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Building better quarterbacks: Former ND assistant, St. Joseph's College coach Reagan provides elite training for young signal-callers

With school out and kids looking for something to do, the summer is a popular time for camps of all kinds.

For present and future football quarterbacks, that schedule includes Bill Reagan's Top Gun Camp, where signal callers learn all the mechanics that come with the position from the former Notre Dame assistant and St. Joseph's College head coach.

"They understand the first day, we're not going to play any games, there's no flag, no (skeleton), no half (skeleton)," Reagan said. "It's all individual work, all technique. I worry it's going to be too boring, but they handle what I'm teaching, how I teach it, worry too boring. Some of them eat it up. They're serious about it. You figure, if their parents are paying for it, they're going to be pretty serious."

Though Reagan does one-on-one sessions throughout the year, he is markedly busy in June and July, when he is conducting his camps. He just completed three days at St. Joseph High School in South Bend and will be back at Hobart's Brickyard for three days starting Monday afternoon.

"I was able to get the (St. Joe) facility with no conflicts, I was just praying (families) weren't using (high school moratorium) week to go on vacation," he said. "I had a nice group of high school kids. Coaches have more freedom they didn't used to have, so I have more conflicts than ever with scheduling. The people (at Hobart) are fantastic, very cooperative. (Athletics Director) Mike Black's been really super with me the previous two years. When I first heard (they had a new coach), I thought, is that the same Eric Schreiber whose dad used to be a coach? He used to be a client. We got to reconnecting on schedules to try to make it fit there."

Reagan's slate of camps includes two in Indiana, two in Ohio (Avon and Sandusky), two in Michigan (Byron Center and Stevensville) and one in Texas (Dallas).

"Ten years ago, when I started, part of the model I had was to always have a place to stay," said Reagan, who lives in Granger. "I grew up in the Cleveland area, so I still know people there. The one in Stevensville, I get a lot of Indiana kids as well. It's a last chance camp. Attendance is good. When I added Dallas, I have a 10-year old grandson who has been playing quarterback three years. I was able to get Jesuit High School. The folks are great. There was a guy who was a big Notre Dame fan, his uncle was a grad, we hit it off."

For a period, Reagan, 72, was conducting as many as 10 camps, with the end of the early-week camps overlapping with the start of the late-week camps.

"When I was picking back up after COVID, I made the decision to back off with my summer," he said. "I was killing myself. I cut back. I was gone Saturday morning, Sunday morning, Monday, Thursday. I used to go to Grand Rapids every Tuesday. I just don't want to drive the winter nights. It's nice to be home. Dallas was one of the camps I eliminated until this year. I do a youth camp there as well. I thought I would stop, but I'm enjoying it now more than ever. They start them young, with flag football and all, and I want to make sure they're doing it right."

The camp sessions are comprised of grades 5-8 and high school age.

"This week, I had a pretty diverse group, a couple eighth graders who have been playing for a while, who I've had before," Reagan said. "I have two, brothers from Arizona I've worked with privately, who spend the summer in South Bend, they've already been playing four years, then three really new, raw kids fifth, sixth grade. It was almost a little unfair to the ones who are a little further along, but that's the exception more than the norm."

As the position has transitioned from the standard under-center quarterbacks to pistol and shotgun formations, Reagan has acclimated his training to meet those needs.

When former Notre Dame quarterback Tommy Rees was on the team's coaching staff, Reagan got together with him to go over RPO (run-pass option) and zone read schemes.

"That was not part of offense when I was coaching," Reagan said. "I left the Xs and Os behind, so I wasn't up on that. You have to include the RPO techniques, the footwork, quick throws, quick judgments. I try to hit on all that. Some of these kids have never been under center. You still have to teach that footwork. Who knows, you could get a coaching change and not understand what they're doing. It's actually easier to teach the steps, the spread footwork than from under center."

With the change in offensive approaches, quarterbacks are often bringing a physical skill set that's much different than the old drop back, pocket prototype.

"One of the trends with high school kids, coaching in Indiana, you might have a really good running back and they want them to be a quarterback," Reagan said. "They're going to be running a lot. They don't have a lot of bad habits, so you get guys who can develop pretty fast. It's still mostly mechanics, footwork concepts, getting them to use their lower half as well as their upper half, to make them a true double threat."

Reagan's list of local QBs who has worked with previously or still trains includes Noah Ehrlich (Crown Point), Kodie Young (Portage), Holland Harris (Hammond Morton), Mark Rowland (Boone Grove), Aiden Penziol (La Porte), Aleks Tatum (Hobart), Jonny Sorenson (Hobart/Bowling Green) and Cooper Malaski (Crown Point).

Participants do a footwork drill during Bill

Reagan's Top Gun Quarterback Training

Camp at Hobart High School. The former

Notre Dame assistant and St. Joseph's

College head coach will be conducting a

camp Monday through Wednesday at Hobart.


"I worked with Noah when he was at Hobart," Reagan said. "I think they lied about his age the first camp. He was actually a fourth grader, but he could handle it. Jonny was one who never missed anything. I hate to see him leave."

A trademark of Reagan's camps is the small numbers -- eight in the high school group and 12 in the younger group. There are still two high school openings and seven youth openings for his Hobart camp. Anyone interested can reach Reagan at (574) 876-6349 or William.C.Reagan.8@nd.edu. The web site is Reagantopgunqbtraining.com and Instagram is brqbtraining.


Bill Reagan, left, will hold his Top Gun Quarterback Training Camp Monday through Wednesday at Hobart High School.



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