I have always had the philosophy that I can’t expect a player to do something on the field if I have never worked it in practice. I learned this the hard way a long time ago as a 7th grade quarterback. My coaches wanted me to run the clock out at the end of the game. In the time between plays they were screaming instructions, and I misunderstood because we never did what they were describing, so on fourth down, I did what I thought they wanted and took a knee. What they wanted was for me to drop back and run around and then take a knee. We had never practiced that, so I didn’t understand. We turned the ball over with a few seconds left for the other team to run a play. Fortunately, they didn’t score, but I learned a valuable lesson about coaching that day:
Don’t expect something to happen on the field if it has ever been done in practice.
Here is a situation that points to the fault of miscommunication or lack of practicing this situation, rather than error by the player.
In this video, the quarterback, also a basketball player, runs around until the clock hits zero. Not realizing he had to get down to end the play, he relaxes, the other team takes the ball, and they end up winning and advancing to the play-offs.
One of the coaches shouldered the blame for him on Facebook:
Think about the situations that may come up, and be sure you have a plan for them. Expecting to put it something new at half-time or a time-out may not result in exactly what you want.