Hollywood Memorial 7-on-7 Tournament: Welcome
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Originally a segment of practice for quarterbacks, receivers, and the defensive secondary, interest in 7-on-7 football has grown and sparked numerous off-season tournaments and leagues nationwide. Thousands of high school football players are eager to participate in order to work year-round on their gridiron-related skills, and also as another avenue to gain the attention of college recruiters. In a football coach’s toolbox, the 7-on-7 is quickly becoming one of the favorite methods of evaluation and chemistry-building during summer non-contact days.
Organized 7-on-7 leagues grew out of flag football, which got its start on Army bases during the 1940s as a means of recreation for military personnel. Fast-forward a few decades, and it is now one of the hottest new tactics in college recruiting. “Basically, we’re wanting to work on skills and installing what we’re running this season,” said Murphysboro, Illinois coach Gary Carter. “We’re not a passing team, but we’ve gone to three 7-on-7 tournaments and there is conditioning involved. I look at it as a teaching tool,” Carter said. “Some coaches don’t look at it that way, but you can slow things down and it’s great for the kids and the program.”
For programs that are rebuilding or undergoing a coaching transition, 7-on-7s can be an effective process to determine what assets a coach has to work with. In Sparta, coach Joe Bevis enters his second season rebuilding a program that hasn’t had a winning season since 1994. “They’re helpful in a number of ways,” Bevis said. “It helps your kids build some confidence, it’s relevant in deciding who your defensive backs are and it gives you a more realistic gauge on your athleticism. It’s not the end-all, be-all because you’re not tackling, but I do enjoy them because it gets the kids out and competitive.”
Part of the allure of 7-on-7 tournaments is the attention they get from college coaches and recruiting websites. ESPN has also aired some of them in the past. “They actually have (7-on-7) All-Star teams,” Carter said. “They run a generic offense and defense and they were showcases for college coaches to watch. It’s quite an honor to be on those teams.”
“You really get to see the athleticism of your players,” Bevis said. “I’ve heard 7-on-7s referred to as ‘basketball on grass,’ and it is very, very quick.” Despite criticism that it’s not “real football,” there are benefits to 7-on-7s. With improvements in the passing game, team chemistry, and overall athleticism, it has become one of the fixtures of summer football. If we’re preparing our teams for High School ball, teaching our middle school kids 7-on-7 can only have benefits. Make plans NOW to join us for the 2016 Tournament!!!
Congratulations to our 2015 Winners!
Marshall Warriors (SBCSC)
Westside Catholic Cardinals (SB-ICCL)
Jackson Tigers (SBCSC)
Westside Catholic (SB ICCL)
2016 tournament info:
Guaranteed 3+ games
JV Division (5th, 6th & 7th Grade)
Varsity Division (7th & 8th grade)
Patched & Licensed IHSAA officials
Tournament Date Aug 13
Varsity Div Registration Fee $100
JV Div Registration Fee $75
Registration Deadline Aug 7
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