We were prepping for a big game one season at the University of Central Missouri. One of my defensive staff members was fretting.
“Sometimes I think we (coaches) care more about this game than they (the players) do.”
Of course we do… that is no surprise! The amount that you “care”… how much winning means to you… is directly proportional to the amount you have invested in it… in the program. As coaches, we have the most invested… time, work, sweat… etc. It is our chosen avocation, so without question we will “care” more than our players… even the most dedicated ones.
The goal is not to get your players to “care” as much as you do, that is unrealistic. The trick, the goal, is to get more of your players, more invested in your program…. more of your players “bought in”.
How do you do that?
You use your skills daily to “sell”… your philosophy, your program, your game plan, your offense, your defense, your off-season program, your film study…. essentially every thing you do, to your players.
What skills? The skills you must have to be an effective teacher and coach.
- Your “product knowledge” … how and why the way you are doing things is the best way.
- Your communications skills…. you have to be able to articulate something as simple as a play concept to something as complex as your vision for them and the program.
- Your motivation skills… you have to get a group of young men (or women) to believe in you, themselves, and their teammates.
- Your work ethic… players will “buy in” if they see you are “all in”.
- Your empathy… this will help you connect with your athletes.
- Your energy level… I have never seen a great teacher/ coach that was boring. Great teachers are enthusiastic and their enthusiasm is contagious, spilling over to other coaches and players.
How would you rate yourself in each of these areas?
The off-season is a great time for you as a coach to develop skills, to become a stronger coach, as well as your players.
Thanks again to PrepsKC , home of the Greater Kansas City Football Coaches Association, for running this column today. If you get a chance to go and visit their site and “Like” this post, I would appreciate it!
You Can Do More… your brain is lying to you.. Don’t Believe It!
Jeff Floyd – firstname.lastname@example.org