Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Double Goal Coaching

A victory is so much sweeter when it’s a team victory! This is the culmination of every team practice, when every player feels they made a contribution to the victory. It’s not often that this happens, and it’s a credit to the coaches who are able to integrate every player into a game. It shows that the coaches are paying attention not only to the game, but also to the players’ strengths, efforts, and hopes.

Let’s chalk up a double victory each time the team wins and every player gets into the game! With coaching focused on promoting sportsmanship, teamwork, and building on the players’ strengths, the double victory can become a powerful tradition.

Go Team!

Every Player, Every Game.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Coaches! Consider your Respect Level

Let’s say you are a coach that has been around for a while. You feel you have earned a certain amount of respect for all the years of coaching and teaching you’ve put in. Well, how would you feel if someone brought in a new coach that had an undefeated season with a previous team and then replaced you as coach with the new coach? You would feel that it was unfair for all the time you had invested and that one winning season is not proof enough that his other coach is better qualified. Personally, I would have to agree.

Now apply that same scenario to the players that you coach. Many kids started playing their sport when they were in third or fourth grade. Then the players advanced to travel teams or AAU teams and play their sport all year round. Now the players enter the high school program and advance from freshman, to JV, and then onto varsity in their junior or senior years. Well, how do you think these upper classmen feel when you (as the coach) put in a freshman or sophomore that has not invested the amount of time and training that the upper classmen have? They would have the same feelings you would have about your replacement coach. They have invested their time and efforts over the years and feel that they should be given a certain amount of respect for their efforts.

You may say that the younger players will help the team will win more games, but whom are they winning the games for...the coach? Winning more games does not honor the years of effort put in by the upper classmen, it honors the coach who will get their name in the Hall of Fame. Who is this game about, the players or the coach?

Sure, you have helped a select group of players get into some colleges but what about all the rest of the players that you have disrespected along the way by showing more bench time than playing time? I know there is a larger group of student athletes that were completely demoralized by the fact they were on the bench more than they were on the playing field or court.

If you modify your coaching style to playing upper classmen, then all the players will understand that when they are brought to the varsity level, the upper classmen will have first chance at playing time and under classmen will wait their turn. This will provide a more consistent system that will help unify the team. Bringing under classmen into the starting line up confuses the players and breeds discord within the team.

I ask you to consider the impact you have on players and parents in their student athletes’ future. All players should be given the opportunity to continue playing their sport in college and the amount of exposure they get in their high school careers effects not only where they might be able to play but how much scholarship money they may receive. The amount of scholarship money ultimately affects the players’ family and their financial needs. A more consistent style of coaching and utilizing the upper classmen will help the individual players in pursuit of their college dreams and provide a more coherent high school team.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Responsible Sports Season Evaluation

Establishing an evaluation process can be extremely helpful for sport organizations. It reinforces shared values, provides a forum for constructive feedback, and delivers quantitative as well as qualitative results to support future actions.

Gain Valuable Insights From Your Team's Parents
The Responsible Sports Season Evaluation Tool, developed in partnership by the experts at Positive Coaching Alliance, helps leagues and teams solicit feedback from parents on their child’s youth sports experience.This free, easy-to-use online survey tool gives parents a forum to provide constructive feedback while giving coaches and administrators key insights into areas of strength and areas of opportunity. The Season Evaluation Tool handles all of the survey sends, data tabulation and even provides recommendations from the experts at PCA based on your organization’s results. And with optional group settings, you can sort your results by sport, division or team.

Check it out at

Monday, September 21, 2009

School is back in session

The school season has begun and the Athletic Director of our district led off with the Captain's Academy for Student-Athlete Leadership. This is a great concept and the AD, along with his staff, should be applauded for their efforts. The Captain's Academy objective is to develop captains and leaders of sports teams who serve as positive leaders and role models for those around them.

The Captain's Academy worked on three main themes. 1)How to communicate with coaches? 2) What is the student-athlete experience? How to handle adversity as a leader? 3) How to deal with Code violations as a team?

We wish them continued success in their on going efforts in opening communications with the players, coaches, and the Athletic Director.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Summer recess

The summer has brought a long recess to the EPEG effort. There has been some activity with the Positive Coaches Alliance while some of the other important groups have been vacationing. School will be starting again soon and we can only hope that we can continue the dialogues previously started and continue the work of bringing stuent athletes the best possible experience from their high school days.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

AD responds to PCA info

The Athletic Director did respond with the following:

"Thank you for the email and we are very excited about the development of our Captain's Academy for fall 2009. As far as parental involvement, we are going to be inviting parents in for the end of the program. Also, thank you for the info on the Positive Coaching Alliance. Hope all else is well and talk to you soon. "

We can only hope that they will explore the PCA website and contact Rich Pruszinski. The PCA provides group workshops for an organization's leaders, coaches, parents and athletes that emphasize character-education and life lessons through sports. Please visit the website yourself and see

In the end, is it about a winning season for the coach or educating student athletes??

Thursday, June 25, 2009

PCA Materials forwarded

We sent some PCA materials to our Athletic Director, Superintendent of Schools, and the Assistant to the Superintendent along with a brief letter. Here is an exert from our letter:

"During the AAU season we came in contact with an organization that would be a very good resource for the ______ sports programs. The Positive Coaching Alliance, or PCA, was developed by the Department of Athletics at Stanford University. This is a national organization, and we have been in touch with one of their representatives, Rich Pruszinski. He has forwarded some information which is attached to this e-mail. The PCA program can serve our district by providing a tested methodology that helps schools transform the culture of youth sports to give all young athletes the opportunity for a positive, character-building experience. Rich would welcome the opportunity to provide you with more information or answer any questions directly. Rich’s phone is 414-242-8125; his e-mail is The PCA main website is Please consider investigating this program extensively.

On a separate note, we would like to congratulate your efforts in creating the Captain’s Academy. We believe this is a good first step in opening communication between coaches and players. We might suggest adding parents to the Academy, as they are another party that should be represented. Parents’ insight and experience provide another perspective and source of information that could be beneficial. Thank you for your concern and dedication. We look forward to hearing your opinions about the PCA. "