As I talk about planning practices I can't help but think back to my time as a player. I played on a high school team that would beat you by 25 and only score 55 points.
I will let you do the math on that.
We had an old-school mentality where defense was the only thing that mattered and you were going to have to work your butt off to put the ball in the hole. Our mindset was based on the idea that in March you needed to win four in a row to get to the state tournament and the chances that you shot the ball poorly at least once was really high.
So, you needed to be able to find a way to win. And for us, that was our defense.
On the flip side, our offense struggled. We were super inconsistent. I remember scoring under 40 points in an overtime game early in the week and then scoring 45 in the first half a couple days later. You seemed to know what you were going to get from us defensively, but our offense was up in the air.
But we understood that part of becoming great at one aspect means that you had to sacrifice time working on other things. In my 12 years of coaching & training, I see so many teams that are average at a lot of thing, but not great at anything.
In essence, they are the jack of all trades, master of none.
I understand it as well as anyone. As I write this I am thinking about my own ADHD tendencies. I tend to bounce from one thing to the other. We start working on something and not of nowhere, an idea or something else pops into my head and I am off to the races on something else.
It’s not that I am not focused, I just don’t have A SINGULAR FOCUS.
And I think that becomes our mindset as coaches all too often. We play a single game and we struggle with the other team’s 1-2-2 full court press, so the next day at practice we spend half of our practice time working on beating a 1-2-2. But we fail to look at the fact that only one team all year has played a 1-2-2 against us. And when we think about our offense, the issues that we had against the 1-2-2 are the same issues that we are having getting into our half court offense.
Now, when we look at our practice schedule we have spent 50% of our time on something that we see 5% of the time. We are definitely getting better at beating a 1-2-2 full court press, but at what cost?
Our offense still can’t get the ball entered, we don’t understand spacing and we can’t score. But we can beat a 1-2-2.
Now, I’m not saying that coaches shouldn’t work on something that they struggle with. What I am saying is that we have to use less emotion and more reason when making decisions on what to work on.
Because if we don’t, we become the jack of all trades and we won’t master anything.