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Thursday, June 26, 2014


Here a couple of thoughts I found interesting in Coach John Calipari's most recent book "Player's First" --

·         You can’t have a whole team with just runners, rebounders, and defenders. You need shooters.

·         On defense our priorities are the converse of what they are when we have the ball. Guard the basket. Guard the three point line. Force turnovers. Rebound every missed shot. We’ll take our chances getting beaten by teams hitting midrange shots.

·         Thinking about how you would try to beat you own team goes with the job of being a coach you put yourself into the mind of another coach as he looks at film of your games. Where are we vulnerable? What defenses have we struggled against? At what speed don’t we like to play?

·         One thing I have to guard against is the tendency of my kids to look to far down the road—and also to take certain things for granted rather than pausing for reflection. I have to remind them that here is where we are. Right now. Focus on what we’re doing in the moment. And don’t be afraid to stop to honor the milestones you’ve already achieved.

·         What’s the expression? You don’t know where you’re going until you know where you’ve been? I believe in that. I also believe that if you don’t slow down and take stock sometimes, you’re never going to feel good about yourself.

·         There are coaches who will try to make their guys hate my team. We’re winning that game every time. It works for them for a couple of minutes, maybe even a half, whatever. But when you play with a sense of rage, you don’t respond well to being challenged.

·         I write out an index card that I have with me during the games that has on t what we’re going to do on offense, how we’re going to guard certain things. It’s basic. Here’s what we do if they go zone. Here’s how we break their press. Here are our baseline out-of-bounds plays. I have it with me to refer to, because in the heat of the moment sometimes you want it.

·         I never want one of my kids to be held publicly responsible after a big loss.