24 Mar Don’t Be Fooled!
As we grow and fall deeper into the AAU and club basketball world, we find the uglier side of things that aren’t so great when dealing with youth sports. Recently, we have built a pretty strong high school team and we look around, meet college coaches and hear what other AAU coaches talk about it becomes a harsh reality that lots of parents are being fooled.
I got off the phone with a Div 1 coach the other day and during that conversation he explained to me how more that half of AAU coaches talk their players up and when the colleges go to watch the player is no where close to what was said. From the information we gathered it seems that players are being over hyped and parents are being undersold. Basically, by the end of the conversation the consensus was that AAU coaches are telling parents what they want to hear and telling college coaches lies to help further their clubs. Things like we know people, our program has connections to colleges, we will build your player up and the worst of all; we will get your player a college scholarship or a Varsity spot on his team. NONE of the this guaranteed no matter who you know. So as a parents here are some questions to ask before joining a program that is making promises:
How do you build your players? Do you practice twice a week, once a week, once every two weeks? Having a practice once a week does nothing for players.
What is your coaching philoshopy? What offenses do your run, how are your defensive game plans? What breakdowns do you do to make sure your team goals are met.
What is your player turn around? New faces every week?
Do you have milestone goals set for you teams? Offense, defense and overall team improvement over the long haul. Do you care about longevity?
Where do you players come from? Do you bring them from other teams for tournaments, do you fly players out or how does my player benefit if players come from other teams to make a good showing in a tournament?
Do you care about rankings? How do you feel rankings help a young player even though the rankings system is run by random people who have no clout with middle school hoops or even high school?
These questions are a great way to see where a coaches heart lies. Is it about building a team or building a program. Longevity lacks in todays AAU world so finding a program that cares more about your player then its name will be the best thing for your player. Put the wins and losses aside. At the end of the day, you are paying coaches to improve your player and the team around him, not to get wins. These are our two cents, don’t be fooled as a parent and look out for the long term not the short term. That will provide ultimate success as a person and a player.