Return-To-Play Update (5/20/20)
RedZone Family— I’m taking a minute to check-in and update. I sincerely miss interacting with you and your kids. Despite the effects that COVID-19 has had on your life, I genuinely hope this finds your family well & secure.
In the last 2 months, I’ve taken up a 2nd career on an exterior house painting crew, bucket & brush. I like the work and am grateful to have an alternate income source. It’s been nice to step back and take a break. Refreshed, I’m growing eager to get back on the grass to play ball.
I halted all RedZone operations on March 17, taking a ‘wait and see’ and ‘under further notice’ position. I’m surveying a variety of resources to establish our operating guidelines and return-to-play plan.
I'm largely a slow mover. I was resistant to immediate shutdown in mid-March. I don’t want to jump the gun and move too quickly back to a normal routine- only to have it be undone soon there after. That doesn’t jive well with my planning duties, so I’m trying to balance both ends here. I despise the thought of a registration-refund loop on a large scale, but realize it’s inevitable if you want to plan well. That being said, I would describe our return-to-play model as gradual— limited early summer training, an expanding range of late summer/preseason camps, and a full scale RedZone League season in the fall— perhaps with a few COVID-responsive operational tweaks.
Specifics Position Regarding:
RedZone League- We’re pushing off with registration on June 1. We're on a track to host a full season— largely the same operation, format as 2019. There will be a 2-week early bid pricing special until June 15.
This plan follows a best-case-scenario in regards to public gathering and group football activity by August 15. We'll continue to monitor the COVID situation, and take reasonable measures to safely conduct the season. If conditions should change and the league season seems less plausible or would need a major format change, we will push back and/or re-suspend activity to adjust as needed.
Summer Camps- Expect some limited training opportunities (private/semi-private training & 4-6 player Huddle Pack programs) to become available by June 1. There will be a gradual rise in frequency and group size as summer turns to preseason. We’re looking to offer some return-to-play training dates to get your player back to moving like a ball player before the season begins. Training locations TBD but will be locale, based at our temp facility in North Liberty or elsewhere within the Iowa City area. There's limited space and we'll leak this info early to RaZors club team members, past camp registrants, and camp survey respondents so shoot us an email if you'd also like to be included in the first-to-know contacts.
Satellite Camps Outside IC area:I'm looking into potential areas within 75 miles of Iowa City to host limited preseason training, and am also considering some reduced, 1-2 day ’season warmup’ camps in further locations if conditions permit. Stay tuned or get in touch with me if you are interested in something like this.
RaZors Club Team- We’re still on hold competitively, but I’m open to designing some training sessions for theses players. This would occur in limited groups and would work toward developing our 7v7 rosters and brand for this year and next. I’m not going to rule out a competitive event for this year, but I think we can still advance this program and your player’s skills before the season. Look for a further update when I have solid training plans set. If all fails, we’ll issue refunds/credits and try again next spring. We had such a great response to this program and I’m really excited about what it can become.
Postseason Camps: Have you heard that Diamond Dreams, our facility partner, has begun construction on a new training facility?! We’re so jacked about this new training space + place of business, and will hit the ground running with camps right after the fall youth season— a hot time to try some advanced training outside of competition or extend football season a few more weeks!. Be the first to train in the new facility this October! Progress updates coming soon or check out Diamond Dreams Facebook.
Be well. Be safe. I'm excited to see you soon!
Coach TYLER BLUM
Director, RedZone Football Academy