Thursday, November 13, 2008

A tactic for ensuring players know their roles

Will Wade, an assistant on Tommy Amaker's staff at Harvard, described to me recently how the coaching staff there makes it a point to clearly define roles for each player.

Then, on a 3x5 notecard, they boil down the role to three simple points and post it on each player's locker for them -- and their teammates -- to see.

It's a good way to ensure (1) players understand what's expected of them and are reminded of it daily; (2) their teammates know what's expected of them and hold them accountable for it; and (3) players can't claim that they don't understand their role -- it's right there.

Speaking of roles, according to Pistons coach Michael Curry (pictured above):

"Guys either accept their roles or they don't play. I think guys want to play so they are going to accept their roles. Guys not accepting their roles is a myth in this game. Guys will accept their role, but you have to reward them for that, and stay true to them playing that role. That's where the problems come in. It's never about them accepting their role. It's on me as the head coach to put them in the game when it's time for them to play their role."