School and You

Here is another guest blog by our coaching friend Bud Leonard.

You will often hear stories of “student athletes” on the radio or TV.

There are many stories written about “student athletes” in the newspaper and in magazines such as Sports Illustrated.

You may even hear stories about “student athletes” in everyday conversation.

There is one common thread among these stories: they are all about students who are athletes. The “student” part is the most important, and deservedly so.

You are here at your school to receive a complete and valuable education. Everything else is second to that goal! Basketball is considered as an extracurricular activity; that means outside of the classroom.

Is basketball important? We, the coaching staff, feel that it is. But, we also know that it is secondary to your primary purpose here: to get an education.

Playing basketball, or any other sport, while in school is a privilege, not a right! You probably know by now that a privilege is earned through hard work, and can be removed if the hard work is not continued. Basketball is one of the important privileges.

We expect all of our players to be diligent in their studies and to be leaders in the school. You may not realize this, but you will be known, and probably respected, by your classmates as part of their basketball team. This is not a joke, nor is it something to be taken lightly. Your behavior and deportment, both on and off the basketball court, will be judged by everyone: coaches, staff, students, parents, and friends.

Part of being a successful and respected basketball team comes from your behavior and performance in everyday situations off the basketball court and in the classrooms and hallways of the school.

The coaching staff will expect you to act in a manner that will not detract from the team, but one that will identify you as one of the student leaders in the school. This expectation starts from the time you decide to try to gain the privilege of being a member of the Basketball Team and continues throughout your career here at school!

It is now time for you to make the decision to mold yourself into what will be expected of you by the coaching staff in order to earn yourself a position on the Basketball Team.

It all starts now!

– Coach Bud Leonard

5 thoughts on “School and You”

  1. Coach Leonard,

    You are spot on here! GREAT article – every student athlete, parent and administrator should read it.

    We had pretty high expectations for our players, both on and off the floor. I was one of the Deans ( Special Ed. Department ) in the building along with being the Boy’s Varsity basketball coach, so I always knew a lot more than some of them would have liked me to know. I think that helped them to think twice about how they were acting and what they were doing.

    We always told our players that when they were out in the community, at a party etc. to act like their parents or one of the coaches were going to walk in at any moment. We wanted our players to be leaders in the school…. many times I would ask the Varsity players to be “big brothers” to the Freshman… helped the younger kids to get along and be comfortable with the BIG school along with showing them HOW things are done in our program and the school.

    They knew that academics ALWAYS came before basketball…. their school work was much more important than any game. Their education is what will make them successful after they are finished with school I think that extracurricular’s are also an important part of the educational experience – it makes for a “whole” individual.

    Our school used to have a talent show ( and of course it was right in the middle of our season ) My philosophy was to let my players be involved with as many other extracurricular’s as possible……… hopefully not too many interruptions during the season. The most memorable was a few of my players participating in a dance routine…. they came down to the practice floor dressed in PINK TU TUS…… I don’t have to tell you that everyone had a good laugh about that one.

    We always had some accelerated students on our teams along with some Special Ed. kids, so that was a good mixture and they got along fine. The accelerated kids were good role models for everyone… they never wasted any time… they would study

  2. Also need to emphasize even (especially) at competitive levels that basketball can be gone in an instant with a knee blowout or Achilles breakdown, while brainpower lasts a lifetime. Great post, thanks Coach Bud!

  3. Its important for players to be well rounded. Make sure all players have time for school, God, practice, games and fun time too.

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