Tech Report CS-99-08

The Coach's Playbook

Jeffry M. Pickering, Dom Bhuphaibool, Joseph J. LaViola Jr., and Nancy S. Pollard

May 1999


This paper presents an electronic playbook (COACH) for football. COACH combines gestural input, two-dimensional (2D) simulation, and nivtnivhree-dimensional (3D) animation to help coaches instruct players in an effective manner before they take the field. This part of the football coaching process is well-suited for non-traditional interface technology, because it requires coaches to discuss dynamic, 3D scenarios while within a classroom setting. We present a 2D gestural interface that allows coaches to use standard diagrams and gestures to set up a play, modify that play, and display a 2D animation. In addition, we demonstrate a virtual environment that allows coaches and players to view a play from any point of view, including the first-person perspective of one of the players. We present the results of a formative user evaluation given to the Brown University football team's coaching staff, and discuss what we have learned in developing an application to address this specific problem. Although the application focuses on football, we believe that the techniques described in this paper can be used to develop electronic playbooks for other team sports as well.

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