From the Bench »


April 10, 2018

Give your team something to rally behind

by Kevin Hoffman, Editorial Director

Prior to each season, coaches typically call a team meeting to get their players fired up for the upcoming year. You can shout words of encouragement or challenge your team to put in the extra practice time, but there are more effective ways to help ...

April 5, 2018

Creating a summer open-gym regimen that gets results

by Chad Cluver, contributing writer

Offseason open-gym workouts — in which specific skill areas are focused on — have proven critical in preparing our teams for the following season. There was a time when we wanted to play as many summer-time games as possible. A couple of years a...

March 26, 2018

Player surveys take your program forward

by Kevin Hoffman, Editorial Director

As the season draws to a close, a coaching staff’s first job is to assess how it wants to improve the program before next year. But you can’t do that without knowing your weaknesses. Before players leave your gym, some for the last time, ask the...

March 15, 2018

Building genuine relationships with athletes

by Kevin Sutton, contributing writer

Genuine relationship building takes time, and coaches today have to make a conscious decision to forge these relationships with their players. The ability to communicate with players is an invaluable skill. These relationships allow coaches to earn ...

March 8, 2018

Setting expectations on and off the court

by Mike Durbin, contributing writer

The accomplishments of your players on the basketball court only represent half the battle. Part of a coach’s job is to help players develop character and prepare them for adult life. Here is a list of 10 expectations that you can give each of you...

youth sports
February 23, 2018

How varsity coaches can help their junior high counterparts

by Rick Elia, Union Township, Pennsylvania

Great Expectations is a novel written by Charles Dickens. Expectations — great or otherwise — are what every high school varsity basketball coach should have for the middle school coaches in their program. These should be clearly spelled out, be...

February 19, 2018

The 12 attributes of elite point guards

by Brian Roper, Lynden High School, Washington

Great point guard play is easy to recognize, but can be difficult to define. You can talk about John Stockton, Magic Johnson and Chris Paul, and everyone would agree they’re all great point guards. However, if you asked coaches what they want most ...

February 8, 2018

Making time for skill development in practice

by Kyle Ohman, Orlando, Florida

At the beginning of the season, you have many different things you must implement into your basketball practices, and unless you are fortunate enough to have a core group of returners to your program, you may have to reteach everything. You have to b...

February 1, 2018

Column: A challenge to get better every day

by Kevin Hoffman, Editorial Director

One year ago, I made a New Year’s resolution to read 25 books by the end of 2017. It was an ambitious goal, and one that came with a high probability of failure, but I didn’t let that discourage me. If you’re not willing to set your sights high...

January 30, 2018

Scouting the opposition

by Kevin Hoffman, Editorial Director

Tips for gathering and dissecting information that matters Scouting is agonizing for some coaches and simple for others, but the process of identifying tendencies of upcoming opponents is a lot easier for everyone if they have a system. Honey Brown,...