My thinking has pretty much run the gamut regarding “training rules”… or what used to be called “training rules”. When I played in high school and college the list looked like, and I am sure could be traced back to, something out of a Vince Lombardi Packer camp. When I first became head coach, and then into my days at the University of Central Missouri, and William Jewell College, the list of rules expanded to almost two pages long. Recently my thinking has swung back to the concept that simpler might be better.
The last few years we have had the simple Rule/ Mantra/ Creed… whatever you want to call it, of “Do Things Right… all the time”
Rather than have a list of extensive rules to try and cover every imaginable situation that could come up … in the classroom… on the field… in the halls of school… at home with friends… we talked in terms of “Doing Things Right”. We make it very clear what our expectations are, and the type actions that will lead to success… on the practice field… in the off-season… in life. Really, most of the student-athletes understand the difference between positive actions and actions that could have a negative effect. Any action that could keep them from achieving their goals should be scrutinized.
“Do Things Right… all of the time”
- Not some things
- Not just big things
- Not only the little things
- Not just during a game
- Not only on the practice field
- Not just in football
- Not only in sports
- Not just in the classroom
- Not only at school
“Do Things Right… all the time”
It began as a catch phrase our staff started using at practice… actually emphasizing attention to detail during warm-up … “Do Things Right”…. It (the use of the term) spread through all phases of practice and carried over to how they acted in school, and how they were conducting themselves at home and with friends. We ended up adding “All The Time” to make it all encompassing.
I think a good chunk of our kids took it to heart. Most of our kids made good decisions most of the time. If they were straying, it was pretty easy to bring them back by the simple reminder … “Do Things Right … all the time.”
I was in the main school office this past week as one of our graduating seniors was checking out on his last day. He played for me his sophomore and junior years, but was unable to play his senior year because of repeated concussions. We were talking about his college plans (he was going to study film.. probably at Columbia College in Chicago), and as he was leaving, I wished him good luck at college and told him to keep in touch.
He gave me a big hug and said, “Do Things Right, Coach… all the time”
Jeff Floyd – firstname.lastname@example.org