From the Bench »


June 7, 2016

Culture is king when building a successful program

I've had some amazing opportunities over the last 10 years, working with some of the best people players and organizations in the world. And as I write this piece, I'm in the midst of a huge transition to Liberty University as the men's basketball st...

April 1, 2016

Laying the foundation for a successful program

Whether you're taking over a successful program or a team that has seen better days, it's important to consider how to build a strong foundation when you step in as head basketball coach. I took over a program several years ago that was relatively s...

February 17, 2016

Halftime adjustments to spark your team

Rarely do you find a basketball game that plays exactly the same from the first half to the second. Teams go into the locker room at halftime, and make critical adjustments. But when one team plays better, the other one plays worse. So what happens ...

February 13, 2016

Four point guard rules for attacking zone defense

Point guards need to know the difference between being a passer who hits the open player, and one who creates openings. Anyone can throw a pass to an open player, but the great point guards know how to find and attack openings, especially against a z...

January 22, 2016

’40-and-Under Club’ motivates defenses

Philosophy and technique are important components in a great defense. A coach must work tirelessly to ensure that his or her team utilizes the basic defensive fundamentals. A critical factor however that must not be overlooked while preparing your t...

January 13, 2016

Making the case for cuts

One of the most difficult times for any coach is tryouts. Some schools have programs where the numbers dictate the need for making cuts. No coach enjoys this part of the job — not a single one. Making cuts is not only difficult for athletes and par...

February 20, 2014

Get your team ready for the stretch run

Winning Hoops asked some of basketball's best coaching minds to offer their game-tested tips for finishing the season strong. Here's what they had to say. "Run short, intense practices. At this time in the season, it's important to motivate your s...

January 13, 2014

The seven signs of a struggling coach

I recently read an article about the seven characteristics of unhappy people. It made me think about my teaching and coaching, and the happy and unhappy coaches I compete against. I began to consider the seven signs of an unhappy coach, which transl...

January 13, 2014

Keys to developing young post players

Even though post play has been somewhat diminished with the dribble-drive offense and the high screen and roll offensive sets, it's still a skill that must be concentrated on and emphasized. There will never be a lack of importance for a player who i...

January 13, 2014

Going his own way

by Kevin Hoffman, Editorial Director

John Hutchcraft isn't much for scheming and play calling. If a player has the ball and they're open, shoot it — it's that simple. Some coaches might scoff at that philosophy, but it's difficult to argue with a coach who has nearly as many champion...