A little on coaching (again), and other news

I’ve said the same thing before as this piece: coaching is teaching, and should be structured the same way teachers build lesson plans. Check it out:

I do wish that more youth coaches truly saw themselves as basketball teachers with aims, curriculum, and pedagogy. Those that do – and you can hear it in the way they talk about the game – are among the most successful (though something should be said, especially at the pro level, for the value of a charismatic motivator).

However, teaching for sports performance and teaching for intellectual development are two very different tasks. And, from my experience, the latter is harder – what makes great teachers is not helping students accomplish the task immediately in front of them, but preparing them to accomplish tasks as intellectuals and citizens that they might encounter decades down the road. As much as we can consider the classroom practice for democratic society (as Dewey suggested), there aren’t games in which students can put their skill to work and experience the type of immediate success that helps them understand the long-term importance of practice in the short-term. Despite my belief that policy debate is an outstanding learning environment, there aren’t authentic wins and losses in teaching and it can be detrimental to impose them (e.g. standardized testing). It’s indeed a very different responsibility, but also a higher pedagogical bar.

What great teachers do is plant the seeds without expecting any sort of credit and sometimes even making the student forget that there was ever a time that they didn’t know what they were just taught. It’s a matter of patience and almost a leap of faith that is difficult to teach adults in teacher education and a personality trait that “BFF teachers”, drill sergeants, martyrs, and white teachers trying to prove to the world they’re not racist usually lack because everything they do is so wrapped up in personal gain. It’s part of what makes the crisis of education so difficult to tackle – we don’t just need more “highly qualified” (read: credentialed) teachers. Our children deserve teachers and institutions who put them first.

Beautifully said.


Hurry up college season! In the meantime……

Big 12 coaches pick Baylor to finish on top this year.

Longtime Georgia Coach Andy Landers and new athletic director Greg McGarity go way back.

The ACC has added eight games to its schedule.


Pro tip:

Jefferson Award for Public Service nominees include Tamika Catchings and Sylvia Fowles. That’s a tough choice. Is it any coincidence that those are two of the nicest pro ballers on the planet? I think not.

Connecticut Sun exit interviews.

The Czech Republic is honoring its winning women’s hoops team with the Golden Medal of the President. That’s ridiculously cool.