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PostPosted: 23 Jan 2013, 18:58 

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Hi Coaches,
I have two boys playing high school basketball. My oldest is a junior. He is a consistent starter on the varsity team. He has played many travel teams and attended many camps since 2nd grade and has worked very hard. He has given up up a lot of Saturdays and sleep-overs to be a competitive player.He plays nearly all positions on the court for his varsity team including point guard, wing, post. He plays nearly all of the game. We are at mid season now. We have won 1 game (by 2pts), had 3 running clocks (against us), and lost 5 more by 15 or less. We have a newer coach. This is his 3rd season with our team. He is young, the only coaching experience he has had on the high school level is assistant to a larger fairly successful girls varsity team for 1 year. He seems to have adopted an unexplainable substitution method. He consistently (but not every time)subs in 4-5 guys at a time. This puts in our 6,7,8,9,10 players against the other teams best players. He also subs out players approximately every 3 minutes. There are 13 guys on the team. I would not agree, that all of our team members are equally talented. The majority of our athletic boys are die hard football players- I even think we lead our league in fouls-. I feel as if the boys can't get their head in the game much less into the rhythm of the game between all the fouls and being on the bench every 3 minutes? Is there a rhyme to his reason? Are there actually successful high school teams substituting in this manner? Do you have any websites that attest to the success of this? My son is not pulled out every 3 minutes but all the personnel around him is. He is very frustrated. All of our parents are frustrated. Almost all of these boys have played together on a team in the past and have had more success than this. PLEASE HELP! THANK YOU! TERESA


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PostPosted: 23 Jan 2013, 20:06 
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I think as a parent it's important to be supportive of what the coach does because what else can you do? On the other hand if you are critical and your son or any of the players get wind of it, that will cast doubt on what the coach is doing and that will almost surely sabotage their success.

There are so many ways to coach a game and there is no "better" or "best" way. There are a thousand different offenses, defenses, philosophies, and sub methods that have won championships. It''s not what you do, it's how you do it.

I know the Grinnell coach runs a platoon method where 13-15 players get minutes and they win lots of games. I know a very successful coach in Michigan that wins HS games where ever he goes and they sub constantly playing 13 or more players in each game.

So yes, I know the method can work. I also know it can fail, just like anything else.

I can see where players want to stay in and develop a rhythm, but you can't use that as an excuse. You find a way to adjust and make it work. In life you'll always have bosses, coaches, and so on that don't do things the way you want. So if anything he should use this as a life lesson and learn from it.

Hope this helps. I know it can be frustrating but remembers it's just basketball and win or lose, your son will have opportunities to learn life lessons from it.

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PostPosted: 23 Jan 2013, 23:24 

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Grinnell is a good example of a team that subs a lot. Not sure I agree with that style of play, however, if you're going to fast break and press the entire game, you have to sub a lot. I'm guessing this coach has a method to his madness, we just don't know what it is. Does your son's team press and fast break a lot? I'll admit, it does seem a bit unorthodox from most high school teams I know. They usually make it clear the best five players stay on the court and you earn the right to be on the court by playing well.

JeffHaefner wrote:
I think as a parent it's important to be supportive of what the coach does because what else can you do? On the other hand if you are critical and your son or any of the players get wind of it, that will cast doubt on what the coach is doing and that will almost surely sabotage their success.
Good point here. Even though you may disagree with the coach, good to be supportive. I know it has to be tough as you look at all the time, money, and effort spent on your son's basketball career.

JeffHaefner wrote:
There are so many ways to coach a game and there is no "better" or "best" way. There are a thousand different offenses, defenses, philosophies, and sub methods that have won championships. It''s not what you do, it's how you do it.
Another good point. I can see where you might not agree with his method, especially because he's only been with the team a short while. Keep in mind he doesn't have your perspective or reference point. He wasn't around when these kids played together back in the competitive basketball days.

Over the years, I can't tell you the number of times parents have offered their thoughts and advice on what we can do better in games. I filled in as a sub ref tonight in a game. The view from the other side of the fence was a bit different than my usual role as a coach.

Couple of questions? What was the record before this guy came on board? Have the last two seasons been losing seasons?

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PostPosted: 24 Jan 2013, 09:02 
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I think Jeff hit is right on point here..... The Grinnel system works for some... I saw a coach at my old school use it once on the Sophomore level... he won some and lost some. The point is, that the only people/players/parents that are happy, are the 5 or 6 that get the majority of the time.

I for one never bought into that style of play... that doesn't make it wrong. I played my best players, we were not very deep although we tried to bring some players along to increase our depth.... not an easy task.

Give this coach a chance to get his feet wet.. he will find out what does and does not work for his program. IF he is any good, he will make adjustments... all the good ones do.

There are many people who have said that the three point shot has ruined the game, especially at the high school level and below. It saved my program.... there came a point where I didn't have any post players to speak of... so we ran an open post looking for back door moves, takes to the basket and the three point shot. You better be able to hit some outside shots when teams zone you... ok, off the soap box for now.

But, as I always say... JMO AND, I bet a lot of those kids are having fun PLAYING.


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