would've dunked it". I used to be one of those players playing for a coach who recited never ending quotes and as corny as it may have sounded back then as I got older the more it begin to make sense. In fact, one famous phrase that would stick with me, "What you put into it is what you get out of it", impacted the way I approached sports, business and life in general, to this day. I was always accustomed to hard work. I believed it was part of who I was and what I wanted to be.
Unlike players of my era and those before me, our youth athletes these days are very privileged...and naive. Basketball is a billion dollar industry and it seems like these players are just itching to get a piece of pot. They watch the NBA and see players like Derrick Rose and Lebron James run circles around defenders and soar to the basket like they're sitting on a rocket and believe it'll just kick in for them the same way one day. What they don't see is the hard work and sacrifice it takes to make it there. The things that go on behind the scenes when the arenas are empty. The countless hours these players spend perfecting their craft. I've been blessed to have worked with 100's of eager athletes over the last 10 years and before I begin working with a new client I always ask what are their basketball goals? And what are they willing to do to make it happen? As you could imagine many of them express a great interest in playing basketball at a higher level, most would like to have their name announced on the biggest stage...and I encourage it. Unfortunately the problem with some, if not all, of these kids is they have NO IDEA what it takes to actually get there.
About 95% of the younger players I work with basketball year round, from Fall leagues into the school season then AAU. They are very active but outside of their organized practices or workouts the development stops. Of that 95% only 10% may continue to workout on their own time, without a coach's instruction, building habits within the skills we worked on before. There's nothing wrong with dreaming big, even if its too big. But what are you doing to turn these dreams into reality. Many of our young athletes are distracted, lost or possibly both. As a player I believed in one theory, I have to work harder than my competition. I knew if I did this two things would happen: 1. I would develop better skills and 2. I would be prepared to apply these skills when it counted. As a coach I like to share my experiences with my players, not to just reinforce my beliefs but also as proof of the results of hard work and dedication. Most of us are not gifted with height and God given abilities but that's not to say that we can not develop the skills and pray for the height. I take responsibility for making sure the players I can reach have a firm understanding of what it takes to become the player they dream of. Many will get it, some will not, but at least they will know.
So ask yourself these 3 questions: What do you want? How bad do you want it? And are you doing everything possible to get it? Your answers will determine your success.