Keeping score at practice suggests an emphasis on instantaneous feedback

Much of what Lane Kiffin is doing this spring is simply readjusting the collective attitude of the players. We've mentioned this before, but it bears repeating: the Kiffin Chimera is keeping score at practice.

This is certainly good news, and maybe for more reasons than you might think. Yeah, it makes the practices more competitive. Sure, it motivates players to practice well from the first whistle to the shower.

But an added benefit that hadn't occurred to me until now is that it provides instant feedback to players. How many times in prior seasons were we told that the coaches would have to wait and see the tape before coming to any conclusions about a player or a game? How many times do you think the players were told that as well? There is some prudence in that philosophy -- you don't want to misjudge anyone, and video provides a better vantage point -- but I'm guessing that the emphasis on waiting also wasted days at a time.

I'm assuming a player would have been brought into a post-game or -practice meeting, made to watch the tape, and then receive his feedback while sitting there in street clothes when there's nothing he could really do about it except nod and say, "Yes, sir." He was probably given a list of things to do better next time, which he may or may not have remembered.

With the instant feedback approach, though, I'm assuming he has a coach in his earhole correcting him as he goes, and he's given an opportunity to correct mistakes right then, right there. And if he did something else wrong, he could correct that on the very next play.

Sure, the former regime was likely providing some immediate feedback during practice, but the emphasis really seemed to be on what they could learn from the post-practice video. And sure, there is a danger that a coach might miss something or see something incorrectly and therefore give some incorrect coaching. But even that could be corrected on the next play.

If a player has to wait to get the majority of his feedback until after practice, he can't correct it until the next practice. Or next game. Or the game or season after that.

 

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