This week, dozens of assistant coaches and administrators are meeting at the Nike campus in Beaverton, Ore. The Villa 7, an annual event sponsored by Virginia Commonwealth and Nike, aims to connect aspiring assistant coaches with some of the game's top decision-makers. The event, which helped Smart and a multitude of future head coaches earn their first jobs, offers a speed-dating session that helps assistants network and establish those critical relationships.
And it's a great chance to put yourself in a situation where you'll be in front of some people [who] make the decisions," said Ohio State assistant Jeff Boals, who's attending the event this week. But a lack of head-coaching experience is a giant obstacle in their collective plight. Most schools, even at the mid-major level, would rather hire someone who's led a program than a reputable assistant coach who hasn't.
Former Illinois head coach Bruce Weber's free-agent status lasted for a few weeks until Kansas State signed him. Southern Methodist didn't seek an assistant on the rise to fill its opening. The Mustangs tapped year-old Larry Brown, who hasn't coached college basketball since the late '80s. That comes into effect when you're going after jobs in the smaller leagues.
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When you've been an assistant, they want to know how is he going to be? He's never been a head coach before. I'd say that's a question that comes up. Winthrop's Pat Kelsey former Xavier and Wake Forest assistant and Florida International's Richard Pitino former Louisville and Florida assistant -- both under 40 -- became head coaches for the first time. Virginia Tech locked up Johnson, who was an assistant with the Hokies before he took a job as a Clemson assistant last month. He returned to Va. Tech when Seth Greenberg was fired.
Ray received the offer as he stood in a line for a beignet, a sweet Southern treat, during the Final Four in New Orleans. Ray credits his former bosses Purdue's Matt Painter and Clemson's Brad Brownell for boosting his reputation, especially among search agencies. Ray was an associate head coach at Clemson.
And that position, Ray said, helped him earn his new post with the Bulldogs.
I think when you get that title, it lets athletic directors and administrators know who's a person on that staff to identify as probably the next head coach or a person [who's] ready to step out and become a head coach," he said. Kelsey said he never worried about becoming a head coach during his time as an assistant at Wake Forest and Xavier.
When the late Skip Prosser offered him a job as Wake's director of basketball operations, he also gave the young coach some advice that he's consulted throughout his career. It's all the administrative stuff. Don't worry about the next job. You crush it where you're at and you worry about one thing: Most coaches have full-time jobs see 1 above , so practice has to happen later in the day. Figure it out before the season starts so things stay as un-stressful as possible. This all takes time and planning—for both of you. Even the college-aged ones. Even after they leave his team and head off to college, or start coaching a team of their own, or get married and start a family of their own.
The coaches are like his brothers and one actually is his brother. Accolades go to everyone, not only to him as the head coach. This is a winning recipe for a healthy coaching brotherhood or sisterhood , and an excellent example of good leadership.
Assistants face long road to top
No, not a literal cheerleader. More of a champion.
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And, not all fake; you have to mean it. You need to be supportive of the endeavor, the heart that goes into it all. Your kids, if you have them, need to see that you support your spouse. Be positive, listen, and provide perspective. What you can do, though, is listen. Be an ear, help look at the bright side when things are frustrating and tough, and provide third party perspective. The benefit of not being too close to the team itself is that you see things differently.
Not as a coach. Not as a player.
6 Things To Know About Being A Coach’s Spouse
Not as a parent of a player. Subscribe here to have delightfully chic and sometimes snarky opinions on must-have experiences delivered straight to your inbox! My long-term boyfriend and I have been struggling lately with the time-constraints of coaching life, especially because his team is doing so well this year. Mind you, off season is not this way, and he treats me wonderfully! Something emotionally bothering me? And yes, he is exhausted. Any advice would help!
Then, tell him how you feel, ways you think things could improve — on both your ends. Just my initial reaction. I can tell my husband is frustrated with my lack of support and the only thing I feel like I can do is say sorry because I feel like such a non-priority. Maybe the answer is that during basketball season, you find something to do that brings you just as much joy as coaching basketball does for him. Could be that you find somewhere to volunteer, or maybe you join a book club.
Always wanted to take up knitting? I wanted to thank you for posting this. I have been with my boyfriend for two years and with each year he becomes a greater coach. I am proud of him, he is caring, strong and just an overall great guy. But coaching takes time, energy and just about everything from him. It is uplifting that there are marriages that can survive the coaching lifestyle.
I currently have been struggling with feeling alone in this basketball season, the thought of this lifestyle being manageable was unheard of until I read your post. I would definitely find something that fills your bucket during the season and in those off-season times where the coach still has things to do.
The point is to do a little work to make sure you fill your own bucket, outside of just him. I appreciate your positive outlook in this article. Over the years, the sport has begun to take up more and more family time year round. Needless to say, between my kids sports schedules and his, we have very little time together as a family and I feel like I have to fight for him to make the time. I work and have my own life but I feel more and more disconnected. Are you saying this is normal and I should be supportive?
For assistants, it's a long road to become a head coach
When he was coaching high school, it meant March 1 through the middle of June. Like you, our lives are busy kids are 12 and 8 — both kids have sports activities throughout the year, among other activities. We usually get a little time together in the evenings, but generally as introverts enjoy doing our own thing once the kids are in bed.
We try once a month, or so, to get out and do something together. So, to answer your question… I think you should be supportive of one another. Do you have any advice for how to help your husband when the season is not going well? What age does he coach? My husband loves coaching girls basketball. This caused so much strife. He rarely spent time with our son or me, and the time with my daughter was way too intense for a child. He is now my ex-husband.
My husband is a soccer coach of two rep teams. EACH team has two to three practices a week and a game per week during soccer season many which are away games. I feel like I rarely see him during the evenings. Of course, in between the games and practices, there are many discussions and phone calls that are soccer related.