LAKEVIEW — Second-year varsity football coach Guenther Mittelstaedt has his Lakeview football teams together early for some early learning.
Mittelstaedt is hosting a football camp all this week for players who will be playing in the fall.
“It’s for grades 9-12,” he said. “It’s working on our basic offense and basic defense. We had 42 ninth-through 12th-graders today. We go from 8 a.m. to noon until Thursday. The last day we’re going to have hot dogs and a picnic.”
The 42 players that came to the camp Monday was good, according to Mittelstaedt.
“We averaged probably about 25 last year and last year I think one person had strep throat and one had to work,” he said. “I was very pleased with the turnout.”
Mittelstaedt said the players are working through all kinds of different things.
“What we’re working on is all different kinds of blocks on offense,” he said. “We’re working on drive blocks, double-team blocks, trap blocks, and we’re working on pulling with our guards. With our ends, we’re working on our hook block, our downfield blocks and our double-teaming. With our backs we’re doing footwork, trying to do a better job faking than we did last year. We’re also working on what we call a J-block and a C-block.
“On the defensive side, we’re working with our linemen on our basic lineman stance and with different techniques like the slant technique. Our secondary is working on their basic footwork, pass coverage, zone coverage and man-to-man coverage.”
Monday’s work went well, according to Mittelstaedt.
“As a group many of them have a lot better understanding of what we’re doing here,” he said. “He coaches are happy with the kids. Also I’ve got to know the kids except for the freshmen.”
Mittelstaedt has many of the players he had on last year’s team back for the camp, and that is an advantage, he said.
“It’s an advantage because they can help teach the younger kids,” he said. “One thing we have to remember is we lost 14 quality seniors last year. But the juniors that are coming back have a good, solid knowledge of the offense and defense.”
Mittelstaedt said he hasn’t changed anything between his first year and this year.
“I don’t think I’ve done anything much different,” he said. “I’m trying to encourage a lot of kids to come out. I’m trying to project some enthusiasm in football, and I’m trying to make them believe we can become very competitive in the league.”
Yet Mittelstaedt wasn’t going to predict how well his team would do this season, which starts Aug. 24 against Morley Stanwood.
“I can’t make any predictions. I believe we’ll be a better team than last year,” he said.