Coyotes bring professional approach
Tyler Takeda/The Madera Tribune Madera Coyote offensive line coach and former NFL player Anthony McCoy sits with his wife Ashley, a former Madera Coyote basketball player, during last week’s Coyote football kick-off dinner.
The newest member of the Madera Coyotes varsity coaching staff is one of those that has proven what he teaches can lead to a professional career.
Coyote offensive line coach Anthony McCoy sports a Super Bowl ring he won as a member of the Seattle Seahawks while spending six years in the National Football League.
“We won’t talk about the other won we should have gotten,” McCoy says about the decision to pass the ball rather than run it in with Marshawn Lynch. Fans of the game can remember Malcom Butler’s game-clinching interception for the New England Patriots.
However, after his football career finished two years ago, McCoy seeked something to do and was thinking about calling his old football coach and current Madera Coyotes head coach Yosef Fares.
“I started looking around and Yosef gave me a call,” McCoy said. “I was thinking about Madera, but never pulled the trigger on calling, but Yosef called me first. We were on the same page. I got myself through the door and with the Yotees.”
McCoy was a senior when Fares was the linebackers coach at Bullard-Fresno. From there, McCoy played four years at USC before getting drafted and playing for the Seahawks.
“We knew each other,” McCoy said. “It was a player-coach relationship then. Now, it’s a friends/colleagues relationship. It’s a little different than before. Coach Yosef gave me a call one day and we were going to go over some run-game stuff. The next thing you know, it went from run game stuff to do you want to come on board as the offensive line coach. I said, ‘hell yeah.’”
McCoy is also working with his wife’s diamond business, McCoy’s Diamonds, and being a father to his kids.
“It’s been a lot slower since I got out of the NFL,” he said. “You have to try to keep the structure in your life. You go from the past 10-plus years to I have to be here at this time and be done at this time. Now, the past two years, get up without an alarm clock and what to do with yourself. The first year, I was enjoying the stuff and traveling while taking up hobbies. That stuff tends to get old and you want to get into something.”
In addition, McCoy runs a camp with his father-in-law, former San Francisco 49er Tim Collier (McCoy Collier Football Camp). In his time working with the camp and visiting schools, he saw things he could teach kids to make them better.
“A lot of these kids don’t know hot to do some of the little things right, like stretching, warming up, stepping this way, hand placement and all the things that comes with playing the position in football,” he said. “In going around, I noticed that a lot of these kids simply didn’t know. I said, that’s where I need to be, at this level. In high school, you’re trying to teach these boys to get to the next level versus kids who are at the next level expecting them to be all great talent. I heard Deion (Sanders) say. It’s not about getting your top guys scholarships. It’s about getting 15-20 guys scholarships to wherever and give these kids the opportunity to play at these places. The only way they are able to do that is if they get professional-level or good coaching at the high school level. These kids at the places I have visited just don’t know. This is where I have to attack. That way, if they are blessed to play at the next level, they will be way far ahead than a kid at another school and isn’t doing what they are doing.
“When I got to the college level, I had to learn all that stuff. I didn’t know that going into college. I got my butt kick learning to how to play a position, how to read a defense, proper stance, what to look for. I was just beating guys with athletic ability. Off of that, I did well in high school. A lot of kids do that from high school. Not a lot of kids know football at this level. The kids know football, but don’t know football and the nuances about how to play the game.”
McCoy says that one of his goals is to make sure Madera kids are ready to play at the next level.
“More coaches and scouts are most likely to come to a school like Madera because they know kids will know football,” he said. “I’m glad to be here with Yosef because he knows a lot of football. He travels a lot to a bunch of different clinics to talk to a lot of different coaches. He’s like a sponge. He’s taken all the information and throwing the kitchen sink at me on defense. That’s how it’s supposed to be, competing. That’s what I like about Yosef and the environment he’s created in Madera. It’s about competing. It’s no different than it was with Coach Pete (Carroll, Seahawks head coach). I like the philosophy that he’s following in the program.”
McCoy is excited for his first season as a high school coach and sees a lot of positives going into this season, including inheriting bigger, faster and stronger linemen.
“The best thing is Yosef runs a good offseason program,” he said. “They are big, strong and fast so I don’t have to worry about that much. All I have to do is worry about the X’s and O’s, footwork, technique, fundamentals and stuff. I don’t have to worry about if this kid is fast enough or strong enough. Yosef has done a great job of preparing these kids. My job is easy. My job is coaching techniques and fundamentals because these kids are physically already there and their mindset is where it needs to be. I come into a real good situation in Madera. Only time will tell how good we do, but I’m excited to see what these boys can do.”
Heading into Fares’ third year as the Coyotes’ coach, optimism is high for the upcoming season. Some think this could be the year the Coyotes break through that County/Metro Athletic Conference armor and beat one of those teams other than Madera South.
“There was a lot of optimism even before I got here,” McCoy said. “I just try to do my part, crank it up another notch and bring energy that I’ve had in my career. I just try to bring what I’ve learned at the professional and college level to bring a mindset to what they are already doing. Yosef is already doing professional stuff. Everything he has been doing to how he runs his weight room to how he runs his practice is how it’s done professionally. Everything, for me, is easy. He is running a professional-style ship. That makes me more optimistic as a coach to see how great things are run. Now, I can fit in a lot easier. All this experience we have, they know how to bring the energy at practice. You know when the game comes, they are going to kick it up. Optimism is real high. The kids believe, we believe, the city believes. Now it’s time to put the work in.”
One of the advantages McCoy has over other coaches is that he has played at all of the levels. The players know that what he is teaching comes from the professional level.
“They know who I am now,” McCoy said. “I want them to approach me as a coach. I’ll come out and bring the energy. I hope I can energize, motivate them, get them better and teach them how to do things right. I had to learn how to do things right. I want to teach these guys to be able to play longer. All I’m teaching from is from experience. Who I’ve learned from, what I’ve learned and bring it all to these kids. The kids know what I’m teaching them is from the professional level. Everything we do is professional-style with these kids. I want to make them better. If any of these kids, and we have some kids that can play at the next level, are prepared.”
In looking back, McCoy is excited about coaching at Madera, particularly at the high school level. It completes a circle for
McCoy to where his career started and now his next career is starting.
“It’s bringing me back to my roots,” he said. “It’s back to where it’s not about business and politics. It’s about competing and it’s all about football. It’s all about the game of football and having fun with your brothers and enjoying this game. Each level, something changes. The game gets more political and more dangerous. You know all the coaches and players. You kick it with them afterwards at the high school level. If you are blessed to the next level, all of that changes. I like coming back and having fun with the kids. I like showing them something new and see them doing what you taught them and they are successful brings a lot of joy to me. Knowing that I am able to teach somebody else what I’ve been taught is like the father-son relationship passing down knowledge. It’s been a real privilege to have this opportunity to coach kids the game of football.”