NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Titans are honoring Brainerd High School's Brian Gwyn as the Week 4 Titans High School Coach of the Week.
Brainerd Panthers defeated the East Ridge Pioneers, 29-28 after trailing 21-7 with only six minutes remaining in the game. With great play and coaching, the Panthers forced the game into overtime and won on a two-point conversion.
Brainerd High School supports the Heads Up Football program. We reached out to Coach Gwyn and discussed the Heads Up Football program and his beliefs of improving safety measures in the game of football.
Why did you decided to join Heads Up Football?
Being from Georgia and the city of Atlanta and dealing with a lot of athletes, of course I have seen a lot guys from South Georgia die over the years from summer workouts. A lot of times the result of death has something to do with some type of head injury. So it was very imperative for us (coaches in Georgia) to make sure we were educated. When I accepted the position at Brainerd my main goal was to be a part of Heads Up Football and educate a lot of coaches in Chattanooga about the importance of safety.
With that being said, do you educate coaches outside of Brainerd High School?
*I do. Of course I am setting up a meeting with all my coaches at the end of the season to make sure they are all Heads Up certified. This Spring I am planning a clinic with youth football and middle school coaches regarding the Heads Up program and learn how to minimize and if possible eliminate the head injuries we are having. *
That's a great idea! Here is something I always ask -- how are your players accepting the Heads Up method of tackling? Are they actually enjoying the program?
*Yes, they are. I continue to educate the guys during practice. We (coaching staff) are continually showing proper tackling techniques and teaching to eliminate what they were incorrectly taught about proper tackling technique. We are constantly educating more and more of the Heads Up program, proper form tackling, keeping your head up, to eliminate many injuries, so they can live a normal life once they finish playing. *
Of course, you are not the first coach I've discussed about Heads Up football and all have said their team tackling has drastically improved. Is that also true for Brainerd?
*Yes it is. After we started implementing the different tackling circuit, my team has been able to tackle a lot more people than we were before. *
Coach Gwyn will continue his efforts to make the game safer for his student-athletes. As the Coach of the Week winner, Gwyn will receive a $1,000 grant benefiting the Brainerd High School football program.
The Tennessee Titans have provided grants for teams across the state for over 15 years. Over that period the Titans have provided $178,000 toward the Titans High School Coach of the Week grant program.