Living in STL and listening to STL sports station (101.1) I heard an interesting interview a couple hours ago.
Jerry Brewer of the Washington Post
“Missouri Coach Dennis Gates Could Transform College Basketball”
Google: Jerry Brewer Washington Post if you’re interested in the take. (Or you can probably hear the interview on 101.1 online) Worthwhile perspective that is timely in light of this boards opposing views re BU. (Too disrespectful to players vs all is fair because tough love is what they need)
Summation of the interview:
He has a very interesting, though not necessarily new, point of view. He believes the next wave of generational coaches will be those that treat players differently than the current group of old school coaches. He believes more and more players will gravitate to schools based on how coaches “connect “ with players, and that even coaches that aren’t getting the one and done caliber players will do better long term because of player buy-in and lack of mass exodus.
These coaches, according to Brewer, get to know their players in a deeper way, give them encouragement while also giving tough love. But more than anything, they figure out how each player needs to be coached and communicated with, and fits his communication style to that persons needs. (Not a new concept in corporate America)
Brewer spoke at length about a transition to coaches, specifically Gates and Jerome Tang of K St were his examples, that are able to control their emotions and, in turn, this connects the coach and player through emotional intelligence and forms a unique bond that plays in todays world. He believes this will be the direction coaching will go versus the in your face, my way or the Highway mentality. Coaches will adapt their communication style to the players individual needs as opposed to the coach making players adapt to how the coach wants to communicate with them. Brewer believes this style will tap into the most potential from players, teams, etc. It is what makes players buy into offensive sets and execute the plan, they adopt the culture seamlessly, and it builds trust and a bond that is stronger than normal, and the results on the court will evident.
He says it’s why Dennis Gates turned Cleveland State so quickly, and why Mizzou is on the trajectory they are on in year one of a train wreck. Gates has created a bond that goes beyond I’m the coach and you’ll do what I say. He’s taken mid level talent and adopted a communication style and bond with players that is so much stronger than the typical player/coach relationship.
Hey, it’s not for everyone….but it was an interesting interview at an opportune time to get my interest.
I admittedly agree with much of what Brewer talked about. As an anecdote I will provide my opinion:
Like it or not, the world that has changed and continues to change and evolve at a rapid rate. More than ever, it seems all we hear and read anymore is to be inclusive of other views and perspectives. To treat one another, regardless of differences pertaining to faith, race, gender, sexual orientation, neuro-typical vs neuro-diverse minds, etc, with respect and acceptance. The momentum of the inclusion/diversity movement cannot be stopped. (Nor should it be)
To this end, those who believe we shouldn’t want kids here who can’t accept tough love or disrespectful, in your face screaming and mother-effing from BU simply are missing the point, in my opinion. All people should be treated with respect. Tough love is great, but it is a subjective opinion regarding what’s too much. That, my friends, varies from person to person.
One example: It’s been fairly apparent all season that Jayden Epps is neither too high, nor too low, as a person and as a basketball player. (I believe we can agree on that) We’ve all seen his body language when BU is 3 inches from his face and screaming obscenities at him. Seriously, for a kid who is very even keeled - does anyone think that style of coaching will be a motivating factor to him? I don’t believe it would be. Now we are worrying JE may be looking for another landing spot. The kid is tough as nails and very talented. I hope JE stays the course, though I cannot blame him should he leave because the BU communication style is not what he’s looking for. Would it not be more beneficial for BU to amend his approach as needed? It’s potentially archaic to believe that players need to be screamed at and humiliated on national tv in order to make a point. Perhaps for some….but shouldn’t it be what communication style is most effective for that particular player?
For me, what Brewer says makes a lot of sense. Common sense to be honest. No, it isn’t a be all end all….but I bet we see this evolution occurring at a much more rapid pace in the next number of years and the data (wins, losses, etc) will support the theory.
Long post, I know. Hopefully someone will enjoy reading Brewer’ take as I found the interview quite engaging and interesting.
Either way….much love to Illini nation regardless where you stand on this topic.
I L L . . . .