The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

High School Sports

January 8, 2013

Rebels find new coach at home

Assistant football coach Block hired to replace Unruh

CLINTON — Northeast athletic director Gregg Mohl is pleased with the selection of Jerad Block as the Rebels’ new head football coach.

"Once we got the applications, he was the guy we wanted," Mohl said.

After it was known Ryan Unruh would not return as coach, Block, who served as the Rebels’ special teams coach last year, took some time to decide whether to apply.

“It was about a week, maybe less,” Block said. “I wanted to make sure my full heart was in it and it was the right decision for myself and my family. The head coach role takes a lot of time commitment.”

Block has his work cut out for him, though; Northeast went 3-15 the past two seasons.

“The first thing is for the kids to build on the Northeast tradition,” Block said. “I want them to play other sports and be competitive year-round. Under coach (Jeremy) Mosier and the coaches before him, Northeast had success. What’s the difference now? There is none. Sure, we’re in Class 2A and we’re in a tough district, but that’s no excuse to not have a winning record. We need to build on that tradition.”

Block has a lot of things going for him in turning the program around, and one is that he works in the high school, which Unruh did not.

"In the football position, it's hard if you're not in the building,” Mohl said.

“It will help tremendously,” Block said. “I’m around the kids constantly, and I can hold them accountable to do what it takes to be a good football program. I get to know their personalities and then I can coach toward those personalities.”

Another thing in Block’s corner is a wealth of experience as an assistant coach.

"He has a lot of experience,” Mohl said. “He was on the North Scott staff, the Bettendorf staff, the DeWitt staff. That's pretty good experience with Randy Scott, Kevin Tippett and Kurt Kreiter. I'm excited to have him on board."

Block, a Central DeWitt graduate, played for Kreiter when he was in high school.

“I was fortunate to not only play for Kurt Kreiter, but to have him as a coaching resource,” Block said. “He taught me the skills behind the game — how to be organized and get prepared, how to build quality young men of character. The bulk of what I learned comes from coach Kreiter and coach Tippett. That’s how to approach the game and how to teach it to kids.

“One of the main things I learned from coach Tippett was game-planning. He had every situation thought of and planned for. In my opinion, he’s one of the top coaches at that on this side of the state.”

As far as a coaching philosophy, one of the things Block has stressed is being physical.

“Defensively, we’re going to be physical and play with a little attitude,” he said. “If you watch Alabama (in the BCS Championship game), they all fly to the football. That’s what we’ll do. Offensively, we’re going to develop a physical running game. We’ll also be able to spread the ball around out of multiple formations to multiple receivers. We’re definitely going to make the team we’re playing have to defend the whole field against us.”

Continuing that theme, he said a more physical defense was one of the things Northeast fans could look forward to seeing.

“It will be a faster-paced ballgame,” Block said. “There will be more excitement on the offensive side. Hopefully we’ll give them a lot to cheer about.”

Block said he’d met with the football team a couple times already and many of them embraced his message.

“I told them it’s going to be a lot more work and a bigger time commitment than they’re used to,” he said. “A lot of the kids are excited for it.”

It seems they’ll be more excited about putting in the work if Block can get the Rebels to produce better results on the field.

1
Text Only
High School Sports
  • Jones leaves UNO program

    Jalen Jones is done with basketball — for now, anyway.
    The 6-foot-5 Clinton High grad who had committed to play for Nebraska-Omaha, has left the program, and according to his Facebook page, has enrolled at Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids.
    The enrollment office at the community college confirmed that Jones was registered for classes this fall at Kirkwood. Kirkwood coach Bryan Petersen, a Clinton High graduate, declined to comment and gave no indication that Jones would play basketball for the Eagles this winter.
    "College basketball isn't for everybody," Clinton coach Nick Lawrence said. "A little time away might do him some good."
    Jones came home to Clinton after spending just a few days with the Mavericks, and enrolled to Kirkwood shortly thereafter.
    Jones, the Herald's Player of the Year, averaged 19 points a game for the River Kings in his senior season and finished with the second-most rebounds with 160.
    He shot 41 percent on the floor and 28 percent from 3-point territory. He committed to Omaha before last season started in October.

    July 26, 2014

  • 7-25-14 Football field Football facility receives makeover CAMANCHE — Camanche School District administrators expect updates to the high school football facility to be completed next week.Camanche Superintendent Tom Parker said crews have worked to make sure everything is complete before next week’s Clinton

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-25-14 1B-Photo, Clinton track Clinton king of Brady DAVENPORT — It might not have been the blue oval, but Clinton track can place its mark at the top of the hill.The quartet of Barrion Collins, Marquis Robinson, Quavon Jones and Deshond Robinson won the high school boys division of the Battle Up Brady

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-24-14 1B-Photo, Choice 2 Cinderella run ends DUBUQUE — The playoff run was fun while it lasted. Dubuque Hempstead, the No. 1-ranked baseball team in Class 4A entering Wednesday, ended Clinton’s chances at back-to-back appearances in the state tournament in Des Moines. The Mustangs knocked out t

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-23-14 3B-Photo, Clinton baseball Kings feel re-energized (with VIDEOS & PHOTO ALBUM)

    CLINTON -- There’s nothing like a postseason run to get the juices flowing again and jumpstart a baseball season that at times was trying.The atmosphere around the Clinton High School program is upbeat these days. One game away from a second consecut

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • AGWSR silences Marquette Catholic FORT DODGE — AGWSR of Ackley pitcher Ashley Sicard can add another win to her state tournament resume.AGWSR defeated Marquette Catholic (34-7) 2-0 with both runs coming in the third inning for the Cougars (28-6).In that third inning, the leadoff hitt

    July 23, 2014

  • Trio of Queens earn honors ELDRIDGE -- Three members of the Clinton High softball team were named to the All-Mississippi Athletic Conference honorable mention squad Monday.Junior Cara Brewer and sophomores Sydney Davis and Jenna Stremlow received the honors.Brewer, a catcher-t

    July 22, 2014

  • Assumption spoils Sabers' strong start MAQUOKETA—Things fell apart quickly for the Central DeWitt Sabers on Monday night, as they fell 5-4 to the Davenport Assumption Knights in the Iowa Class 3A District 7 baseball final, ending their 2014 season.The Sabers (21-19-1) had complete control

    July 22, 2014

  • 7-23-14 1B-Photo, Clinton baseball A rally fit for Kings (with VIDEO)

    ELDRIDGE — It would have been easy for Clinton sophomore Nick Houzenga to be discouraged as he took the mound in the bottom of the first inning of the River Kings’ Class 4A substate semifinal against North Scott.After all, the Lancers had already bui

    July 22, 2014 4 Photos

  • 7-21-14 8-Photo, Marquette softball Last year motivates Marquette WILTON -- Marquette Catholic barely missed making a second consecutive trip to the Iowa softball state tournament a year ago. But, the 3-2 regional final loss to Gilbertville Don Bosco that prevented the return trip is a key reason the Mohawks are he

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

Sports Updates
Facebook