Giving Thanks Through Basketball

FIL HoopCan you hear it?  Can you hear all the noise from Madison Avenue telling us to just bypass the Thanksgiving holiday and jump into Christmas full force?  Even the hoops world is squeezing out the Day of Thanks – just look at the TV listings for games being broadcast on Thursday!  It’s not just games on the weekend, but now we have a full slate on Thursday, including my Baylor Bears!  Having coached at the Division I level, traveling on Thanksgiving Day to play over the weekend was fairly routine and to be honest with you, it always felt like something was missing.  One thing that I’m thankful for at the Division III level is that we can at least give our guys a day to hopefully be with family and to at least take the day as it was intended to be –  a day of remembrance and awareness of the blessings in our life. Continue reading


Post-Game Evaluations

As a coach, I always appreciate fans and acquaintances who ask after a game “How’d you play?”, rather than a simple “Did you win?”  When they do, they show me a deeper understanding about coaching.  They realize that it goes much deeper than winning and losing.  Each game we play allows us to evaluate where we are in the process of building our team and reaching its potential for that season.

CUW BasketballLast weekend, our Falcons opened the season with a two game tournament on back to back days.  In the first game we lost to a talented and experienced team, but certainly had our chances to win the game. Our staff had to turn around quickly and assess how we could bounce back the next day.  With a few adjustments, we played more like the team we envision we can be and not only came away with the win, but played much better.  All it took was a little self-examination and then adjusting our ways! Continue reading


How Certain Are We That Kentucky Will Be Cutting Down the Nets in 2015?

As the college basketball season opened up this past weekend, it’s a common practice for many of us who follow hoops to predict the final outcome.  Once again, all eyes are on John Calipari’s Kentucky Wildcats.  Can all of the rim-rocking, high-profile, McDonald All-American recruits in Lexington go wire to wire as the nation’s top team?  Can they do it without losing a game?  We asked that same question last year, didn’t we?  (see ESPN’s 2013-14 College Basketball Preview).  Julius Randle and James Young are gone, but the Harrison twins are back, along with the No. 2 recruiting class in the country, featuring Karl Towns Jr., Trey Lyles, Tyler Ulis and Devin Booker.  But last season, after Calipari sparked the undefeated talk in the preseason and opened the debate about his one and done culture, the Wildcats lost eleven games enroute to their final loss in the NCAA Championship game to Connecticut.  So, with the mix of the returners’ experience and the talent of the newcomers, surely this year they’ll win it all, right? Continue reading