In one week my boys basketball team will be at the state championships. We are a small highschool but haven't lost a league game all season. But we are up against some giants. I've been reviewing tapes, talking to the players one on one throughout the day trying to keep them loose yet prepared and working them hard.
I can't imagine the pressure that professional team coaches must have. I mean in our little town it's bad enough. Win or get run out of town on a rail. That seems to be the motto. After each game dozens of people who think they have all the answers want to know why I didn't do this or that or play this kid or that kid. Sheesh.
Anyway I don't pay attention to fans, teachers, administration or even my wife right now. This school used to be very strong in sports yet the boys haven't been to state in 10 years. I remind them of that. Anyway I've been rambling enough. Almost time for lunch so I'd better head up the hill and meet a couple of players for lunch.
The only thing that might can ease the stress of a school team is to realize that playing a sport is more than just the game. It can teach innumerable lessons. Win or lose if the coach shows class and good sportsmanship and teaches it to his players then you have had a successful season. One of the best coaches in the college ranks who helps his players learn about life as much as about basketball is Coach K of Duke(I ain't even gonna try and spell it). I know some don't like him but if you look at his teams, his players come away more than just good basketball players, they come away as good people.
From your posts I can sense that you are that type coach. One who cares for his players as much, if not more, off the court than on the court.
I know I'm not telling you anything you don't know, but I thought it might help you to hear from someone who appreciates the job a coach does besides the Xs and Os of the game.
Coach K and Duke are my favorites. Want to see what my teams uniforms will look like next year? Tune in Duke on ESPN.
The majority of my time this season has been taken up with teachers and the eligibility problems of two of my players. We raised the barn this season so that if you have a single grade under a C you can't play. This is a problem for two kids. So Every monday morning I'm at school looking at grades and then talking to each teacher who gave a player a low grade. I want a list of missing assignments and I want a list of what that student needs to do in order to get his grade up. I honsetly thought the teachers would love me taking such an interest but that's not the way it is. They really don't want to be bothered. They have told me to leave them alone and go away.
So a visit to the school board paid off and each monday the teachers are required to give me such a list. Then I visit the students AND his parents. The next morning I visit the student and contact the parents again. I do this until they have picked their grades up. What is nice is not one student has failed to get a C. The GPA of the team is 3.6 and this includes a student that struggles to get C's.
Yep teachers hate my guts but I've never asked for a favor. I just want to know grades and what they need to do. I really thought they would appreciate that.