Using the iPad for Scout Cards

Finding a way to improve efficiency and productivity during the season is always an objective. An answer to meeting that objective is to use the technology that is available to us today. I was inspired by Nebraska’s use of the iPad in this video:

Using Hudl and the iPad, coaches and players can get instant feedback on performance and make corrections before their next set of reps on the field. You’ll certainly see some of our student coaches armed with iPads this spring and fall.

This got me thinking about other possible uses of the iPad. One idea is to create our scout cards and use the iPad to show our scout team their assignment. We spend time everyday drawing those up, printing them, and putting them into protective sleeves in a binder. Why not skip several of those steps and just put the scout cards in Keynote. Instead of flipping to the next page in the binder, a simple swipe takes you to the next play. We could easily draw those cards on Keynote on the iPad.

I thought this through a step further, and looked at how we might use still shots in Hudl that might be more useful to our scout players in communicating alignments and assignments. We put together playlists already of the defenses we plan on seeing. It’s very simple to take a screen shot of a paused Hudl clip (press the home button and on/off switch at the same time) and have it in the iPad’s photo library.

Next, a simple app named “Skitch” ( can be used to draw lines, arrows, label players, and add notes to the still shot. Here is an example of the tight shot. This would show exact alignments and assignments expected of the front.

The wide view would be swiped to for the defensive backs and any players aligned outside the box. They can use the still shot to see and get a better understanding of the alignment and leverage that is expected of them. Here is an example of what the wide view would look like.


While this might seem intensive as far as preparation, creating those still frames with drawings took me no longer than having to draw up all 22 players and shade alignments, note depths and leverage and draw lines. In fact, it probably took a little less time. The actual picture provides the scout team players with a better visual in the end. Once those are created one time, the can be inserted multiple times into Keynote which will serve as the on screen presentation that we swipe through to show our players each digital scout card. The current practice using actual cards and a binder is to draw a card of the same defense multiple times in order to stay in order and be able to turn the page in the binder to the next card.

In the longer run this becomes a cost savings to the program because card stock, binders and markers and or printer ink is no longer necessary. The quality and visual detail that the players get from a still shot is much greater.

More updates on using technology in coaching will be coming soon…

Purchase my iBook 101+ Pro Style Pistol Offense Plays on your iPad from the iBookstore:


One thought on “Using the iPad for Scout Cards

  1. Pingback: Homer Smith on Computers in 1970 | Coach and Coordinator

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