login to members site  

Basketball Coaching Do's and Don'ts - by Ari Fisher

The Coach’s Clipboard Basketball Playbook

Ari Fisher has coached on all levels except professionally. He started his career as the third assistant at LSU during the tenure of Dale Brown. He was on staff for four seasons; two as a GA and two as restricted earnings coach from 2003-06.

Coach Fisher was also the Head Boys' Basketball Coach and Associate Athletic Director at University Lab School from 1997-2008. His teams won Louisiana High School Class AA State Championships in 2002 and 2004. He was selected district coach of the year four times (1998, 2002 – 2004) and state coach of the year in 2004. His 2004 team finished ranked # 17 nationally.

Coach Ari Fisher
Coach Ari Fisher

Afishe@lsu.edu or af2002004@gmail.com


  • DON'T COACH FROM A TEXTBOOK: Undermines credibility with your players. Make sure you can teach only using a practice plan. Teach with confidence.

  • DON'T KEEP COPIOUS RULES: Less is more. People recall information in groups of 2's, 3's or 4's. Rules should be in exact language and only cover things that a coach absolutely cannot tolerate.

  • DON'T COACH ANGRY: Always coach rationally in lieu of emotionally. The athletes follow your lead.

  • DON'T LABEL ATHLETES: Behavior can be labeled, but personal dignity must be kept intact. Think about how you would want someone to address you when you were a student. Usually yelling gets tuned out.

  • DON'T ASSUME: Coach as if the players don't know anything. Be precise in your teaching.


  • DO TAKE CARE OF SUPPORT STAFF: Managers, trainers, stat keepers, administrators, custodians, secretaries, or anyone else that might cause you a problem.

  • DO MAKE SURE YOU YOUR TEAM KEEPS SUPERIOR PHYSICAL CONDITION: Keeps the mind fresh for the whole game; and reduces the risk for injuries from fatigue.

  • DO COMMUNICATE: with parents, administrators, media, athletes, or anyone else you deem appropriate. And you must communicate with those whom you find distasteful.

  • DO KEEP HIGH LEVEL OF 'WITH-IT'NESS': Know what is going on in your program at all times. Make sure you are never shocked by anything that happens. You don't have to let the kids know you are aware of everything so your athletes do not think you are stalking them.


"You can say or do something in an instant that gives someone heartache for life"

"The worst thing we can do to another person is to make them feel what they say, do, or think doesn't matter"

"Nothing is more expensive in life than regret"