A Few Good Men


Photo Credit: Kat via CC Flickr

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” Isaiah 6:8

One man committed to a cause is greater than 10,000 merely interested spectators. A few good men is better. That’s how the greatest armies, greatest teams are built.

God is looking for such men. His missions are crucial. High stakes define them but they grow great through everyday faithfulness. His team is built on abandon, selfless, brave volunteers who say ‘Yes!’ and take on His noble missions with fearless honor.

* Heard the Lord talk like this to you? Recognize a true call and holy cause? Need to turn the volume down on other things?
* Feeling yourself moved by high calling? What could this be? Attaching any strings or fully surrendered?
* Willing to step up, step out, and offer full commitment to a cause greater than yourself, the greatest cause ever? Employed by God and engaged in mission?

LORD, let me feel Your heavenly surge and upward, outward cause. Don’t let me contract the disease of me and die in the dumps of disservice. May I take rank with You in holy mission.

Maximum effort.
Heart for others.
Bring honor to Christ.
Coach Mo

What Do Coaches Make?

Photo Credit: Woodleywonderworks via CC Flickr

Photo Credit: Woodleywonderworks via CC Flickr

I came across this great story a while ago which perfectly illustrates the life and mindset of a coach. I have been a coach for 30 years and I think this tale hits the subject right on the head. I hope that it inspires you as much as it did for me. 


The dinner guests were sitting around the table discussing life. One man, a CEO, tried to explain the problem with college athletics. He argued, “What’s a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to be a coach?”

He reminded the other dinner guests what they say about coaches: “Those who can’t play, are those who coach.” To stress his point he said to another guest, “You’re a coach, be honest. What do you make?”

Having a reputation for honesty and frankness, the guest replied, (At this moment Coach Ridder was FIRED up and getting after it!) “You want to know what I make? I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could. I make a C+ feel like a winner of the Congressional Medal of Honor. I make kids run through 90 minutes of practice and sweat. I make kids turn dreams into reality.”

“You want to know what I make?”

I make kids wonder.

I make them question.

I make them criticize.

I make them apologize and mean it.

I make them cooperate.

I make them competitive and respectful.

I make them show all their work in front of hostile crowds and perfect their acts of sportsmanship.

I make them understand that if you have the will to follow your dreams, should anybody try to judge you by a mistake you made you must pay no attention because you tried and gave it your all.”

“I make teams from individuals who work together to build success.”

He paused and continued. “You want to know what I make?” I MAKE A DIFFERENCE, I MAKE LEADERS, I MAKE OTHER PROFESSIONS POSSIBLE.”

Then he asked the CEO, “What do you make?”


It makes you think doesn’t it?

13 Ways to Build Culture and 12 Keys to A Winning Program

Photo Credit: Yahoo via CC Flickr

Photo Credit: Yahoo via CC Flickr

These two lists were written by Alan Stein and posted on his Stronger Team Blog

Alan is the Basketball Performance Coach at DeMatha High School.

I hope this gives you an idea or two that you can add to what you do or just a different way to present your program’s values to your fellow coaches and to the players.

13 Ways to Build Culture

Successful programs have created a palpable culture, sound habits and high standards:

  1. Program > Team > Player
  2. Players and coaches talk to each other, not at each other. Big difference.
  3. No one is perfect. Mistakes will happen on and off the court. Learn from them.
  4. Every player and every coach is important to the team and plays a role. Respect that.
  5. Focus on effort and attitude. Those are the only 2 things we have complete control over.
  6. You either accept it or you correct it. There is nothing in between.
  7. Repetition is not viewed as punishment. Repetition is necessary to development.
  8. Confront issues, not people.
  9. Goals match behaviors and habits.
  10. Be on time. It is a sign of respect.
  11. Discipline = Love
  12. If you aren’t prepared to put the team first… don’t play.
  13. Believe or leave…

Being a part of program is not a part time endeavor. It’s something you get to pick and choose. You belong to and represent your program 24-7-365. Act accordingly.

12 Keys to a Winning Program

Please note, when I say winning program – I not referring to W’s & L’s exclusively.

I am referring to a winning culture, developing winning habits and setting winning standards.

Winning is all about commitment.

Every player and every coach must be committed to…

  1. Academic work. Aim for success in everything you do, not just the stuff you want to do.
  2. Behavior. Carry yourself in a first class manner at all times. Be respectful.
  3. Character. Doing the right thing all of the time (not just when someone is watching you).
  4. The program. No player is bigger than the team and no team is bigger than the program.
  5. Working hard. There is never an excuse to let someone outwork you. Never.
  6. Working smart. Work out with efficiency & purpose. Learn how to play the right way.
  7. Working consistently. Anyone can be good for a day. Work hard/smart every
  8. Unselfishness. Be a servant leader. Put other’s needs first.
  9. A winning attitude. Earn confidence through effort and demonstrated performance.
  10. The team. Commit to your team’s philosophy and system of play.
  11. Your role. Know it. Embrace it. Take pride it. Fulfill it to the best of your ability.
  12. Your teammates and coaches. They are your brothers/sisters. You are a family.

Alan Stein
Hardwood Hustle Blog