As a coach, you always want to put your team in position to win, help your players develop and grow, and just be successful. We spoke to arguably one of the best and most influential high school coaches, in Team USA U17 head man Don Showalter, and he gladly shared his coaching secrets with us. Continue reading “Interview: Secrets to high school coaching with team USA U17 Don Showalter” »
It’s every coach’s dream to see their players working on their game outside of practice. All the great players arrive early and stay late. Coach Vara of Vision Hoops shares how his drills are so fun, he sees his players gather and do them outside of practice! Coach Vara is a skills development expert and in this interview he will share:
- How he designs FUN drills inspired by streetball mixtapes and NBA players
- What he wants to teach and how he designs drills to teach those skills
- How to organize during the pre-season for a school team
- When and how to step in to give players feedback
- What his past coaches taught him about mental toughness
Do you ever watch players like Ricky Rubio and wonder where they get their creativity and flair from? Check out this video of him training at Barcelona and you’ll realise that those amazing passes he throws today aren’t accidents- he practiced those behind the back no look passes from a young age.
Coach Joe Riley spent many years in Spain learning about how the Spanish train their youth and in this interview he’ll share:
- Why he’s never seen a single shell drill in Spain
- How to create players with “flair” or their own identity as opposed to every player playing exactly the same way
- Why should you teach step away 3 point runners and behind the back passes to 13 years old?
- How the coaches in Spain don’t have a set drill book. They create new drills every practice.
- Where to draw inspiration for new drill ideas
If there’s one thing that coach Nick George knows how to teach better than many coaches in youth basketball, that would be EFFORT. He built his professional and international career as a hustle guy who would outwork everyone on the court. But teaching effort isn’t easy.
Effort is brought into practice from the very first training session. The reason why coaches like Nick George love testing their players with conditioning workouts first up in the season is that they:
1. Measure how much effort players put in the off-season
2. Set the tone for the season ahead
If your players kill these workouts- then you’ve got a great season coming up. If not… then they better be prepared to put in the work. So keep reading for some coaching pointers from our interview with coach George, or click here to fast forward straight to the 3 annotated practice plans!
Whilst elite athleticism and NBA experience are the keys to team USA’s success at the senior level, the same cannot be said for it’s junior U17 team. Despite the narrower gulf in talent, the U17 team has seen no shortage of success, winning its most recent FIBA Championship this July to make it 4 in a row.
At some point the athleticisms are going to catch up with each other and it’s going to be a matter who have the best skill work.
The U17 team’s on court performance is identical to many high school teams- they run a full court press on defense and utilize a ball screen offense. No complex plays or defensive schemes are taught. Instead, what we learned from our interview with their U17 head coach, Don Showalter, is that daily drilling of basketball fundamentals is their key to success.
Today, we’ll breakdown coach Showalter’s 8 key principles to organizing training and show you how they can be applied to a practice plan- ones with drills used by coach Showalter himself. There are 2 complete annotated Practice Plans and 13 drills inside – keep reading to find out more!
Coached by the legendary Bob Hurley, the St Anthony Friars are the most dominant high school powerhouses in the nation. Assistant Coach Dan Murphy is a lot more reticent when it comes to the titles- labelling the team as just the third or fourth best, per rankings. However, as they do, scouting reports don’t tell the whole story. Behind the 1100+ wins, 24 state championships and 4 more national championships since coach Hurley took charge, there are tens of thousands of hours of preparation and hard work.
Coach Murphy has been an assistant coach to coach Hurley for 3 years, when after having attended one of his clinics he received an offer that he could not refuse. Last week, we sat down with him to gain a special insight into what it takes to build a championship winning program. What immediately struck us following the interview was how much dedication it took. Like the most successful, innovative companies- the Apples and Teslas of the world, a lasting legacy requires coaches to create a culture. When Coach Murphy was recounting stories of his time at St Friars we learned that this culture was created by an acute attention to detail, in every moment of practice, and enabled by a detailed plan. Today, we give you some advice on how to build a championship winning program from the top down- from planning to culture to practice.