This was kind of a wasted week. Monday was the football banquet, so we had only seven players at practice, roughly half of the team. Then we played two games. We practiced once after the games, though we don’t play again until January 7th, and then we went into the moratorium where we are not allowed to do anything for five days.
We started with a game on Monday. I don’t like Monday games since Sunday practice is prohibited. Never know how freshmen will react after a day off. From the opening tip, we were in control, but we never really put our opponent away. When I spoke to the team, I did not have too much to critique: our defense was solid, we were getting open shots, we were rebounding better. […]
After five days off, we practiced again and prepared for a game against one of the tougher opponents that we will face during the season. Our play in the game was much improved from our first game, and the game was a fairly well-played, competitive freshmen game. Our opponent was well-coached and prepared, and a couple dumb breakdowns (talking on screens, boxing out on free throws, making free throws) came back to hurt us. We lost 48-44. We actually had the best official that I’ve ever had at the freshmen level, though his partner was doing his first game and didn’t know the rules. For the entire game, we were one or two plays away, but every time we made a big shot, they answered or we committed a foul to put them on the line and they took advantage. For the second game of the year with fewer than 10 practices, I was pretty happy with the way that we played and competed. […]
Week 3 consisted of one practice and one game. In Utah, there is a rule that prohibits practicing on the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving, so we are off until Monday. We also missed a day of practice because the boys’ and girls’ had home games on the same day. […]
This was our first week with the team. Rather than immediately focus on team specifics, the focus remained on general skills, especially shooting, finishing and transition play. Unfortunately, our finishing and shooting has not transferred to scrimmages thus far, so scrimmages take too long to complete. […]
The first week was tryouts. It was a tough cut. Most of our activities were game-based: transition drills, chaser lay-ups, tag, half-court cut-throat, and full-court games.
Whereas there was not a lot of instruction during the first week, we did emphasize a few things. […]
With two assistant coaches onboard this season, I feel like I need to prepare them for how I coach and the things that I believe so that we can be on the same page.
Therefore, here is the start of a list (stream of conscious) of things that I believe or emphasize, especially regarding freshmen basketball. […]
When I pick teams (or recruit), I want to identify those qualities that are the rarest. When watching players, one can choose to see the things that a player can do (strengths) or the things that the players cannot do (weaknesses). I want to identify the rare strengths and ignore the easiest weaknesses to remedy. […]
Tryouts have started. We have roughly 40 players for 12-15 spots. The freshmen class is talented, which is good and bad. The best freshman went straight to varsity, and we are likely to lose anywhere between four and eight more players to the sophomore and/or junior varsity. Certainly hurts our competitiveness as a freshmen team, but gives a lot of players a chance, as there could be close to 25 freshmen in the program this year. […]