge, Jacob CB, WR
(#45) Hussman, Tyler DL, OL
(#78) Kruse, Nick CB, WR
(#41) Lee, Mariano DL, OL
(#77) Lozano, Antonio CB, WR
(#34) Miller, Luke LB, QB
(#51) Pallett, Vincent CB, WR
(#82) Potts, Aiden DL, OL
(#23) Sachs, Tristan CB, WR
(#13) Sevenau, Jeremiah CB, WR
(#32) Sims, Hunter DE, OL
(#22) Totman, Collin LB, QB
#Bold = Veteran
During our conversation with Coach Willie about how he made this program so successful he talked about his “do your job” philosophy. He discussed the importance of his players doing their job, no more, no less. “Our goal is to instill an environment that the kids come to and expect to work hard. The kids will learn that when you work hard, good things will happen,” Coach Willie explained. We also discussed the importance of practice. Coach Willie talked about how practice is the most important aspect of any successful football team, because you play like you practice. Coach talked about how they make their players earn their playing time. Whichever player shows up to practice and works hard on a consistent basis will play. No favorites, just facts.
The River Valley Jr Falcons, Jr Peewee team have a we are lining up and coming right at you football philosophy. The Jr Falcons run variations of an I-Formation offense. Coach Chris Sachs, who is the offensive coordinator, does an excellent job of keeping it quick, clean and simple while coordinating the offense. Tempo and execution are very important. Coach Willie and his staff all buy into this philosophy, which is part of the reason they have had so much success together. They also do an excellent job of keeping things simple for the kids. Head Coach Willie does a great job of making sure his team focuses on the fundamentals. They also play real solid defense. Defensive Coordinator, Jeff Ellsworth does a great job putting his players in the best position to make plays. He coordinates a hard-hitting, disciplined defense that has one focus and that is “doing their job”! Coach Willie and his coaching staff are committed to installing a disciplined, team first and fundamentally sound football program.
The River Valley Jr. Falcons Jr. Peewee Football Team’s letter to YouthFootballOnline.com, every coach should read this:
Hello Coach Jeff,
I was thinking about our conversation the other day and wanted to make sure I was able to articulate the pride and pleasure I feel at being a part of something special. When you combine a strong core of extraordinary young men with a competent coaching staff, you have the making of something truly amazing. That is the situation we find ourselves in this year. We are blessed to have a strong nucleus of 5-6 players with the drive and talent to be better than average. They want to be great. They realize they have the opportunity to do something that only a few lucky people have achieved. That is to be champions.
They understand it takes hard work and dedication, but more importantly they are willing to give it. For the past two years, I have watched this group of young men start to realize their potential. They have bought into the idea of playing for each other. They challenge each other to be better every day. They are beginning to take a leadership role and responsibility for the team, forcing others to step up and be accountable for their actions. In doing so, they are establishing strong character traits and forming bonds that will last them for a lifetime. And that is amazing to watch.
We started this year with one simple message, “DO YOUR JOB”! If everyone does their job, the outcome is never in question. There are no trick plays or gimmicks here. This is an “In your face”, “coming straight at you” style, “bring a lunch because we will be here all day type of team”. Now, what are you going to do about it? That is the mentality we started the season with and they have taken the challenge, and then some. They unselfishly block for each other on offense. On defense, they give up the glory play so that the other team has no mistakes or weaknesses to exploit. They each do their jobs. There is “nowhere to run, nowhere to hide”. And oh by the way, here we come again! That means if the coaches have done their jobs and diligently prepared them for the challenges posed by the team we are about to face, once again the outcome is never in question.
The Good news is that we have not met anyone able to match our intensity and tempo. The Bad news is that we are just getting started. Now we are beginning to develop more of our players. They are following our leaders and starting to drink the Kool Aide. They are beginning to understand what we have been trying to tell them from day one. Work hard, do your job, and good things will follow. Yes, the Coaches are demanding. Yes, the coaches are never fully satisfied and always want more. But, we have earned their respect and trust that if they do what we ask, good things will come. I guess the coaches really do know what they are talking about. Look at the results. Look at how much better I have become.
This was not an easy journey. We had to instill an identity and work ethic that represented who we wanted to be. We had to find coaches who understood the vision and bought in to what we were selling. We had to change our coaching approach a little to get the buy-in and effort out of our kids. Meaning we had to dumb down our instruction and focus more on fundamentals than formula, and use terminology that 8-9 year olds could understand. We focused on simple execution with maximum effort. We built them up as often as we constructively criticized them (praise goes a long way with kids). Basically, we stopped “yelling” and started “showing”. We still demanded maximum effort, but we slowed it down enough so that they understood the concepts we were trying to teach them. We returned to our coaching roots.
The result is that we are now 4-0 going into the regular season, outscoring our opponents 13 TDs to only 1 given up. Take into account that there is a four TD “Mercy Rule” in our league, and that we usually dialed it down after half-time. The difference is that our team is unusually focused and our offensive tempo is relentless. While I give most of the credit to our remarkable group of young men, I have to also give kudos to my outstanding coaching staff. They have done everything I have asked of them, and more. I know that not everything I do makes sense to them, but they have come to understand that everything I do is for a reason and with the “big picture” in mind. They are true professionals and collectively we make one hell of a team.
Thank you for your time and consideration. I truly enjoyed speaking with you and wish you and your team success this season. Remember, the journey is the reward and each little success along the way is the treasure.
WCB3, “Coach Willie B.”