David Shaw: 'I will never have a recruiting conversation with a 7-on-7 coach'

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Saturday July 29, 2017

Originally published 3/7/16

David Shaw says 7-on-7 football means nothing to him in evaluation.

Shaw spoke to a group of coaches at the Nike Coach of the Year clinic in San Diego in early March, and Redlands High School (CA) offensive line coach Kevin Haugh tweeted Shaw’s thoughts on 7-on-7, which has risen in offseasons. 

“So the question is my thoughts on 7-on-7 teams. … 7-on-7 is not football,” Shaw told the group. “This is going to be my sixth year as a head coach, my 10th year at Stanford, and I’ve never watched a 7-on-7 film. I think it’s good, it’s good for guys to do it, especially if they do it with their teams. You know, the other stuff, the travel teams, that’s fine I guess. I like when they do it with their own teams, running their offense and getting used to each other. It’s good practice.

“I need to see them with pads on. I need to see the quarterbacks with a pass rush. I need to see the receivers catch a ball over the middle and get hit and break tackles. 7-on-7 is great for staying in shape and great for working with those guys, but it means absolutely nothing to me as an evaluator. … I will also never ever, ever have a recruiting conversation with a 7-on-7 coach. I talk to high school coaches, counselors and parents.”

In early March, Shaw said it’s vital for teams to have physical practices in the offseason, or it’s impossible to build a tough program. The 7-on-7 football would fall under this, without the tackling, pressure or pads.

Shaw strongly believes in the physical aspect of football, and his program exemplifies that. As the game spreads out, Shaw is sticking to his fundamentals.  

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to chris@coachingsearch.com.