Lions recognise Coaching as key

Lions recognise Coaching as key

The Lions’ players have had a great season – not just on the field this year – but in terms of assisting the growth of the sport by gaining invaluable experience as coaches too!

From being exclusively involved in the NFL/Detroit Lions’ Heads Up Coaching Clinic, assisting BAFA deliver taster days (to the likes of the now newly formed Cardiff Valkyries and Oxford Saints), gaining Level 1 qualifications to accepting invitations to become Student Coaches (at the first ever BAFA Women’s Skills Camp) all in the last 12 months alone…and breathe!…Club Captain Jo Kilby is right to be pleased with her team’s endeavours:

“It’s great that as an organisation we’ve access to opportunities that develop our players as coaches too, the aim being that once they’ve finished their active duty on the field for the team, they stay in the game to help develop the next generation of players, be that at Birmingham or indeed at clubs closer to them.”

Add this intent to the pedigree the Lions have such access to and you can see how Birmingham’s foundations are so strong:

  • Head Coach Jamie Kilby was this year nominated for BAFCA’s (British American Football Coaching Association) Head Coach of the Year award and is this season promoted to Great Britain Women’s Offensive Coordinator;
  • Lions’ Defensive Coordinator James Branagh was entrusted with the reins of the inaugural Southern Counties (‘Blaze’) team, as part of BAFA’s Diamond Series and has been promoted this year from Great Britain Special Teams Coordinator, to GB Defensive Coordinator;
  • OL Coach Carl Lewis, joins the Great Britain Coaching team, as well as himself being an active Great Britain player;
  • Lions’ Assistant Coach Sammy-Lee Baker also joins the Great Britain coaching ranks this year as Wide Receiver Lead, having upgraded from an assistant the season prior.

Factor in Lions’ Linebacker Phoebe Schecter’s current coaching progress – as Head Coach of the Staffordshire Surge Women’s American Football Team and a Special Teams Coordinator with their men’s programme – and the future looks pretty bright for Britain’s most impressive troupe.

Good work team!


Image with thanks to Gary Longstaff © 2016 GL Photography.

James Branagh