• Family

    Posted: November 18th, 2011

    I am a retired Marine. For three fantastic years (I’ve been a Duke basketball fan since the eighties), I was the Assistant Marine Officer Instructor at Duke. Needless to say, my entire family have become Dukies. In 2006, my two boys were checking in for camp, and my wife Cindy was in the line for Coach K autographs. You made her year! When she told you that I was a Marine and had been in the battle of Fallujah, you gave her a hug, signed a ball for me that I treasure, and called your daughter with the husband then in Iraq over to introduce her.
    You had me with the leadership evident in the carraige and comportment I saw in your players while on campus (I met pretty much all of the members of the 2001 team around campus at one point or another), and of course your service to your country. What you did with my wife was for her one of the most special moments of her life and cemented her as a Duke and Coach K fan forever. For that special moment, a wonderfully inscribed basketball, and for my sons still talking about who they let on their bus, I thank you.

    1stSgt Brant Young
    USMC (Ret.)


No matter how successful you believe yourself to be, you can never feel as if you’ve reached the absolute pinnacle. There are always new and wonderful challenges out there, and part of maintaining success is knowing when you need to accept them.

- Coach K

Effective teamwork begins and ends with communication. Communication does not always occur naturally, and must be taught and practiced in order to bring everyone together as one. The most crucial element of communicating is telling the truth.

- Coach K

Belief can mean the difference between a fear of failure and the courage to try. On a team or in a family, belief makes each individual stronger and also fortifies the group as a whole. The basis of belief is in individual relationships.

- Coach K

Take care not to allow one aspect of your life to so consume you that you neglect the others. Balance can put things in perspective, can bring you joy even when you are down, and can allow you to be at your best in all aspects of your life.

- Coach K
Collective Responsibility

We win and we lose together. Handling the responsibility for wins and losses together removes the burden from one individual’s shoulders and distributes it among each member of the team. That atmosphere is conducive to high-level performance and places you and your team in the position to be bold and unafraid, and if you should lose, you are not alone.

- Coach K

You can possess countless good qualities as an individual, but if you don”t have the courage to proceed, you may never see those qualities come into fruition. It takes courage to put what you believe to be best of you on the line, to test it, and to see how far it takes you. Courage means daring to do what you imagine.

- Coach K

Adversity can teach you more about yourself than any success, and overcoming an obstacle can sometimes feel even better than achieving an easy victory. Through adversity, you can discover things about your endurance, your ability to turn a negative into a positive, and your personal strength of heart.

- Coach K

When you care about someone or something, you show genuine concern for that person or thing, in good times or bad. When you care about one another and about your purpose, you are compelled to put your feelings into action. Care creates an atmosphere that breeds success and gives you the confidence to try again.

- Coach K

When you are winning, your commitment is never challenged. But loyalty and dedication during difficult times can be tough. When commitment doesn’t waver, that’s when you have the greatest chance of winning. You can never give up.

- Coach K

You have to adapt what you do based on who you are. In teaching, you must remember that no group or individual is the same as who you taught the day before, the year before, or the decade before. Your plan has to suit who you and your team are right now.

- Coach K
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