Detroit, Mich.—The Detroit Lions have named Jason Watkins of Midland Dow High School the week seven recipient of the 2016 Farm Bureau Insurance of Michigan High School Football Coach of the Week Program.
Watkins directed his Chargers to a 44-6 victory over Saginaw Arthur Hill to run their record to 7-0 on the season. Currently in his 23rd year at Dow and 8th season as head coach, Watkins has led the Chargers to five Michigan High School Football State Playoff appearances while compiling a career record of 57-22 (72.2%). Midland Dow is ranked No. 4 in Division 2 and hosts Flint Carman-Ainsworth on Friday, October 14 for the chance to win their 3rd straight Saginaw Valley League-Red Division title.
Regarding player health & safety, the Dow football program is testing Riddell's InSite Helmet Sensor System, a helmet-based impact monitoring technology designed to alert staff when significant single or multiple impacts are sustained during a football game or practice. Dow also employs a full-time athletic trainer in partnership with MidMichigan Health, in addition to having three athletic training interns from Central Michigan University and Saginaw Valley State University available for all practices and games.
High School Football Coach of the Week Program
Each week throughout the 2016 nine-week high school football regular season, one coach that best develops his players' character, discipline, and football skill in addition to emphasizing player health and safety in their program, will be recognized for his commitment to the team, school, and community. The winner is selected by a panel of high school football media members—Mick McCabe (Detroit Free Press), Hugh Bernreuter (Saginaw News), Bret Bakita (WOOD Radio-106.9 FM, ESPN 96.1 FM-Fox 17/Grand Rapids), and James Cook (Traverse City Record-Eagle).
This season's program will award $22,000 to aid in the development and promotion of high school football in the state of Michigan, thanks to contributions from the Detroit Lions, the NFL Foundation and presenting partner, Farm Bureau Insurance of Michigan.
Each winning coach during the regular season will receive a $2,000 donation to his school's football program. At the conclusion of the 2016 Michigan High School Football season, the Lions will also select the High School Football Coach of the Year. This season's Coach of the Year will receive a $4,000 donation to his school's football program. All winners will receive a certificate signed by Lions' head coachJim Caldwell and National Football League (NFL) commissionerRoger Goodell, a personalized game ball as well as acknowledgement at an upcoming Lions home game.
Currently in its' 20th year, the Detroit Lions High School Coach of the Week program has awarded $367,000 to high school football programs throughout the state of Michigan. For more information on the Detroit Lions High School Coach of the Week program, contact Chris Fritzsching, Lions' Director of Football Education, at 313-262-2248.
About Farm Bureau Insurance: Farm Bureau Insurance of Michigan was founded in 1949 by Michigan farmers who wanted an insurance company that worked as hard as they did. Those values still guide the company today and are a big reason why they are known as Michigan's Insurance Company, dedicated to protecting the farms, families, and businesses of this great state. Farm Bureau Insurance agents across Michigan provide a full range of insurance services—life, home, auto, farm, business, retirement, Lake Estate®, and more—protecting nearly 500,000 Michigan policyholders.
About the NFL Foundation: The National Football League Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the lives of those touched by the game of football – from players at all levels to communities across the country. The NFL Foundation represents the 32 NFL clubs and supports the health and safety of athletes, youth football, and the communities which support our game.