Monday, April 2, 2012

Two Junior Practices


The only inefficient thing that I have found in 55 days of living in Switzerland is the Swiss American Football League's Official Website.

With that being said . . .

Swiss American Football League

NLB Week #2 Results
Basel 37 - Thun 20
LUCAF 50 - Luzern 0
Geneva 20 - Fribourg 0

NLB Standings
Basel Meanmachine 2-0
LUCAF Owls 2-0
Geneva Seahawks 1-0
Thun Tigers 0-1
Fribourg Cardinals 0-2
Luzern Lions 0-2

NLB Week #3 Game
Saturday, April 7
Luzern (0-2) at Fribourg (0-2)
BYES: Basel (2-0), Geneva (1-0), LUCAF (2-0) and Thun (0-1)

Few games in all of Europe this weekend because of the Easter weekend. Easter Monday is as big a holiday here as is Easter Sunday.

Thun-Basel Game Action

Please note FB #34 Rudy Bohren's crushing block in the right corner. I'm still waiting for the game pictures to be posted to our team website at but I have inside sources who leaked these two pictures to me.

2012 Thun Tigers American Football Club

Switzerland's most beloved AFC by far!!!

for March, 2012

This past month a total of 6,856 people from 105 countries worldwide visited this blog! My Top Five Exotic Visiting Countries were Senegal, Macedonia, Botswana (the blog is HUGE in Botswana!), Ghana and the Netherlands Antilles.

Speaking of the Netherlands, we have a mini-break in the action because of Holy Week and Easter Sunday/Monday. Our Friday and Monday practices have been cancelled and we have a BYE this weekend. Thus, I have decided that I am going to do a little traveling in the next few days.

On Thursday morning I'm going to take the train to Lyon, France to visit with French American football coach Julien Urgenti. We have communicated several times in the last nine months via the internet and now I will finally get to meet him in person and see his beautiful family and city. I'll return to Thun late Friday evening because I need to scout the Luzern at Fribourg game Saturday afternoon.

What better place to celebrate Easter than Amsterdam! I'll fly out of Berne Sunday morning and spend a few days relaxing in both Amsterdam and nearby Haarlem. I'll be back in Thun early Wednesday afternoon in plenty of time for our Senior practice that night.

These two trips should make for an interesting week.

Bon Voyage!!!

Construction begins at Helvetica

Ueli Sutter's, our Tiger Defensive Coordinator, house is right behind Helvetica. Ueli and Cindy have been looking forward to this house addition since way before I arrived I'm sure, today it started.

Because we are located on this hillside, they have to sink reinforcement holes hundreds of feet deep into the earth. The noise level from the work crew is not so bad but that damn yellow Bern Young Boys fussball flag flying proudly on top of their rig is a slap in the face to any FC Thun loving fan like me.

I will try to stay calm.

Speaking of our hillside . . .

Cattle were grazing at the top of our hill today.

Time for football practices, the U-16 met at 6:00 and then the U-19 squad would workout at 7:30. Both practices were outdoors but in two locations very far apart.

My crusade at these two practices was to vastly improve our offensive line techniques which I believe is a big weakness in our program from top to bottom right now. Thus I now have three blocking shields permanently sharing Helvetica with me so that I can be sure that they will be at every practice from now on.

When I boarded the bus today with shields in hand to go to the U-16 practice, I definitely got some funny looks . . . inquiring minds want to know!

U-19 coach Stephan Pulver gave me a ride to the U-19 practice, he did not bat an eye when he saw the blocking shields . . . he knew.

U-16 Arm Circles

I have learned to not say anything about EuroBall warm-up exercises in Italy, Sweden or Switzerland. It works best for everyone that way.

BIG day for the U-16 team

It was both our first practice outdoors and our first day in pads!

We had a good turnout today.

Fratelli Valentino

Here QB Angelo Valentino, who is more experienced and does double duty also playing on the U-19 team, helps his younger brother Daniele, our Center, don his pads for the first time.

U-19 Warm-Ups

Sparse turnout tonight due to two factors in my opinion.

First, five of the U-16 players also play for the U-19 team and could not make the long trip to the second practice as there is no bus line near the practice field you see here.

Secondly, the U-19 team had a rather long scrimmage yesterday, so game day soreness may have been an issue as well.

Still, I enjoyed my second great practice of the evening as I got to work with my favorite athletes, the Offensive Linemen, on their fundamentals. I was very happy to see such rapid improvement in just one good, long technique period by the young men on both teams. The Tigers are just so very coachable, it is just great!!!

#49 Remo Balsiger in action

This is from one of our U-16 Offensive Line drills, Remo is seen working on his base blocking fundamentals. I like his footwork, pad level, punch and finish in this clip. He was our best U-16 lineman tonight by far!

O Line on three . . . 1 . . . 2 . . . 3 . . . "O LINE!!!"

1 comment:

Ryan Bolland said...

I hope you have a great time in the Netherlands. I'll be sure to tell my dad you will be visiting his birth city of Haarlem! When we visited while you were on the Camino we actually found the house in which he was born, which was a neat experience for him. Travel safely!