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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

PEYTON MANNING'S ADVICE TO ROOKIES

A big thanks to Joey Burton for passing on this article written by Peter King of SI about Peyton Manning who is the poster child for preparation.  Here is the advice he would give to rookies:

If I could give them a couple pieces of advice, I would start with this: ‘Don’t ever go to a meeting to watch a practice or a game without having already watched it by yourself.’ That’s one thing that I have always done. When the coach is controlling the remote control, he’s gonna rewind when he wants to rewind. He’s gonna skip certain plays. He’s not watching every single detail. When you can control the rewind button, you can go in there and you watch—first, you better watch your mechanics. Watch what you’re doing. Is your drop good? How’s your throw? OK, now rewind it again. Now you better watch your receivers. OK, looks like Demaryius Thomas ran a good route here. Not sure what Julius Thomas was doing here. Then you better rewind it again and watch what the defense is doing. So, there’s time in that deal. You have to know what they were doing so you can help them. So that has helped me. When I go in and watch it with the coach, I’m watching it for the third, fourth, fifth time. That’s when you start learning.

 

Monday, September 22, 2014

DEL HARRIS AND THE FIVE LEVELS OF COMMUNICATION

Coach Del Harris speaks of five levels of communication with players—use each one less than the one before it as you go down the levels.

1. Conversational level: You have the give and take whereby you get to know the player and he learns you as well. You demonstrate you care. Use this the most.

2. Encouragement level: Voice is animated and enthusiastic. Use it as much as you can, but it has to be a result of real achievement, not just blowing smoke. But the worst person to be with is the one you simply cannot please. Be real.

3. Instructional level: Voice is slightly animated as you attempt to pass on teaching points that may help your player get better, or that may help him understand the team concept. Use often, but mostly in practice or in certain 1-1 situations.

4. Correctional level: Voice increases somewhat in urgency, but this is not to be confused with screaming. Naturally, this is used on important issues in practices and games to help eliminate errors. Use it as needed, but if it overwhelms the encouragement level, the team will tune you out sooner than later.

5. “Go Nuts” level: Yes, there is a place for letting them know that they have crossed the line in terms of lack of effort or execution or attitude, etc. They must know you really care about certain issues. But, of course you must maintain control here, as it should be a purposeful act. Overdo this level and you will lose your team by Christmas unless you are winning every game.

 

BOB STOOPS PHILOSOPHY PART I: EXPECTATIONS AND CONDITIONING

This is part 1 or 3 parts of notes I took listening to Bob Stoops, the head football coach at the University of Oklahoma at a clinic following his 2001 National Championship team.

I believe the more you expect, the more you will get. If you expect an un-defeated season, and you only win 10 of 11 games, it sure beats the heck out of being 5 and 6. Expect a lot, and you have a better opportunity to get it. We walked in to Oklahoma and raised the expectations.

I believe in being positive, and I believe in being confident. I believe the more you talk to your players that way, the more it becomes a part of their nature. A confident and positive player on the field is better than one that isn’t.

When we started our first winter workouts, we had 20 players that had to fall out of the drills the first day. They could not make it through the first workout. They were throwing in the trashcans, pulling up with pulled mus-cles, and all kind of excuses. They were in bad shape.

Probably, the best person I hired was our strength and conditioning coach, Jerry Schmidt.

...what I getting around to is the fact that everyone talks about changing their perceptions and raising their expectations. Everyone does that. What we talk a lot about is "earning the right to win." We talk about earn-ing the right to those expectations. You can expect to go 13-0. You can say that. But, you have to earn the right to put that expectation up on the board.

We run a winter program at 6:15 am for three days a week. On one of those days three days we do speed work, and the other two days we do agilities. The way we work out is something to see. We really go hard.

I am not one to go get one of my coaches up at 5 am in the morning to get that one player that is late to the workout and have him work extra. That is hard on the assistant coaches. I do not want to do that. Why should I make one of my assistant coaches get up early? If the player does not have enough responsibility to get to practice, then we are not going to play that person. They have to be accountable and responsible to their team.

We had excellent participation in our summer workouts. We had 85 to 90 percent of the players there for the entire summer. In the second part of the summer, we had 95 percent of the players working out at school. We had great participation, and it make a difference. We were making pro-gress, and we were committed to winning. We had great participation, and we were acting like a team.

You will never hear me tell the players that we should have won a game. You will never hear me quoted as saying, "we should have won." I do not believe in it. You either do or you don’t. It is as simple as that.

The big quote association with me is "no excuses!" To be frank, I have never heard a good excuse. They all amount to the same thing. They all amount to losing.

If you give your players a reason as to why they did not win, or if you are quoted as to why you did not win, they are going to latch on to that.

I never acknowledge injuries, and I am never going to acknowledge how young we are, or anything that has to with losing. The reason for this is because I never want one of my players to have an excuse not to succeed or to win.

 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

MAKE THE BIG TIME WHERE YOU ARE

Those who are faithful reader's of this blog know how we feel about the importance of process over results.  Far too many get caught up in setting destination goals as opposed to living daily striving for excellence in all they do.  Life is about mastery and mastery is a daily process -- sometimes involving the most mundane activities.  Yesterday, spending time in airports and airplanes, I read "Burn Your Goals" by Joshua Medcalf and Jamie Gilbert.  It is one of the best books I've read in regard to understanding and living the process.  I believe it is a necessary read for coaches and athletes and I will blog a little over the next week about a few of the passages.

One chapter, "The Resources Myth" hit home because of my own coaching journey of some of my stops along the way.  It also brought back fond memories of Coach Don Meyer and all that he accomplished in his career.  If we were to hear Coach Meyer speak this fall, one of his topics was always doing the best with what you have with where you're at.  And he would no doubt encourage us all to read "Make The Big-Time Where You Are" by Frosty Westering.

The thing to know about resources is you have what you have and you don't have what you don't have. 

Simple, but far too many of us spend more time -- completely wasted time -- talking and thinking about what we don't have instead of showing initiative and maximizing what we do have.  Excellent programs do a few things in regards to resources:

1. They get the most out of what they do have.
2. They utilize their imagination to overcome what they don't have.
3. They go to work to obtain what they don't have (fundraising, etc.)

Here are some great thoughts from "Burn Your Goals" in regard to resources:
The "lack-of-resources" myth not only cripples creating thinking but it also has another harmful effect. If limits the people you will attract.  Successful people's ears perk up when they see and hear about people being resourceful and persevering.
Rather than fall into the trap of the resources myth, try and always ask these 2 questions:
What is the smallest version of my dream I can start right now, using what I have, right where I am at?
What is one thing I can do make this better?
Those who are faithful with little will be trusted with so much more.
Create. Be resourceful. Persist.
Resources have a habit of following:
Passion
Persistence

Patience

HOW ARE YOU BUILDING YOUR COMMUNITY

I believe a lot of people would be fascinated to sit in on our staff meetings here at Texas A&M.  The novice probably believes that we spend a great deal of time talking about X & O's -- and nothing could be further from the truth.  The subject of basketball itself is towards the bottom of the list.

Our #1 subject? Our student-athletes -- their academics, their health, their attitudes.  Programs of excellence don't deal in things, they deal in people.  There is not a day that goes by that we don't meet as a staff or in pairs to talk about our student-athletes and their needs.

Subject #2 is most often recruiting.  Why?  Because it deals with us bringing in new family members.  Again, many would think we would talk entirely about skills but we spend a great deal of time talking about attitude, personality, and the other intangibles.

Subject #3 is about what we are doing to develop our team chemistry.  What are we doing as a team so we can continue to learn and grow together. Yesterday in our staff meeting, this was a major subject.  We looked at our team calendar and discussed ways and dates of building our community.

It's why I loved this passage today from "The Maxwell Daily Reader" by John Maxwell:

September 20: DO THINGS TOGETHER AS A TEAM
I once read the statement, "Even when you're played the game of your life, it's the feeling of teamwork that you'll remember.  You'll forget the plays, the shots, and the scores, but you'll never forget your teammates."  That is describing the community that develops among teammates who spend time doing things together.
The only to develop community and cohesiveness among your teammates is to get them together, not just in a professional setting but in personal ones as well.  There are lots of ways to get yourself connected with your teammates, and to connect them with on another...the where and when are not as important as the fact that team members share common experiences.

REASON #4 TO ATTEND THE 3rd ANNUAL GARY BLAIR COACHING ACADEMY

As we inch closed to the 3rd Annual Gary Blair Coaching Academy, I want to occasionally list a few of the reasons that make us proud to be the host.  First and foremost, Coach Blair has a great passion for growing our sport.  Not all programs open their doors and share anything and everything with coaches off all levels.

My presentation at the Academy is titled "Don Meyer: Lessons Learned and a Legacy Left."  I will speak about the many lessons I learned from Coach Meyer over the years, on the court and off as well as share some of my personal stories about coach.  The presentation will include photos, video and as much of Coach Meyer's basketball philosophy as I can fit in during the allotted time.

I've spend a great deal of time working out the details and I believe those that know and follow Coach Meyer will enjoy this presentation.

The academy includes sessions led by each of the Texas A&M women’s basketball coaches, focusing on wide-ranging topics on both the offensive and defensive ends of the floor.

Registration for the Academy includes three meals, a Texas A&M highlight DVD, a DVD of the Academy sessions and a notebook that includes tips on scouting, motivation, coaching philosophy, conditioning, and practice planning, in addition to a playbook.

Interested coaches may register here or get additional registration details here.

For more information, email Coach Bob Starkey at rstarkey@athletics.tamu.edu

SATURDAY - OCTOBER 4, 2013
12:30 PM      Registration

  2:00 PM      Aggie Basketball Philosophy (Gary Blair)

  3:15 PM      Stars Basketball (Dan Hughes)

  4:45 PM      Dinner

  6:00 PM      The Don Meyer Legacy (Bob Starkey)

  7:15 PM      Quick Hitters vs. Zone/Man (Kelly Bond-White)

SUNDAY - OCTOBER 5, 2013
  8:00 AM      Breakfast

  9:00 AM      Point Guard Play (Amy Wright)

10:00 AM      Aggie Offense
                      ◄Primary & Secondary Break

                      ◄Man to Man Offense

                      ◄Shooting Development

11:45 AM      Lunch

  1:00 PM      Aggie Defense (Bob Starkey)
                     ◄Ball Screen Defense

                     ◄Shell Defense
  2:00 PM      Q&A with the Aggie Staff   

Friday, September 19, 2014

REASON #3 TO ATTEND THE 3rd ANNUAL GARY BLAIR COACHING ACADEMY

As we inch closed to the 3rd Annual Gary Blair Coaching Academy, I want to occasionally list a few of the reasons that make us proud to be the host.  First and foremost, Coach Blair has a great passion for growing our sport.  Not all programs open their doors and share anything and everything with coaches off all levels.

Those attending the Academy will receive two DVD's.  The first one will be a highlight of last season's Texas A&M Elite 8 run.

The second DVD will be mailed a week after the Academy and will include all floor demonstrations during the clinic as well as a copy of any video presentations.  So take good notes but know that you will have video back up in the mail coming!

The academy includes sessions led by each of the Texas A&M women’s basketball coaches, focusing on wide-ranging topics on both the offensive and defensive ends of the floor.

Registration for the Academy includes three meals, a Texas A&M highlight DVD, a DVD of the Academy sessions and a notebook that includes tips on scouting, motivation, coaching philosophy, conditioning, and practice planning, in addition to a playbook.

Interested coaches may register here or get additional registration details here.

For more information, email Coach Bob Starkey at rstarkey@athletics.tamu.edu

SATURDAY - OCTOBER 4, 2013
12:30 PM      Registration

  2:00 PM      Aggie Basketball Philosophy (Gary Blair)

  3:15 PM      Stars Basketball (Dan Hughes)

  4:45 PM      Dinner

  6:00 PM      The Don Meyer Legacy (Bob Starkey)

  7:15 PM      Quick Hitters vs. Zone/Man (Kelly Bond-White)

SUNDAY - OCTOBER 5, 2013
  8:00 AM      Breakfast

  9:00 AM      Point Guard Play (Amy Wright)

10:00 AM      Aggie Offense
                      ◄Primary & Secondary Break

                      ◄Man to Man Offense

                      ◄Shooting Development

11:45 AM      Lunch

  1:00 PM      Aggie Defense (Bob Starkey)
                     ◄Ball Screen Defense

                     ◄Shell Defense
  2:00 PM      Q&A with the Aggie Staff   

Thursday, September 18, 2014

REASON #2 TO ATTEND THE 3rd ANNUAL GARY BLAIR COACHING ACADEMY

As we inch closed to the 3rd Annual Gary Blair Coaching Academy, I want to occasionally list a few of the reasons that make us proud to be the host.  First and foremost, Coach Blair has a great passion for growing our sport.  Not all programs open their doors and share anything and everything with coaches off all levels.

Besides great meals, an Academy Notebook and some great videos, you get to hear to of the best clinic speakers in the business -- Hall of Famer Gary Blair, and WNBA head coach Dan Hughes of the San Antonio Stars.

Coach Blair hasn't slowed down after leading our Aggies to the National Championship and into the SEC where we have won the SEC Tournament Championship and then advanced to the Elite 8 the past two seasons.

Coach Blair, a two-time national finalist for the Naismith Coach of the Year Award, has guided Texas A&M to nine straight NCAA Tournament appearances, and to four conference championships.

Blair led the Aggies to their first national title in their first-ever trip to the NCAA Women’s Final Four and closed out the 2010-11 season with a 33-5 record, the most victories in program history. The Aggies were voted as the No. 1 team in the coaches’ poll following the season, the first time Texas A&M stood atop either poll in women’s basketball.

In 2013 he was inducted into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame.

Coach Hughes is the winningest coach in San Antonio Stars history and will enter his 10th season with the organization next summer where he also serves as General Manager.  His list of honors and awards include:

• WNBA Coach of the Year (2001, 2007)
• 14 WNBA All-Star Selections
• 9 Postseason Appearances
• 5 WNBA All-Rookie Team Selections
• 4 All-WNBA First Team Selections
• 4 All-WNBA Second Team Selections
• 4 Kim Perrot Sportsmanship Awards
• 3 WNBA All-Defensive Team Honorees
• 1 WNBA Top 15 Honoree
• 1 Conference Title

The academy includes sessions led by each of the Texas A&M women’s basketball coaches, focusing on wide-ranging topics on both the offensive and defensive ends of the floor.

Registration for the Academy includes three meals, a Texas A&M highlight DVD, a DVD of the Academy sessions and a notebook that includes tips on scouting, motivation, coaching philosophy, conditioning, and practice planning, in addition to a playbook.

Interested coaches may register here or get additional registration details here.

For more information, email Coach Bob Starkey at rstarkey@athletics.tamu.edu

SATURDAY - OCTOBER 4, 2013
12:30 PM      Registration

  2:00 PM      Aggie Basketball Philosophy (Gary Blair)

  3:15 PM      Stars Basketball (Dan Hughes)

  4:45 PM      Dinner

  6:00 PM      The Don Meyer Legacy (Bob Starkey)

  7:15 PM      Quick Hitters vs. Zone/Man (Kelly Bond-White)

SUNDAY - OCTOBER 5, 2013
  8:00 AM      Breakfast

  9:00 AM      Point Guard Play (Amy Wright)

10:00 AM      Aggie Offense
                      ◄Primary & Secondary Break
                      ◄Man to Man Offense
                      ◄Shooting Development

11:45 AM      Lunch

  1:00 PM      Aggie Defense (Bob Starkey)
                     ◄Ball Screen Defense
                     ◄Shell Defense
  2:00 PM      Q&A with the Aggie Staff   

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

CAL BAILEY: 4 KEYS TO BEING A GOOD COACH

I have blogged before about my relationship with legendary baseball coach Cal Bailey.  While an assistant men's basketball coach at West Virginia State College I also served as the Sports Information Director for baseball which mean that I shared a seat on the bench with Cal, rode in vans with him and had a lot of meals.  It was one of the most valuable experiences of my coaching career.  I learned a great deal from observing Cal and talking to him about coaching, teaching and life.

Recently there were a set of podcasts talking to Cal about various things including his coaching philosophy.  Here are a few take aways:

Something he got from a college instructor, Dr. Herman Kennedy, when Cal was 21 is that "life is hell."  And the sooner you realized that the sooner you could go about navigating successfully through life.  It helped form his coaching philosophy.  Cal would actually create chaos at practice intentionally.  His thought process was that we wanted to occasionally put his players in situations where they would fail in practice to learn how to recover from it.  The experience in practice would make it more comfortable to handle in a game situations.

As Cal said, he want to "teach them to become their own best coach."

Another thing that Cal shared on the podcast was something that he learned as well -- 4 Keys To Being A Good Coach:

#1 The ABILITY to recognize ABILITY

#2 The ABILITY to surround yourself with ABILITY

#3 The ABILITY to develop ABILITY

#4 The ABILITY to utilize ABILITY

Cal retired at the end of last season but after listening to the podcast the Big Dog is still teaching me.

REASON #1 TO ATTEND THE 3rd ANNUAL GARY BLAIR COACHING ACADEMY

As we inch closed to the 3rd Annual Gary Blair Coaching Academy, I want to occasionally list a few of the reasons that make us proud to be the host.  First and foremost, Coach Blair has a great passion for growing our sport.  Not all programs open their doors and share anything and everything with coaches off all levels.

One of the items that clinic participants receive is our Academy Notebook.  The notebook is over 100 pages of Aggie Basketball and will include the following sections:

Practice Planning & Philosophy
This section speaks to how the Aggies develop their practice and has some sample practice plans for coaches to view

Man to Man Offense
A very detailed list of Aggie set plays via Fast Draw.



















Zone Offense
A look at the Aggie zone offensive attack

Man Defense
This section will deal with shell series and screen defense this year.

Special Situations
Principles and guidelines for Aggie special situations.

Skill Development
     -Point Guard
     -Wings
     -Post Play













Strength & Conditioning
A look at some of the work the Aggies do in the areas of strength, conditioning, explosion, quickness and agility.

Scouting
Guidelines for scouting and always includes an actual scouting report that Aggies would utilize with their team.

Motivation
Always one of the favorite section for clinic coaches, this is filled with motivational passouts that the Aggies give to their players.



















Resources
A section of how you can follow and contact the Aggie coaching staff.

We take great pride in making sure the material from the previous Academy is not repeated!  We want to make sure that we are adding new information for those coaches who are repeat attendees.

We start putting the Academy Notebook together in the summer and work on it up until the day before the clinic.

The academy includes sessions led by each of the Texas A&M women’s basketball coaches, focusing on wide-ranging topics on both the offensive and defensive ends of the floor.

Registration for the Academy includes three meals, a Texas A&M highlight DVD, a DVD of the Academy sessions and a notebook that includes tips on scouting, motivation, coaching philosophy, conditioning, and practice planning, in addition to a playbook.

Interested coaches may register here or get additional registration details here.


For more information, email Coach Bob Starkey at rstarkey@athletics.tamu.edu


SATURDAY - OCTOBER 4, 2013
12:30 PM      Registration

  2:00 PM      Aggie Basketball Philosophy (Gary Blair)

  3:15 PM      Stars Basketball (Dan Hughes)

  4:45 PM      Dinner

  6:00 PM      The Don Meyer Legacy (Bob Starkey)

  7:15 PM      Quick Hitters vs. Zone/Man (Kelly Bond-White)


SUNDAY - OCTOBER 5, 2013
  8:00 AM      Breakfast

  9:00 AM      Point Guard Play (Amy Wright)

10:00 AM      Aggie Offense
                      ◄Primary & Secondary Break

                      ◄Man to Man Offense

                      ◄Shooting Development

11:45 AM      Lunch

  1:00 PM      Aggie Defense (Bob Starkey)
                     ◄Ball Screen Defense

                     ◄Shell Defense
  2:00 PM      Q&A with the Aggie Staff