Back during my coaching days, before I got into administration, I was fortunate enough to coach some great teams…some championship teams. In the last couple of weeks I have run into some of my former players who are now grown with families of their own. It was good seeing them and talking about the good times we had. It got me to thinking about those teams and the players that I had coached over the years. It didn’t matter whether it was Jr. High teams or Varsity teams, the same formula for success was present in each one.
Obviously having players with talent is a big plus. I was blessed to have players with a lot of talent. That made my job a lot easier. Many of them ended up with scholarships and playing at the college level. Talent was a big part of our success, but it wasn’t the only factor.
Another characteristic of these players that helped make our teams successful was that they had a desire to win. Sure it was fun to play, but if you are going to play the game, you play to win. That’s why you keep score, right?
Because of the desire to win, we worked hard. We didn’t just go through the motions. We practiced hard. We played hard. We had a plan and we practiced according to that plan. Sometimes during our practices or in our games something came up that wasn’t a part of the plan. We made adjustments and took the opportunity — whatever it was — and made the best of it.
Talent, a desire to win, and hard work doesn’t mean much if you can’t play together as a team. This is very important. Teams are made up of players who all have individual jobs and responsibilities. One person cannot do it all. Each player relies on the other players. When they believe in each other, when they trust that their teammates will take care of their responsibilities, the team will thrive. The team will be successful.
When you have talent, a desire to win, work hard, and can work together, you have the potential to be a great team. Come to think of it, these are the same components of a great faculty. It may be a different kind of team and a different kind of game, but if we all have these same attributes we can be a successful team as well.