Orange Bowl Youth Football Clinic


"Clinics like this are priceless and we can’t do enough of it and we love to be involved in it as much as we can,” - Mario Cristobal

Noah Sharfman | Orange Bowl Staff

Over 300 boys and girls ages 5 to 14 from the Orange Bowl Youth Football Alliance participated in a youth football clinic hosted by the Orange Bowl and NCAA Football. The free half-day clinic of football skills and drills training was held at Florida International University and led by Panthers Head Coach Mario Cristobal. Cristobal and his assistant coaches ran participants through stations that focused on offensive, defensive and agility drills, proper technique that promotes on-field football safety and provided a pep talk about the importance of character development and good sportsmanship.

“It’s a tremendous privilege for us to come out here and help these kids develop the fundamental skills that will help them have successful seasons,” Cristobal said. “Our coaching staff is very much into it for us, and you couldn’t ask for a better situation for us to help our youth get better at the fundamentals while certainly plugging in the importance of academics and school.”

In addition to the 300 youth football players to participate in the clinic, Cristobal led a coaches clinic for 125 youth football coaches from the Orange Bowl Youth Football Alliance. The coaches clinic focused on practice drills, coaching strategy and motivation and included film sessions with Cristobal and his offensive and defensive coordinators.

“(Youth football) is the purest form of football we have now. You start off with a young man that doesn’t have any bad habits; you have a chance to mold him from the beginning. Everything that the youth league coaches do, the high school coaches and the college coaches do, we all work in unison to develop the best product we can. Clinics like this are priceless and we can’t do enough of it and we love to be involved in it as much as we can,” Cristobal said.

Now in its 14th season, the Orange Bowl YFA presented by Sports Authority serves more than 16,000 young football players and cheerleaders in nine football leagues across eight South Florida counties and has invested approximately $5 million in youth sports in South Florida since 1999. In addition to its continued support of the Orange Bowl YFA, the Orange Bowl directly supports locally-based festivals and events, including those that provide participatory opportunities to youth from all over the world, such as Junior Orange Bowl, Orange Bowl Sailing Regatta Series, Orange Bowl International Tennis Championships and Orange Bowl Paddle Championships.

The Orange Bowl YFA is presented by Sports Authority, with additional sponsors American Airlines, Doctors Hospital, Florida Blue, FOX Sports Florida / Sun Sports, Hampton Farms, MetroPCS, Nike, Sun Life Stadium & The Miami Dolphins, The Miami Herald, Toyota, Sparkling ICE and Wells Fargo.

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