Tuesday, April 30, 2013


The following are notes taking at the Texas A&M Special Lecture Series hosted by our Kinesiology Department.  The speaker is Mark Johnson, a Hall of Fame baseball coach that coached the Aggies as well as our Olympic team.  The notes were scribed by Kyle Felen, one of our basketball managers that attended the lecture series -- glad to see he is a great note taker.

A coach will impact & influence more people in 1 year than most people will in a lifetime. Coaches are held to a higher standard and must have a good influence.
As a coach, you have to be able to deal with the critics. Young men & women are helping decide whether you are a success. Handle pressure.

If you want your athletes to grow, you have to put them in an uncomfortable situation and make them comfortable, there is no substitution for experience. Have to practice the “inner game” (mental aspect of the game).
To be successful: have to find a cause/passion outside of yourself, have the talent to communicate the passion and be persistent.
To be successful: hang around good people, hang around good places, and be close to God (have a relationship).

Life is about little moments. Little moments will determine big things & you have to be ready for these moments. You need to practice for your moments, as a coach you help your players practice their moments by putting them in an uncomfortable situation and making them comfortable.
Figure out what wins & loses mean to you. Coaches don’t start out as cheaters, bad seasons can cause coaches to cheat. You have to figure out what your priorities are as a coach and for your program.

Winning has to be the thing you are playing for but it’s not the most important thing.
Accountability: commitment to the cause, get players committed to the program and their teammates.

Work on the process (winning in practice to win games)
Play for excellence, no one can define it but you.

“The highest reward for your toil will not be what you get from it but what you become by it.”
Great coaches are competitive and have a lot of pride. Have superior work ethic, patience & goal setting.

Great coaches refuse to be average. GREAT COACHES STAY WITHIN THEMSELVES.          
Great coaches always learn/improve/ have discipline (of players and of yourself).

Coaches never take a day off (mentally/physically/emotionally).
Bring enthusiasm & preparation. Even if you have to act it out on certain days.

Act like a champion.
You as a coach have to care about the program and everyone in it. From your most talented player to the least talented.

When you care enough, you will be a leader.
Develop a positive environment, happiness brings success, build self-esteem, develop self-fulfilling images & encourage positivity.

Life isn’t always about getting through the storm, it’s about learning how to dance in the rain. Learn how to have fun in your struggles.
Let your players be in control of their finest moments.

Positivity: a lot more people are better if from praise than negative criticism.
Handle adversity well. Have to light the candle, not curse the darkness. Any time you’re moving forward adversity is knocking on your door.

The ultimate measure of a man is where he stands in time of conflict & adversity not in convenience & comfort.
Very important to encourage team building.

Communication: There are no quiet leaders.