Coaches hit the gridiron to celebrate local league

After 40 years of being one of the most popular recreational sports in town, the Coral Springs Flag Football Club (CSFFC) took a day to mark the milestone.

To commemorate such an occasion, some of the league’s coaches played a game of their own, in which city officials recently recognized the CSFFC as being the oldest recreational league in the city of Coral Springs.

“It’s a fun way to celebrate, and all the kids certainly get a kick out of the coaches game, especially because they get to see their coaches making mistakes they teach their players to correct themselves,” said Bruce Weinberg, who has been CSFFC’s treasurer for the past five years. “Besides the fun element of the coaches game though, it’s truly great to be recognized by city officials as the longest running rec sports program for kids in this city. It’s nice for our volunteers to get a pat on the back.”

And the numbers speak for themselves. Thousands of youths have gone through the CSFFC program, some for the simple aspects of fun and competition, while others looked to lay the foundation to their long-term football goals.

Troy Bedard, who is currently the starting center for Cornell College in Iowa, attributes much of his gridiron roots to his seven seasons of play with the CSFFC.

“I definitely learned the basics of football from playing Coral Springs flag,” said Bedard, who also played four years at Stoneman Douglas High School. “I still make similar plays, but more than anything, what I learned about discipline as a team player and respect for my coaches is very useful for me now in college.”

CSFFC has offered some unique facets to its players over the four decades. In their flag program ways, play follows a traditional 11-on-11 format, as opposed to other flag football leagues, where play is 7-on-7. Players also have the opportunity to learn many typical ‘tackle’ techniques, such as full contact and hitting.

CSFFC President Bryan Levin has seen a handful of previous players return in other capacities over his 18 years with the league.

“There’ve been referees and coaches who played in our league for some time. They want to come back after they’re too old to still play because they want to stay involved in this incredible program,” Levin said. “A lot of kids have gone through it over the years, so there’s a nice closeness about it.”

The league offers several different divisions for boys and girls ages 5-14, in which games are still held at Mullins Park from August until November.

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