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, Tom Smart, Deseret News
USU head coach Matt Wells during Utah State Aggies football practice Thursday, March 28, 2013, in Logan
It allows you to meet coaches from around the country and see what they’re doing and what philosophies they have. It allows us to talk, build that bond and exchange ideas. —Casey Miller, Hillcrest High School football coach

MIDVALE — Casey Miller has always had to travel out of state to attend coaching clinics.

This year, instead of heading to Denver, Las Vegas or Los Angeles, he decided to organize a clinic here that local coaches, including Little League coaches, could attend.

“It allows you to meet coaches from around the country and see what they’re doing and what philosophies they have,” the Hillcrest football coach said of the clinic that begins Friday at 4:30 p.m. with USU head coach Matt Wells. “It allows us to talk, build that bond and exchange ideas.”

The demands on coaches have never been more significant. Year-round training, recruiting, technology, financial and fundraising issues and intense scrutiny have made the job of teaching football a lot more complicated.

“Being a coach is kind of a stressful deal right now,” he said. “It’s nice to run into people who are going through a lot of the stuff that you’re going through. We can bounce ideas off of each other.”

The lineup on Friday starts with Wells, who took over the Aggie program last December after serving as the team’s offensive coordinator for their best season in decades. SUU head coach Ed Lamb will speak at 7 p.m., followed by Ron McBride, former University of Utah and Weber State head coach, at 8 p.m.

Some of the featured guest speakers lined up are Jerry Gordon, the author of “Coaching the Under Front Defense,” Fresno High School coach Rick Stewart, speaking on the Pistol Wing-T, and Santiago High School's Jeff Steinberg, who will speak on the 4 and 5 WR spread, hurry-up no-huddle.

On Saturday, the conference is all about Xs and Os, with workshops on everything from quarterback progression reads to zone and stretch blocking to odd-front nickel packages out of the 4-3. It kicks off with a workshop by Dr. Peter Gorman, president of Microgate USA, on developing “the indestructible athlete.”

There will be dinner and door prizes and an address from University of Utah defensive coordinator Kalani Sitake.

The cost is $75 and includes a goodie bag, three meals and a certificate for 10 hours of professional development.

“We’re just trying to bring football to Utah rather than us going everywhere else,” said Miller. “It’s open to anybody who wants to come, high school or Little League coaches. Sometimes it’s hard to find time to sit down and talk with college coaches, and many of them will be here.”

To register, contact Hillcrest High or coach Casey Miller.

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