Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Take Big Shots, don't be a Big Shot. No one summarizes this statement more in college basketball that Davidson's Stephen Curry. The 6'3'' 185 lb junior from Charlotte, NC , averages over 28 ppg and takes almost every big shot that his team needs at any point in the game. This past Saturday against Butler, Davidson's coach pulled him out about a minute before a media timeout to give him a long rest. That was short lived, however as Coach McKillop put Curry back in the next offensive possession because his team struggled in that one possession without him. Last year in the NCAA tournament, Curry took every big shot imaginable for his team as they upset Gonzaga, Georgetown and Wisconsin and almost beat eventual champion Kansas.
However, Curry doesn't act like a typical college player averaging 28 ppg who lead his team to the Elite Eight last year. He acts no differently now, then he did 5 years ago when he was playing high school ball and wasn't a household name. Curry realizes that the team is the most important thing and acting like a big shot doesn't help your team. He connects with many of his fellow peers at the small 1700 student Davidson campus. In fact, he recently said, "If you had a roster of every student, I probably would know a little something about each one of them." Now how many star college players can say that?
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Too often I have parents tell me that their child has been told by their coach that they aren't a good player by using negative words and phrases towards them. One of the things I always press all of our coaches with is that we must always use positive reinforcement with any player no matter what the age.
When I was at the University of Georgia, Head Coach Jim Harrick always use to say, "it's amazing, absolutely amazing how much a youngsters hearing improves when they hear praise. Praise 'em, praise 'em, praise 'em. And they will open up like a flower." What I learned from him in the summer of 2000 was so true. Young players hear and absorb everything around them. Saying negative things towards them can damage their confidence quite quickly.
Coach Harrick always used a positive reinforcement with our players. If a player missed a layup, he would say, "you're too good of a player to be missing layups." This reinforces players with positive thinking, but also allows them to realize that they have made a mistake.
With so much negative in our society today, there has to be at least one place a kid can go to hear words on encouragement and that place should be the hardwood.