Quotes from the Jungle: Tigers, Huskies and Cougars

Here are some insights from some of the best college football coaches in the game today:

On the experience of the coaching profession: “You have to enjoy the whole journey. Enjoy all it. You have to enjoy the bad, you have to enjoy the good.” – Dabo Swinney, Clemson Tigers Head Football Coach (August 23, 2016 – Jim Rome Show)

On defining yourself in regards to your coaching career: “My identity is not tied up in being a football coach or being the coach at Clemson. My identity is tied up to who I am as a man, and being a father to three sons, and being a husband and being a good citizen, you know, trying to serve my community. That’s what my identity is tied up in. I love coaching football, I’m passionate about it, that’s what I do. But I’m so much more than that.” – Dabo Swinney, Clemson Tigers Head Football Coach (August 23, 2016 – Jim Rome Show)

On building a program and the patience it requires: “I think the results are probably slower to come than we had hoped for and expected. You know, it’s been an awesome, and a hard, and a frustrating, and a rewarding two and a half years. And what I mean by that is that, this just a tough process. And I think a lot of times when you come in from the outside and your trying to establish your way of doing things it just takes some darn time to get things done. After two and a half years, we feel like the process is in place and we feel really good about it.” Chris Petersen, Washington Huskies Head Football Coach (August 18, 2016 – Jim Rome Show)

On keeping players focused despite social media: “It’s hard because they’re bombarded with messages each and every day. The social media is a blessing and a curse. It allows us to get our message out to our fans and recruits but it also bombards our players.I think our culture is so insulating though that I’d be a fool to think that our guys didn’t hear it but, the thing I’m probably most proud of is that they don’t listen to it. They understand that our goals internally are the only ones that matter and that our goals will never change. It doesn’t matter what last years team did or how good last years team was. What matters is this is the 2016 team and quite frankly we haven’t done anything yet.” – Tom Herman, Houston Cougars Head Football Coach (August 18, 2016 – Jim Rome Show)

“You can win as many games as you want but if the culture is not there it’s not sustainable.” – Tom Herman, Houston Cougars Head Football Coach (August 18, 2016 – Jim Rome Show)

Follow Bert DeSalvo on Twitter @CoachDeSalvo


Morning Discussion on a Company’s Culture

I had conversation with a VP of Sales for an prestigious New England company this morning.

The individual cited the following reasons for not retaining or hiring individuals in the company:

  1. Didn’t have the right personality
  2. Not mature enough
  3. Didn’t fit the company’s culture
  4. Were not able to get the job done without daily supervision/Different mindset

This is something to think about when hiring an assistant or if you are looking for your next coaching position/career…do you fit the culture?

Follow Bert DeSalvo on Twitter @CoachDeSalvo

Dabo Swinney & The Clemson Way

Here is an article from the most recent AFCA Magazine that features on Dabo Swinney and the Clemson Football program.

AFCA Magazine – Eye of the Tigers – Paul Markgraff – May-June 2016

I think his sentiment regarding relationship and culture building stood out for me the most.

Follow Bert DeSalvo on Twitter @CoachDeSalvo

The Grass Isn’t Always Greener: More Than Just Championships

Thunder Road – Sports Illustrated – Lee Jenkins – May 30, 2016

This article by Lee Jenkins of Sports Illustrated show’s why Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook may stay in Oklahoma City no matter what their fate is this season in their quest to the NBA Championship.

It just goes to show that despite the yearly coaching carousel, the mass exodus by transfers every year in college basketball and NBA free agents bolting for the money, maybe, just maybe, Durant and Westbrook are mature beyond their years.

Sometimes the grass is not always greener and quality of life and building a lasting legacy will mean more down the road.

Follow Bert DeSalvo on Twitter @CoachDeSalvo




Jay Wright, Villanova MBB – Coach & Athletic Director Article

Here is an article from April 2010 on Jay Wright and Villanova men’s basketball as they tip off in the Sweet 16 vs. Miami (FL) in just a few minutes!

Jay Wright’s 4-Out, 1-In Motion Offense – Coach & Athletic Director – April 2010

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The Value of Championships: A Kansas Lesson


As Selection Sunday was unveiled last night, the Kansas Jayhawks were slotted as the overall No. 1 seed.

This has set the stage for the Jayhawks and Head Coach Bill Self to finish one of the most historic seasons in recent college basketball history.

Kansas has not only won the Maui Invitational, their 12th consecutive Big 12 Regular Season Championship, and the Big 12 Conference Tournament, but they also won the 2015 World University Games in Gwangju, South Korea, as Team USA defeated Germany, 84-77. That version of Team USA consisted of the almost the entire Jayhawk roster and gives them an added championship pedigree (USA – Germany box).

This means that Kansas has already won four different championships this season.

Essentially, Self’s Jayhawks could win their fifth championship this season if they can win six more games in the upcoming National Tournament.

It begs the question, how much did it value Kansas to play the type of competition it did in the World University Games? It can be argued that this tournament will be more challenging then any games in the NCAA Tournament and rhat it really helped prepare Kansas for their rigorous Big 12 regular season.

After the gold medal win in July, Self acknowledged that “‘It’s a huge thrill, a huge honor. Our team really bonded and came together. To win it the way we won it — playing against a Germany team that outplayed us a majority of the game — we were dead tired, no legs, no lift, couldn’t make a shot and willed ourselves to win.'”

Although Kansas may not eventually cut down the mets, their championships still have provided the elite program with an opportunity to test themselves throughout the season and be as prepared as possible.

It seems that throughout college basketball, more preseason tournaments should play for championships, especially at D2 & D3 levels,  and not just have an exempt weekend where games are played for regional rankings.

There is value to winning a championship at any level of college basketball, as it prepares teams for the quick turnaround and focus that postseason play requires.

Follow Bert DeSalvo on Twitter @CoachDeSalvo




Attendance in Women’s Basketball

Here is a interesting piece by Serena Elavia of the Atlantic that discusses the difficulties of attendance in women’s basketball and ways to promote attendance growth (See Elavia’s article)

What are some of the things your school or program has done to increase attendance? Please leave your feedback below to share with the coaching community.

Follow Bert DeSalvo on Twitter @CoachDeSalvo