Why do we spend so much time selling what we want from our players to the players and their parents?!
Here is a common conversation many coaches go through on a yearly basis:
When I total the number of hours and days of basketball that I’ve played in, coached in, practice planned, conducted practices, it adds up to about 50 years!
- Kids who have only been playing or participating in basketball for 3-4 years are questioning me!
- Parents, whose only interaction with the game comes out of a mob psychology that’s formed in the stands at every game with 20 other parents who believe their kids should be All-State, do the same thing!
Dear parents: I’ve been studying, teaching, honing my craft, my knowledge of the game more than twice as long as your kids have been alive! Believe it or not, there’s more to coaching than yelling at your child ‘get open, get the ball, and take over!’
How about trusting me? How about trusting that I know what’s best, for your child and the team?”
The above “rant” was an imaginary conversation to an imaginary team and their parents. You probably shouldn’t speak that way, but you need to at least think about your “Coaching Doctrine” with that kind of confidence!
If you have any doubts, then I challenge you to begin a habit of studying the game. Start studying and never stop studying as long as you coach. You’re not a player anymore – you can’t simply show up to the game and play!
Here are 5 areas that you need to be able to speak intelligently about. There are probably more, but let’s start here:
- Team Offense
- Team Defense
- Player Development
- Game Management
- Player Relationships
- Your unique culture that is wrapped around the above 5 areas.
You don’t have to know ALL there is about each one, but you need to know more than a few platitudes and “coach-speak”. Remember the lines that “Crash” Davis taught “Nuke” Laloosh in the movie ‘Bull Durham?’
“We’ve got to play them one day at a time.”
“I’m just happy to be here – hope I can help the ball club.”
“I just want to give it my best shot and the good Lord willing, things will work out.”
It’s “player-speak”. It’s camouflage for ignorance.
Avoid “coach-speak” and know exactly what you believe, how to sell it, and how to teach it.