Saturday, May 3, 2008

Meeting of the minds results in better coaches

In an earlier post, I wrote about how Coach Cal at Memphis got the idea to remake his team's offense from a JUCO coach.  It's a good example of basketball coaches learning from each other, regardless of what level they're at -- high school, junior college, NAIA, major college, minor league, Euro league, NBA.

But it actually goes beyond basketball coaches talking with their peers in basketball about basketball.  The best coaches go outside their sport to learn from what successful coaches in other sports are doing.  The Xs and Os might be different, but the principles are the same.

For years, coaches like Bobby Knight, Bill Parcells, Tony La Russa, Tom Izzo, and Steve Mariucci have traded ideas, taking effective tactics and strategies from coaches in oth
er sports and applying them to their teams.

I've read where UF hoops coach Billy Donovan and Gators' football coach Urban Meyer talk frequently.  Ditto for Tennessee coaches Bruce Pearl and Pat Summit.

When I was with the Atlanta Hawks, team president Stan Kasten (pictured right) would bring the GMs and coaches from the Hawks, Thrashers, and Braves together in a summit where we would exchange ideas on draft strategies, player development, and coaching philosophies.

And you never get to old to learn from others.  What's the old saying?  "Life is like riding a bicycle.   To keep your balance, you've gotta keep moving."