(Hopefully) good sports essays and observations for good sports by a guy who tries (and can sometimes fail) to be a good sport.


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Saturday, February 09, 2008

The Joys of Coaching Smart Players

A few anecdotes:

First, a loyal reader to whom I'll refer as "The Green Mountain Man" sent me a story about an Ivy League football teammate of his. The teammate was an offensive lineman, and his position coach was drilling him on the fine art of a certain kind of block.

Coach: "Do you have a mirror in your room?"

Player: "Yes, coach."

Coach: "Well, then can you practice this in front of the mirror?"

Player: "No, coach."

Coach: "I don't get it. You say you have a mirror in your room but you can't practice this block in front of the mirror. Where the hell is the mirror?"

Player: "It's on my ceiling, coach."

I recall another story from about 25 years ago involving a reserve forward at Oral Roberts, a Philadelphia native named Gerald Johnson. The players were in a shoot-around, and his coach didn't like some long jumpers (there weren't 3-point shots then) that Johnson was taking. So the coach challenged Johnson to take shots that he was likely to take during the game. Whereupon Johnson walked over to the bench, sat down, and threw up a shot.

Have a great weekend!


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