Basketball coaching

Touch the Lines

Touch the Lines

I was attending a basketball clinic a couple years ago and heard something that was new to me – the presenting, very successful coach, Clif Wegner (Clackamas Community College in Oregon) said his mantra was “We Touch The Lines.” It seems simple enough but I think there’s something really key in this. “We have a […]

Tips from "The System"

Tips from “The System”

A couple years ago I read “The System” by Jeff Benedict and Armen Keteyian, and while it was a deep dive into the world of college football, we know there is a lot to learn from coaches in other sports. One area that grabbed my interest was a short section about Mike Leach (former Texas […]

What do you do when players don't get along?

What do you do when players don’t get along?

When you jump back into basketball planning again, one of the first things to do this offseason is consider how to improve strained relationships for next season. You know when players don’t get along. You don’t need everyone to be best friends, but if you noticed a divisive atmosphere in your locker room, and you […]

Brian Baxter's tips for the mental game

Brian Baxter’s tips for the mental game

Brian Baxter is the director of Sports Psychology Institute Northwest in Portland, Oregon, and says: “Take time to reflect on the team’s mission statement, goals and performance, and to update the goals for the postseason. Make sure to celebrate improvements and successes together, but refocus attention and energy in the new goals. Clarify players’ roles […]

Do you script your plays?

Should you script your plays?

I’d always heard of football coaches scripting out their first 5 or 10 plays of a game, but it’s not something I’d heard of basketball coaches doing. However, when I met up with frequent Basketball Coach Weekly contributor Justin Duke (author of 46 Winning Warm-Ups), who says he sometimes scripts his first few plays to help build confidence. […]

Pat Coons coaching philosophy

Pat Coons coaching philosophy

Our game continues to evolve outward. Three-pointers have taken over and, not surprisingly, Cleveland and the Houston Rockets led last NBA season in 3-pointers made. Your players see this, want to mimic it and spend their gym hours hoisting shots behind the line, how should this impact on your coaching philosophy. A while back I […]

Bill James's "safe lead" formula

Bill James’s “safe lead” formula

Recently, I discussed blowouts and how to handle them from your perspective. Roy Nickerson, a coach in Billerica Travel Basketball, Massachusetts, says he uses a statistical model by Bill James, who is more usually associated with baseball analytics. While Nickerson says the model was developed for college games, he says it can be used for lower levels. […]

How do you handle blowouts?

How do you handle blowouts?

It comes up every year – some team blows out another and it makes national news. So, I’m curious, how do you handle blowouts? I asked a few coaches this question a while back and three coaches agreed that once a game hits a 30-point difference, it’s time to take steps to keep things from […]

Bert DeSalvo's halftime talk tips

Bert DeSalvo’s halftime talk tips

There are some teams that just struggle coming out of the locker room at halftime. It’s hard to pinpoint why but there are no minutes to be wasted in a game. So, if your team takes a while to get going after the break, consider some of these tips about what to say at the […]

Westview's 6 areas of focus

Westview’s 6 areas of focus

I routinely go out and observed basketball practices. Last season, I went to Westview High (Beaverton, Oregon) to watch one of the top boys teams in the state. Upon entering the locker room, one of the first things you see if a game chart with many areas of focus on it, including six statistics at […]