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Monday, February 24, 2014

ADVERSITY: THE CATALYST FOR LEARNING

After a difficult loss yesterday, it found some time this morning re-read some passages from "Sometimes You Win, Sometimes You Learn," by John Maxwell. The following comes from his chapter Adversity: The Catalyst for Learning.

1. Adversity Introduces Us to Ourselves If We Want to Know Ourselves.
As the great Egyptian leader Anwar el-Sadat said, "Great suffering builds up a human being an puts him within the read of self-knowledge."

"Circumstances does not make the man; it reveals him to himself." -James Allen

Trying times are not the time to stop trying.

2. Adversity Is a Better Teacher Than Success If We Want to Learn from Adversity.
Philosopher and author  Emmet Fox said, "It is the Law that many difficulties that can come to you at any time, no matter what they are, must be exactly what you need at the moment, to enable you to take the next step forward by overcoming them.  The only real misfortune, the only real tragedy comes when we suffer without learning."

"Turn your wounds into wisdom." -Oprah Winfrey

3. Adversity Opens Doors for New Opportunities If We Want to Learn from It.
As speaker and cofounder of the Rich Dad Company, Kim Kiyosaki, observed, "Most of us are taught, beginning in kindergarten, that mistakes are bad.  However often do you hear, 'Don't make a mistake!'  In reality, the way we learn is by making mistakes.  A mistake simply shows you something you didn't know.  Once you make the mistake, the you know it.  Think about the first time you touched a hot stove (the mistake).  From making that mistake, you learned that if you touch a hot stove you get burned.  A mistake isn't bad; it's there to teach you something."

4. Adversity Can Signal a coming Positive Transition If We Respond Correctly to it.
The life of a successful person is comprised of one transition after another.  Being static isn't an option in life.  Time is always moving forward.  We can't stop it, nor can we stop its effects.  We need to make chances and adversity can often be the catalyst.

5. Adversity Brings Profit as Well as Pain If We Expect and Plan for it.
Successful people expect to experience pain when they face adversity.  They plan for it.  And by planning for it, they set themselves up to benefit from it.  Fred Smith once said, "I listened to Bob Richards, the Olympic gold medalist, interview younger Olympian winners of the gold.  He asked them, 'What did you do when you began to hurt?'  Fred points out that none of the Olympians were surprised by the question.  They expected pain, and they had a strategy for dealing with it.  As Bob Richards summed it up, "You never win the gold without hurting."

6. Adversity Writes Our Story and If Our Response is Right, the Story Will be Good
Performance psychologist Jim Loehr says, "Champions have taught us how to take an experience and essentially write the story of its effect.  If you see a failure as an opportunity to learn and get better, it will be.  If you perceive it as a mortal blow, it will be.  In that way, the power of the story is more important than the experience itself."

"For ever hill I've had to climb
For every rock that bruised my feet
For all the blood and sweat and grime
For bling storms and burning heat
My heart sings but a grateful song
These were the things that made me strong."

by James Casey

Sunday, February 23, 2014

JEFF VAN GUNDY ON 'TALENT'

When most people talk about 'talent' they are simply talking about athleticism...meaning speed, quickness, jumping, size, strength, etc.  This isn't a track meet -- other things matter.  Skill level is a talent.  Intelligence is a talent.  Decision making is a talent.  Toughness, both mental and physical, is a talent.  Energy and intensity are talents.  Forget 'talent' and focus on production and consistency.

-Jeff Van Gundy

RESPECT, TRUST, CHARACTER, PERSONALIZATION

Saturday, February 22, 2014

HOW'S YOUR BENCH CHEMISTRY

Watch what Duke basketball does.  In specific, watch the end of Duke's bench...all game long.  Preseason, early season, midseason, it doesn't matter' you'd think they were playing in a world championship.  They're on the edge of their seats.  They're high-fiving and hollering.  And they look exactly like the players at the starters' end of the bench.  There's a no difference between #1 and #12 on the depth chart.  When a player comes off the court, every single guy stands up, claps the player off, and pats him on the back.  They're all totally engaged; they're all prepared to go in the game.  The best way to describe it: they love being there.

From "Help The Helper" by Kevin Pritchard and John Eliot

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

MAKING PEOPLE THE HEART OF THE ORGANIZATION

The following comes from "Finding The Winning Edge" by Bill Walsh:

One of the most strategically important and economically sound steps that an organization can take is to attract, develop, and retain a diverse group of the best and the brightest human talent in the market place

All factors considered, the organizations that have traditionally been the most successful are those that have demonstrated a pronounced commitment to their employees by providing a work environment that enables them to achieve at their maximum levels of productivity and potential

Management must recognize and acknowledge both the uniqueness of each individual employee and the bona fide need that individuals have for a reasonable degree of job security and self-actualization

Although a personalized approach should be employed when dealing with employees, undue familiarity should be avoided

Employees who are creative will sometimes require “special handling.” Passionate about seeing their ideas implemented (all of their ideas, as soon as possible), creative people should be made to understand that every one of their ideas will not be appropriate and, as such, will not be used. Coming up with an idea, no matter how brilliant it may be, is just the beginning of the creative process

New ideas are important at every level of the organization. For example, coming up with a unique way to drill a particular technique or a fundamental skill may not be as exciting as reinventing the forward pass, yet it’s very useful and a lot more likely to have a practical application on the football field

Although an organization should demonstrate a reasonable amount of flexibility in the work environment to accommodate the needs of its employees, to management must be totally inflexible with regard to its expectations of the performances of its employees. In this instance, the key step is to document those expectations

People are most comfortable in their working environment when their duties are laid out in specific detail and their performance can be gauged by distinct and measurable parameters. Employee accountability is facilitated when the responsibilities of the employees are spelled out in great detail

It is critical that employee expectation levels are both reasonable and attainable, as well as high

Once the employee expectations have been identified and documented, they must be continually monitored, revised, and refined.

 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

LAST GAME/NEXT GAME THEORY

Last Game/Next Game theory. In basketball, if I thought we had an insurmountable lead toward the end of a game where we had beaten a pretty good team, I’d pull our five starters and-while that game was still being played out and those starters were on the bench-I’d be talking to those five about the next game: getting them thinking about who they are going to guard, about what we were going to be facing, getting them over this game. I didn’t want them gloating about how well we played in a game that was almost over.

The mark of success, or failure, in handling victory is what happens the next time out.
Coaches tell me all the time, “You don’t enjoy the wins like you suffer the losses,” and there’s a lot of truth to that. You lose, the next day you can’t put it away, you win and it’s usually easy because you’re worried about the next one.

That’s the true mark of a champion -- forgetting the last victory and preparing for the next one.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

WINNERS GET UP...CHAMPIONS GET UP A LITTLE FASTER

The following comes from an article in Success magazine and was written by Chelsea Greenwood:

If you’re a coffee fan, you may already know of Bonnie St. John. In 2006 she was quoted on a Starbucks cup during its “The Way I See It” campaign: “I was ahead in the slalom. But in the second run, everyone fell on a dangerous spot. I was beaten by a woman who got up faster than I did. I learned that people fall down, winners get up, and gold medal winners just get up faster.”

That anecdote refers to St. John’s Paralympics run in 1984, when she became the second-fastest female amputee skier in the world and the first African-American Olympic ski medalist. “That’s a powerful metaphor for today’s business world: There’s change, there’s competition, there’s technological shifts, and we will get knocked down,” says the upstate New York resident. “The prize often goes to the team that can get up the fastest and get back in the game.”

To read the entire article on St. John, click here.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

FOR ALL WE'VE BECOME, THANKS BETTY

This past Monday, the sport of women's basketball lost one of it's greatest contributors with the passing of Betty Jaynes.  She was quite simply one of the most remarkable people I've met.  And what made her remarkable is that she could combine passion with compassion.  She so deeply loved this game that she made it her lifetime mission to grow it on all levels.  She did it without much fanfare -- but she did it at a level that is staggering.

Today, many of those coaching in women's basketball are too young to truly remember her sacrifices and too busy to discover what she meant.  But without reservation, women's basketball would be no where near where it is without her.

She was a head coach herself at James Madison when she gave up that career to start the WBCA at the urging of some of the games legendary coaches including Pat Summit and many others.  It is hard to imagine today how sparse the beginning days were for the WBCA when you see what a powerful organization they are today -- but such is the contributions of Betty.

My favorite memories of Betty would be when our LSU team travelled to Georgia. She would always stop by our hotel and almost always be with her sister Peggy.  Most of the time she would join us at dinner or at our pre-game meal so she could visit with her friend and fellow pioneer Sue Gunter.  I would so enjoy sitting at the table and listen to them tell stories -- stories about the history of our game.

If only those getting started in women's basketball today knew how difficult it was at the beginning and all the sacrifices made by so many.

After Coach Gunter had passed away I was fortunate enough to be on the LSU staff with another legend, Van Chancellor.  I will never forget Betty coming by for our pre-game meal, searching me out, sitting with me and telling me Sue Gunter stories.  It was if she knew it would be comforting to me.  It meant a great deal to me.  And Betty knew it.  That what she was all about.

An email we received from the WBCA regarding funeral arrangements for Betty asked that
in lieu of flowers that donations be made to the Betty F. Jaynes Internship Program, her pride and joy, in care of the WBCA office, 4646 Lawrenceville Highway, Lilburn, Ga., 30047.

I smiled and thought how appropriate.  Even as Betty is leaving us she it still giving back to the game.  My check is in the mail Betty, and I hope that all that coach this great game of women's basketball will make a donation as well.  It's a wonderful program and a great way to say thanks to a very special person in which we owe a great deal.

PEAK PERFORMANCE DOWN THE HOME STRETCH


Another great newsletter from the Texas A&M men's basketball staff and Coach Mitch Cole.  If you have already, you need to sign up for it -- each edition is outstanding. Simply email Coach Cole at Mitch Cole mcole@athletics.tamu.edu and ask him to put you on the list.  Here are the Aggie thoughts on peak performance as we head down This time of year, everyone is searching for the best ways to get their teams to play at peak performance in February/March. Every staff asks the questions:

What is the best way to prepare our players for a late season run? What is our strategy if our team is favored and playing well?…Or what if our team is the overwhelming underdog? What approach is best when our team is inconsistent, good one game and poor the next? 

The following are a few concepts that are some helpful reminders to stress to our players in February, regardless of where our teams rank in the standings:

1.EMBRACE "THE MOMENT"

This month is the reason you (the player) work so hard in the off-season. Don't have a mindset of "I can't wait for the off-season." You are working for February (and March) when you spend countless hours in an empty gym the other 10 months of the year. Stay in the moment. The time is now! 

2."TRUST" THE PROCESS

Regardless of the final outcomes of games, ask the question, "Are we improving in certain areas?" For good teams, "are we eliminating mistakes that could cost us when the competition gets tighter?" For struggling teams, "are we seeing improvement and building toward a successful culture/program?"

3. HOW DO YOU MEASURE ON THE  "GRIT" SCALE?

Some educational researchers have defined GRIT as "passion and perseverance to achieve long term goals".  When struggles come, do you get more DEJECTED or more DETERMINED? 

Studies have shown that the attribute of GRIT,  is one of the most powerful indicators of success. The most GRITTY people usually succeed on and off the court.

4. STAY TOGETHER, PRACTICE "TOGETHERNESS"

 -Teams can become selfish during good times and turn on each other during tough times. Teams that stay together can resist the temptation to be selfish, can withstand tough times, and even conquer insurmountable odds. I love this clip of the movie Gladiator.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWRfWr65rlg 

Is it possible that a more "together" team could be worth 1 point in a game? Have you ever won or lost a game by just 1 point? 

 5. KEEP FIGHTING, BE "RESILIENT"

Most people can appreciate a team or athletes that refuse to give up no matter what the circumstance. Resilience is the ability to bounce back from difficulty and in some cases, be better than before. This can happen when the other team goes on a run and things look most bleak, or even within a season. Teams that "Fight" and show tremendous Resilience over and over again have the best chance for sustained success.

 

 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

LEARNING YOUR ROLE, EARNING YOUR TIME

The following is an excerpt from NFL.com by Daniel Kim.  It speaks to the fact that many players that are successful must start at the bottom, learn the game and work to earn their playing time.  I thought Coach Saban's quote at the bottom was outstanding

In an interview with CBS Sports Radio's Jim Rome last week, McCarron said he thought elite prospects tend to enter college with the idea that they're too good to sit on the bench. "It's a little entitlement, and when they don't play off the bat, they get a little ticked off and they don't want to work," McCarron said.

Nick Saban didn't necessarily disagree with McCarron, but he said he remembers McCarron wasn't that different in his first few days with the Crimson Tide.

"When they were freshmen they had the same issues," Saban said, referring to McCarron and other Crimson Tide stars. "I remember when AJ came up in my office all upset because he was the third-string quarterback after the first scrimmage. So, you know, sometimes we forget what it's like to be a teenager."

McCarron arrived at Alabama as a four-star recruit. After redshirting in 2009, he served as a backup the following season before taking over as the starting quarterback in 2011. He went on to lead the Crimson Tide to two national titles as a starter.

Saban, of course, has plenty of experience managing the expectations of elite prospects.

Said Saban: "We want everybody to have goals and aspirations for everything they want to accomplish here. We just want them to be realistic about what they have to do to accomplish those goals, and to understand the competition here is actually going to help them be successful and help them to be better."

THOUGHTS THIS MORNING OF COACH YOW

Today is our Breast Cancer Awareness game -- our Play 4Kay game.

In March of 2007 I was serving as the interim head coach for the LSU Lady Tigers in the NCAA Tournament and we had advanced to the Regionals in Fresno, California.  Another of the regional participants was Coach Kay Yow and her North Carolina State team.  I was sitting in my hotel room with my wife and were watching a moving piece on ESPN on Coach Yow and her battle with breast cancer talking about how Coach Yow had actually had a chemo treatment on the team plane from Raleigh, NC to Fresno.  It was very moving and I can remember as if it were yesterday my wife Sherie, with tears in her eyes, saying "She must be an amazing woman."

Three months later Sherie was diagnosed with breast cancer.  When we spoke about the various options, Sherie simply said, "I hope I'm as tough as Coach Yow."

During the 2008 Final Four in Tampa, my wife and I were honored to speak at the inaugural Kay Yow Foundation press conference and for the first time Sherie got to meet her new hero.  I had known Coach Yow for sometime, working her camps.  But I will never forget how she treated Sherie that day -- as if they were old friends.  She gave Sherie confidence and hope in her battle.

When I spoke that day I said the following:

"We often ask ourselves why would God put a particular person through any tough trials and tribulations."  I then looked at Coach Yow and said, "I know why he pick you though.  In this very difficult battle against breast cancer we needed a leader of courage and inspiration.  So many of us thank you the being a light that guides through tough times."

Coach Yow continues to be the light for so many of us and while I often think of her and what she means to so many, I'm thinking a little more about her today.

Thank you Coach Yow!

Friday, February 7, 2014

TRIBUTE TO A WARRIOR

I’ve been working on this post for over two months. It’s the most difficult thing I’ve had to post. They say the hardest thing for a parent to do is to have to bury one of their children.  The same can hold true for a coach. 
 
The silent ageless oak tree,
the river running strong,
the mountain set against the sky,
the sweet melodic song.*
 
I’ve heard that coaches shouldn’t have favorites.  As someone that has coached for three decades, I can tell you that simply isn’t possible.  We all have our favorites.  It doesn’t mean that we don’t love all of our players and that we don’t give them all our very best.  We want them all to succeed.  But there are those who’s kindred spirit inspires us, the teacher.
 
Such was Bryan Frampton.
 
As a coach you work hard not just to teach your student-athletes how to pass, shoot and screen.  You want to lay a foundation that will last them for the rest of their life.  You want to them to learn about teamwork, commitment, and sacrifice.  When they leave your program they should understand goal development and time management.  There is nothing greater for a coach then to see that player 10 years removed and they are successfully navigating through life...raising a family...holding down a job...making a positive contribution to society.
 
Such was Bryan Frampton.
 
Every once in a while, you have the privilege of coaching a young person who lives just as they played.  Giving life every bit as much as they did the game of basketball on the court.  The type of person that leaves a legacy on the program they participated with, as well as a legacy in life to his family and friends.
 
Such was Bryan Frampton.
 
I only coached Bryan for one year which speaks to the impact he had on me as a coach.  I was between college coaching stops at West Virginia State College and Marshall University when I had the opportunity to work for my junior high school coach and mentor Allen Osborne at Poca High School.
 
In that one season, I learned more about teaching and coaching than any other stop I’ve had in my professional career — Allen is that good!  But we also had a special team.  For those that coach you already know that special team translates to special people.  But I’ve never coached a special team that didn’t have at least one warrior.  That one player that took it personal not just on game night, but at every practice, in every drill.
 
Such was Bryan Frampton.

The storm that rages wildly,
the faith that never alters,
cannot compare with a warrior's heart
for his heart's strength never falters.*
 
Bryan passed away December 1 of 2013 after a long battle with cancer.  And when I say battle, I mean it in the warrior’s sense.  Cancer may have finally took Bryan, but I promise you it was exhausted after the battle.
 
After a great career at Poca High School, Bryan felt the need to compete at a higher level.  He joined the United State Navy.  It was during his tenure with the Navy that his first battle with cancer occurred — one that forced doctors to amputate his right leg.  No problem for Bryan.  Remove it and let’s move on.  Move on he did.  Securing a job, getting married and raising a family of three boys, Nathaniel, Noah and Luke.
 
Noah and Luke now carry on the Frampton tradition at Poca High School playing for Allen.  Once, when Coach Osborne was looking into purchasing a shooting machine for the team, Bryan asked if he could take the brochures home with him.  He later called Allen and of course Bryan had picked out the most expensive machine for his boys urging Allen to purchase the one with the computer digital read out.  When Allen told Bryan it was the most expensive, he replayed a message he had learned playing for Allen: “It always cost a little more to be the best.”
  
Bryan continued to be a great fan of the game, encouraging his sons to play and becoming a loyal supporter of the University of Kentucky Wildcats.  Now the thing you have to know about Bryan is that God has never placed a more loyal soul on this earth than Bryan Frampton.  In Bryan’s heart there was the University of Kentucky and then there were the enemies.
 
A few years ago Bryan had a pain in his shoulder.  For the longest time he shrugged it off.  That’s what warriors do.  Finally, upon seeing a doctor and going through tests, it was discovered that he had a new battle with cancer — this time the cancer stretched from his lungs up into his shoulders.

The cancer was aggressive and wide-spread.  Bryan Frampton was aggressive also — he was a warrior.  As doctors worked with Bryan, they also looked at some of the best facilities in the nation to send him for additional help such as M.D Anderson in Houston, the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota, and the Duke Cancer Center in Durham, North Carolina.  Please remember our earlier passage about Bryan’s strong love for his Kentucky Wildcats and his amazing loyalty.  He quickly informed the doctors that he would not be going to Duke.  He was always quick to inform anyone that “you can’t spell Duke without UK.”
 
Such was Bryan Frampton.
 
The oak may be cut down,
and the river may run dry,
the song will end, the storm will break,
but a warrior will never die.*
 
Bryan was also an active outdoorsman despite having only one leg.  He love to fish and he loved to hunt — and he loved doing both with his sons.  One day, while out weed-eating, he fell and broke his hip.  The doctors encouraged him not to repair the hip because the surgery was too complicated and could be fatal because of what he was going through in his cancer treatments.  Sorry, said Bryan.  We’re doing the surgery.  “Gotta hunt and fish with my boys.”
 
Today, both Luke and Noah are playing at Poca — one of the top teams in the state.  Now let’s talk about the love a coach has for his player — after they have played.  Allen would often go over to Bryan’s home last year with game films so Bryan could watch his sons play.  Allen and Bryan would of course critique the videos — that what competitors do.  The cancer was taking its toll at that point and he was often so sick he could not attend games.  Below you will see a shot his son Noah hit to win a game — another game Bryan was unable to attend.  I would tell you that it looks similar to the shot Christian Laettner hit to beat his beloved Kentucky but Bryan would not want it described that way.
 
As the Poca Dots play through the remaining part of their season, Noah and Luke take turns wearing #34 in honor of the father.  I believe strongly that the best way to honor the passing of a loved one is by the life that you live.  Bryan’s sons certainly have some big shoes to fill — but with dad’s DNA flowing through them I’m going to bet that they are going to be competitors, hard workers, great husbands and fathers.
 
Such was Bryan Frampton.
 
Their memory lives on, eternal;
their spirit guides us through;
their courage gives us hope:
brave warriors, ever true.*
 
*indicates from "A Warrior's Heart"
A Poem by Gonflet

Thursday, February 6, 2014

LOU HOLTZ ON MISTAKES AND CHARACTER

"You can tell a lot about a person’s character, not by the mistakes he has made, but by how he has handled those mistakes. The person who takes responsibility for his errors and does what he can to fix the problems he’s created is someone you should respect. The person who has never made a mistake in his own mind, who obfuscates and attempts to deflect blame, is someone you should approach cautiously."

-Lou Holtz

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

PETE CARROLL: COACH YOUR COACHES

The Win Forever philosophy is not just about maximizing the potential of our players.  It is about maximizing the potential of everyone in a program or organization.  All the principles we use with your players apply to our coaches and other staff members as well.  Right down to the core of your being, be believe that our success depends on ensuring that everyone is completely engaged, committed, and in a relentless pursuit of a competitive edge.  A big part of my job is creating an environment where this will happen.
 
Ultimately, the most critical point in coaching our coaches is to understand that we don’t want every coach to have the same style.  What we need on our staff are unique competitors who can each find a way to deliver the same message with one heartbeat.  The coaches need to internalize the message and then convey it in their own voice.  When each person does that, we get a diversity of styles and approaches that makes the whole team stronger.  

Putting together a staff may be the most important part of any head coach’s job, and I have always enjoyed it.  I am often asked what I look for when hiring coaches.  The first thing I look at is a person’s competitiveness and work ethic.  I also like to hire young and promote from within.  There have been exceptions along the way, of course, but for the most part I would rather get someone who is open-minded and full of competitive fire, even if it comes at the expense of a certain amount of experience.

The other critical factor we look for when hiring new coaches is their willingness and ability to grow.  Leadership development is critical in any organization.

If a leader is clear and consistent about his philosophy’s core values, it frees everyone up to do their best.

 Most coaches think that leadership comes from the players, but I don’t see it that way.  The leadership that I count on most comes from our coaches. 
 
The only leadership that I can really rely on is hat which comes from our coaching staff.  The coaches are constantly nurturing our players’ ability to serve as part of the team’s leadership. But it is the coaches that I hold accountable.  You can try to position and promote players in ways that make them leaders, but I don’t want to rely on them when it comes to winning or losing.  I have chosen to rely on our staff first and foremost.

From "Win Forever" by Pete Carroll

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

THE IMPORTANCE OF OPTIMISM

"Drive, competitiveness and determination.  Commitment.  These are the qualities we associate with winners.  But each one of these characteristics depends on one other: optimism.  Without optimism – that gut-level belief that we can succeed – we are far less likely to realize our dreams.  Setbacks and slumps will stop us cold if we don’t have basic faith in ourselves.  No matter how badly we want to succeed, if we don’t feel optimistic about our abilities and our potential, every day is going to be a struggle."

-Joe Torre


DO YOUR JOB AND DO IT WELL

"That was the final lesson I learned from my days as an assistant coach. Don’t waste your time and energy looking for the next job. Take care of the job you’ve got now. If you’re good at what you’re doing now, they’ll find you."

-Bo Schembechler

BOB KNIGHT'S 10 COMMANDMENTS OF LEADERSHIP

The following comes from "The Power of Negative Thinking" by Bob Knight:

For anyone who wants to be a leader, here are Ten Commandments of my own:

I.    Don't accept status quo.
Look for better when others are satisfied.

II.   Always question.
The best of all questions: “Why?”

III.  Always worry.
If you can’t think of a thing to be worried about, worry about being overconfident.

IV.  Look for improvements to make in yourself or bad habits to break.
Don’t drink to excess or smoke at all, give the proven cancer risks.

V.  Don’t act without evidence or buy something without checking thoroughly.
Before job interviews, eliminate all possible reasons not to be hired.

VI. Be skeptical-untrusting.
In every theory, look for proof. Verify, as President Reagan said.

VII.  Make your players or employees work to get better-encourage them, challenge them, maybe even inspire them to do it, but make it clear that the “same old, same old” is not acceptable.
When they’re saying “The boss is never satisfied,” count it as a compliment. (I heard that one of my players once said, “He’ll never be satisfied until we hit every shot and shut the other team out.” He didn’t know me well enough. They’d better all be A+ students, and never have thrown the ball away either.)

VIII. Never think talent alone will determine the outcome, whether it’s your side versus the other side in a game or a competitive deal.
Plan and train so that your side makes fewer mistakes.

IX.   Never talk too much.
Get yourself a degree from the Shut-Up School and remember it when talking about your competitors, whether they’re a sports team or a sales team. Self-promotion and gloating never have a place; let your products or your performance do the talking. I hate it when a coach or a player boasts about his own team before a big game. That’s an incentive to the other side.

X. Never stop looking for new ideas.
Be self-critical of your beliefs when others offer possible alternatives. Remember, you’re not the inventor of the wheel or the Internet. Learn from the wisdom of others-listen to people who  came before, like the playwright George Bernard Shaw: “Some see things as they are and ask, ‘Why?’ I see things as they  could be and ask, ‘Why not?’”

Monday, February 3, 2014

THE PETE CARROLL PHILOSOPHY

In honor of the Seattle Seahawks Super Bowl victory, here is a list of some of the blog posts we've done over the years on Pete Carroll:

Pete Carroll on always competing.

Pete Carroll's approach to practice.

Pete Carroll -- practice is everything.

Pete Carroll -- "recruiting is another opportunity to compete."

The Pete Carroll Success Plan.

Pete Carroll on playing in the absence of fear.

Pete Carroll's promise to recruits at USC.




MENTAL DOMINANCE

The following is an excerpt from Tim Grover's book "Relentless" --

Because no matter what you want for yourself, whether your ambitions take you to the gym or the office or anywhere else you want to be, your ultimate power source will come from the neck up, not the neck down. In sports, we spend so much time on the physical component—training, working, and pushing the human body to be fast and stronger and more resilient than most people ever thought possible. And then eventually, we get around to paying some peripheral attention to mental conditioning. That’s completely backward. Excellence isn’t only about hitting the gym and working up a sweat; that’s the smallest part of what you have to do. Physical ability can only take you so far. The fact is, you can’t train your body—or excel at anything—before you train your mind. You can’t commit to excellence until your mind is ready to take you there. Teach the mind to train the body. Physical dominance can make you great. Mental dominance is what ultimately makes you unstoppable. You will never have a more powerful training tool than this: get your mind strong, so your body can follow.