10 Ways To Get Into The Good Graces of Your Coach

By Daniel Benjamin

Players, particularly the younger ones, always want to know how they can earn more playing time.

There are several ways to do this and most are very simple. All of these tips will make a positive impression on your coach, which in turn will cause him to have more confidence in you - meaning more playing time.

1. Giving your full attention to your coach. Generally, a coach speaks to either give instruction or motivate his players and there is no reason for you not to give your full attention to him when he talks. But I have seen players messing around with each other, talking to the person next to them and daydreaming while he talks.

Paying attention to your coach is a simple act and it will only help you in the long run -- becoming a better player, team, etc.

2. Be willing to put the time into improvement. I have seen so many players say they want to win games and become good players but don't want to put in the time needed to improve. The only way you will get better is by working on your game.

No matter your skill level, you will see your game improve dramatically if you are willing to consistently work on your game and listen to people wanting to help you.

3. Go "all-out" every time you step on the court. Going "all-out" is the mantra of my team. The reason being is just by playing as hard as you can, you can create "havoc" for the opposing team as well as cover up any of your team’s deficiencies. It doesn’t take any skill to go “all-out”, it just requires you to put out as much effort as you can when you are on the court. Playing hard also makes the game more fun.

4. Possess the ability to dribble with either hand. This is a simple skill that will make you a more effective/valuable player, yet few players do it well. The main point of being able to dribble with either hand is to protect the basketball when you are dribbling. No coach likes turnovers, so if you are able to master protecting the ball you will likely see more playing time.

5. Being able to shoot layups with your right and left hand. The point of being able to shoot layups with either hand goes hand-and-hand with the importance of being able to dribble with both hands. In other words, you will be more valuable/effective.

6. Sprint back on defense. No matter what happens on the offensive end, you must protect the basket on your defensive end and the only way to do that is to beat the offense down the court. Every year, there are countless instances where a defensive player has thwarted a fast break opportunity just by hustling back down the court.

7. Know all your plays and the corresponding responsibilities. This seems simple enough but it really infuriates a coach when a player doesn't know what they are doing, especially if the reason is that they weren't paying attention. However, if you truly don’t understand something ask someone for clarification. Coaches would rather explain what is going on several times than see someone make a mistake on the court.

8. Have exquisite knowledge of the game. Being knowledgeable about the game will put you ahead of most of your teammates. This includes knowing your abilities and duties, knowing your teammates’ abilities and duties as well as knowing the rules of the game.

9. Respond when challenged. Coaches like players who will “step up” their game or that of their team when he gets "after them. " A positive response to a challenge will likely push you up the depth chart while a negative response will have the opposite effect.

10. Be a good teammate. You should always be a good teammate whether you are on the floor or on the bench. When you are on the floor, you should encourage your teammates while never criticizing them. When you are on the bench you should be cheering on your teammates.


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Garrett Murphy says:
4/28/2015 at 5:19:42 PM

Awesome post. This one's going out to my team tonight.


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