• ‘Coach K’ Proud Recipient of Lincoln Award

    Posted: May 3rd, 2014

    Mike Krzyzewski woke up early Saturday, elated to do something he rarely can.

    The Duke and USA Olympic men’s basketball coach, winner of two gold medals and four NCAA national championships, went on a tour of his old haunts on the city’s Northwest side.

    He met his sister-in-law for a “nostalgic tour” and they visited the grave sites of his brother and his parents, his alma mater, the now-closed Weber High School, and his old house on the 2000 block of West Cortez Street.

    “I hope I always have that spirit, that I grew up in Chicago,” he said. “The pride of being part of something bigger than you, and the pride of representing something that is worthy of being represented. And Chicago is that.”

    “Coach K” was in town to accept the Order of Lincoln Award at the Art Institute of Chicago from Gov. Pat Quinn. The Lincoln Award is the state’s highest and is presented to ”those from Illinois who have brought honor to the state with their achievements.”

    Krzyzewski has helped mold some of the brightest basketball stars in the city’s recent history. He addressed Derrick Rose, the Simeon product who hopes to play for Team USA in the 2016 Olympics; Jabari Parker, a likely top-3 NBA draft pick from Simeon who’s leaving Duke after one season; and Jahlil Okafor, Whitney Young’s consensus No. 1 high school player in the country who will play for the Blue Devils in 2014-15.

    “I think the common thread is that they’re just really good guys,” Krzyzewski said of the triumvirate. “They’re great players and they’re great guys. Sometimes that combination is not there. And they’re humble. You’re really talking about three of the best kids.”

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    Source: http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/college/ct-krzyzewski-award-spt-0504-20140504,0,5846469.story


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
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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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
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