Columbia Football Week in Review, April 12, 2014 

By Inside Lion

The upcoming weeks are all about preparation for the Columbia football coaching staff. After the Lions finish their morning workouts and conditioning, the coaches focus their attention on three main pieces of the upcoming schedule.

Head coach Pete Mangurian set the training camp schedule last week. This week, he has broken down what exactly he wants installed for each practice during camp. The first three days of camp will be a review of the installation from spring practice, but after that, the packages will be mostly new looks for the Lions to learn.

For example, Coach Mangurian has set the days he wants to work on third downs, goalline packages and hurry-up looks, among other situations. Coach Rippon and Coach Elizondo then decide what schemes they want to have installed on those given days and prior to those days. They also tell each other what plays, formations and schemes their respective units need to see in those practices to adequately prepare them for the year, especially for the first four opponents. If Coach Rippon wants to see the defense adjust to a specific kind of formation or Coach Elizondo thinks the offense needs to see a specific blitz in a given situation, they tell each other, and those looks go into the practice plan for that day. This also helps the other assistants plan out what they want to work on during their individual position portion of each practice as camp progresses.

When the staff is not working on the training camp schedule, their attention shifts to the upcoming recruiting trips and summer camps. They spend hours every day studying film of high school athletes as they build their lists of potential recruits. For three weeks from the end of April to the middle of May, the staff will be on recruiting trips across the country. These trips consist of stops at dozens of schools in multiple cities from the various states each coach recruits.

While they cannot directly interact with recruits on these trips, the coaches can watch recruits work out, play games in their spring sports or observe any teams that have spring practices. They can also talk to the recruits’ high school coaches and administrators.

These visits and the hours of film the coaches watch help them build a list of recruits that want to attend Columbia’s summer camps and Junior Days. The camps are on June 19, June 21 and July 12 while the Junior Days are June 20 and July 11. This scheduling allows the potential recruits to hopefully experience a day on Columbia’s campus in New York City, check out the Lions’ facilities and interact with the staff on the field during camps.

While it may be the offseason, planning for training camp, recruiting trips and summer camps will continue to fill the Columbia coaches’ schedules as they prepare for the weeks and months ahead.