Hal Mumme’s Insight and Method for Selecting Personnel

Hal Mumme’s Insight and Method for Selecting Personnel

When selecting personnel, Hal Mumme, a pioneer of the Air Raid offense, offers invaluable insights that every football coach can benefit from. Mumme’s approach is grounded in his extensive experience and innovative thinking, making his methods both practical and transformative for any coaching staff.

Listen to Coach Mumme on Coach and Coordinator: A Tribute to Mike Leach

Don’t Go to Walmart without a Shopping List

Imagine selecting your football team like a trip to Walmart. Coach Hal Mumme likens the process to walking into a massive store without a clear plan or list. You’ll find yourself overwhelmed by endless aisles, grabbing items you don’t need while missing the essentials. In the same way, without a structured approach to selecting personnel, you risk assembling a team that doesn’t fit your strategy. Just as a successful shopping trip requires a list, building a winning team demands a thoughtful, methodical approach to recruitment. 

Whether you are at the college level and can recruit or at the high school level and need to make the proper decisions on slotting the personnel you have available, Coach Mumme’s insight and method are useful. Here is Coach Mumme sharing his philosophy on selecting his offensive personnel.

You don’t go to Walmart without a shopping list

Emphasize Fit Over Talent

One of Coach Mumme’s core principles is prioritizing fit over raw talent. He believes that the best players for your team are not always the most talented ones but those who fit your system and culture. 

This means looking beyond traditional metrics and focusing on how a player’s skills and personality align with your team’s philosophy. When evaluating potential players, ask yourself: “Does this player complement our style of play? Can they adapt to our system?” Doing this ensures that your team operates as a cohesive unit where each player’s strengths are maximized.

Value Intelligence and Coachability

Coach Mumme emphasizes the importance of intelligence and coachability in players. He argues that smart players who can quickly grasp concepts and make adjustments are invaluable. These players not only understand their roles better but also help elevate the performance of their teammates. 

During the selection process, include assessments that gauge a player’s ability to learn and adapt. This could involve reviewing their game film to see how they respond to different situations or asking them to explain their thought process during key plays. A player who demonstrates quick thinking and adaptability is a great asset.

Use Data and Analytics

Incorporating data and analytics into your selection process is another key aspect of Coach Mumme’s methodology. He advocates for using advanced metrics to identify players who may not stand out in traditional evaluations but have the potential to excel in your system. 

This involves looking at specific statistics that correlate with success in your style of play. For example, if your offense relies heavily on passing, focus on metrics related to pass completion rates and decision-making under pressure. By leveraging data, you can uncover hidden gems that might be overlooked.

Emphasize Position Versatility

Coach Mumme also stresses the importance of position versatility. In today’s game, having players performing well in multiple positions provides a strategic advantage. This flexibility allows you to adapt your lineup based on the strengths and weaknesses of your opponents. 

When evaluating players, consider their ability to contribute in various roles. For instance, a wide receiver can also play as a running back or a defensive back who can switch between corner and safety. This versatility can be a game-changer, especially when injuries or other factors force you to adjust quickly.

Focus on Character and Leadership

Character and leadership are crucial elements in Coach Mumme’s selection process. He believes players with strong character and leadership qualities can inspire and elevate the team. During evaluations, look for individuals who exhibit resilience, a positive attitude, and the ability to motivate others. 

This could involve speaking with their former coaches and teammates or observing how they interact with others during practice and games. Players who lead by example and maintain a strong work ethic can profoundly impact your team’s culture and performance.

Integrate a Collaborative Approach

Finally, Coach Mumme advocates for a collaborative approach in the selection process. Involve your entire coaching staff in evaluations to gather diverse perspectives and insights. This collective input ensures you make well-rounded decisions and identify players who fit your team’s needs. Conduct regular meetings to discuss potential recruits and encourage open dialogue among your staff. This collaborative environment improves the selection process and fosters a sense of unity and shared purpose among your coaches.

By implementing Hal Mumme’s insights and methods for selecting personnel, you can build a team that is not only talented but also cohesive, adaptable, and resilient. Remember, the key to success lies in finding players who fit your system, demonstrate intelligence and versatility, and possess strong character and leadership qualities. Embrace a data-driven and collaborative approach to create a winning formula for your team.

The entire presentation is available from Lauren’s First and Goal Foundation which supports pediatric brain tumor research and cancer services. Hal Mumme on Selecting Personnel