The Pulse Team had the opportunity this week to talk with Coach Cedric Douglas. Coach Douglas is currently the Recruiting Coordinator and TIght Ends Coach at Coffeyville Community College, one of the Nation's Top Junior College Football programs. He is also an elite raw powerlifter in the 220lb weight class. Enjoy.
Q: What are your former and current positions?
A: I was formerly the Wide Receiver’s Coach and Recruiting Coordinator for Ave Maria University, an NAIA school near Naples, Florida. I am now the Tight Ends Coach and Recruiting Coordinator at Coffeyville Community College in Coffeyville, Kansas.
Q: Tell me a little about Coffeyville and the tradition there.
A: Coffeyville Community College has been great at football for a very long time. It has been known for helping players who struggled with their academics out of high school by being a place that they could take classes to help get back to the necessary standards of the NCAA. It also prepared them on the field because the level of competition in the Jayhawk Conference is 2nd to none for the Junior College ranks. Since the 1950s Coffeyville Community College has won 3 national titles, produced a Heisman Trophy winner, and produced countless NFL draft prospects. Just this past year 3 former Coffeyville Red Ravens were drafted to the NFL after coming here out of high school and earning SEC scholarships. And this is the norm for every sport. Basketball hasn’t lost more than 5 games since 1992, and last year the women made it all the way to the National Championship game. Both the Men’s and Women’s track team took 3rd at this year’s National Meet.
Q: When it comes to the recruiting process, what are most kids NOT doing that they should be doing?
A: So many kids in the recruiting process think that skill alone on the field is what we are looking for. I place so many kids’ tapes in the talented pile that I can’t touch because of grades. Take the classroom seriously. I’ve dealt with coaches at every level of competition, and that’s always a recurring theme. Also, big men need to make highlights too. O-line and D-line get evaluated on tape as well. May not make the Sports Center top 10 like the 80 yard run but we need to see it.
Q: What is most effective way to contact a coach? Email, phone, letter, send film, have their high school coach be the middleman, wait for them to contact you?
A: The best way to reach a coach in my mind is to email. Send them an email and have a link to your film. I need to see the tape. Build a great relationship with your H.S coach because often times the 2nd person I talk to in an evaluation of a player is the Coach. I want to know what kind of person I’m dealing with on and off the field. Have as many ways to contact you as possible and any good recruiter will be able to find you with those things in place. Don’t be hard to get in touch with! Twitter is a hidden gem! In fact hit me on my handle @CoachCD2.
Q: At what age should most kids start the process trying to contact coaches?
A: I’d say going into your Junior year. If you have any film of yourself that isn’t a bad time to start. When I say film I mean Varsity film, we don’t watch JV film. But generally speaking the Junior year itself is when a lot of potential prospects are identified. If you are entering your Senior year and haven’t gotten any buzz yet, be proactive and get on it yourself.
Q: What is the biggest mistake you think most kids make in the recruiting process?
A: THE BIGGEST MISTAKES ARE MADE ON SOCIAL MEDIA! Be careful what you are posting on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. I’ve had Big 12 and SEC coaches come into my office, take a prospects info down, and before they get to the parking lot they have found you on social media and then called me back and said “no thanks coach”. That stuff really matters so bring attention to yourself in a positive light.
Q: What is the number one thing you want to see from a kid when you put on his film? Anything you see that makes you immediately pass on him?
A: I love what you guys do at Pulse because it’s all the key components to a good football player in one beautiful training program. I want to see speed of course, but I’m looking at your hips on tape. Can he bend? Does he explode at the point of contact? Is there a second gear? Biggest mistake I see kids make with their highlight tape is they’ll have a 90 yard run as the 10th play on the film. Put the big plays up front, make me say wow before play 4.
Q: I’m starting to see a ton of combines and summer camps being held at various high schools and colleges. Do you feel that these are worth spending the money to travel and attend?
A: I am about 50/50 when it comes to the camps, but I won’t lie to you I’m not all that big on the private sector events. Unless a college coach is going to be there to evaluate you and see you do position specific drills, I really don’t see a big benefit to spending thousands of dollars a summer on those things. Now, if a college is putting it on by all means show the people what you’re working with.
Q: I know you are also big into strength and conditioning; you have the powerlifting medals to back it up. What is the biggest thing you see lacking physically with the kids that come into your program?
A: I have met so many athletes who have never lifted before for various reasons. The worst is when it’s because their coach never emphasized it. That should be a crime punishable by the Judicial System. For all those kids who just think that their natural talent is going to do it….news flash! No program in the country ISN’T going to put you in the weight room. You’re going to learn to love that room one way or the other. Big, fast, and strong is the name of the game!
Q: We always like to say, “Never trust a skinny chef”. Do you think your own experience and success under the bar has made you a better asset to your players in the weight room?
A: No question, I think that quote is almost the 11th commandment or something. The level of care and respect I have for the strength programs is because I know what they do for the kids and how crucial each component is. It would be impossible to understand if the dividends I reaped from that room hadn’t been so high. I still lift and run with my guys, it is just that important.
Q: Number one exercise for football players…GO!
A: SQUAT! If you catch me in your school don’t be surprised if I ask you if you put the bar on your back or not. Not many other exercises that deliver the goods the way to squat does.
Q: What is the best advice you could give a young football player looking to play at the next level?
A: Work hard. Work hard. And work hard! The game of football is a special one. The percentage of players that play high school ball and go on to the next level is not very high. Rare are the cases where more than one or two from each school go on. You need to set yourself apart. Take your strength training seriously and learn to be a student of the game as well. Even more important are your academics. I’ve seen some of best players to ever touch the gridiron never see the lights because they didn’t take the classroom seriously. Even if you are one of the fortunate to go to the next level, even fewer make it beyond that so you need to be able to walk out of that deal with a diploma in hand to one day provide for your family.
If you have any additional questions for Coach Douglas comment below or reach out to us and we will make sure we get those to him!