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Monday, June 24, 2013

ASSISTANT COACHES: GROW FROM YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES

I often have the opportunity to talk to young, aspiring coaches about our profession.  They always want to know about the X & O's and game strategy....and certainly that's important.  But the best coaches are the ones that jump into it an early age and work as hard as they can at any and all responsibilities passed on to them.  As Coach Don Meyer would say, you have to be able to "suck some scum."  But beyond accepting all jobs that are passed your way, what is your attitude in regard to the areas of responsibility you have?

Below are a couple of passages from "Wins, Losses, and Lessons" by Lou Holtz.  I loved his attitude in the various jobs that he performed as an assistant coach -- how he made sure that he used each as an opportunity to grow as a coach:

Scouting gave me a chance to learn more about planning and preparation, and to observe some of the finest coaches in the country at work. I got to observe their offenses, defenses, and special teams and, equally important, had to determine why they ran the plays they did. It became obvious to me by scouting that there are a lot of ways to win and succeed. Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant at Alabama and Coach Charles McClendon at LSU were different, but the one thing all great teams had in common was that they blocked and tackled very well. They executed the fundamentals of the game. This made me all the more determined to be the best teacher of fundamentals in the country.
I also learned a lot from handling our players’ academics. I wasn’t aware of it at the time, but players don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care. There is no more rewarding feeling that I have experienced as a coach than to help a player graduate.

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