Coach's Clipboard Newsletter #90
July 15, 2016
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Dear Coaches, Players, Friends,

Today's Quote:

"First master the fundamentals." - Larry Bird

"The image of a champion is someone who is bent over, drenched in sweat,to the point of exhaustion--when no one else is watching."

Today's Theme - Players Don't Waste Your Time Getting Seen Before You Get Good

This article, submitted by Tyler Coston of PGC Basketball, discusses how a young player should not try to gain visibility with college coaches until his/her skills are already developed.

Why Play AAU Basketball?  It was a great night for High School basketball.  I was in a gym packed with fans, it was a regional playoff game, and the winning team would qualify for the State Tournament.  I was proud to watch the game, between the two teams playing I had trained nine of the players in the game.

They all played hard, a few played well, and in the end it was a lopsided victory for the more experienced, better coached team that made more shots...

After the game the parents of one of the guys, I had trained, approached me.  They were upset.  Their team had lost.  Their son hadn't played much and he hadn't played particularly well, outside of a big dunk towards the end of the game. "Tyler," they said, "We need to get Jonathan on a good AAU team this summer."  I grunted non-commitally.

They went on, "He really wants to play in college and right now he doesn't have any options.  We need to find the right team and the right coach that will get him to the right tournaments.  Can you help us find the right team?"

They are loving, supportive, well intentioned parents.  They want the best for their son.  I decided to share the truth with love, and here is what I laid out for them...

Jonathan didn't start for a team that lost by a lot in regionals. Jonathan is a 6'5" post player.  Jonathan can't dribble by a defender or shoot well from fifteen feet.  Jonathan can't defend a wing and won't play post in college.   If a college coach did see him this summer, they would dismiss him almost immediately and not think of him again.  These are TOUGH things to hear, but they needed to be said.

Jonathan needs to get GOOD before he even thinks about getting SEEN.  Jonathan needs to spend 2–3 hours a day training his skills.  He needs to be able to face the basket and beat a defender 1 on 1.  He needs to be able to consistently make threes and elbow jumpers.  He needs to be able to defend perimeter players. He needs to be able to pass and make plays at speed.  He DOES NOT need to get seen by college coaches until he gets good.

Let's do some math. If Jonathan gets on a "good" AAU team and travels to a viewing tournament somewhere, he will probably invest five days in that one tournament between all the travel, games and useless hours sitting in a hotel or in a van.  Over those five days he will probably play five games. The average high school player that isn't the star or point guard has the ball in their hands 1 minute and 47 seconds per game.  In those five games he will have the ball in his hands against good competition doing something that makes him better a grand total of 10 minutes. 10 minutes! (See More...)

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