IFAF coaching development tour attends BAFCA convention
Jun 18, 2023 - 10:59:14 PM

IFAF and USA Football have selected six American football coaches - three from the collegiate ranks and three from US high schools - to further strengthen the sport beyond the United States. The group will make several coaching presentations at the British American Football Coaches Association (BAFCA) Convention, at Leicester University on June 27/30 which will be attended by more than 150 coaches.

"This is an exciting tour that will further strengthen the understanding of a truly international sport," said IFAF President, Tommy Wiking,.  "All six of these coaches were hand-selected for their ability to teach the game.  Thanks to their work, hundreds of European coaches and thousands of players will further advance their football knowledge and enjoyment of our sport."

USA Football Executive Director, Scott Hallenbeck, said: "The best way to enrich football on the grassroots level - whether in Paris or Pittsburgh - is to provide coaches with resources to become quality instructors and mentors. We are proud to partner with IFAF and the national football federation of Great Britain. This tour will benefit the youngsters who love playing football and who represent its future."

After its visit to Leicester, the IFAF Coaching Development Tour will move on to Denmark (July 2/3) and Sweden (July 5/6) and will have already visited France (June 21/25).

The six American football coaches participating iat the BAFCA Conventio from June 27-29:

Jim Barnes, Head Coach, Augustana College, Rock Island, IL
In eight seasons as head coach, Barnes has guided the Vikings to three College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin titles and participated in two NCAA Division III playoffs.  Overall, Barnes has a record of 97 wins against 36 losses (.722).  The Vikings have earned two conference championships in the past three seasons.

Clayt Birmingham, Defensive Coordinator, University of Wisconsin-Stout, Menomonie, WI
Birmingham enters his second season as UW-Stout's defensive coordinator. A former standout defensive back at UW-Stevens Point, he has coached on the Division I, II and III college levels.  He spent the summer of 1998 as the head coach of Stockholm's Swedish National Championship team, leading the team to an 11-3 record. The Sturgeon Bay, Wis., native was part of USA Football's Senior National Team coaching staff last summer, which led America's first national team in an IFAF competition to a gold medal at the 2007 IFAF Senior World Championship.

Tim Breslin, Offensive Line Coach, DeMatha Catholic High School, Hyattsville, MD
Following 10 seasons as a member of the Georgetown University football coaching staff (1993-2002), Breslin has contributed as the offensive line coach for one of America's most successful prep football programs at DeMatha Catholic High School near Washington, D.C.

Adam Dorrel, Offensive Coordinator, Northwest Missouri State, Maryville, MO
Dorrel has helped lead the Bearcats to three consecutive NCAA Division II championship appearances. In his four seasons as a full-time coach at his alma mater, Northwest is 48-9 (.842). The program will enter 2008 with 21 straight wins in conference play and with a 17-game home win streak.  Like Birmingham, Dorrel was part of USA Football's gold-medal Senior National Team coaching staff which won the 2007 IFAF Senior World Championship in Kawasaki, Japan.

Jim Esposito, Offensive Coordinator, Northern High School, Dunkirk, MD
A 30-year coaching veteran, nearly all on the prep level, Esposito enters his first season at Northern H.S. this fall.  In leading Pautexent High School in Lusby, Md., for six seasons earlier this decade, Esposito guided the Panthers to a 42-21 (.667) record.  The Washington Post named him its 2001 High School Coach of the Year.

Greg Horning, Offensive & Defensive Line Coach, Northern High School, Dunkirk, MD
A master at teaching the game's fundamentals, Horning has had spectacular success on youth and high school coaching levels.  Leading the Huntingtown (Md.) High School freshman program for three years, his teams posted a 24-2 (.923) record.  He attributes his success to strong communication with players and their parents along with providing his players with structure and discipline to succeed in football, a game rooted in teamwork.

The attendance of these coaches will compliment an already extensive agenda. BAFCA President, Jim Messenger, commented, "The BAFCA Convention is the UK's premier American football coach education event. With the addition, this year, of the high quality guest speakers provided by IFAF and USA Football this promises to be possibly the best ever line-up featured. BAFCA are extremely grateful to IFAF and USA football for their support of the event”.

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