relationships

relationships
29 years coaching experience/ 7 years as a varsity boys' basketball coach, now assisting

Friday, December 9, 2011

It's a Family Affair


Coaching and having a team is very much like having a family.  In all of the good and bad ways.  You know that they are going through similar situations, you know they care about you (most of the time), you know there is someone that you don't get along with that well, but you do it for the good of the family, there are arguments, there is hurt, there is laughing and spending time together.

Something that has changed in me through the years coaching is what goes on at practice and at games.  It really bothered me for people to shoot around or talk while we were practicing, now it doesn't.  Don't get me wrong, when I talk I want it quiet, but our jr. high managers shooting doesn't bother me.  Having my children or any other children at practice doesn't bother me.  To be honest, sometimes I get frustrated because my children can't read my mind, but I enjoy them being around.

At our games at home or away you can find my family hard at work besides me and the players.  My daughter cheers with the high school cheerleaders at home games, but on the road, she is usually the only one...cheering....by herself....with all her might in her cheerleader outfit.  My son has become a little manager.  It is good for our guys to be around him because his love for them is 100% and not fake, false and not based on anything other than they play basketball and they pay attention to him.  You can find him out on the court while the players are warming up dribbling a basketball.  Finally, my wife keeps the book, and does a very good job at it.

Some people wonder if it is good that they are so involved because, well, it can be a mean vocation that I have chosen and it puts my family in positions to have to hear or deal with that ferocity.  I, however, wouldn't want it any other way.  When I decide to hang it up, if by my choice, one of the things that will delay my decision is knowing my children will not have the opportunities to do what they do now.  Even if I assist some day, it doesn't mean that the head coach will have the same ideas about family that I do.

My wife and I have treated our players, past and present, as family members.  We have cared about them, helped them, and hopefully influenced them (my wife does a lot!).  But having my own children involved is rewarding far beyond what I thought it could be.