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Friday, May 27, 2011

ADVICE FROM THE SKIPPER

One of my mentors during my stay at LSU was Hall of  Fame baseball coach Skip Bertman.  It's important when developing mentors that you have "range" in those you choose.  If you are a basketball coach, don't just choose basketball coaches.  They can coach other sports or be educators or successful professionals in other fields.  Two of the most important people in my growth as a coach were Coach Bertman and Cal Bailey who is the long-time ultra-successful baseball coach at West Virginia State College.

While I was coaching basketball at West Virginia State College, I also served as assistant sports information director in charge of baseball.  I learned so much about coaching for three years sitting besides Cal in the dugout, eating or driving the team van.  Look for successful people for your circle of influence.

After a baseball career that including 5 College World Series Championships, Skip became our Athletic Director.  He was so driven for all of our sports to achieve success.  He made it part of his job to help us become better coaches.  Below is one of my favorite Skip passages.  He would use it with his players, with us as coaches, and with our teams when he spoke to them.

“I’ve always believed that anything you vividly imagine, ardently desire, sincerely believe and enthusiastically act upon, must, absolutely must, come to pass.”

-Skip Bertman