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January 2009

January 2009

Football Video – The Right Way

Getting more from your team’s video program can get you more wins.
© January 2009

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From the days of 16 millimeter film to the videotape era to today’s sophisticated digital video systems, recording and sharing game images for team analysis and opponent scouting has been an essential coaching tool. But do some coaches underestimate the importance of video and miss opportunities to get more effective use out of their video programs – possibly costing them future wins?

According to David Affholter, the answer is, unfortunately, yes. “All coaches study game video of their teams’ and their upcoming opponents’ games,” said Affholter. “But many coaches are not taking advantage of methods and guidelines that can really help their programs.”

He should know. As video coordinator for NAIA powerhouse St. Francis in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Affholter has elevated the level of quality and effectiveness of their video program to that of a D-I university. An accomplished football videographer who has coordinated programs for New Mexico State as well as high school and professional indoor teams, he has seen first-hand the value of upgrading a program’s video equipment, technique and staff.

And, as founder of Championship Grade Video, he has successfully developed an instructional DVD, “How to Film Football”, with insider’s tips that help coaches everywhere get more out of their team video.

How can improved video lead to more wins? We asked Affholter’s boss at St. Francis, Head Coach Kevin Donley, the AFCA Regional Coach of the Year in NAIA. “It has helped us to be better teachers and coaches,” according to Donley, who is widely recognized as one of the top small-college coaches in the nation. “The shot quality that we have helps us to examine every detail of what we do – not only in practice but in games as well.”

Affholter believes that many coaches underestimate the impact coaching video can have on a team’s success. “Coaches focus on offensive, defensive, and special teams’ productivity,” he commented. “Video provides the best means to evaluate each of these areas and will become the basis for future improvements for your football team.”

In “How to Film Football”, Affholter addresses critical areas that can help make a team’s video the most effective coaching tool possible – primarily technique. “While we have sections in the DVD about terminology and using technology to your advantage,” said Affholter, “most importantly, they need to master certain techniques so they can present coaches with a final product that can be used effectively to help players improve.”

How has the “How to Film Football” DVD been received by coaches? Very well, according to Affholter, who pointed out that schools at every level from grade school to D-I FBS are using the DVD to train their staffs. Kevin Donley’s colleague at St. Francis, D-Coordinator Warren Maloney agrees. “Every high school and small-college team needs this video.”

Any coach who recognizes the importance of quality game and practice video and wants to ensure having improved video capabilities next season can order “How to Film Football” at or by calling David Affholter at 260-312-1399.

Tips from a Pro

In addition to the technical aspects of producing better quality video, David Affholter has outlined ways that coaches can better manage and motivate their video staff – important but often overlooked members of the team.

1. Emphasize the importance of video and video personnel
Your team’s video staff members need to realize that the video they produce will become the basis for future improvements for your team. Be sure to include videographers when preparing for team dinners, awards banquets or when handing out team apparel.

2. Empower personnel with the ability to make improvements
Relatively inexpensive investments can enhance your video program. Equipment upgrades and video training resources convey that improving video is a necessity in building your team’s success.

3. Coach up video personnel as you would a player
When your video staff gets it right - let them know. Show examples of what works best and what needs improvement.

4. Express the opportunity for excellence
Football video provides the rare opportunity to excel on each play. In football terms, videographers are always an unblocked blitzing linebacker. Emphasize this as a basis for getting it right on every play.


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