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Thursday, July 2, 2015

STEVE SMILEY: PLAYING FOR COACH MEYER

Several years ago, Steve Smiley wrote a book which details his relationship and all the lessons he learned from his college coach, Don Meyer.  The lessons were both on and off the court and it's one of my favorite books.  It's been out of a print recently but Steve has some on hand for those interested.  It's an outstanding book for coaches or players.  If you're interested, you can contact Steve via twitter or Facebook.

From "Playing For Coach Meyer" by Steve Smiley:

Great men do great things. Coach Don Meyer is a great man who does great things. Everyday he works on giving his gift of knowing the game of basketball and player development away to anybody who will listen, and anybody who asks him. Coach Meyer takes pride in sharing his love and passion for the game of basketball and player development each and every day. It doesn’t matter if you are a 7-year old putting up jump shots in the gym all by yourself, or a successful coach yourself who has been coaching for 20 or 30-plus years, Coach Meyer will go out of his way to help you become the best player, coach or person you can be.

We all know that Coach had won a ton of games but that’s not what I’m going to remember about him after my career is over. I’m going to remember his desire to get better everyday and the way he pushes his players to improve not just on the court, but off it as well.

Coach Meyer made this point simple enough when he said: “As a player, you are always doing one of two things. You’re either bringing energy to the team, or you’re sucking energy away from the team. On our team, we want energy givers, guys that bring energy to the group.” This is a simple enough concept, but Coach Meyer would constantly ask us what type of player we were on an individual level. Was I an energy giver or an energy drainer during the last practice? Did I make the team more energetic, or did I bring the team down? Constantly Coach Meyer would question every player on the team, and as my career progressed I began to see how important the concept was.