• To realise a sporting dream

    Posted: December 2nd, 2010

    In 2005, myself and 15 coaches from Australia traveled on a study tour to the USA, Turkey and China, visiting many wonderful coaches and universities along the way. We met Coach Fran O’Hanlon, Coach Jay Wright, The late Coach Skip Prosser, Coach Roy Williams, Coach Phil Martelli, Coach Fran Dunphy, Coach Bruiser Flint Coach Gail Goestenkors and of course Coach K.

    Being a Duke fan from as far back when Gene “Tinkerbell” Banks played at Durham, I was so excited to be going to see Duke. When I landed at Raleigh – Durham Airport, it was a warm sunny morning and I felt that I had been there before but of course had not. When we entered the Duke Campus, I was taking my time walking up from the lower car parking area and some one asked if I was ok, I said to them, I am about to realize my sporting dream as being so far away in Australia, I never thought I would visit Duke, let alone watch a practice session in Cameron Indoor Center.

    We spent a week watching the Duke teams practice and got to meet the staff and of course our mentor for the group was a 20 year friend of Coach K and he had arranged for us to meet him and the staff including Gerry Brown and all of the staff in the Duke Basketball office.

    Coach K was speaking to us and he mentioned that there was a particular person who had been a fan for longer than he had been at Duke, well he called me up and nearly s… myself. I got to shake hands and meet a coach that I have watched through the good and lean times at Duke and have followed his coaching philosophy from Coach Knight, through to Coach K’s present team ( 2010 ).

    He was a great person and really made us all feel welcome, we watched the Blue / White Scrimmage and I then realized, I had lived my sporting dream, I watched a Duke team at Cameron Indoor and had met Coach K.

    Just recently I had the opportunity to meet Coach Johnny Dawkins in Germany this summer and mentioned my visit, obviously he did not remember details, but he was as nice and friendly and I will now also follow Stanford while he is there….

    I will never forget my visit to Duke and meeting the staff and Coach K, it was a gift.


    Alan Mc ( Melbourne, Australia )

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

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

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

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 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

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

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

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

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
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