relationships

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

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Gameday

Today begins a journey that started from the moment last season ended.
 
 

Monday, November 25, 2013

It's Monday!

Every once in awhile, I need a reminder that every day, even Monday, is a good day.  I wasn't too far from this on March 2, 2012.



Thursday, November 21, 2013

Dreams Do Come True

One of the things on my bucket list was to sit in the bleacher seats at IU for a men's game.  I was able to do it last year with my and this year I was able to share it with my daughter and son.  Below is a picture during the game.  Second row behind the bench, towards the end of the right side,  you can see him and me...if you try really hard.  He's in a white practice jersey with a red shirt underneath and I am in a red polo.  The row in front of us is vacated at this time.

 


 

Is it in You?


I don't bicycle, but I do compete at lots of things in my life.  To me life will either use you or you can fight until the very end...I plan to never give up.  Back to the picture, I don't bike, but I do compete and I do get this picture.  How many of us have that desire inside of us to do what this guy is doing?

I can remember as a kid when someone told me that I couldn't do something, I would not quit until I could do it.  Once, my cousin just jokingly flipped a basketball up to the top of a door that was sitting against the wall from where it was open.  The ball bounced off and then I tried.  He told me I could never do it...I tried for over an hour until I was able to finally do it.  It is just something that I believe was born in me.  However, as I aged, I did have to learn other mental toughness, I had to learn not to listen to the little voice that says "quit"

How often do we quit because it's too hard or that we just can't win because some perceived wrong has happened to us?  How often when the going gets tough, do we just stop?  Mental toughness is everything.  Physical toughness is important, but you cannot have that without being mentally tough.

Mental toughness will bring you through anything and even having you compete until the end...just like in this picture.  Never give up.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Why I am a Christian



I was agnostic looking for a reason to believe and kept searching.  Being a social studies teacher, I was exposed to many different religions and have taught about them all.  However, Christianity offered something that no other did.  Free redemption.  I didn't have to do a number of things to be saved, I just had to accept Jesus Christ as my savior.  I did that, but didn't feel different.

About 3 years ago, I started growing and felt The Holy Spirit for the first times in my Christian life.  That growth made me into a different person.  I can't really explain it other than to say that I became a better father, husband, person, and didn't mind wearing pink anymore.  What's that got to do with anything?  My pride and ego (which I still deal with) wouldn't allow for me to look what I thought was silly, but now a lot of that is gone.  I am not perfect and still deal with my sinful nature, but I now see things clearly and I am trying.

I am not telling you that you are wrong if you aren't a Christian, I am telling you that accepting Christ as my savior and living according to His teachings has changed me in a good way.  I have seen it happen to many other people, too and when I see people struggling or writing things online that you can tell they are hurt, I want to share the love of Christ.  It is a cure. 

I promise, if you truly look for Him, you will feel better and then instead of worrying about how you feel, you will learn that by selflessly helping others you will lose yourself and all of the old will become new...and better.

If you would like to every discuss this or what I believe feel free to contact me.

Authenticity



We are marketed to, fooled, and growing every more cynical because we don't believe much of anything we hear and a lot of what we see anymore.  Because of that we are drawn to authentic things and people, people who do things for the right reasons and not because they will gain something for it.

I have been drawn into the whole Jennifer Lawrence thing.  She is a beautiful actress, but even better person who seems to be who she is no matter how famous she is becoming.  She is so authentic that she seems almost attainable for the regular guy.  Not the 44 year old, happily married guy, but the 25 year old me who was searching for the right person guy.

Here is one of the reasons I love that she is authentic and using her fame in the right ways.

Jennifer Lawrence comforts crying fan.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Feed the Post



When it comes to offense, I don't care at what level getting the ball into the lane is the absolute best thing you can do.  There is a reason you are only allowed 3 seconds in that rectangle next to the basket and that's because it's a dangerous place for the defense to allow the basketball.

You must get the ball into that rectangle.  One great way is to drive the middle.  When this is done,  you can get a great shot, but any help that occurs will leave someone else open whether it be on the wing or on the block.  If that doesn't get someone open enough for the shot, what it does is get the defense playing catch up and can possibly create another shot within two passes.

But, in my opinion, the best thing to do is pass the ball into the post or on the block.  When the ball is passed into the post, the post can score, the passer can dive or relocate, the post player can pass to the opposite elbow and then follow his pass, or any other amount of things that can be done.  Statistics will show that the best 3 point shots come from reversals and inside out and not just settling for open 3'.  Also, you will get so many more free throw attempts and one statistic I have always wanted and liked is to be able to hit more free throws than your opponents attempted.

Yet, especially in high school, players have a hard time passing the ball into the post.  I have been told that a post player must be open 10 times to get it 3.  Why is that?  Players may not know how to pass into the post or they could be afraid of making a turnover when doing so. 

What we have to do as coaches in teach how to pass into the post (for me, all post passes should be above the shoulders or below the waist...easier to catch), we must teach how to move after the pass is made into the post, and we must allow players to experiment during practice to see what will be successful and what will not be. 

Finally, show practice and games on tape to your team.  It is has been my experience that a lot of times players have no idea what you are talking about until they see it for themselves and the only way to do so is watching game film.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Sirens in Bloomington, IN and a Big Thank You!

(Coach Cooper on the right with Victor Oladipo)
If you know me and/or you have followed my blog, you know that my wife and I were in the Henryville schools on March 2, 2012 when an EF-4 tornado hit our school.  It was a scary time in our lives, something that we will never truly get over, but we use to make our lives stronger.

Seth Cooper, an assistant for IU men's basketball program, is somebody I contact when I want to watch IU practice.  We have texted and spoken a few times throughout the years and I texted him to tell the team that they were providing a time away for people in our community during the NCAA tournament run that year.  He passed that info onto Coach Crean and that started a small relationship that exists even today.  IU football coach Kevin Wilson and the team also reached out and were unbelievably good to our community.  Coach Wilson and some of his staff are from Oklahoma, so they understand what going through this type of thing can do to a community.

Yesterday, we had tickets to the IU vs. Stony Brook men's basketball game.  We set out knowing that the weather could get bad that day, but we weren't going to let that keep us from going and enjoying the day.  We ate in Salem, IN, then headed to Bloomington a few hours early.  My wife and I may be over reacting, but we wanted to have contingency plans, no matter what happened.  We arrived at the mall in Bloomington, knowing that they have bathrooms that could provide safety, and did some shopping.  As we were leaving, we could see that rain was on the way, so we headed to Assembly Hall.

As we got to the front doors, we were waiting in line and I heard the sirens on campus going off.  I started receiving texts that the campus was under a tornado warning, so we headed off to the tunnels below Assembly Hall.  As we got down there, the security didn't know the sirens were going off, but allowed us to stay there.  We were eventually told that the situation was being monitored and they had a plan in case that AH would need to be evacuated. 

We just happened, really, it was an accident, to stop and stand outside the men's locker room.  So my son and daughter, who were starting to get scared saw Yogi Ferrell, Will Sheehey, and others, but it wasn't helping.  They were shaken, especially my daughter.  My children were safe in Sellersburg on March 2, but in the following weeks, they had seen the devastation and understood that mommy and daddy could have died.

As my daughter started to cry, assistant coach Seth Cooper saw us in the hallway.  Cooper, being the person that he is, approached to say hello and to speak with my children.  He saw that they were upset and I explained why.  Seth was kind and reassuring to my children that they were safe where they were and if something did happen, we would be fine.  He explained to my scared children how strong the tunnels of AH were built and we couldn't be safer there.  He was so kind that it actually helped them very much, and maybe reassured mommy and daddy it would be fine also.

Sports reporter Rick Bozich also walked by and saw us.  Bozich did an article on my friends and I during the March 2 time, so I had spoken to him a few times.  He recognized me and stopped to shake hands and could see that we, I mean, my kids, were shaken up.  He also was kind in speaking with my children and reassuring them they would be fine.


(Sports reporter Rick Bozich on the left)
So what's the big deal?  Two guys showed they were human?  The big deal, to me, is that two guys who were extremely busy doing their jobs took time out of their schedules to speak to me and my family.  Not just to speak to them, but to reassure them that we would be fine.  As a father, it was hugely impressive to me.  I mean, they took time to speak to my children when they could have said hello and moved on.  They took time to speak to my children when they could have just ignored us.  Instead what these two guys did was reassure two little kids that they were going to be ok and helped my wife and me in dealing with this stressful situation.

And for that, we say thank you.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Question for You

AIA in Indonesia giving back

What have you done today to give back?  Yea, you.  The one so blessed that you have time to get on the Internet and read blogs.  Yea, you.  The one who has a job, family, and life to live and that you enjoy more often than not.  Yea, you Coach Hunter!  What have you done today?

The Idea is Not as Fun as the Doing


We have been having intramurals the last month for kids 1st-5th grade.  We started with a camp and have had games since.  It is something that most coaches do not really look forward to, and I would be one of them.  However, the idea of camp and intramurals is not as fun, to me, as actually doing camp and intramurals.  Once I am in the gym, I love it most of the time.  There is just something about being around kids that makes you feel like a kid.  I mean, I never really have to grow up because I get to hang out in a gym, teach basketball and be around young people...every year.

Even practice is that way for me sometimes.  There are days I am not feelin it being at practice.  But once there and I get myself engaged, I love it.  I love it.  I love many sports, but basketball is special to me.  I don't know why.  I was good at baseball, both of my grandfathers and dad worked more with me at baseball, but I love basketball.

I truly enjoy getting to meet new people because of basketball and seeing old friends because you are brought together by a game that will be played.  I hope my love for the game that has given me so much is seen in my passion.  Whether it be working with little kids, coaching high school kids or helping the head coach with details that can sometimes be mundane, I love the doing way more than the idea most times.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Tough Lesson Learned



Loving something, working hard, spending many hours at something while working hard at the something you love does not guarantee you success at that thing you love.  It doesn't.  It just doesn't.  If life were fair, I would have won many post season championships because I love coaching and I work hard at it.  Sometimes harder than those who have had more success.  Does it make me bitter?  Not as much anymore.  Does it make me want to change my outlook and work less?  No way.

Because love and working hard does not guarantee success  but it doesn't make me want to quit.  It makes me want to continue on because if you quit working hard because success is so hard...you will never be successful.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Unconditional Love for an Aunt


My daughter loves her Aunt very much.  She recently did the below article (hope you can read it) about her love for her Aunt who recently underwent a double tranplant, both heart and kidney.



Monday, November 11, 2013

Never Forget That Freedom isn't Free


Something to Remember




When I was younger and much smarter than I am now, I thought I was the center of the universe (I used the word "I" four times in the opening sentence alone!).  I believed as a basketball coach/ baseball coach that I could single handedly through my shear will win games.  I thought that programs didn't exist before me, were lucky to have me, and would be worse when I was gone.  The difference between me and some of you reading this is that I am willing to admit it (see what I did there?  Even though I've come a long way, I still think I am pretty special, I mean, I have a blog with my thoughts and pictures all over it, so I still have many narcissistic tendencies).

Then I had a conversation with the New Washington boys' basketball coaching legend and A.D. at the time, Jim Matthews a few years after I started coaching.  His simple comment was something that I had never heard before, it was shocking, I mean the guy hired ME.  But he said, "Perry, the games are scheduled, they will be played."  It was a simple comment and makes complete sense, but what it said to me was, look, you are doing a good job, but they've played the games before, they will this year and they will when you are gone.  I was minimized to a caretaker for a short time...and it was awesome.  Because he was right.

No matter how great you are, the games have gone on before you were there.  The games will be played while you are there dependent on what kind of time and effort you put in, and once you hang it up, the games will go on again.  In fact, you probably won't be remembered as a coach within a few short years unless they put your name on the court or the gym.  Even then, it will be "who?" by most of the following generations.

It isn't about you.  It isn't about you as a coach, and it isn't about you as player or fan.  It is about the program that you are the caretaker for at that time.  What kind of time and effort will you put in?  What kind of lessons will you teach (and I am not talking about what kind of press, offense, or defense you will put in)?  What will you do with the time that you have where you are?  Will you make it about you or will you understand that there is the weight of both the past and the future on your shoulders?  When you leave, will the program be better off or worse than when you inherited it? 

I guess that is up to you and what you believe.  You may think I am full of it after reading this, and maybe that says a lot of things about a lot of things...or not because I don't claime to know everything and sometimes....anything. 

Friday, November 8, 2013

10 Rules to Live and Play By


1.  Respect

-Yourself

-Others

 2. Take responsibility

          -Yourself

          -Others

 3. Develop and Demonstrate Loyalty

          -Integrity above All Else

 4. Discipline Yourself and Others Will Not Have To

 5. Establish Good Habits

          -Work Hard

          -Work Smart

 6. Put the Team before Yourself

 7. Compete

          -Be Persistent

          -Never Give Up

          -Make the Other Team Earn Victory

 8. Communicate

          -Talk, Talk, Talk

 9. Accept Change

          -Sign of Maturity

 10. Handle Success and Failure the Same

          -Have and Show Class

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

How to Judge Character


Don Meyer Quotes from Leadership Workship



You wish that some leaders/people could live forever and Coach Don Meyer is one of those people.  His wisdom far surpasses the game of basketball, but he has done a great job of spreading his knowledge to those of us who will listen.  Below are some of his quotes from a leadership workship I attended a few years ago.

"Be a noticer of people in need and you'll never be at a loss for things to do."

"A rock never shines because it absorbs light, but a mirror will because it reflects it.  Are you a rock or a mirror?"

"All great empires are destroyed from within."

"Most of us would rather be ruined by praise than saved by criticism."

"On a good team, a few people will do the dirty jobs.  On a great team, everybody does them."

"Humility precedes honor, I have never seen a wise person that wasn't humble."

"The devil wants to tear down the best.  He doesn't go after the .220 hitters.  He goes for the .330s.  The more successful you are, the more you have to watch out."

"You can tell a lot about a person when they're getting their butt kicked."

"Loser's limp"

"It's not who you play or where you play, it's how you play."

"Our example isn't the main thing in influencing others, it's the only thing."

"Be who you are...Everybody can spot a phony."

"You can pick captains, but you can't pick leaders."

"Whoever controls the locker room, controls the team."

"Today might be the last day of your life."

"Every situation is an opportunity for growth."

Levels for Leaders:
Unconscious and Incompetent: you don't know that you don't know.
Conscious and Incompetent: You know that you aren't very good.
Conscious and Competent: You know, but no flow.
Unconscious and Competent: everything flows.

Great people talk about ideas.
Average people talk about things.
Small people talk about other people.

"It's not what you achieve, it's what you become."

"You need a soft rain."

Don't Get Blurred by all the Negativity


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

No Complaining Rule, Yea Sure


Yesterday, I posted about a book about not complaining.  It is a very good book, but anyway, last night we had our intramurals for 4th and 5th graders.  Our family is dealing with my sister in law being back in ICU (hopefully things are fine), my wife is in Nashville with her while she goes through this (leaving me as Mr. Mom for my two kids, it is amazing what my wife does and I just help) and I am responsible for both kids, and I have my responsibilities here as well as getting back into shape as I officiate our games for our intramurals.  So I was tired last night, real tired and aggravated, and mentally weak, and...well, I hope you get the picture.

In other words, life is happening, I am busy and I wouldn't want it any other way.  Yet, after posting about the book and the "no complaining" rule, I felt all I did last night was complain.  "I am tired, I wish Kristi were here, why can't my kids listen, why are these little kids running their mouths?" Etc, etc.  It made me feel better, I think, but it is something that those around me do not need heaped upon their already full lives.  Full lives with things they would very much like to complain about.

I think as professionals, especially coaches, we are striving for perfection.  We are striving for perfection in others and in ourselves.  And really, how dumb is that?  Perfection does not exist.  It is something that exists in our minds, but not in the real world.  However, I think it is that need to reach perfection which makes so many professionals successful.  How?  Because by striving perfection, you will reach pretty darn good.  If you reach for pretty darn good, you will reach good and so on and so forth.  I guess I am stuck with this then as it is part of my DNA and feeling of inadequacy that I grew up with, the need to be "good enough".

I guess no matter how many books I read, no matter how much philosophy I read and agree with, I am human.  I won't be able to completely cure my inefficiencies or lack of selfishness, but I can temper it.  The greatest thing I am doing this morning is recognizning what I did last night and that I will try to be better.  I won't be perfect, but I will be better, or at least try today because I can't speak for tomorrow.  Tomorrow is another day and do you realize all I have to do today!?

Monday, November 4, 2013

The No Complaining Rule


Author Jon Gordon has written many good books, you can find them here.  Recently, he posted a quote about complaining on his twitter account., and I loved it.  I tweaked it just a little, but the majority of it is his.

"Complaining is like vomiting in public.  Afterwards you feel better, but everyone else around you feels sick."

I will be the first to admit that I can be one of the worst complainers there is.  It often stems from frustration that I cannot control everything and it makes me feel better.  Yet, maybe I am making everyone else around me sick.

This book gives some good ideas on what to do before you complain.  Give it a read.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Dad, Keep Your Eyes Open Because His Are Open

 
 
 
The Little Chap Who Follows Me

A careful man I want to be,
A little fellow follows me;
I do not dare to go astray
For fear he'll go the self-same way.
 
I cannot once escape his eyes.
Whate'er he sees me do he tries.
Like ME he says he's going to be---
That little chap who follows me.
 
I must remember as I go
Through summer suns and winter snows,
I am building for the years to be---
That little chap who follows me.
 
 
Poem from John Maxwell's Developing the Leader Within You

Yep Part 2