With the recent announcement that two of the country’s top high school basketball layers, twins Aaron and Andrew Harrison, have decided to attend the University of Kentucky, Coach John Calipari was immediately thrown back into the spotlight. (Of course there are some who swear that Calipari has never left the spotlight over the last few years!)
What is Calipari’s secret? Why do so many elite players want to play for him? Aaron Harrison Sr. the father of Aaron and Andrew was impressed with Coach Cal’s honesty and straightforwardness. With that in mind here are some others ideas and quotes from Coach Calipari that you might find interesting:
“I tell the players that you make me what I am. If you want me to be a cheerleader then do the right thing. Want me to be a screaming maniac? Then act like you don’t care, be selfish, don’t listen to coaches, and don’t work hard.”
“Winning is not as important to kids as it used to be because all many of them care about is stats. If you are 2-20 but a kid starts and gets lots of stats then the kid and his parents are happy. However, if you go 20-2 but the kid doesn’t play much the parents and the kid are ticked off. It’s not right but that’s the way it is!”
“You must create an individual bond with your players because someone else is. You must create a stronger bond than others are!”
“Their perception is their reality. Their excuses are also their reality even if they are a cop out.”
“Respect will turn into affection over time. Spend time with your players 1 on 1. Get to really know them and let them know you. Pay special attention to the bottom 6. The top 6 will already be happy because they are playing the most, getting the most shots, etc.”
Coach Cal’s salary might be different from ours and the Kentucky facilities might be different from ours but the problems and challenges that he faces trying to connect with his team are eerily similar.